Boat Trip Company is fined for breaking whale watching rules to ‘take better photos’
The Canarian Police has opened disciplinary proceedings against a company based in the province of Santa Cruz de Tenerife that runs boat trips for tourists to see whales and dolphins, after receiving information from an environmental group called Eguzki.
Eguzki claim that the boats were not complying with the regulations on whale watching and were “chasing and cornering them, so that customers could take better photos, something that, logically, is totally prohibited”, they said in a press release.
After receiving the complaint, the Environmental Department of the Canarian police force carried out an inspection from land and out at sea and were able to confirm that “during the controlled excursion, in which bottlenose dolphins and pilot whales were sighted, different infractions were detected", states the report from the General Corps of the Canarian Police (CGPC).
The inspection was carried out on Friday 28th October, during the first excursion scheduled by the company for that day, from the port of Tazacorte in La Palma at 10:30am.
It also confirmed that the offending company, with the boats named Fancy II and Fantasy, failed to comply with Law 42/2007 of December 13, on Natural Heritage and Biodiversity in several instances.
According to the CGPC, “the following breaches of the rules occurred: approaching the cetaceans head-on in the opposite direction to the one they were swimming, navigating in a circle around the group of cetaceans, not keeping the distance from the exclusion zone, and continually changing their course of navigation. All these actions are against the rules in place to protect the marine life in its natural habitat”.
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