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Give the ocean a chance – our message from the UN Ocean Conference

I'm looking out over the River Tejo in Lisbon, Portugal, reflecting on the astounding resilience...
We need whale poo 📷 WDC NA

Whales are our climate allies – meet the scientists busy proving it

At Whale and Dolphin Conservation, we're working hard to bring whales and the ocean into...
Humpback whale underwater

Climate giants – how whales can help save the world

We know that whales, dolphins and porpoises are amazing beings with complex social and family...
Black Sea common dolphins © Elena Gladilina

The dolphin and porpoise casualties of the war in Ukraine

Rare, threatened subspecies of dolphins and porpoises live in the Black Sea along Ukraine's coast....
WDC's Ed Fox, Chris Butler-Stroud and Carla Boreham take a message from the ocean to parliament

Taking a message from the ocean to parliament

It's a sad fact that whales and dolphins don't vote in human elections, but I...
Minke whale © Ursula Tscherter - ORES

The whale trappers are back with their cruel experiment

Anyone walking past my window might have heard my groan of disbelief at the news...
Boto © Fernando Trujillo

Meet the legendary pink river dolphins

Botos don't look or live like other dolphins. Flamingo-pink all over with super-skinny snouts and...
Tokitae in captivity

Talking to TUI – will they stop supporting whale and dolphin captivity?

Last Thursday I travelled to Berlin for a long-anticipated meeting with TUI senior executives. I...

Under The Skin…

We are into the bottlenose dolphin calving season up here in the Moray Firth and I often get asked about the discoloured, sometimes unsightly marks and blotches that often appear on young (and not so young) dolphins skin. These skin “lesions” as they are called appear to take on many different “types”, colours and shapes – both on adult dolphins and more noticeably on youngsters that have much paler skin. In the case of ID#1168, the not quite year old calf of ID#744 “Bonnie” in the photo below, he or she has lots of little markings here and there over all the body surface but there is a large grey patch on the rear flank that is more easily seen. This patch is already beginning to vanish compared to earlier photos as are other marks and so is the yellow staining on the dorsal fin and around the mouth. We often find that after a year or two the young dolphin looks much “cleaner” and we believe that skin lesions are not painful or irritating but are just something that these dolphins live with throughout their lives. Their skin has a tough environment to cope with – very cold water, differing salinities, sustaining tooth rake and bite marks from each other and collision damage plus bacterial infection too.  photo ID1168BonniesCalf.jpg Best Wishes, Charlie.

About Charlie Phillips

Field officer - Adopt a Dolphin