You don't need to be an expert to help us identify a stranded animal. Photos, basic observations and location all provide useful data.
If you find a dead whale, dolphin or porpoise please report it to the local coast guard and then to us using the Whale, dolphin and porpoise strandings form PDF (244.9 KB)
Note: the form can only be opened in Internet Explorer. To download the form in different browsers, right-click the link and select 'Save Target As'. The form can be returned by post or email.
Some basic measurements or estimations, observations and photos can be an enormous help in identifying species. However, always keep your own safety in mind. Avoid touching dead animals and beware of hazards on the beach such as dangerous rocks and rising tides.
If the animal is still fresh check to see if it is in a position where it could be retrieved for post-mortem.
Even a photo taken by a smart phone can be invaluable. If you have no way to take pictures, some basic descriptions can help, such as:
Close-up of the baleen inside the mouth of a gray whale, Eschrichtius robustus.
Photos are really important as they give us a definite identification.
If you find a live stranded marine animal, please contact the following authorities:
Tel: +44 (0)131 3390111
If you find dead stranded marine animal, please contact:
Whale, dolphin and porpoise strandings form PDF (244.9 KB)
Note: the form can only be opened in Internet Explorer. To download the form in different browsers, right-click the link and select 'Save Target As'.
England (seals and turtles)
Zoological Society of London
Tel: +44 (0)207 4496672
Wales (all species)
Marine Environmental Monitoring
Tel: +44 (0)1348 875000
Scotland (all species)
SAC Veterinary Services
Tel: +44 (0)1463 243030
Tel:+44 (0)7979 245893 (out of hours)
Cornwall (all species)
Cornish Wildlife Trust Strandings Network
Tel: +44 (0)845 2012626