Whale Watch Ireland 2014, 24th August....Results

29th Aug 2014

Whale Watch Ireland 2014 results summary

It was hard to avoid the fact that this years Whale Watch Ireland event was a weather washout along the South and SW coasts, which pretty well knocked out many of the event's "better established" venues which draw in very large crowds and tend to bring in the whale sightings. For instance we had to cancel the Galley Head watch in West Cork due to driving rain and high winds. But the positive to take from this years event was just how well some new events performed such as Clogher head (Louth) and Bloodyforeland, Co. Donegal and indeed how other locations such as Bloody Bridge, Co. Down and Hook Head, Co. Wexford performed on the day. But all in all, given the conditions on the day a turnout of >700 people for an outdoor wildlife event is a strong result which hopefully has succeeded in introducing members of the public and visitors to the work of the IWDG and help improve awareness of our marine megafauna.Everyone at the Loop Head watch got to see this minke whale!
As always a big thanks to Inis Cologne for their generous support on the day. The event made a net profit of €880 which will go towards maintaining the core functions of the group.




Whale Watchers at Loop Head, Co. Clare enjoying bottlenose dolphins









1.  Overall sightings at  9 of 20 sites = 45% (56% in 2013)

2.  Cetaceans seen at 6 of 9 sites (67%) with reasonable viewing conditions
3   Cetacean species (3): harbour porpoise, common & bottlenose dolphins 
4.  Zero species at 11 sites, 1 species at 9 sites  
5.  Other species: basking sharks (7), Ocean sunfish (1) and Grey seals 
6.  # individuals: hbr. porpoise x 29, common dolphin x 4, bottlenose dolphin x 4-5
7.  Attendance: 725 (40% decrease on previous year)  

Whale Watch Ireland 2014, Sunday 24th August

Record numbers of whale sightings along stretches of the Irish coastline, including minke whales in the Irish Sea, fin whales in West Cork and humpback whales off Co. Kerry coast all seem like good omens for this year's All Island whale watch day on Sunday 24th August. Members of the public are invited to join the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) on one of our 20 land-based whale watches from headlands around the Irish coast between 2:00-5:00 pm.

The purpose of whale watch day is to raise awareness of the 24 species of cetaceans (porpoises, dolphins and whales) that have been recorded around the Irish coast, by giving members of the public an opportunity to observe some of these wonderful marine mammals in their natural environment.  This event also provides IWDG researchers with a unique snapshot of whale and dolphin activity around the entire Irish coast. By taking part in this annual event you are actively supporting whale and dolphin conservation in Ireland and the work of the IWDG.

This annual, all-island event, organized by the IWDG in association with Inis Cologne  is free and open to all.    All whale watches are land-based and will be led by experienced IWDG personnel, who will show you how to observe and identify some of the more commonly seen cetacean species seen in Irish waters and will be available to answer any questions you may have on the work of the IWDG.

You should bring binoculars or a spotting scope and dress appropriately for outdoor conditions.  There are no boat trips involved, and there are of course no guarantees that you will see whales or dolphins during your particular event.  Please contact your local organizer for further details (see below) or visit the IWDG website www.iwdg.ie for the latest information on whale and dolphin sightings and strandings in Irish waters.

IWDG would like to extend a huge thanks to Inis Cologne http://www.perfume.ie who have generously provided funding support for All-Ireland Whale Watch day each year, and who remain the IWDG's sole core-funder. This year's event will once again be part of Heritage Week, coordinated by the Heritage Council www.heritagecouncil.ie

Any media enquiries to:

Pádraig Whooley, IWDG, Phone: 086- 3850568 or email: padraig.whooley@iwdg.ie

Whale Watch Ireland 2014 sites

Full event details below:

Location                                   Meeting Point                         Watch Leader          Contact

Cloger Hd, Co. Louth             Port Oriel Upr Car Park          Breffni Martin             087-9145363

Howth Hd., Co. Dublin,          Balscadden Car Park,           Ronan Hickey            086-3391142

Killiney Bay, Co. Dublin,        Vico Road,                         Isabel Baker              086-4057633

Bray Hd., Co. Wicklow,         Pitch & putt,                         Hannah Keogh          087-2819201

Hook Hd, Co. Wexford,         Lighthouse                           Jim Hurley                   086-1637199

Ardmore, Co. Waterford,       Ram Hd Signal tower         Andrew Malcolm        087-7952061

Ballycotton, East Cork,          Car Park                                John Goggin               087-2766801

Galley Hd., Co. Cork,             Lighthouse,                           Pádraig Whooley       086-3850568

Valentia Island., Kerry           Bray Hd. Tower                     Sean O’ Callaghan    085 7764918

Clogher Hd. Co. Kerry,          Layby,                                     Nick Massett               087-6736341

Brandon Pt. Co. Kerry            Car Park                                Louise Overy              085-8173999

Loop Hd., Co. Clare,              Lighthouse,                          Simon Berrow            086-8545450

Black Hd, Co. Clare,              Lighthouse,                          Sabine Springer          091-637621

Downpatrick Hd, Co. Mayo,        Car Park,                         Róisín Pinfield            087-1210121

Mullaghmore Hd, Co. Sligo,        lay-by,                             Miriam Crowley          087-6171377

Bloody Foreland, Co. Donegal, Heights Bar car park    Gareth Doherty           086-2223328

Malin Head, Co. Donegal,      Signal Tower,                     Ronan Mc Laughlin    086-3893154

Ramore Hd, Co. Antrim,        Portrush Coastal Zone       Alison Archer              7518263648

Portmuck, Co. Antrim,           Car park,                           Ben Simon              0044-7788146577

Bloody Bridge, Co. Down,    Car park,                             David Thompson        028-41765489



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