Whilst we are primarily a Bird Club we are also very interested in non-bird records from offshore.
Most of our non-bird records relate to cetaceans - whales, dolphins and porpoises, and insects such as butterflies and moths. We also have records of fish, turtles and bats.
Identifying marine animals is often more difficult than identifying birds and wherever possible a brief sketch/description should be made of what is visible if identification is not certain. E.g. any white areas, shape of dorsal fin etc.
Some useful hints are provided by Caroline Weir, who verifies our marine animal observations. You can improve your identification by being familiar with what is and what isn't common in the North Sea. We have further information on the identification of cetaceans.
We welcome all insect reports - even though many are sent in dead! Butterflies and moths found dead should only be sent in to the Recorder if they cannot be identified offshore.
Initially, a photograph could be emailed to us to assist in identification. Colleagues at Aberdeen University can assist in the identification of specimens sent in or for whichphotographs have been emailed to us.
Occasionally, bats are found offshore - often alive. These cannot be sent onshore without following an established procedure.
Prof. Paul Racey of Aberdeen University has provided guidelines which should be adhered to in the event that a bat is found.
Bat records from offshore have provided useful information on the Nathusius' Pipistrelle - a species found primarily on the European mainland.