DOLPHIN WATCH CITIZEN SCIENCE INITIATIVE
What is Dolphin Watch?
Our Dolphin Watch Citizen Science initiative provides a platform for the community to assist in understanding and monitoring of coastal dolphins whilst providing opportunities for education and environmental awareness. Citizen scientists can contribute by reporting information on dolphin sightings. Dolphin sighting reports received from Dolphin Watchers contribute to understanding the long-term status, ecology and protection of local dolphin populations.
The Dolphin Watch initiative provides an opportunity for you to help monitor the populations of dolphins in your local area or in areas that you are visiting.
How to Get Involved
Anyone can be a Dolphin Watch citizen scientist!
It is easy to get involved.
- Have you seen a dolphin? – Simply report your dolphin sighting and enter in all the details via our online sighting form. When you see dolphins, take note of how many you see, what species they are, their location and what they are doing. Take photographs when you can too.
- You can also become a trained Dolphin Watcher by attending one of our Dolphin Ecology Workshops where you’ll learn the basics in recording and observing dolphins and how to photograph them.
- Attend one of the community presentations, events or visit us at our market stall. For updates on when and where these will take place, please sign up to our enewsletter or follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
- If you would like to get even more involved with our programs, you can also become a volunteer as a Dolphin Ambassador.
How your Observations Help
You can help to understand and monitor dolphins in your area by reporting your dolphin sightings. Every sighting helps!
We can learn a lot about the dolphins from sighting information and a photograph, all of which will help to understand:
- Population status and trends
- Movement patterns and residency
- Life histories and life cycles
- Habitat use
- Health & vulnerability of individuals & populations.
Dolphin Watch Reports
Thanks to our dedicated Dolphin Watchers, we have been able to obtain baseline knowledge about dolphins in some regional areas of Australia!
Check out what’s been seen by Dolphin Watchers around the Country.
Throughout 2021, we had over 133 Dolphin Watch participants from around Australia who collectively reported 821 dolphin sighting reports!
Sightings included 12 different species including: The Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, Australian humpback dolphins, Australian snubfin dolphins, Bryde’s whales, Burrunan dolphins, Gray’s beaked whales, humpback whales, Common dolphins, Pilot whales, Risso’s dolphins, and spotted dolphins.
Dolphin Watch Sightings from 2021
During 2020, a total of 711 sightings were made to the Dolphin Watch Citizen Science Initiative by 113 participants throughout Australia.
Of the data submitted, 11 were reported including; The Australian humpback dolphin, Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin, Cuvier’s beaked whale, humpback whale, orca, Risso’s dolphin, spinner dolphin, short-beaked common dolphin, Bryde’s whale, snubfin and spotted dolphins.
Dolphin Watch Sightings from 2020
Dolphin Watch Sightings from 2019
Dolphin Watch Sightings from 2016-2018
Regional Dolphin Watch Chapter Reports
2019 Bribie Island Dolphin Watch Report
In 2019, the Bribie Island Dolphin Watch chapter collectively contributed many sighting reports of the resident Australian humpback and Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins! Check out the full Bribie Island 2019 Dolphin Watch Report Bribie Dolphin Summary January 2019-December 2019
2018-2019 Town of 1770 Dolphin Watch Report
This report was made possible by the amazing efforts of Dolphin Watchers in the Town of 1770 that provided sightings over the 12months allowing the first information to be recorded on these populations.
Download full report 1770 Dolphin Summary April 2018-January 2019