Hawaiian spinner dolphins rest during daylight hours in shallow, sandy-bottom bays along the Kona Coast of Hawai‘i Island. These bays provide protection from predators found in deeper waters as well as refuge close to feeding grounds where the dolphins travel overnight.
The issue with these bays is that they are also easily accessible to tourists. Tourism operators exploit the slow swimming, shallow diving behavior associated with rest each day. Snorkelers often surround the dolphins, grabbing the animals and even riding on their dorsal fins. With this amount of disruption, the dolphins are not allowed to get the rest that they need.
The Nai‘a Guide serves as an ecological conscience for tourists traveling to Hawai‘i. The app provides explanations of the dolphins’ unique ecology and tips for responsible viewing. Hawai‘i’s approved Dolphin SMART tours are also listed in The Nai‘a Guide so that tourists may choose a sustainable tour that abides by a code of conduct created to have a minimal impact on the animals’ natural rhythm.
If you are traveling to Hawai‘i, download The Nai‘a Guide to learn more. Show the dolphins aloha. Let them rest without disturbance.