Wednesday 30 July 2008

Apologies for the lack of updates, but it's been a busy few weeks as the season has been coming to a close for us. Last week we held a stranding workshop to try and rebuild interest in collecting data from stranded animals. This was done in collaboration with NACOMA and the Ministry for Fisheries and it was hosted by Heidi Skrypzeck at the Ministry in Swakopmund. Dr Jean-Paul Roux, who was been working with cetaceans and fur seals longer than anyone in Namibia made it up from Ludertiz and gave a great introduction to the area and the history of strandings here.

Stranded cetaceans are fairly rare and Namibia has a very large empty coastline, so to be able to effectively find out what animals are stranding and be able to collect data (species, size, age, genetics, stomach contents etc) from them , there needs to be a system in place for reporting their occurrence. This workshop was a first step in getting people interested and letting them know why strandings are important, what kind of data to collect (location, photographs and length) and who to tell so that there is an opportunity for more in depth sampling and that all the data gets centralised.

We'll put up more data on this in a few days.

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