From the ed­i­tor’s desk

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY VIEWS -

THE Whit­sun­days has been in the na­tional spot­light this week – this time be­cause of our vis­it­ing whales.

The amaz­ing footage cap­tured by tour guides and guests on the wa­ter with Whit­sun­day Jet­ski Tours last week has cap­ti­vated a na­tion it would seem.

We’ve made it to the pages of var­i­ous me­dia out­lets’ print and on­line prod­ucts and to mil­lions of peo­ple’s tele­vi­sion screens thanks to Chan­nel 7’s Sun­rise pro­gram and Sky News.

What’s in­ter­est­ing about this is that the Whit­sun­days isn’t nec­es­sar­ily known for whales.

We’re not a “Her­vey Bay” with a plethora of ded­i­cated whale watch­ing op­er­a­tions although a cou­ple have started to spring up.

What makes it more dif­fi­cult for our tourist op­er­a­tors to ‘cash in’ on our fa­mous friends are the rules in our Whit­sun­day Whale Pro­tec­tion Area.

In­side this zone ves­sels must not ap­proach within 300 me­tres of a whale.

Out­side the zone a 100-me­tre dis­tance ap­plies.

This is a good thing for ob­vi­ous rea­sons – those be­ing pro­tec­tion of the whales, who are here to breed and give birth.

And also for our own pro­tec­tion – I mean who wants to spook a multi-me­tre mumma feel­ing pro­tec­tive of her calf.

But the beauty of what hap­pened to the group with Whit­sun­day Jet­ski Tours last week is that there’s noth­ing to stop the whales from com­ing to you.

By law, if you’re out on the wa­ter, you’ve got to re­spect the dis­tances, sit back and watch from afar, but if these won­der­ful crea­tures want to have a closer look at you they can come right over – and our front cover this week is proof of the amaz­ing re­sults.

Sharon Small­wood Ed­i­tor

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