Watching Wildlife Responsibly

While it is thrilling to watch marine mammals, we encourage you to watch them in a way that does not disturb or harass them. The following links provide guidelines for responsible wildlife viewing.

Marine mammals are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (MMPA), and some of them are further protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Harassment may be considered as anything that disrupts their normal behaviors or activities.





*Contributors to these guidelines include NOAA National Marine Sanctuary Program, NOAA Fisheries Service Office of Protected Resources, National Park Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Watchable Wildlife, Inc., International Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, Wildlife Conservation Society, and a number of state and regional agencies, organizations, and institutions.


The Whale Trail is a nonprofit organization in partnership with
Partners NOAA Seattle Aquarium People for Puget Sound Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife The Whale Museum National Marine Sanctuaries