南非旅遊新規 禁止人與野生動物互動 業主正反聲浪四起 | 台灣環境資訊協會-環境資訊中心

南非旅遊新規 禁止人與野生動物互動 業主正反聲浪四起

2019年12月18日
環境資訊中心外電;姜唯 翻譯;林大利 審校;稿源:ENS

南非旅遊服務協會(South African Tourism Services Association, SATSA)表示將不再允許遊客與任何野生動物幼獸互動、與掠食性動物或大象散步、與掠食性動物互動、以及騎乘野生動物。

SATSA的動物互動委員會在10月31日的產業簡報會議上宣布,不再推薦提供此類活動給國際旅遊業者或觀光客。

南非旅遊服務協會宣布人與野生動物互動新規定。照片來源:南非旅遊服務協會

發言人Blessing Manale表示,南非國家旅遊局相當歡迎對SATSA的「保護野生動植物和環境資源承諾」。他說,該準則「鼓勵尊重南非自然襲產的觀光活動,勸阻剝削野生動植物的經營方式」,支持現行的國家責任旅遊標準。

全國防止虐待動物協會(NSPCA)也歡迎新規。發言人威爾遜(Megan Wilson)說:「SATSA花時間向全國各地的權益關係人徵詢意見,並選擇了我們認同的立場。」

SATSA的研究成果可用來評估與動物的互動是否符合倫理,並選擇符合倫理的互動方式,其中包含評估的決策樹。入境旅遊運營商Private Safaris表示,SATSA的倫理框架是該產業的重要指引。

私人狩獵公司執行長伊埃爾(Monika Iuel)表示:「長期以來我們一直很困惑,在南非,要怎樣與圈養野生動物互動才符合倫理。」

「現在旅遊業、旅行社、任何其他訂購管道、行銷組織和媒體都必須承擔責任,確保我們灌輸在地和國際觀光客正確觀念,並積極與我們的業務夥伴合作,使不道德動物互動需求減少,最終能停止。」

SATSA的研究簡報主旨是「幫助業者、產品所有者、遊客和一般南非大眾做出更好的選擇」,許多業者都參加了該會議。

野生動物觀光設施業者之一、誇祖魯-納塔爾省的祖魯蘭貓科動物保育計畫業主內爾(Louis & Cecillie Nel)夫妻兩年前重新評估他們的經營方式。

他們與SATSA密切合作,「決定更改整個體制,終止所有互動。結果訪客人數大幅下降,但我們立場不變並繼續前進。」他們希望成為產業的示範,且新的SATSA指南能夠促使更多企業跟進。

其他業主就沒那麼容易接受。約堡獅子公園總經理拉科克(Andre La Cock)表示對SATSA新指南深感失望,「這肯定會對我們的生意產生負面影響」。約堡獅子公園目前是SATSA的成員,一旦新政策實施就必須遵守​​,否則可能會失去協會的認可。

約堡獅子公園的動物互動活動包括撫摸幼獸、與獵豹和獅子散步等。拉科克說:「這些活動是我們業務的核心,佔營業額的30%以上,少了這些我們會活不下去。」

永續旅遊顧問德瓦爾(Louise de Waal)博士說,不符合SATSA新標準的業主肯定會極力爭取維持現狀。「但是,整個產業一直在尋求與野生動物互動的標準,哪些活動可以哪些不可以。」

反對黨預備內閣旅遊部長弗雷塔斯(Manny De Freitas)說:「人類與野生動物互動是不自然的。在南非,我們需要在野生動物旅遊業中培養出一種符合倫理和自然的方法。我們應該教育遊客,解釋為什麼某些活動不再被接受。」

我們應該教育遊客,人類與野生動物互動是不自然的。照片來源:Danny Nicholson(CC BY-ND 2.0)

SATSA希望在其年度大會後於2020年7月底全面實施新準則,若從事以下活動則取消會員資格標準:

  • 動物表演–所有類型的動物,包括大象、掠食動物、靈長類動物和鳥類
  • 觸摸任何野生動物幼獸
  • 觸摸陸域掠食者、鯨豚和其他水域哺乳動物
  • 與掠食動物或大象散步
  • 騎乘動物,包括大象和鴕鳥

此外,該準則也警告旅遊業者和遊客不要去可能涉及任何非法貿易、動物的部位交易、圈養狩獵、繁殖、誤導性廣告或缺乏透明度的旅遊設施。

New Animal Rules Rattle South African Tourism Industry
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, December 13, 2019 (ENS)

Interactions with all infant wildlife, walking with predators or elephants, interacting with predators and the riding of wild animals are no longer acceptable practices, according to the South African Tourism Services Association, SATSA.

The association’s Animal Interactions board committee announced at an industry briefing on October 31 that facilities in South Africa offering any such activities will no longer be recommended to international operators or visitors.

The National Department of Tourism has welcomed SATSA’s “commitment to protection of our wildlife and environmental resources,” says spokesperson Blessing Manale.

He says the guidelines support the existing National Standards for Responsible Tourism in “encouraging visitor behavior that respects South Africa’s natural heritage and discouraged exploitative wildlife industries.”

Going forward, the National Department of Tourism, “will be looking into the guidelines in detail to ensure that we support emerging product owners to meet such standards,” Manale said.

The NSPCA has also welcomed the move. “SATSA took the time to gain opinion from stakeholders countrywide and made a stand which we approve of,” says spokesperson Megan Wilson.

The research outcome has been structured as a practical and interactive tool to evaluate and select ethical animal interactions. It includes a “decision tree” for assessing such operations.

According to the inbound tourism operator Private Safaris, SATSA’s ethical framework is a beacon for the industry.

“It has long pained us that there has been no clarity about what constitutes an ethical captive wildlife encounter in South Africa,” says Private Safaris CEO Monika Iuel.

“It is now incumbent on the industry – tour operators, any other booking channels, marketing organizations, and media – to ensure that we educate the local and international traveler, and actively engage our business partners in order to work towards demand for unethical animal experiences being reduced and eventually stopped.”

The SATSA research briefing, aimed at “helping operators, product owners, tourists, and everyday South Africans make good choices,” was attended by many operators within the industry.

One such wildlife facility is the Zululand Cat Conservation project in KwaZulu-Natal, previously known as the Emdoneni Cheetah Project. Owners Louis and Cecillie Nel re-evaluated their approach to tourism two years ago.

Working closely with SATSA, the Nels say they “decided to change the entire system to end all interactions. Visitor numbers dropped immensely, but we made the stance and pushed forward.”

“We did our best. But now that we know better, we need to do better,” they say. They hope their example, along with the new SATSA guidelines, will prompt more businesses to do the same.”

Other facilities haven’t been as susceptible to change. Joburg Lion Park general manager Andre La Cock says they “are deeply disappointed with the outcome of the SATSA guide” which will “definitely have a negative impact on our business”.

The Joburg Lion Park is currently a member of SATSA and will have to adhere to the new policies once they are implemented, or risk losing endorsement from the association.

The facility hosts activities like cub petting, walking with cheetah and lion, which “cannot be altered or tailored to adhere to the SATSA guidelines because they have been categorized as outright unacceptable,” La Cock says. “These activities are the core of our business and make up more than 30 percent of our turnover – without which our business would not survive.”

Facilities falling outside SATSA’s new criteria “will no doubt fight tooth and nail to keep the status quo,” says sustainable tourism consultant Dr. Louise de Waal. “However, the wider industry has been begging for guidance on what captive wildlife interaction activities are and are no longer acceptable.”

“It’s not natural for humans to interact with wild animals,” says Shadow Tourism Minister Manny De Freitas. “In South Africa, we need to foster an ethical and natural approach to wildlife tourism. We should educate tourists, explaining why certain activities are no longer acceptable.”

SATSA hopes to implement the guidelines with full effect by the end of July 2020, after its Annual General Meeting. “We hope to outline what the specific criteria for members who provide animal interactions will be at this meeting,” says SATSA CEO David Frost.

The new guidelines contain strict disqualifying criteria for:

  • Performing animals – all types of animals, including elephants, predators, primates, and birds
  • Tactile interactions with all infant wild animals
  • Tactile interactions with land predators, cetaceans and other aquatic mammals
  • Walking with predators or elephants
  • Riding of animals, including elephants and ostriches

Additionally, the guidelines warn operators and tourists against facilities that may be involved in any illegal trade, trading in body parts, canned hunting, breeding, misleading advertising and any lack of transparency.

“Primarily,” Frost says, “the research outlines a home-grown approach to a complex problem, one which draws a line in the sand – moving the South African tourism industry forward in terms of responsible and sustainable practices.”

※ 全文及圖片詳見:ENS

※ 本文與 行政院農業委員會 林務局   合作刊登

作者

姜唯

如果有一件事是重要的,如果能為孩子實現一個願望,那就是人類與大自然和諧共存。

林大利

於特有生物研究保育中心服務,小鳥和棲地是主要的研究對象。是龜毛的讀者,認為龜毛是探索世界的美德。