International experts in the development and operation of responsible whale watching are conducting a three-day workshop in St Vincent and the Grenadines (22–24 October 2014), to provide training to existing and prospective whale-watch operators.
The objectives of the workshop, which include two full days of instruction and a morning at sea, are focused on educating stakeholders on the importance of protecting whales and dolphins from the impact of vessels; increasing the educational and scientific value of whale watching trips for passengers and researchers; and maximising the income potential and community benefits of nature-based tourism.
The agenda includes segments on responsible regulation and passenger safety as well as business aspects such as marketing and tour design.
The trainers from Fundacion Cethus in Argentina bring years of experience in training whale-watch operators in developing countries to the workshop. It is being conducted in cooperation with the National Trust of St Vincent with financial support from the Animal Welfare Institute, Cetacean Society International, OceanCare and Whale and Dolphin Conservation.