When you walk down to the water on a sunny day, you’re probably thinking of enjoying the weather and playing in the water. Hunting for seashells is another popular beach activity. Sometimes, you’ll see a seagull, jellyfish, or a school of dolphins. These are amazing sights, and some that people often watch for while on the shore. Marine life is interesting, and there are many ways to see it up close.
Watching Marine Life
There are many ways to see dolphins or other marine life.
- Quietly watch aquatic animals that spend time on land from the beach.
- Observe animals from a boardwalk or pier overlooking the ocean.
- Go snorkeling.
- Take a dolphin or whale watching cruise.
- Travel to a location known for manatees or other sea creatures.
- Hire a guide who knows the local wildlife to show you where wildlife is abundant.
Observing Without Impacting
The most important thing you can do when watching any wildlife is to keep the animals safe. It’s natural to want to get as close as possible and even interact with them, but wild animals can be disrupted or harmed if you aren’t careful. Even the most well-intentioned outing may result in the interruption of migratory patterns or breeding, or even separating young animals from their mothers. When watching marine wildlife, watch for any changes in an animal’s behavior such as quickly moving away, tail slapping on the water, and female animals shielding their young. These – and other actions – can signal that the animal is in distress because of your presence. If so, cautiously leave so that you don’t disturb them further.
There are some precautions you can take to keep from disturbing the animals. Always stay a safe distance from wild animals, and never try to feed them. If you have a pet with you, keep it on a leash. Try to keep your presence unknown by being quiet and keeping downwind of the animals. Remember that you should not touch wild animals, and don’t assume that a solitary young animal is abandoned. Mothers regularly leave to feed, so the mother will probably return soon. If you’re in a boat, limit your time observing animals. Drive as slowly as possible, and never follow animals if they try to swim away. You can find more tips on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website at www.fisheries/noaa.gov/insight/viewing-marine-life.
If you’re able to watch animals from a boardwalk or pier, the animals are more protected. These structures are designed to keep you away from marine habitats, and the animals are able to swim as close to you as they’re comfortable with. They can leave if they feel that they or their children are in danger. A bridge from Nature Bridges is designed and built with wildlife in mind, ensuring that they are not harmed by the materials or building process. When you ask Nature Bridges to build your boardwalk, you can be confident that no animals will be harmed. Call us today to get started on your marine structure for viewing these amazing creatures.