[MARMAM] New publication: Cashing in on Spinners: Revenue estimates of wild dolphin-swim tourism in the Hawaiian Islands

Lars Bejder lbejder at hawaii.edu
Thu Aug 13 14:45:45 PDT 2020

On behalf of Carlie Wiener and co-authors, we are pleased to bring to your
attention the following publication:

Wiener, C., Bejder, L., Johnston, D., Fawcett, L., and Wilkinson, P. 2020.
Cashing in on Spinners: Revenue estimates of wild dolphin-swim tourism in
the Hawaiian Islands. Frontiers in Marine Science. 7:660. doi:

Abstract: Wild dolphin-swim tourism has grown in specific locations where
Hawaiian spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) have known resting
habitat. The increased growth in dolphin-swim businesses has created an
industry in Hawaii that earns an estimated $102 million (USD) annually in
2013. Semi-structured interviews with business owners, market research, and
boat-based observations provide a platform for estimating revenue generated
from dolphin tourism in two popular locations, Waianae, Oahu and
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii Island. A revenue analysis of dolphin-swim tourism is
presented using a peak season and utilization rate model. These predictions
offer an accountability exercise based on a series of assumptions regarding
wild dolphin-swim demand and an annual estimate of the number of viewing
participants and revenue earned. The results show that dolphin viewing
companies are making a larger profit than dolphin-swim businesses by
approximately $19 million (USD) per year, however, both avenues are
generating large earnings. Sizable differences between businesses in Kona
and Waianae are discussed. The average lifetime revenue generated by a
dolphin in 2013 is estimated at $3,364,316 (USD) for Waianae and $1,608,882
(USD) for Kona, and is presented as a first step in scenario analysis for
policy makers looking to implement management in the bays where tourism
occurs. This study offers the first revenue estimates of spinner dolphin
tourism in Hawaii, which can provide context for further discussion on the
impact and economic role of the dolphin-swim industry in the state.

The paper is freely downloadable here:

For any further questions, please email Carlie: cwiener AT schmidtocean.org

[image: University of Hawaii at Manoa]
Lars Bejder | Director, Marine Mammal Research Program
| University of Hawaii at Manoa | Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology
| *Website*: www.mmrphawaii.org
| mobile: ++ 1 808 892 9490
| email: lbejder at hawaii.edu
| address: 46-007 Lilipuna Rd, Box 1346 Kaneohe, HI 96744
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