Despite holding the accoladeas the largest animal ever to live on the planet earth and ubiquitously inhabiting the world's major oceans, an acute paucity of information surronds the geographical distribution and migration phenology of the endangered blue whale (Baleanoptera musculus) in the northeast Atlantic. Current migration and distribution information derived from robust scientific studies is required to ensure the formulation and implementation of successful conservation measures with a vision to support the ongoing recovery of the northeast Atlantic population. At 10:20 (UTC) on the 9th of November 2020, two blue whales were observed at position 55º13.99'N, 01º13.62'W, 18 km off the coast of UK in the central North Sea just north of New Castle at the water depth of 76 m. This is the first paper that has confirmed an account of live blue whales frequenting shallow waters of the North Sea and represents a new area of occurence within the accepted of the northeast Atlantic population, an area in which sightings are extremely rare and may provide insight into the intricacies of migration routes and behavior.

Lavallin, E., Øien, N., & Sears, R. (2023). A fluke encounter: First record of the blue whale ( Balaenoptera musculus ) within the central North Sea, United Kingdom. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 103, e64. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0025315423000516

View PDF