Stranding FAQs

What is the largest stranding that has occ​urred in Tasmania? 

  • How many - 294
  • Where - Stanley
  • When - 15/10/1935
  • Species – long-finned pilot whales

When was the last larger str​anding? 

  • How many - 170
  • Where - King Island
  • When - 1/3/2009
  • Species - long-finned pilot whales

​What have been the top 5 strandings in Tasmania?

​How Many
​15 October 1935
​long-finned pilot whale
​Marion Bay
​17 October 1998
​long-finned pilot whale
​Marion Bay
​22 December 1955
​long-finned pilot whale
​Marian Bay
​18 February 1975
​long-finned pilot whale
​16 September 1992
​long-finned pilot whale

Tasmanian Stranding​​ events on record (1802-2020)

  • How many events – around 700 – single and mass stranding 
  • How many individual animals - over 6652 recorded individuals 

What are the mo​st common species for mass stranding?

​Common Name
​Number of recorded stranding events
​Common Dolphin
Delphinus delphis
​Bottlenose dolphin
Tursiops truncatus
​Sperm whale
Physeter macrocephalus
​Long-finned pilot whale
Globicephala melas
​Pygmy right whale
Caperea marginata

​Of the above: 
  • common dolphins, bottlenose dolphins, sperm whales and pilot whales are common mass stranders due to living in social groups
  • Minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) and Pygmy right whale (Caperea marginate) strandings are often single/low number stranding events
  • Dolphins are commonly involved in single/low number stranding events as well as mass stranding events.

​Are there any pattern​​s for pilot whale strandings?

Strandings commonly occur on low profile sandy spits. Macquarie Heads at the entrance to Macquarie Harbour is a known stranding hot spot for Long-fined pilot whales, Sperm whales and Bottle-nosed dolphins.

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