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Time to count our dolphins


Not always so easy to seepeterfTue, 02/05/2017 - 12:59pm


The dolphin census has been concluded. The article below is now only of historical interest.

The Marine Parks Association will be conducting a census of Port Stephens Bottlenose dolphins on Sunday 4th June and is keen to line up some volunteers to cover the Western half of the port – from North Arm Cove to Soldiers Point and Big Swan Bay/Karuah.


In previous years, the association has had very few observers participating in this particular section of Port Stephens but is hoping things will be different this year. The census is important because it provides insight into the health of the dolphin population.


The census, which is happening in conjunction with Port Stephens Naturefest, will take place between 11am-12pm with volunteers being distributed around Port Stephens and up and down the coast. Each volunteer will be between 1 and 2 kilometres apart, with approximately 130 viewing sights nominated around the Port. The association is also looking for boats to monitor areas within the Port.


At the conclusion of the census, participants will submit their photos and data via the Marine Parks Association website. Each census site will receive an Official Port Stephens Dolphin Census Kit, including data collection sheets, instructions for filling out the forms and a map of Port Stephens.


The voluntary census is invaluable because it is the longest running community dolphin count in Australia and directly supports dolphin conservation and studies conducted by research institutes.


To participate in this year’s census, simply visit the Marine Parks Association website: www.marineparksassociation.org.au  and complete the registration form. If you require any further information contact Lisa Skelton on 0412 464 325 or email marineparksassociation@gmail.com


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