[MARMAM] SURVEY ON WHALING VERSUS WHALE-WATCHING IN ICELAND: FIRST CALL FOR PARTECIPATION

chiara bertulli ciarabertulli at yahoo.it
Tue Jan 10 05:06:00 PST 2012


SURVEY ON WHALING VERSUS WHALE-WATCHING IN ICELAND: FIRST CALL FOR PARTECIPATION 


Whale-watching activities, one of the fastest growing sectors of the world tourism market, began in Iceland in 1990 (Hoyt, 1995), and have enjoyed over 250% annual growth in recent years. Iceland rejoined the IWC in 2002 and started scientific whaling the following year. Although Iceland’s scientific whaling programme provided no immediate monetary benefits, rather, amassing a deficit of €0.5 million per year, nevertheless, Iceland resumed commercial whaling on 17th October 2006. According to Parsons and Rawles (2003), 79% of potential whale-watchers would boycott a country conducting hunts for cetaceans. 

Since 2009 the Faxaflói Cetacean Research (www.faxa-cetacean.org) has been collaborating with a local Icelandic whale-watching company (Elding Hvalaskoðun Reykjavik ehf, www.elding.is) and the University of Iceland (www.his.is) in order to learn more about who tourists (visiting Iceland) are and where they stand on issues such as whaling, whale-watching and whale meat consumption. Whale-watching tourists boarding daily tours in Faxaflói Bay, Iceland, have been interviewed using a pre-designed questionnaire in English. Passengers have responded to questions about whale hunting, whale watching, the coexistence of these two activities and whale meat consumption within Iceland. 

We are seeking collaborations with whale-watching companies outside of Iceland, which are considered to be similar in size and scope to the whale-watching operations in Iceland to facilitate comparison among data. The goal of this collaboration is to investigate whether the resumption of commercial whaling in Iceland would cause whale-watching tourists to reconsider visiting that country, and thereby evaluate the potential impact on the whale-watching market. 
Proposed deliverable will include publication in peer-reviewed journals. The funding agency along with all the collaborating organizations will be acknowledged in all publications and scientific and public presentations of the research. 

Two dataset of data (from the year 2009 and 2011) collected on board whale-watch boats in Reykjavik, are available. Additionally, from 1st June to 6th September 2012 groups of volunteers will ask to distribute questionnaires to tourist in Iceland on board whale-watch boats (for the third year) in Reykjavik and on land (for the first time) in five different locations in Reykjavik and vicinity. 

This is an initial call and if you have interest in participating into this collaborative effort, please contact us by emailing Chiara Giulia Bertulli (ciarabertulli at yahoo.it). 

Best wishes

Chiara G. Bertulli
On behalf of the Faxaflói Cetacean Research 

*********************
Chiara Bertulli PhD student 
University of Iceland
Biology Department
Náttúrfræðahús/Askja
Sturlugata 7
101 Reykjavik
Iceland
e-mail:cgb1 at hi.is / ciarabertulli at yahoo.it 
mobile:+354-8618307 (Icelandic)  +39-3406933102 (Italian) 
skype: chiara.giulia.bertulli

Faxaflói Cetacean Research
Principal Investigator and Research Coordinator
c/o Elding Whale-watching
Ægisgarður 7
101 Reykjavik 
Iceland
www.faxa-cetacean.org
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