How to Report a Stranding

Live Strandings

Rescue for LIVE strandings can be called 24 hours a day through British Divers Marine Life Rescue on 01825 765546, Scottish SPCA Animal Helpline on 03000 999 999 or using this link.

Dead Strandings

To report a stranding in Scotland:

Phone/text: 07979 245893

or Email: [email protected]

When you report a stranding, please try to provide the following information:

  • Date found
  • Location (grid reference if possible)
  • Photographs of the carcase
  • Species or description (see species guide)
  • Overall length (estimation)
  • Condition of the animal
  • Your contact details

Animals that are in a relatively fresh condition may be sampled or collected for necropsy.

If you are unsure about the species and condition of the carcase; don’t worry, we can usually extract most of this information from photographs. Perpendicular shots of the body (along with something for scale), close up shots of the head and mouth, close up shots of the genital region (to potentially allow sex determination), as well as close ups of any marks, cuts, and lesions are particularly useful.

If you have reported a stranding in the past, you can find your reported stranding in the database.

Depending on the condition and location of the carcass, pathologists may collect the carcass for necropsy or arrange for samples to be taken for analysis. They can also provide advice and assistance on how to manage removal and disposal of the carcase.

Please note SMASS is the dedicated research and reporting scheme for stranded cetaceans, pinnipeds, marine turtles, and large sharks in Scotland. If you wish to report a stranding in England or Wales, please contact our colleagues at the CSIP .