Signatures Needed To Hold All Guilty Parties Accountable After Divers Carelessly Straddle An Endangered Whale Shark In Indonesia
Photo by Facebook/Wayan Segara Bali
The whale shark is the world’s largest fish. The species is considered endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, due to the impacts of fisheries, bycatch losses, and vessel strikes. Their numbers are declining and it is up to the global community to implement laws that ensure their survival.
That’s why Indonesia’s marine laws stipulate that divers who come from all around the world to see this beautiful species in the wild, always keep a safe distance from the enormous creatures.
Those warnings weren’t taken seriously by a few careless scuba divers in Indonesia’s Cenderawasih Bay National Park. In the infuriating video that recently went viral, the group can be seen having no regard for their safety and more importantly, that of the sharks. One person is seen straddling the shark’s back while two others held down its fins and another person clung onto its tail. Others then proceed to take photos of the incident.
According to World Wildlife Fund, these gentle marine giants roam the oceans around the globe, generally alone. However, large numbers of whale sharks often gather in areas with abundant plankton. The distribution of whale sharks indicates the presence of plankton and the overall health of our oceans. Making them even more important to protect.
Whale Sharks, like other sharks, must keep moving in order to breathe. Although they are massive in size, the fish are extremely fragile, and any type of human contact can lead to injury which could quickly lead to death.
While the scuba divers are clearly at fault and have been arrested by authorities, there is one other person that should be equally held accountable — the tour guides. Tour guides are suppose to know the laws that protect Indonesia’s endangered marine species, but this one decided to ignore them and allow his clients to treat this beautiful creature like a toy.
Indonesian authorities need to hold the tour guide accountable for endangering these beautiful whale sharks.
Sign this Care2 petition and encourage Fisheries Minister‘s Susi Pudjiastuti, to take action against all guilty parties, and send a message that these endangered animals need to be protected! HERE!