Wild Whales

Home of the BC Cetacean Sightings Network

Did you see a whale? Let us know!

Just two minutes of your time helps protect the whales in our waters.  When you report your cetacean (whale, dolphin, and porpoise) and sea turtle sightings, large ships in your area will be immediately alerted to the presence of the animals and will be able to take measures to reduce the risk of ship strike and disturbance.

Report a Sighting OnlineDownload WhaleReport App

How Sightings are Used

The BCCSN maintains a database containing over 130,000 sighting reports.  This database is the primary source of information on the occurrence of cetaceans and sea turtles in B.C’s waters, and spatial and temporal trends in their abundance.   Subsets of these data are provided to over 30 conservation-based research projects annually.

Threats to Cetaceans

11 of the 26 species or populations of cetaceans and sea turtles are listed as Endangered, Threatened or Special Concern under Canada’s Species at Risk Act.  Learn more about the many anthropogenic threats these animals face.

Identifying Species

Some species, such as killer whales (orcas) are large, distinctive, and easy to identify.  Other species, however, are more difficult to distinguish.  View our ID guide and take the quiz to help with identification!

The Whale Trail BC

Ocean Wise has partnered with the Whale Trail to establish a network of shore-based viewing sites along the Salish Sea and the Pacific Coast.  The Whale Trail’s mission is to inspire appreciation and stewardship of whales and our marine environment.

Be Whale Wise

When vessels of all types get too close, they impact an animal’s ability to hunt, feed, communicate, socialize, rest, breed, and care for its young. These are critical life processes that are necessary for healthy marine wildlife populations. You can reduce your impact by following the Be Whale Wise Guidelines and Marine Mammal Regulations while out on water.

The WhaleReport Alert System

The WhaleReport Alert System (WRAS) uses your real-time sighting reports to alert large vessels of whales in their vicinity.  This awareness better enables mariners to undertake adaptive mitigation measures, such as slowing down or altering course in the presence of cetaceans, to reduce the risk of collision and disturbance.

Recent News

Churchill, Manitoba; Putting Polar Bears on the Radar

Churchill, Manitoba; Putting Polar Bears on the Radar

By: Julia Felske, Practicum Student Churchill, Manitoba, a small community of 899 residents, is widely known as ‘The Polar Bear Capital of the World’, and with good reason: from July to November about a thousand polar bears migrate to Churchill where they wait for the...