Tips on Watching Wildlife More Responsibly
Wildlife tours offer opportunities to see different kinds of animals in their natural habitats. It is also a great way to raise awareness on conservation efforts and develop a deeper appreciation of the natural world. But wildlife watching activities can also do more harm than good often due to some tourists’ irresponsible behaviors. For more responsible wildlife watching practices, here are some tips to keep in mind.
- Do some research. Find out the best destinations for wildlife viewing. Learn more about those places particularly the specific locations where you are going. Know as much as you can about the do’s and don’ts when watching the wildlife in the area.
- Choose a tour company or tour guide well. Look for reputable tour companies that promote responsible travel. Try to find out as much as you can about the tour operators’ best practices. Read reviews, if available. Or ask around for recommendations from people you know.
- Keep your distance. Avoid creating unnecessary disturbance to the animals in their natural habitat. Stay only close enough to see them but still far to disrupt whatever it is they are doing.
- Don’t offer or leave food for the animals. Feeding the animals may seem like a kind thing to do. But it can have potential negative effects that may ultimately prove more harmful to the animals. Never offer food to the animals you encounter no matter how friendly they may seem.
- Avoid taking photos with the wildlife. There have been a growing number of animal deaths caused by tourists who want to take pictures with them. Take photos from a distance and make as little disturbance as possible when doing it.
- Stay in designated wildlife viewing spots. Follow the guides’ instructions every time you go wildlife viewing. Stay in the designated spot and avoid disturbing the surroundings, especially in sensitive areas.