Latest Sea Mammal Sightings and Photos
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- these records will be used in the compilation of the Shetland Sea
Thursday 18th November 2004
A Minke Whale was in Colgrave Sound.
Tuesday 16th November 2004
A Minke Whale was in Bressay Sound in the south mouth of Lerwick
Wednesday 29th September 2004
There are about 40 Harbour Porpoises and a Minke Whale in South
A whale was also seen in Scalloway harbour, possibly a Sei Whale, but this
would be exceptional so close inshore.
Friday 10th September 2004
There were 2 large Minke Whales close in off the north side of
Tuesday 7th September 2004
A minimum of 6 Risso's Dolphins were off
Bard Head, Bressay, shoaling fish from about 1.50pm. They were present for at
least one hour when they kept moving east and then returning back inshore.
Thursday 26th August 2004
A Minke Whale was seen several times off Mousa.
Tuesday 24th August 2004
Tom Thomason reports 40 probable White-sided Dolphins
in Colgrave Sound.
Sunday 15th August 2004
A Minke Whale was off Mousa and another was possibly seen off Skeld.
Saturday 14th August 2004
A Minke Whale was in Dury Voe and the White-sided Dolphins were
back in Vassa Voe.
Tuesday 10th August 2004
Two bits of a very old whale carcass have washed ashore at Haroldswick.
Friday 6th August 2004
There were at least 18 White-sided Dolphins in Vassa Voe, Nesting,
from mid-afternoon until well into evening. They were in two groups at first,
with 6 close in, more or less opposite the school and at least another 12 almost
as far out as the point of Railsbrough. The further out group appeared to be
vigorously herding and feeding on fish while those further in were just
circling. Eventually the main group swam in to join the near shore group and
continued vigorously swimming and breaching.
White-sided Dolphins at Vassa Voe - videograbs by Austin Taylor
There is also a brief piece of video (1MB) here:
If you have problems, go to the SSMG homepage (http://www.seamammal.shetland.co.uk)
and then download the file by right clicking on the link (NEW! Atlantic
White-Dolphins, Vassa Voe, 6 August 2004 (1MB) - Windows media video NEW!) and
then choose "save link to disk" (or similar, depending on your browser).
A pod of 7 Killer Whales passed through Bluemull Sound this afternoon.
Thursday 5th August 2004
There are still 2 Minke Whales feeding off Mousa with at least 10 Harbour Porpoises also there.
At least 13 Harbour Porpoises are off Sumburgh Head.
Wednesday 4th August 2004
There were 2 Minke Whales feeding off East Ham, Mousa between 16:20
and 16:.50 at least with at least 12 Harbour Porpoises also there.
A belated report of 6 Killer Whales at Baltasound (presumably off
Balta rather than in the voe).
Tuesday 3rd August 2004
Whales were seen from the Fair Isle ferry just off Sumburgh Head.
Sunday 1st August 2004
A pod of 4-5 Killer
Whales, including one male, was in Yell Sound at mid-day. Disturbed by two
successive ferries, they swam back out of the sound towards Ollaberry,
disappearing round the point of the ness at Toft.
Thursday 29th July 2004
A Bottlenose Dolphin has been reported from Olnafirth; there are no
confirmed Shetland records.
Monday 26th July 2004
There are 5 Harbour Porpoises in Mousa Sound.
Wednesday 14th July 2004
A Harbour Porpoises was in Brei Wick, Lerwick.
Thursday 8th July 2004
There were 3 Harbour Porpoises off Sand of Sand, Fetlar.
Tuesday 5th July 2004
A Minke Whale and a Harbour Porpoise were seen off Sumburgh
Tuesday 29th June 2004
There were 2 Minke Whales, around 10 Harbour Porpoise and 5
White-sided Dolphins off Sumburgh Head.
Saturday 26th June 2004
A pod of 5 Killer Whales, including one bull, moved
south off Hermaness in the mid-afternoon.
Monday 7th June 2004
There were at least 3 Harbour Porpoises in
Voe of Cullingsburgh, Bressay,
yesterday at approx. 1.30pm, and one in the same
place this morning at 8 am.
Thursday 3rd June 2004
At least 5 Killer Whales (including 2 youngsters and a bull) were off
Sumburgh Head from around 10 am - 11 ish. Approached from the north, swam down
the east of the head around head then into the bay between the lighthouse and
Horse island before swimming south then east.
Wednesday 2nd June 2004
Nicky Davies saw 4 Harbour Porpoises in Noss Sound at about 9:30 pm
and, briefly at about 9:55 pm, 3 Killer Whales in Voe of Cullingsburgh,
Bressay, possibly heading east.
A large whale, believed to be Sei Whale, surfaced
twice near the Hamnavoe, Burra Light.
Wednesday 26th May 2004
A single White-sided Dolphin was in Brei Wick, Lerwick, in the early
evening and there were 3 Harbour Porpoises in Burra Firth, Unst.
Tuesday 25th May 2004
A Harbour Porpoise was off the Bressay lighthouse.
Monday 24th May 2004
A pod of 6 Killer Whales were seen in the late afternoon, moving south
off the Bard of Bressay.
Saturday 8th May 2004
A single Atlantic White-sided Dolphin was observed swimming close to
shore at the head of Garths Voe in Sullom Voe all day (it had also been seen the
previous day) but at about 3:15pm it stranded. After examination by a vet it was
put down and later taken for post mortem analysis.
Thursday 29th April 2004
There were 6 Killer Whales, including one bull, at the mouth of
Wednesday 14th April 2004
'Some' Killer Whales were reported in Brei Wick, Lerwick today.
Friday 19th March 2004
A group of 6 Risso's Dolphins moved through Bluemull
Sound during the day.
Wednesday 18th February 2004
There are 4 Harbour Porpoises in Burra Firth.
Thursday 16th October 2003
At least 100 White-sided Dolphins and about 6 White-beaked
Dolphins were in Bluemull Sound in the evening.
Friday 3rd October 2003
Hugh Sim reported about 50 dolphins, presumably White-sided
Dolphins in these numbers, heading south in Brei Wick, Lerwick.
Tuesday 23rd September 2003
Sandy Smith saw at least 6 Risso's Dolphins
in Uyea Sound (identified from a photograph and description).
This Common Seal was photographed by Micky Maher at
Saturday 20th September 2003
A Minke Whale was seen from the Out Skerries ferry.
Sunday 14th September 2003
There were 2 White-sided Dolphins at
the head of Whiteness Voe.
Thursday 11th September 2003
A Basking Shark was at Belmont at
about 7:00 am.
Wednesday 10th September 2003
There were 3 White-sided Dolphins at
the head of Whiteness Voe.
Tuesday 9th September 2003
A pod of 15 Killer Whales was reported
in the Bay of Quendale in the early morning.
Thursday 4th September 2003
A Basking Shark and 6 Risso's Dolphins were seen
in Wick of Tresta, Fetlar, and another Basking Shark was in Mousa Sound.
Wednesday 3rd September 2003
The Bluemull ferry crew had a pod of twelve unidentified dolphins pass
through the sound in the evening.
Monday 1st September 2003
A Basking Shark spent a couple of hours off South Ness, Foula, and there were
up to 4 Harbour Porpoises there as well.
The Foula Basking Shark - photo Russell Wynn
Friday 29th August 2003
There was a group of 5 White-sided Dolphins at the head of
Weisdale Voe at about 08:30.
Monday 25th August 2003
Willie Mouat saw 3-4 Minke Whales in Harold's Wick in the evening.
Saturday 16th August 2003
Willie Mouat saw at least 6 Killer Whales moving north through
Bluemull Sound at about 18:30.
Tuesday 12th August 2003
Off Hermaness, there were at least 100 dolphins in the morning NW of
Muckle Flugga before moving NE with the majority being White-sided
Dolphins, although there were at least 1 or 2 White-beaked Dolphins.
There were also 5 Minke Whales north of Hermaness at mid-day, and one
heading SW off Humla Stack there and 2 feeding off the Neap in the early
afternoon. Another Minke Whale was seen briefly off Lamba Ness, Unst.
Terry and Liz Holmes saw a Basking Shark
from 17:48 to 1:800 off White Hil,l Vasetter, Yell
Monday 11th August 2003
There were at least 5 Minke Whales off Lamba Ness, Unst, along with
several White-beaked Dolphins and a few Harbour Porpoises, and
another Minke Whale and a White-beaked Dolphin off the Keen of
Another Minke Whale was off Sumburgh Head.
Sunday 10th August 2003
There were 7 White-beaked Dolphins off Lamba Ness, Unst at about
Saturday 10th August 2003
Minke Whale was seen again in the Wick of Gruting.
Friday 8th August 2003
A Minke Whale, 3 White-beaked Dolphins and a pod of about 15 distant dolphins were off
Hermaness in the morning and 9 Harbour Porpoises and 5 White-beaked
Dolphins were off Lamba Ness, Unst in the afternoon.
Colin Petrie reports that several
Minke Whales were seen during the Mid Yell Boating Club fishing
2 feeding at north end of Hascosay, one
feeding in the middle of the Wick of Gruting (north end of Fetlar),
another 2 feeding farther out in the Wick of Gruting towards the back of
Haaf Gruney and 2 in Colgrave Sound off the White Hill - Aywick area. There
were also small numbers of Harbour Porpoises.
Tuesday 5th August 2003
A White-beaked Dolphin was off the mouth of Haroldswick bay at
4.15pm (seen from the Keen of Hamar).
Wednesday 30th July 2003
A Minke Whale was off Lamba Ness, Unst this evening.
Saturday 26th July 2003
4 White-sided Dolphins were approx 10 miles SSE of Foula.
Thursday 24th July 2003
A Minke Whale and 4 Porpoise were between Tonga and the
Neap, Hermaness between 1.40 - 1.50.
Monday 21st July 2003
A Minke Whale was to the west of Hermaness 21st July.
Monday 14th July 2003
A Minke Whale and 2 Porpoise were to the north of Hermaness
Saturday 12th July 2003
Jack Cavers reported a pod of 20 unidentified dolphins heading
south past Fladdabister @ 5.30pm.
Thursday 10th July 2003
One, probably 2, Minke Whales were off the west side of Unst at
Tuesday 1st July 2003
Not a sea mammal - but a Basking Shark
was off Hermaness most of the afternoon, drifting south from off Hermaness
Hill towards the Neap.
A pod of 3 Killer Whales were sighted
at 11:55 hrs off Sumburgh Head. Then a second pod of 4 was sighted between
Sumburgh Head and Horse Island... then they fed behind Horse Island and
Scatness for about 1 hour, before both pods headed North seperately (within
20 min. intervals). They were sighted again off Spiggie Beach at around
Monday 30th June 2003
Seven Killer Whales (including the
regular notched female) passed close to Sumburgh Head and then spent over an
hour between Sumburgh and Horse Island feeding.
A Minke Whale was seen off Noss. At
least 3 Harbour Porpoises were in Burra
Friday 26th June 2003
There were 7 Risso's Dolphins
Thursday 25th June 2003
There were 50 White-sided Dolphins
off Hermaness this morning.
Wednesday 25th June 2003
There were 4 Harbour Porpoises in
Monday 23rd June 2003
There were 3 Harbour Porpoises in
Sunday 15th June 2003
There were 7 Harbour Porpoises in
Bluemull Sound and 7 in Burra Firth.
Thursday 12th June 2003