Did you know that 30 species of whales, dolphins and porpoises have been recorded in the waters around Britain and Ireland?

Sea Watch Foundation is the leading UK cetacean research charity and works tirelessly to improve the study, conservation and protection of the whales, dolphins and porpoises found in British and Irish waters.

These incredible creatures are facing huge threats from climate change, marine pollution (including plastics), ship strikes, sound disturbance, over-fishing and entanglement in fishing gear. Their habitats need protection and for almost half a century, staff from Sea Watch Foundation have pioneered Citizen Science through a valuable partnership of scientists, researchers and volunteers observing and studying cetaceans, providing the evidence needed for protection to be put in place.

Our eminent Director, Dr Peter Evans is one of 350 cetacean scientists from more than 40 countries who has signed an open letter calling for immediate global action to prevent the very real crisis looming in our oceans. Some species and populations of whales, dolphins and porpoises face a very real and imminent threat of extinction. For others the timescale may be longer but without prompt action it will be too late for them too. To download the letter, please click the title of the document below.

The real and imminent extinction risk to whales, dolphins and porpoises: An open letter from over 350 cetacean scientists.

“Scientists and the public in partnership, working together to improve the conservation and protection of whale, dolphin and porpoise populations in British and Irish waters.”

Our Aims

• Monitoring the numbers and locations of whales, dolphins and porpoises (cetaceans)
• Gaining knowledge of the health of the marine environment and insight into the effects of chemical pollution, noise disturbance, ship strikes, over-fishing, accidental capture in fishing gear and climate change
• Involving the public in scientific monitoring through “citizen science”
• Raising awareness and understanding of marine mammals and the threats they face
• Educating, informing and advising for better environmental protection

Our Work

Through a continuous programme of research and monitoring, Sea Watch Foundation continues to provide vital information on changes in the status and distribution of cetacean populations and their habitats. Our network of volunteers, including a Regional Co-ordinator for every coastal area, provides much of the data and evidence by recording sightings throughout the year. This data are then shared with other scientists and environmental and government bodies in order to better understand and protect cetaceans and their habitat.

“The information gathered by Sea Watch Foundation and its network of observers has been a primary source of knowledge about the relative status and distribution of cetaceans around the British Isles for almost 50 years!”

Please become a Sea Watch Member today and help us to study and protect whales, dolphins, porpoises and the marine environment, especially in our home waters. Join here!