Tourism, Conservation, Whale Sharks

La Paz Group


Thanks to Conservation for this item about entrepreneurial conservation of the ecosystems where one of the greatest of sea creatures dwell:


August 22, 2014

When the revenue generated by wildlife-related tourism is higher than that generated by the consumption of that wildlife, then the animals in question are worth more alive than dead. This seems intuitive, but the economics of wildlife tourism aren’t always easy to work out.

Over the last couple decades, one form of wildlife-based tourism that has quickly become popular is diving alongside free-swimming whale sharks. While they’re the largest fishes in the sea, whale sharks are actually quite docile and have highly predictable seasonal movement patterns. That makes them particularly attractive to dive operators. While whale shark tourism has operated in Western Australia’s Ningaloo Reef since the late 1980s or early 1990s, most whale shark tourism outfits have…

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