05 Jun Dolphins Need Your Help
We get it! People really love and are captivated by dolphins. We’ll be the first to admit that we are exactly the same. Heck we’re so taken by them we started a business watching them. Honestly, we get no bigger thrill than to see people light up when they spot dolphins from our boat, in the wild, for the very first time. In fact, if you’ve been out on a tour with Amy and I you’ll probably notice that our excitement level is just as high if not higher than our guests. This is a genuine reaction because we recognize how special this life of ours is. We also know that nothing is a given with these animals. Their world, our world, is changing, and we have a duty to to be a voice for them.
In the last couple of years we have been encouraged to see the changes taking place in the publics attitude towards captive dolphins, Orcas, elephants, lions and other animals relegated to a life of misery for the sole purpose of entertaining us. This pressure has brought about the end and phasing out of Orca shows at Sea World and the retirement of many circus animals. This is a good start and the absolute right thing to do. This attitude and consumer pressure must be carried forward to the dolphin watching industry.
In 1972 the “Marine Mammal Protection Act” was enacted for the purpose of protecting dolphins, whales, sea lions, otters and other creatures from, well, humans. From that law was born the “Dolphin SMART” program developed by NOAA’s office of National Marine Fisheries Service. Their stated mission is “to promote responsible stewardship of wild dolphins in coastal waterways”. We here at Blue Wave Adventures could not agree more.
We need your help! It is you the consumer that will drive changes in our industry. Take the time to research the tours that you are thinking about going out with because there is a difference. Ask them if they follow “Dolphin SMART” protocols and the “Marine Mammal Protection Act”. Make sure they are not feeding or trying to attract dolphins with trawl nets (shrimp boats) or other devices. Voice your concerns when you see more than one vessel (this includes jet skis) encroaching on a group of dolphins. Finally, let them know that driving up on and over them is also unacceptable and against the law. Unfortunately law enforcement is rarely around to do anything about these violations. However, you the consumer are there to witness it every time. With your help and pressure on businesses we can have a more positive impact on our dolphins.
Thanks for reading,
Capt. Mark Collins