Non-profit volunteer association carries out and promotes sports, educational, eco-tourism and research activities at sea
Friend of the Sea, the world’s leading global certification standard for products and services that respect and protect the marine environment, today announced that it has certified MareCamp in the category of sustainable dolphin and whale watching for scientific groups. The certification covers the organization’s eco-tourism, research and educational programs.
“MareCamp is doing a true service to the cause of sustainability by showing that it’s possible to learn and enjoy oneself with the vast treasures of the sea, but without harming the environment,” said Paolo Bray, Director of Friend of the Sea. “In fact, as their success demonstrates, educational and eco-tourism programs lead people to fall in love with the ocean, so they will want to protect it.”
MareCamp is a non-profit volunteer association that is recognized by the Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI), the Sicilian Region and the Agreement on the Conservation of Cetaceans of the Black Sea, Mediterranean Sea and contiguous Atlantic area (ACCOBAMS). It carries out and promotes sports, educational, eco-tourism and research activities at sea. Mare camp’s experiences include snorkeling and naturalistic excursions by dinghy or sailing boat. They also offer dolphin watching eco-tours. MareCamp also uses some of the proceeds of its activities to fund free experiences for disabled children and from low-income communities.
This program is linked to the “Dolphin Observation and Conservation in the Gulf of Catania” project, which helps local researchers carry out the essential data collection by surveying the resident cetofauna and monitoring their health. “We experience the sea on a 360-degree basis. Only by living the sea is possible to appreciate this environment, know its vulnerabilities and learn how to protect it.” said Clara Monaco MareCamp’ Scientific Director. “Everyone who participates get to see a wide range of wildlife and we are pleased to accompany them by easily providing all the useful scientific information on the exciting encounters we make together”.
MareCamp program participants may possibly spot bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) all year long. Occasionally, they might see sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus), fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus), Cuvier’s beaked whales (Ziphius cavirostris), Risso’s dolphins (Grampus griseus) and common dolphins (Delphinus delphis).