Maritimes Region Cetacean Sightings Database

The Species at Risk Group has designed and implemented a whale sightings database for the Maritimes Region. The vast majority of data comes from the Scotian Shelf and Gulf of Maine area, but some sightings from other areas along the east coast of Canada are included. This database allows us to input sightings records from a variety of sources including: whale watchers, researchers, fishermen and the at-sea observer program. It can also accommodate information on large marine animals such as basking sharks and sea turtles. The database contains "interaction" codes for cases where whales and marine animals are impacted by human activity. The database is compatible with other whale databases in the U.S and Canada as well as with other DFO databases.

V-Shape Blow from whale

A subset of these data is available directly to the general public through the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS). Fields available through OBIS include: location, date, time, species, and number.

All information on whales is useful in studying migrations, distributions and feeding habits. The cost of undertaking surveys specifically for whales is prohibitive and therefore opportunistic data sources are of high value

If you are interested in participating in this project, or requesting data, please contact Dr. R.K. Smedbol.