Disturbing Increase In Whale And Dolphin Strandings

Thursday 25th, November 2010 / 11:21 Published by

Whale and dolphin strandings are increasing according to data to be released this week by the UK Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme (CSIP).

The news comes in the wake of the unexplained mass beaching of 33 pilot whales found dead on Rutland Island off the coast of County Donegal earlier this month.

CSIP’s data shows there has been a 25% increase in reported strandings since it began keeping records 20 years ago.

At least 500 dolphins, porpoises and whales have been found stranded on British beaches so far this year.

So is the increase in stranding numbers a sign that something disturbing is happening to these sea-going mammals?

Ian Enlander director of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Research Group (IWDG) said it was a difficult question to answer.

“It may be a sign that awareness of strandings is increasing or perhaps something else is going on. There are sometimes clusters of these events which may be caused by strong weather systems pushing already dead or dying animals towards the shore.

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