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Humpback whale. Image: Christopher Swann

A story about whales and humans

As well as working for WDC, I write books for young people. Stories; about the...
Risso's dolphin at surface

My lucky number – 13 years studying amazing Risso’s dolphins

Everything we learn about the Risso's dolphins off the coast of Scotland amazes us and...
Dead sperm whale in The Wash, East Anglia, England. © CSIP-ZSL.

What have dead whales ever done for us?

When dead whales wash up on dry land they provide a vital food source for...
Risso's dolphin © Andy Knight

We’re getting to know Risso’s dolphins in Scotland so we can protect them

Citizen scientists in Scotland are helping us better understand Risso's dolphins by sending us their...
Pilot whales pooing © Christopher Swann

Talking crap and carcasses to protect our planet

We know we need to save the whale to save the world because they are...
Fin whale (balaenoptera physalus) Three fin whales Gulf of California.

Speaking truth to power – my week giving whales a voice

The International Whaling Commission (IWC) meeting is where governments come together to make decisions about whaling...

Why do whales and dolphins strand on beaches?

People often ask me 'why' whales and dolphins do one thing or another.  I'm a...
A spinner dolphin leaping © Andrew Sutton/Eco2

Head in a spin – my incredible spinner dolphin encounter

Sri Lanka is home to at least 30 species of whales and dolphins, from the...

Another Little Mystery Solved !

Hi Everyone,

There has been a few days of pretty good dolphin activity (for this time of year) with around a dozen or so local, well known individuals including our own Sundance and Mischief coming in and out of the Chanonry Narrows searching for food. In amongst the adult dolphins has been one of my favourites – a lovely big female ID#732 “Tall Fin” and she still has a bigger calf keeping her company, young “Doyle” ID#1126. A few days ago Doyle, who will be four years old this season was deliberately annoying Sundance and to get out of the way of a good slap decided to breach beautifully into the air twice in succession. Although the dolphins were about two hundred metres away, my hugest camera lens made them look really close and Doyle filled the frame very neatly…

 photo Doyle Breach.jpg
ID#1126 “Doyle” breaching from the water.

In the following breach, not as nice as the one above – I managed to get some good, sharp and clear pictures of the young dolphins tummy (or ventral area) and after showing the photos to Barbara Cheney at Aberdeen University’s Lighthouse Field Station at Cromarty we have immediately agreed that Doyle is a girl, so another valuable member of this population can have one more piece of data put in her “passport” life history file. I love solving mysteries !

Best Wishes,

Charlie.

About Charlie Phillips

Field officer - Adopt a Dolphin