This article was written by our volunteer Kieren Massie, who has spent the past two months at AWF working on a geographical information systems project!

GIS (Geographic information systems) is software that uses GPS (Global positioning systems) to map out points of interest in an aerial map of your choice.

At the AWF (Atlantic Whale Foundation) in Tenerife we are using this technology to map out areas in which the named individuals of dolphin (Pilot Whale/ Bottlenose) can be found and located. This helps us to learn more about their migratory routes as well as pod behaviour.

The named dolphins are identified by the shape of their fins in conjunction with the database present at the AWF where we have over 32 resident Bottlenose individuals being tracked and identified, 300 resident Pilot Whales also monitored and have been identified as well as numerous migrant dolphins to the area to make up our database.

Fin shot of Indio the Pilot Whale