Whale Sightings WA is designed to allow all water users to digitally submit their sightings of whales off the Western Australian coast. Despite their iconic status, there is little known about the movement patterns of many whale species.
Your sightings of whales, combined with sightings from other users, will give us a much better understanding of where and when different whale species move along our coast, and their behaviour patterns here. This information will greatly assist us in protecting these important species that frequent and migrate through our coastal waters, and it will also help the Department of Fisheries to provide better management information to the fishing industry.
Whale Sightings WA also provides information to assist you in identifying any whales you might see. Details on each species are included in the ‘Species’ page, or can be seen when creating a sighting report by tapping the right arrow on the species you think you may have seen. There are photos and diagrams to assist you, as well as some interesting information on how the whales were named.
It is very easy to log a whale sighting. After you launch the app, and have recorded your details in the ‘My Details’ section you are ready to record your sightings. When you see a whale:
Launch the app and tap ‘Create New Report’ on the ‘My Reports’ page.
You will be asked to record the:
Species: There are 11 species of whale that are most commonly found off the WA coast. The Species screen will assist you in identifying the whale you have sighted. There is also an option to record the whale species as ‘Unknown’ if you are unsure of the type of whale you saw.
Number of adults and calves: Adult whales sometimes are found in groups (a pod), while at certain times of the year (September to December for humpbacks), calves (baby whales) are often found swimming with adults. Please provide an estimate of the number of whales that you saw at the location of the sighting. If you see multiple groups that are separated by hundreds of metres, please record these as separate sightings, as this is very significant information for us.
Movement: The whales found off the WA coast use the waters for a variety of purposes. They may be traveling (migrating) along the coast to get to a feeding or breeding area, resting in areas (milling) or indeed just playing (surface active), where they breach (leap out of the water) or tail slap. Knowing what whales are doing in certain areas can help to identify what areas of water whales use for these different behaviours.
You can also:
Take a photo: When you create a report you will have the option to add a photo of the whale you saw, which can help identify the species of whale. If you are unsure of the species, the photo would ideally show as much of the whale as possible.
Once you take the photo, it will automatically upload into the report. There is also the option in the app to use a photo you had previously taken of the whale from your camera roll.
Provide comments: You can provide any other information on the sighting you think may be important. If you are unsure of the species of whale, please provide any description of what you saw to help us identify the whale.
The app can automatically
Use your current location (or you can select your location at a later date using the map), and select the current date (which can also be changed if filing a report after the sighting).
Thank you for choosing to use Whale Sightings WA

What’s New

Version 1.1.22

- A refreshed user interface to make the app more intuitive
- Increased report submission area
- Performance improvement and bug fixes


Department of Fisheries Western Australia
57.7 MB

Requires iOS 9.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.



Age Rating
Rated 4+
© Department of Fisheries, Western Australia 2014


  • Family Sharing

    Up to six family members will be able to use this app with Family Sharing enabled.

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