Manx Whale and Dolphin Watch in the early days

Manx Whale and Dolphin Watch was set up in June 2006, by John Galpin.  John had moved to the island a few years earlier and from his house on the coast discovered he could see cetaceans from his window. He soon started to do some research into what can be found here and realised that there was no one studying these creatures and little historical evidence of cetaceans in Manx waters. It was because of this realisation that John set up a public sightings network, together with the Sea Watch Foundation,  in 2006  and began learning about the cetaceans that pass through here and began giving talks. In 2007 John decided that in order for the organisation to progress, he needed the help of marine mammal scientists to start some scientific research.  He enlisted the help of four eager young scientists; Tom Felce, Eleanor Stone, Simon Mitchell and Sharon Bond to move to the island and start researching Manx waters, which at the time were completely undiscovered.  With no idea what to expect or the potential of what they would achieve, it was going to be a huge challenge…

Manx Whale and Dolphin Watch in 2019

We have now been studying cetaceans around the Isle of Man for 13 years. We carry out land-based surveys, boat-based surveys, photo-identification, outreach and education and run a small visitor’s centre. We work a lot with the public, appearing at various events, giving talks and teaching in schools. We have taken on full-time volunteers every summer since 2010 who help us run the organisation throughout the summer, as well as local volunteers who assist with survey work. Most importantly though, over these 13 incredible years, we have discovered a huge amount about marine mammals in Manx waters. We hope you will take a look through this website and learn about what our work involves and what species you can see here. We work voluntarily year round to study and conserve these fantastic mammals and we do it because we genuinely care and we know we can make a difference.

John 'Galps' Galpin