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Page updated 16.4.2018

Monitoring of Harbour Porpoise in Finnish Waters

Harbour porpoise is the only regularly occurring species of cetaceans in the Baltic Sea. The harbour porpoise population in the Baltic Proper is classified as critically endangered and the population size is estimated to be only ca. 500 animals. Based on the results of the project SAMBAH LIFE+ , the harbour porpoise occurs regularly also in the southwestern offshore waters of Finland.

The project continues the monitoring of harbour porpoise occurrence in the Finnish waters using the passive acoustic monitoring methodology implemented in project SAMBAH. The goal of the project is to produce scientifically valid information on the species for national and international conservation efforts and management actions. The project also includes advisory work in the ASCOBANS/Jastarnia group, contributes to the development of a HELCOM candidate Core Indicator of harbour porpoise distribution and abundance, and participates in the collection and validation of opportunistic harbour porpoise sightings from the public. The Jastarnia group works under the ASCOBANS agreement and focuses on the conservation of harbour porpoise populations in the Baltic Sea area. The group consists of experts e.g. from national ministries and research organizations.

The project is funded by the Finnish Ministry of the Environment and the regional Government of Åland.