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]

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 .

 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.


Beach Track


You can now also record strandings via our mobile phone app, Beachtrack !
Available for android and iphone – just search your store or follow the link on the Beachtrack website. 

Through the app you will not only be able to easily submit your stranding reports; but you can also track your beach walks, which tell us where beaches were surveyed but where no strandings were found! This may sound strange, but is actually very important for us to contextualise the strandings data that does come in, and helps us extrapolate our findings in stranded animals, to better understand the threats and pressures to the animals still out at sea!

By taking a walk along a stretch of coast, then submitting your track and observations, you will also help us collect vital information about our coastal environments. This information will help improve our understanding of the health of, and threats to marine animals, and in turn help all of us better protect our seas.

The Beach Track project was supported by Scottish Marine Environmental Enhancement Fund (SMEEF) using the Scottish Government’s Nature Restoration Fund managed by NatureScot.

The Beach Track app was developed by Flumens.