FREE SHIPPING ON ORDERS OVER £40 - SHOP NOW
SHOP NOW
arrow
LEARN MORE
arrow
menu
search
BUILD A BUNDLE icon
search
basket
SHOP ALL PRODUCTS
Free Shipping On Orders Over £40
SHOP ALL PRODUCTS
Free Shipping On Orders Over £40
SHOP ALL PRODUCTS
Free Shipping On Orders Over £40
SHOP ALL PRODUCTS
Free Shipping On Orders Over £40

Spirtle The Sunburned Wonder Dolphin

  • 4 min read

Throughout February, we are donating £1 from every ocean-friendly, SPF 25 Mineral Sunscreen sold on our website to WDC. It's more important than ever to wear your SPF! 


Sunscreen is a vital step in a beauty regime to protect you from harmful UV rays which should be applied everyday, even in the winter (if it isn’t , it should be! ). However, finding a ‘blue’ SPF can be difficult as most sunscreens in the market contain harmful chemicals that cause coral bleaching and damage to the ocean. At UpCircle, we are a part of the Blue Beauty movement, which focuses on encouraging consumers to buy beauty products made from ethical, sustainable and ocean-friendly ingredients that are packaged in refillable, reusable or recyclable packaging.

Believe it or not, even whales and dolphins can be affected by sunburn. The team at WDC have been kind enough to take us through the unseen impact of the sun on these incredible ocean dwellers - and how your SPF purchase can be a game-changer.


Let's dive in!


Born in 2012, “Spirtle” is the lively and adventurous daughter of “Porridge” and lives mostly in the Inner Moray Firth around the Black Isle coastline of Scotland with her siblings and friends. Her adventurous nature nearly cost her life when on 29th May 2016 she became stranded on mudflats in Nigg Bay, near Cromarty. With the tide ebbing, there was no chance of swimming away by herself.
She was high and dry for many hours in bright sunshine, but by amazing luck she was spotted by two tourists whose sat nav had taken them down the wrong road. Thankfully they knew to phone BDMLR (British Divers Marine Life Rescue) and soon some volunteers and medics were with her, covering her body in wet towels to try and cool her down.


However, it was evident that her skin on her right side was blistering badly due to sunburn and the SMASS (Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme) veterinary experts were very worried that she would not survive due to shock.


Many hours later, as the tide started to flood in, the rescuers held her steady as she began to float by herself. She showed great spirit and willingness to get back out to sea. Carefully, she was pointed in the right direction, and she swam away - slowly and a bit lop-sided - but soon she was back out to sea again.


Spirtle wasn’t seen for a few months but one day a young dolphin was photographed by Aberdeen University that had a huge bare patch of flesh all along the right side. The upper skin layer was gone and some of the insulating layer too – it looked awful and terribly painful. It was Spirtle - she had survived and was still in the area.


Spirtle totally astounded WDC with her recovery and healing process - every time she was encountered, the skin and underlying tissue were growing back and the whole area was turning pure white instead of dark red. The grey skin pigment was starting to grow back too. She had avoided serious infection and was seen regularly in the Inner Moray Firth playing with her friends and family, throwing seaweed around and generally just being a typical young dolphin. It was amazing and very emotional.


In early 2019, it was discovered that Spirtle and some of her friends and family had made an astonishing journey all the way round Scotland and were visiting the West Coast of Ireland. WDC were sent some ID pictures of dolphins that the Irish researchers didn’t recognise and immediately knew it was Spirtle – she is so unique. This amazing ‘summer holiday’ eventually ended and Spirtle was photographed with her family back in the Moray Firth in mid-December 2019, so it looked as though they had come back for Christmas!


Spirtle’s amazing story keeps getting better and better; in summer 2021, she had her first little baby! They are absolutely beautiful. Spirtle’s mum Porridge gave birth to another baby a few weeks after Spirtle and they travel around the Firth together.


What a wonderful dolphin family and what an amazing dolphin Spirtle is – a tale of luck, resilience, and healing.

WDC, Whale and Dolphin Conservation is the leading global charity dedicated to the conservation and protection of whales and dolphins. WDC’s vision is a world where every whale and dolphin is safe and free. Their work is backed by robust research, science and philosophy and they are the authority on whales and dolphins and the threats they face.


WDC work globally through campaigns, lobbying, advising governments, conservation projects, field research, rescue, education and much more; bringing together, and working hand-in-hand with, businesses, philanthropists, scientists, NGOs, governments and grassroots communities to find solutions to the problems faced by whales and dolphins.


Whales and dolphins are awe-inspiring. They are intelligent beings, vital for the health of the ocean and the planet. Together we can still help them recover and flourish and they can help us reconnect with the wild and repair the damage we have caused.

A donation of £1 per SPF 25 Mineral Sunscreen sold from 1st February until 29th February 2024 will be donated to Whale and Dolphin Conservation [WDC] to support their conservation efforts.


WDC is a registered Charity - registered charity number 1014705.