Responsible Whale Watching Handbook Now Available

The International Whaling Commission (IWC) and the Convention for Migratory Species (CMS) have assembled a Whale Watching Handbook that is now freely available online. The handbook is a flexible and evolving resource designed to encourage and facilitate responsible whale watching. The Handbook incorporates international best practice, educational resources and a summary of the latest scientific information. It offers free, independent and comprehensive advice divided into sections that specifically target different groups of users.

Hvalsafari Hurtigruten © Ørjan Bertelsen

For whale watching operators, tour guides and educators: the Handbook provides guidance for how to offer the best possible experience, manage expectations, and maximise customer satisfaction.

For regulators and policymakers: the Handbook contains information on stakeholder engagement, types of management strategy, monitoring and enforcement measures in operation around the world, and a comprehensive library of research and policy papers on the management of whale watching.

For the general public: the Handbook equips those preparing for a trip to make informed and responsible choices. It contains an interactive map showing which species may be seen in which locations. It also offers fact sheets about those species including illustrations to help identify them, understand their behaviour, and learn more about their lives.

The Handbook is regularly updated and is available in English, French and Spanish.

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