Conservation benefits of interpretation on marine wildlife tours

Zeppel, Heather, and Muloin, Sue (2008) Conservation benefits of interpretation on marine wildlife tours. Human Dimensions of Wildlife, 13 (4). pp. 280-294.

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Abstract

Marine wildlife tours provide a range of education and conservation benefits for visitors. These benefits derive from interpretation programs and close personal encounters with marine wildlife. Interpretive information covers the biology, ecology and behaviors of marine species, best practice guidelines, and human threats to marine life. There has been limited assessment of interpretation on marine wildlife tours to identify whether these increase tourist knowledge and promote changes in environmental attitudes. This article reviews the educational benefits of guided marine wildlife experiences with dolphins, whales, and marine turtles using Oram's (1999) framework of outcome indicators to manage marine tourism. The key indicators assessed in this article are education/learning and attitude/belief changes in visitors that benefit marine wildlife. This analysis found tourist learning during mediated encounters with marine wildlife contributes to pro-environmental attitudes and on-site behavior changes, with some longer-term intentions to support and engage in marine conservation actions. Areas of research are suggested to examine the causal links between wildlife interpretation and pro-environmental outcomes.

Item ID: 6386
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: marine wildlife tours; interpretation; education benefits; environmental attitudes; conservation actions
ISSN: 1533-158X
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2010 23:10
FoR Codes: 15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1506 Tourism > 150606 Tourist Behaviour and Visitor Experience @ 50%
15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1506 Tourism > 150603 Tourism Management @ 30%
15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1506 Tourism > 150605 Tourism Resource Appraisal @ 20%
SEO Codes: 90 COMMERCIAL SERVICES AND TOURISM > 9003 Tourism > 900399 Tourism not elsewhere classified @ 100%
Citation Count from Scopus Scopus 19
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