Despite the potential wide-reaching negative effects of these migratory animals becoming accustomed to people and boats, the educational value of the interaction to increase awareness is the reason government officials are happy to encourage the practice.
If this is indeed the case, the educational aspects should at the very least be accurate. Using a whale fluke in the logo taxonomically incorrect. It encourages an already un-corrected view by many tourists that the whale shark, a fish, is a marine mammal.
If we are preventing the sharks from migrating for education and awareness, then at least let’s see some more proactive and accurate education. Not just from reporters but on site, where the tourists are.
Sign indicating tourist registration area for Whale Shark watching. Photo via The Tuki Chronicles.
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