Society warns irresponsible tours can harm dolphins by Samuel Aubrey, firstname.lastname@example.org
KUCHING: The Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) has warned that dolphin watching tours that are not managed responsibly could actually harm the cetaceans.
Photo Credit: http://mnskuching.blogspot.com/
A statement issued yesterday said it is important to observe dolphin watching ethics and etiquette and always put the animals’ welfare first.
MNS Kuching Branch will hold a guided dolphin watching trip on Aug 24 at 2pm.
Local dolphin experts Cindy Peter and Wayne Tarman will share with participants findings from the Sarawak Dolphin Projects, the cetaceans’ habitat in Kuching Bay and dolphin watching ethics and etiquette.
Kuching Bay encompasses the area from Telaga air on the west and the Bako peninsula on the east, as well as the rivers that connect these areas — Sungai Sibu Laut, Sungai Salak and Sungai Santubong.
To join the dolphin watching trip, email particulars (full name, IC number and mobile phone number) to email@example.com by Wednesday (Aug 20).
For MNS members, payment for the boat is RM50 per adult and RM25 per child under 12.
For the public the charge is RM80 per adult and RM40 per child under 12.
Children under five are discouraged from joining this trip.
Participants are to gather at Permai Rainforest Resort’s front desk at 1.45pm to fill in the activity’s indemnity form, make payment and attend the safety briefing.
Sarawak is the only state in Malaysia that has commercial dolphin watching as a tourism activity.
The MNS trip is in line with the objectives of the Santubong Nature Festival to be held on Nov 8-9, which is jointly co-organised with Permai Rainforest Resort and supported by the Kuching North City Commission (DBKU) and Sarawak Museum.
Among others, the Santubong Nature Festival aims to raise public awareness about the priceless natural and historical heritage value of the Santubong peninsula, and also to enhance environmental awareness and inculcate a sense of value for the area among the public, especially youth.