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Sailors report sightings

Unfortunately the local harbor porpoise in the Baltic Sea is not well known at the present time. The continuing threat of the animal has increased rapidly in recent decades, and the fact that this mammal lives very shy and unobtrusive increases the low level of public interest.

The GSM - a german society for the protection of marine mammals - has the goal to counteract this trend through comprehensive, honorary publicity and involvement of people, for example boaters and fishermen. In consequence the project "water sport enthusiasts report porpoise sightings" was launched in 2002. Since May of 2011 the German Oceanographic Museum is in charge to collect the data of the ongoing project.

We kindly invite everyone to support this project and report sightings of harbor porpoises, and hereby contribute actively to protect them. All observations are incorporated into a comprehensive database. After statistical processing a map of all sightings is created each year, which is available as an interactive version and provides detailed information for all sightings. The data obtained can help determine in which parts of the Baltic Sea most porpoises live or perhaps where a "nursery ground" is located.

Sightings can be reported via an online form on the website of the German Oceanographic Museum and using the document form by mail, fax or phone.

Harbour porpoises
(Photo: H. Benke)

Flag "friends of harbour porpoises"