Celebrating one year of Whalefish! Since our launch on the 20th January 2014, we have been involved in really exhilarating projects, connecting with inspirational people and doing what we can to encourage leaps and bounds on the marine conservation front. Here is a summary of our 2014 diary:
On the 20th January 2014 we were delighted to see the official launch of Whalefish!
We were quick to get our first visitors to the website (now around 20,000!) and also to post our first blogs covering pressing conservation issues.
It was our pleasure to advise Fundacion Omacha in Colombia on rehabilitation and release strategies for two Sotalia dolphins by facilitating international veterinary networking.
Els, Niru and Amy attended the ECS (European Cetacean Society) 28th Annual Conference, Liege, Belgium where Els won best short presentation for her excellent lecture on bottlenose dolphins of northern Patagonia.
Amy was trained by SMASS (Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme) to sample stranded cetaceans and pinnipeds and became a volunteer assistant to the project, contributing data for the Marine Mammal Strandings database.
Networking at the ECS Conference led to Niru and Amy being invited to assist SOS Dolfijn in the rehabilitation of 5 rescued harbour porpoises in Holland.
Amy advised East Lothian Countryside Rangers on cetacean stranding response plan.
Whalefish were proud to be featured in Marine Scientist magazine Issue No. 47 titled ‘Whalefish: Networking in Marine Science’.
Natalie was busy in the summer conducting marine mammal surveys with Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust, researching the vulnerable resident west coast (Scotland) orca population.
Amy assisted BDMLR (British Diver’s Marine Life Rescue) in training new marine mammal medics for the Edinburgh and Lothians division in Scotland.
Niru attended and presented at the international MARVET (Marine Veterinary) workshop in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico.
World Oceans Day 8th June! Wanda completed an amazing 5km SUP (stand up paddle) fundraiser around the island of Texel in the Netherlands, raising £310 for Whalefish.
Amy undertook 100km from the Voluntary Marine Reserve at St Abbs, Scotland following the coastal John Muir Way to the site of the stranded sperm whale of Joppa (Jan 2014) by foot, monofin and bike raising £1200 for BDMLR.
Whalefish celebrated in June as Co-founder and Scientific Director, Els, completed her PhD on 'Population Ecology of Coastal Bottlenose Dolphins in Northern Patagonia, Argentina'. Congratulations Dr Vermeulen!
Wanda attended the Ocean Film Festival as a Whalefish Ambassador.
Niru, Lorenzo and Amy attend and exhibit at the International Marine Conservation Congress (IMCC3) in Glasgow.
Niru assisted BDMLR in teaching marine mammal rescue techniques at Scottish Centre for Ecology and the Natural Environment on Loch Lommond.
We thank you all for your support over this first year of Whalefish and have lots of exciting plans for 2015, including our first Whalefish Professional Workshop, get in touch if you are interested in furthering your involvement in marine conservation!
Best wishes for the year ahead!