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Dolphinwatch is back and making a splash in Aberdeen

Dolphinwatch is back and making a splash in Aberdeen

RSPB Scotland’s Dolphinwatch project was launched in April against a backdrop of gorgeous weather and spectacular sights.

The popular creatures have become a regular feature of the coastal scenery in and around Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.

And they arrived on cue for the launch of this increasing tourist attraction.

Dolphins were spotted on more than 90% of the days the project was running last year. Many people, locals and visitors alike, saw them for the first time, and Aberdeen is starting to be known as a must-visit destination for dolphin enthusiasts.

Steve Harris, the chief executive of Visit Aberdeen, said: “People don’t always realise what a great City Aberdeen is for watching wildlife.

"But, as a result of this ongoing project, even more people will know about Aberdeen’s bottlenose dolphins and come here to see them.”

Last year, nearly 2000 people visited the Dolphinwatch site to see dolphins and hopes are high that even more people will experience their acrobatic displays and charismatic charm this year.

The 2015 staff, Paul Kendall and Helen Hiley, and their team of volunteers, are excited for the start of the project.

Helen said: “Aberdeen is such a fantastic place to see dolphins and it’s amazing to have a wildlife spectacle like this so close to a city centre.

"From Torry Battery, you often get great views of them feeding and playing at the harbour entrance. We can’t wait to share the ‘Wow’ experience of seeing such magnificent creatures with as many people as possible.

  (Walter Innes)
via STV via STV

As part of the project, RSPB staff and volunteers will be trained so that they can contribute to Whale and Dolphin Conservation's (WDC) Shorewatch programme which monitors the presence of whales, dolphins and porpoises in order to protect them.

Katie Dyke, Scottish conservation officer with the WDC, said: “Our Shorewatch volunteers conduct whale and dolphin watches from their local coastline so that WDC can use the data to contribute meaningful protection at local and regional levels.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with Dolphinwatch for a third year at Torry Battery where Aberdeen locals and visitors alike can share in watching the local dolphins as they go about their daily business."

  (Walter Innes)
via STV via STV

RSPB Scotland’s Dolphinwatch team will be on hand at Torry Battery from 11am-6pm on Thursday to Sunday every week, from now until August 16.

They will be equipped with binoculars and telescopes, provided by Viking Optical, and plenty of expertise to help visitors get the best experience possible.

Aberdeen City Council’s Environmental Manager Steven Shaw added: "We are very fortunate here in Aberdeen that we can watch these beautiful creatures so close to the shore.

"The opportunity to spot dolphins and other marine life so near to the city centre is something that is quite unique in the UK, if not Europe."

The Wild Dolphins art trail was very popular across Aberdeen last summer. But this is the real thing.

Keep up to date with the project on Facebook or Twitter.

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