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Dead sperm whale in The Wash, East Anglia, England. © CSIP-ZSL.

What have dead whales ever done for us?

When dead whales wash up on dry land they provide a vital food source for...
Risso's dolphin © Andy Knight

We’re getting to know Risso’s dolphins in Scotland so we can protect them

Citizen scientists in Scotland are helping us better understand Risso's dolphins by sending us their...
Pilot whales pooing © Christopher Swann

Talking crap and carcasses to protect our planet

We know we need to save the whale to save the world because they are...
Fin whales are targeted by Icelandic whalers

Speaking truth to power – my week giving whales a voice

The International Whaling Commission (IWC) meeting is where governments come together to make decisions about whaling...

Why do whales and dolphins strand on beaches?

People often ask me 'why' whales and dolphins do one thing or another.  I'm a...
A spinner dolphin leaping © Andrew Sutton/Eco2

Head in a spin – my incredible spinner dolphin encounter

Sri Lanka is home to at least 30 species of whales and dolphins, from the...
Sperm whale (physeter macrocephalus) Gulf of California. The tail of a sperm whale.

To protect whales, we must stop ignoring the high seas

Almost two-thirds of the ocean, or 95% of the habitable space on Earth, are sloshing...
WDC team at UN Ocean conference

Give the ocean a chance – our message from the UN Ocean Conference

I'm looking out over the River Tejo in Lisbon, Portugal, reflecting on the astounding resilience...

Global Welfare Guidance for Animals in Tourism

ABTA, the UK Travel Association, has launched a significant report entitled “Global Welfare Guidance for Animals in Tourism”. Initially for use for ABTA members, the tour operators Thomas Cook, TUI, Virgin Holidays and Cosmos, the guidance provides the first ever global guidelines on animal welfare for the tourism industry.

Animal attractions such as dolphinaria, featuring captive dolphins performing in circus-style shows, and “posing” for photographs with tourists or swimming with them, are popular with holidaymakers. But on their return home, many holidaymakers contact their tour operators or organisations such as WDC with their concerns about the places they have visited and the welfare of the animals they have seen or interacted with. ABTA’s initiative aims to address some of those concerns, by providing, among other things, specific guidance for tour operators, tourist boards in holiday destinations and other sectors of the tourism industry, on health, welfare and conditions concerning animal attractions promoted by the industry.

WDC hopes it will be strictly adhered to by ABTA members and others and provide a first step towards an end to tour operator promotion of facilities holding and displaying captive whales and dolphins to international tourists.