DoC investigating jetski incident with dolphins
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Posted January 19, 2021
A video of an Auckland real estate agent driving a jetski through a pod of dolphins, reported to be off Pauanui, is being investigated by DoC.
A concerned member of the public raised concerns after seeing the video online.
A DoC compliance team is following up on the complaint and will determine the severity of the act and whether it is a breach of Marine Mammals Protection Regulations
Doc says growing public interest and increased sea based tourism present new threats to our marine mammals. These include boat strike, noise pollution, harassment and the separation of mothers and their calves.
If you notice a marine mammal being harassed, severely injured or entangled, or in the event of any other conservation emergencies, phone 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468).
Harassment of marine mammals is against the law and offences can result in prosecution. There are a variety of penalties for infringement offences under the Marine Mammals Protection Act.
Using any vehicle, vessel, aircraft, or hovercraft to herd or harass any marine mammal carries an infringement fee of $800 and a maximum fine of $1600. http://www.legislation.govt.nz/…/latest/DLM168286.html…
Follow Marine Mammals Protection Regulations:
A maximum of 3 vessels (including jet skis and kayaks) is allowed within 300 m of a group of dolphins.
Keep your speed to a minimum—no wake allowed within 300 m.
Approach dolphins slowly, from behind and to the side of the group.
Never drive through, cut off or circle a group of dolphins.
Don’t make sudden or repeated changes in direction or speed.
Don’t attempt to swim with groups with calves or juveniles (animals less than two-thirds the length of the adults).
Keep noise to a minimum.
No boats allowed within 50 m of whales or 200 m of female whales with calves.
You must also:
Scan ahead for dolphin dorsal fins – do not drive through a dolphin pod.
Slow down gradually and give the pod a wide berth If you are simply travelling through an area with dolphins.
Give mothers and calves extra space. If you spot a dolphin less than half the size of an adult, keep your vessel 100 m away from the mother and calf.
Make the most of your encounter by switching off your motor and giving the animals plenty of space – this lets the dolphins carry on with important activities like nursing and catching fish.
Give all dolphins and whales a ‘lunch break’ between 11:30 am and 1:00 pm – do not approach them during this time.