More than 12 NorthLink Ferries crew members have undertaken training to help them spot whales, dolphins and porpoise whilst sailing between the mainland and northern isles.
The training marks the start of a new partnership between NorthLink Ferries and ORCA as they launch OceanWatch – a new conservation initiative that begins on 25 July aiming to monitor and collect data on marine life around the UK coastline and adjoining waters
Speaking of the recent training and partnership, Captain Stuart McCallum, Marine Manager at Serco NorthLink Ferries, said: “Marine life is extremely vast and varied in the North Sea and through ORCA’s OceanWatch training we hope to be able to obtain a snapshot of whale, dolphin and porpoise presence in these waters.
“The on-board bridge teams are always on the lookout for marine wildlife and birds to help give passengers a more comprehensive picture of our native wildlife as they travel to and from the mainland.”
Sally Hamilton, Director of ORCA, said: “We are extremely pleased to be working with the NorthLink Ferries crew as they become more actively involved in marine conservation. With daily sailings to the northern isles they are ideally positioned to be able to support us with this surveying. They will also be able to pass on the benefit of their training to passengers.
“ORCA OceanWatch which supports the Sea Watch Foundation’s National Whale and Dolphin Watch is important when it comes to recording wildlife sightings. We are confident that with NorthLink Ferries’ support, the general public will have an enhanced appreciation for and desire to protect their marine environment.”
Follow updates on sightings throughout ORCA OceanWatch by visiting www.orcaweb.org.uk/get-invovled/oceanwatch or on Facebook and Twitter #ORCAOceanWatch