Why We Should Care About Dolphins

dolphin playing

Dolphins in general are not yet among the most endangered species, except probably for the river dolphins. But just because they’re not nearing the brink of extinction at the moment doesn’t mean we shouldn’t care about their plight.

There have been ethical issues raised about dolphins in captivity many of which are trained to provide educational experiences. Dolphin experiences in controlled environments have helped promote awareness about the specie. Many children have learned from their interactions and close encounters with dolphins.

But captivity has found to have negative effects on dolphins. For this reason, many support conservationists’ call for more ethical practices in dealing with dolphins. We are not experts on wildlife conservations. But we are passionate about dolphins. This is why we believe that understanding them more could help in raising awareness on how to better care for them in our own little ways. Here are some videos about dolphins that could make you rethink the way you view them:

1. Dolphins: Even Smarter Than You Thought – Nat Geo Live

There have been many references about dolphins’ incredible intelligence. The 1996 film Flipper has endeared the dolphin to many people who have watched it. The amazing displays of smarts have sparked more interest about his kind. Researchers have likewise noticed intelligence in their subjects. Many have remarked on dolphins’ abilities to learn tricks. And you don’t have to look far than the ocean theme parks that feature dolphin shows. Part of what makes these shows popular, especially among children is the fascinating displays of abilities and tricks dolphins learned from their trainers. This clip from National Geographic explains why dolphins may even be smarter than we think they are.

2. The Cove | Film Trailer | Participant Media

The Cove Movie Extended Clip – Taiji

These movie trailers are about a documentary film released in 2009. The Cove is an award-winning film that is raw and heartbreaking. It was also controversial given the difficulties filmmakers encountered to create the movie. It tells of the dolphin hunting activities in a town in Japan, which was kept secret from outsiders. The lucrative hunting practices had the support of many of the townspeople, which made filming it even more challenging. It is a difficult movie to watch, especially at the part when the horrible slaughter of the dolphins was shown.

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Dolphin Watching Tips: Responsible Ways to Watch Dolphins

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Here at Florida Dolphin Watch, we believe that the best ways to have a dolphin experience is to watch them at their natural habitat. While many dolphins in captivity are well-taken cared for by their caretakers, they are still constrained by their surroundings. The interactions they have with humans who feed and play with them can also affect their wellbeing and ability to survive in the wild if they get the chance to go back to the oceans where they came from.

One of the best ways to help dolphin and wildlife conservation efforts is to promote responsible dolphin watching activities and behaviors. Here are some simple ways to do that:

Choose the right tour operators

Look for dolphin watching tour operators that support ethical practices. Preferably, find those that advocate conservation efforts and not just see the tours as purely business. They should equally be invested in protecting the dolphins from irresponsible behaviors during the tours. With the trip

Support knowledgeable guides

Find skippers or tour guides who are knowledgeable about dolphins. A good dolphin watching experience is when you get off the boat knowing more about dolphins than when before you started with the trip. These are the kind of people and business that you would want to put your money into.

Verify affiliations

There are some operators who may not be honest or straightforward when citing affiliations. Some just put names of trusted organizations even if they are not bona fide members. If you want to confirm such memberships, make time to check the websites of the organizations cited to see if the tour operator is listed.

Take note of irresponsible practices

Observe the skipper’s behaviors when moving towards sighted dolphins. The least you can do is to take note of irresponsible behaviors that could potentially put dolphins at risk so you can make a report to the proper authorities after your tour.

Be more selective during peak season

Avoiding the crowd during the peak season could also mean missing out on the many sightings you can have during that period. One of the downsides of the busy season is that some tour operators become short-handed when it comes to fielding their most knowledgeable and experienced crews. They may resort to allowing less responsible skippers or guides to handle tours to accommodate the influx of tourists. The best thing you can do is to be more selective in picking an operator to ensure that you do not become part of unethical dolphin watching activities or practices.

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About us

Florida Dolphin Watch is a group of individuals who share a passion for dolphin and dolphin watching. We are "chasing dolphins" not only for the satisfaction of seeing them in the wild. We also advocate ethical ways of participating in this activity and wish to bring attention to the benefits of supporting efforts that help in wildlife conservation. This blog is about dolphin watching and tips that could make this activity more fun and meaningful.

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