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Hebrides News


ORCA is a UK whale and dolphin conservation charity dedicated to the long-term protection of whales, dolphins and porpoises.


It coordinates a network of volunteers across the UK who collect data about whales, dolphins and porpoises, helping with marine conservation efforts across the country.


The body’s OceanWatch programme brings together shipping companies across Europe to collect data on marine mammals to increase understanding of the animals' distribution around the coast.


This year’s OceanWatch saw 302 sightings of marine mammals off the west coast plus exciting encounters with basking sharks.


Common dolphins were the most abundant species spotted across the Mallaig to the Small Isles, Oban to Colonsay and Oban to Coll, Tiree and Barra routes, followed by harbour porpoise, grey seals and minke whales.


A new programme of surveys in the Hebrides starts in the spring.


Cal Mac appoints wildlife officer

24 November 2017

CalMac has taken on a wildlife officer to help educate crew and passengers about marine life across the west coast.


Andy Gilbert has been seconded from wildlife charity ORCA to work as a full-time conservation expert across the ferry fleet.


The shipping operator has been partnering with wildlife charity ORCA for four years monitoring mammals in the Minch.


The two organisations are now working together to expand their conservation work next summer.