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New north-east animal trail helps people connect with marine environment

By Kyle Ritchie

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The team behind the popular Dolphinwatch project have launched a new animal trail across Aberdeen to help people connect with the marine environment.

RSPB Scotland has launched Wild Aberdeen with activities to help people from across the north-east connect with the nautical nature on their doorstep.

People are invited to discover five Wild Aberdeen trail locations scattered around he Granite City. Each location provides a fun fact about a marine species that can be seen in the area and outlines an activity designed to help them get closer to nature.

Featuring popular locations Torry Battery, Duthie Park, Seaton Park and the Esplanade, people are being encouraged to explore the Granite City and discover some of the wildlife that lives alongside us.

With activities which require little to no equipment to complete, families can become ocean explorers, delving deep into the world of rockpools, try their hand at detective work searching out tracks and signs of wildlife, protect the oceans by being litter warriors and develop eagle eyes looking out for dolphins and birds.

The trail allows families to become ocean explorers, delving deep into the world of rockpools.
The trail allows families to become ocean explorers, delving deep into the world of rockpools.

RSPB Scotland’s community engagement officer Sadie Gorvett said: “This trail is a great opportunity for families to explore Aberdeen with new eyes and seek out those special moments in nature.

"With the chance of seeing some incredible wildlife like seals, crabs, seabirds, dolphins and maybe even an otter if they are very lucky, and quiet.

"Although the Dolphinwatch project has come to an end, I hope this trail helps to continue to inspire people to care about the amazing marine environment we have in Aberdeen and take action to protect it. We really are lucky to have such amazing marine life right on our doorstep.”

The animal trail is part of the legacy of Dolphinwatch, which between 2013 and 2021 saw thousands of visitors and locals inspired to take action for nature while watching the spectacular bottlenose dolphins at Torry Battery.

Dolphinwatch was a project led by RSPB Scotland in partnership with Aberdeen City Council and Whale and Dolphin Conservation with support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, EventScotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters and many others since 2013.

Aberdeen City Council's operational delivery services convener councillor Philip Bell said: “Dolphinwatch has been a superb success over the years helping people to discover we have one of the best places in the country at Torry Battery to watch dolphins, other sea creatures, and the myriad of bird life in the area.

“The new RSPB Wild Aberdeen animal trail will be a great asset for the city and will be lots of fun for families to do over the school summer holidays.

“We are very lucky to have an abundance of parks, woods, wild areas, green spaces, and the beach for spotting wildlife and anything which encourages people to explore these areas is to be welcomed.”

Every activity in the trail is part of Wild Challenge, a free online selection of activities challenging families to get closer to the natural world. Completing the five activities on the trail gets families just one step away from reaching the bronze award.

People can download a trail leaflet at rspb.org.uk/dolphinwatch

To find out more about Wild Challenge and how to get the bronze award visit rspb.org.uk/wildchallenge

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