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Abstract: Some solitary dolphins reorient part or all of their social behavior towards humans. Such dolphins often attract large numbers of people who wish to observe them at close quarters or even interact with them. These encounters may be rewarding for both the dolphin and the people concerned, but negative outcomes, particularly for the dolphin, are common. This paper describes the pattern of development of human-friendly dolphin situations and proposes a “dolphin etiquette” and protocols for management options. The most critical of these is the development of a situation-specific management plan with official support for its implementation. The success of a management plan will depend on an effective education program and the support of local stakeholders.
Key Words: ODONTOCETES; BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN; TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS; SOLITARY; SOCIAL; HUMAN ORIENTED BEHAVIOUR; ENCOUNTERS WITH HUMANS; MANAGEMENT; WORLDWIDE
Document Type: Research article
Page Numbers: 427 – 433