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Lead by Example
Help others become responsible wildlife watchers.

Wildlife can’t use their voice to advocate for responsible wildlife viewing, but you can! When you encourage others to be responsible, you become an ambassador for wildlife and help to keep everyone - both people and animals - safe and happy. When we enter their homes, we can either be a help or a hindrance - so choose to be a help to all wildlife!

Leading by example requires showing respect for both wildlife and other visitors. By treating others with courtesy, you can help ensure that these places are welcoming to guests of all backgrounds and identities.

People look at a whale fluking in the ocean

A group watches a humpback whale at Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.

Photo: Douglas Croft

Practicing responsible wildlife viewing encourages others to do the same. Choose businesses who follow these principles, including Blue Star, Whale SENSE, and Dolphin SMART operators.

If you witness someone breaking the wildlife viewing guidelines, speak up for wildlife and gently inform them about the proper behaviors to engage in. If they refuse to disengage in activities that are harmful to wildlife or their habitats, they can be reported.

To report a violation involving marine life, call the NOAA Fisheries Enforcement Hotline (800) 853-1964.

Group of people point at the ocean

Students from Monte Rio School spotted a gray whale during an Every Kid in a Outdoors field trip in Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary.

Photo: Jennifer Stock/NOAA

In a tidepool, a person points while a child sits

The tidepools in Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary are a great place to teach young ones how to be responsible watchers of wildlife.

Photo: Sara Heintzelman/NOAA

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Take the Pledge

Respect. Protect. Enjoy.