Dave is a friendly Dolphin who turned up in Sandgate, Kent around Easter time in 2006 on a sunny April day.  He was not alone, bringing with him two Dolphin friends which were seen near Granville Parade, very close to the beach - how else were they spotted.  



Dave the Dolphin Sandgate Kent



Dave the dolphin boosts trade at seaside town


Folkestone has seen a boom in business after hundreds of people have flocked to the south coast to see the rare sight. A deep-sea dolphin that has spent the summer ‘performing’ for visitors at a seaside town has boosted trade and extended the holiday season.


The bottlenose dolphin - nicknamed Dave by conservationists - has been swimming along the reef just 30m from the beach at Sandgate, since April and is still attracting more than 150 visitors a day.


The playful mammal, with a distinctive yellow patch on its fin, has been entertaining beach-goers since it was first spotted splashing about, and a website devoted to him has received 302,000 hits in October alone.


A Chamber of Commerce spokesmen for the town said: “We would have expected a drop in trade by now but it hasn't happened. "Along with the mild weather, Dave has been a real boost for Folkestone."  Experts say the dolphin, with a dark blue nose, is feeding from mackerel.


Conservationist Jason Carter, from the British Divers Marine Life Rescue group, said: "He's looking in good health. He's been feeding and jumping out of the sea, so he's been looking quite good."


"Bottlenose dolphins live around the British coast but are usually found in pods of up to 12 further out to sea. They can dive down 1,000 feet and jump 20 feet above the water.


"It's actually quite rare to see them this close. We are assuming it is a male because normally dolphins swim in a pod, but sometimes males peel off for a while and go off on their own, before going back."


Caroline Chambers, manager of Channel Chamber of Commerce, said Dave had been an asset to the town and even livened up a conference for 1,000 business people in September.


She said: "These things can be a bit boring but Dave was performing for all the delegates, who were watching from the Leas Cliff Hall overlooking the bay."

Angler Simon Chandler, who set up the website, is now selling T-shirts, caps and stamps to visitors.


Any proceeds after the site costs have been covered are to be donated to the charity British Divers Marine Life Rescue.



    Dave the Dolphin at Sandgate in Kent



Wednesday, 4 October 2006 - Dolphin 'at risk from being tame'


A dolphin that has become a tourist attraction off the Kent coast could be injured or die because of the attention being lavished upon it.


Dave has become a frequent sight in past months, swimming along the reef between Folkestone and Seabrook.


Conservationists said if Dave became tame, looked to people for contact and lost his fear of boats, he would be in danger from sea vessels.


Last month, police urged people to stay at least 100m away from the mammal.

Mark Simmons, of the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, said that watching Dave from the shore was not a problem.


But he said: "The problem is when people get in the water and when boats go out to sea, because these solitary dolphins tend to become habituated and tame.


"Once they become tame they lose their natural fear.


"They then start to look to us to provide their social contact and their entertainment and this just leads them into trouble.


"In particular they tend to get struck by boat propellers and that is not something that they are going to come well out of."


Kent Police asked people to keep their distance after receiving reports that Jet Skiers, kayakers and other people in motorised boats were getting too close to Dave.

People were also not to approach, grab, touch or try to swim with him.


This week, the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society and British Divers Marine Life Rescue said solitary, friendly dolphins were growing in number around the coast and were hugely popular.


But they said: "Not surprisingly, people will often flock in large numbers to see them, feed them or swim with them.


"Sadly, the fate of these solitary dolphins is usually not a happy one and it is often the attention from people that leads to their injury and eventual death."




Dave the Dolphin swimming slowly


Dave the dolphin

He can be seen “grazing” in a leisurely way upon the reef and sometimes in the mood for play, and see the pictures, etc videos on Dave's website using the links below.
Dave chooses to stay near Sandgate, presumably because he likes it. 


The good news is, you won’t need any special equipment to see him, though binoculars might be a good idea and perhaps a camera if you want a souvenir. Dave sometimes seen quite close to the shore, so you could be lucky and not need special camera lenses.


CAUTION: advise to mariners


If you're at sea and are fortunate to this beautiful animal:-

  1. Take care to maintain steady speed and course - slow down gently.

  2.  Do not give chase, turn toward or attempt to feed or touch Dave.


Many People swim in the area and some are fortunate to be approached by the dolphin. However, there are safety fears and no one can predict mood swings. Even though there have been no untoward incidents to report. However, it's best if you don't take chances. Dave is a wild animal and is best left alone, especially now he's a celebrity like Flipper in these parts. Another point to consider it that the water is deep and tidal, when even strong swimmers could find themselves in difficulty.


Sandgate is a wonderful coastal village, just on the edge of Folkestone in Kent.
It is close enough to be part of Folkestone itself yet far enough away and separated by Sandgate Hill, to be unique.


Look for Marine Parade, Folkestone and continue through to the Lower Sandgate Road. There is good parking except on Sundays when the local Market attracts extra vehicles.  The beachfront at Granville Parade is the only sensible access for cars. This is popular with boaters who launch and retrieve small angling and pleasure craft outside the Folkestone Rowing Club.

The recent arrival of Dave the Dolphin has captured everyone’s imagination, the media included.  But why he cane and where he came from are still mysteries. This is surely something for marine biologists to puzzle. Unfortunately, while we can only attribute Dave's visit to changing global conditions, that is just speculation. Let us all hope that he is happy and make him feel welcome while he stays English


Location:  United Kingdom

Grid ref:  TR225354

Postcode district:  CT20 2XX

Lat:  51:04:31N (51.0754)

Lon:  1:10:32E (1.1755)

Map of Sandgate:  www.multimap.com/map/




Tuesday, 26 September 2006 - Kayakers harassing 'dolphin Dave'


A dolphin that is regularly seen swimming in the English Channel and along the reef off Kent has been harassed by kayakers.


Dave has been living off Folkestone for the past few months and is often seen swimming between the town and Seabrook.


But there have been reports of jet skiers, kayakers and motorised boats getting too close to him.


Police urged people to keep their distance after kayakers were seen harassing Dave on Tuesday. 

They said no-one should go within 100m of the dolphin.

And people have been warned not to approach, grab, touch or try to swim with him.

Pc Andy Small said: "Dolphins are well loved creatures and very friendly towards humans.


"However, they are wild animals and should be treated with respect."


Dolphins are protected by law and recklessly or intentionally harassing them could lead to prosecution, officers have said.


Kent Police said the force Marine Unit would take action against anyone who annoyed Dave.



Tuesday, 29 August 2006, - Survey reveals dolphin sightings increasing


An encouraging number of harbour porpoises have been spotted around the coast of Devon and Cornwall.


The National Whale and Dolphin Watch said sightings had been particularly good off north Devon.


The Sea Watch Foundation, which carries out a survey every year around the UK, says several bottlenose dolphins have also been seen.


The survey included the sighting of a 20-strong pod of common dolphins near the Isles of Scilly. 

The foundation says maintaining a record of the whale and dolphin population can help to provide a warning of potential problems in the marine environment.


About 28 species of whales and dolphins have been recorded in the past century in UK waters.





LINKS :    



Sandgate USA | Sandgate AU | Sangatte FR


Email dave@sandgatedolphin.co.uk




Garden Forums :: View topic - Meet Dave The Dolphin

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Dolphin brings 'feelgood factor' to south coast town | 24dash.com ...

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Dave the dolphin boosts trade at seaside town

A deep-sea dolphin that has spent the summer ‘performing’ for visitors at a seaside town has boosted trade and extended the holiday season.


Whale Web Forums: Kayakers harass Dave the dolphin

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Dave the Dusty Dolphin VW volkswagen beetle conversion


These guys love V'dubs and Dolphins - Dudes



Dusty Dave the Dolphin


Dusty Dave the Dolphin is a 1972 Volkswagon Bug that has been transformed into a sea mammal. However, don't get confused this is not a Frankestinian effort to create life, just a vehicle art project, not a real Dolphin at all, a project that was conceived and characterized by Penny Smith and Harry Leverette.  These guys commissioned Tom Kennedy as the sculptor who created the art work. Shelley Buschur and Penny Smith assisted. Gordon Gunn is Dusty Dave's designated driver. Dusty Dave is now the official mascot for the Texas Surfrider Foundationwww.artcars.com



Volkswagen dolphin car Dusty Dave


Dusty Dave limbering up



Kayakers harassing 'dolphin Dave'  26 Sep 06 |  Kent

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Dolphin 'at risk from being tame' 04 Oct 06 |  Kent

Lost whale dies after rescue bid 21 Jan 06 |  London


No more concrete prisons - www.dolphins.com


Natural History  Learn about the range, behavior, and life span of bottlenose dolphins as well as other members of the delphinid family.

Communication  Explore dolphins' varied modes of communication from sounds to body language and even touch.

Acoustics  Discover how and why dolphins make sounds like whistles, clicks, and burst pulses. This page also includes a diagram of sound production and echolocation.


Anatomy  See labeled body parts of a dolphin inside and out on a detailed diagram.


Physiology  Find out how dolphins have adapted their bodies to the harsh ocean. Descriptions of dolphin organs and biological systems.


Sea Lion Fact Sheet
Everything you wanted to know about California sea lions, including those here at Dolphin Research Center


Manatee Fact Sheet
Get many facts on the biology and lifestyle of the Florida manatee.


Manatee Conservation
Help save the endangered Florida manatee by learning about what threatens manatees and how to help them.









SANDYGEAT, as first recorded, denotes a gate or cleft in the sandstone hill through which the brook'flows to the sea


During the reformation, when relations with France and Spain were strained, Henry VIII ordered the Buillding of Sandgate Castle. It took 19 months to build and cost £5,587 - 5s - 10 1/8d


Fifteen years after the Spanish Armada, Queen Elizabeth I dines and rests in the castle.


In August, during the 1st Dutch wars, the main Dutch fleet sails down the English Channel close enough to be fired upon from Sandgate Cast


Fabian Clayton Wilson was the first to set up shipyards on the beach ground leased from the 2nd Earl of Radnor.


Other shipwrights followed - seven 28 gun frigates, four 16 gun sloops and two fireships were built for H.M. Navy


Shorncliffe Camp is established on the heights overlooking Sandgate


Sandgate's Westrly defences are extended (Battery Point) and the Royal Military Canal begins it's slow construction. The crumbling Castle is transformed into a giant Martello Tower armed with a cannon. Sir John Moore, pioneer of light infantry raining, commands the coast from Deal to Dungeness.


The trade continues - brigs, yawls, luggers and fishing craft were built but on a smaller scale.


Sir John Moore dies during the Peninsular War (16th Jan). One hundred years later a bronze bust is placed on Sandgate Esplanade


Queen Victoria and Prince Albert pass through Sandgate on their way to Shorncliffe Camp.


The Royal Standard is hoisted for the last time. The War Office sells the Castle (Destined for a railway station) for a sum of £20,000.


Shorncliffe Camp is allocated £170,000 for improvements. The camp is the mainstay in terms of trade and jobs.


The Castle first opens to the public accompanied by the band of the 1st Cinque Ports Artillery Voluuteers.


The Helena Hospital for the families of the military is constructed above Battery Point.


World War I. 40,000 Canadians are trained at Shorncliffe Cam


A posthumous V.C. is awarded to Lance Corporal William Cotter - East Kent Regiment (The Buffs


The British Red Cross acquires Enbrook House as a seaside branch of the Star and Garter hospital in Richmond.


World War II. Invasion fears are rife. Enbrook House is requisitioned by the Army and later the Fire Service.


Enbrook House is leased to the Home Office in 1947 and is opened as No. 6 District Police Training Cent


The semi-derilict castle and land attached are seriously damaged by the sea.


Sandgate Castle is Grade I listed and scheduled as an ancient monument.


Saga Holidays aquire Enbrook House and the 27 acres of land for around £200,000.


Two thousand Ghurkas are expected to take up married quarters.


Extract of:  'Rise and Progress of a Village' by Linda Rene-Martin




Dave the Dolphin diving fast














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