RESPONSIBLE WHALE WATCHING

The whale watching activity has become through the years in an important touristic resource with a promising future in Canarias, and La Palma was not left behind. For this reason, in order to minimize the impact of this kind of activity on the different species that inhabit these waters, we need to focus on the development of responsible whale watching practices.

Ocean Explorer is a firm that is committed with the conservation of the environment and it strongly sticks on the regulation of the cetaceans observation with touristic purposes, described on the Real Decreto 1727/2007, December 21th

Our two boats Flipper and Bussard have the “Blue Boat” certification as they are authorized vessels by the Tourism Department of the Government of Canarias and the Environment Ministry of Spain for the cetaceans observation.

APPROACH TO THE ANIMALS

  • The boats must navigate at a maximum speed of 4 knots and no faster than the speed of the slowest animal of the pod.
  • The approach to the cetaceans must be slow and in the same direction to the heading of the animals in an angle of approx 30º and never from the front, behind or perpendicular to their trajectory. 
  • The trajectory must be parallel to the animals’ with no sudden changes of heading or speed.
  • A maximum of 3 boats are allowed to observe the same group of cetaceans at the same time.
  • The boat is not allowed to stay with the same group of animals longer than 30 minutes.

When observing the animals, it is forbidden:

  • To touch the animals
  • To feed the animals or to throw any kind of objects into the water
  • To cut their trajectory
  • To position the boat between an adult and its calf
  • To make any kind of noise so as to presumably call their attention
  • To swim or dive with cetaceans
  • The use of sonar to find them
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