Ecotourism:The Pros & Cons

                         

Nature is a beautiful thing to admire, but in their search for beauty to admire are some individuals reckless with the environment and its animals? The International Ecotourism Society defines ecotourism as “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of the local people (http://www.ecotourism.org/what-is-ecotourism).” Recently, there has been an increase in ecotourism as well as concerns for the effects that result.

In “Orangutans Stressed by Tourists”, the author shares numerous cons such as the surrounding environment in which ecotourism thrives, individuals losing sight of animals’ need for privacy, and lastly how the animals are affected by people coming into their homes. Obviously the last effect is most apparent especially to scientists who have conducted research on certain primate species from Malaysia of which reside in an area that is known for the country’s ecotourism. Scientists tested feces from orangutans and gorillas, and discovered that theirstresslevelsincreasedwhentouristscameby (http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/23/world/asia/eco-stressed-orangutan/index.html?iid=article_sidebar). This change in their stress levels could really cause adverse effects to things such as behavior, appetite, and overall sense of security (http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/23/world/asia/eco-stressed-orangutan/index.html?iid=article_sidebar).

Despite the concerns some see the increase in ecotourism beneficial. Liz Macfie, wildlife coordinator, shares that ecotourism has enabled many species to increase in population such as themountaingorillas (http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/23/world/asia/eco-stressed-orangutan/index.html?iid=article_sidebar). Two other pros include the education these experiences provide individuals as well as the economic boost it provides local economies (http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/23/world/asia/eco-stressed-orangutan/index.html?iid=article_sidebar). I can see why there is so much debate. From the animals’ perspective I could only imagine what it’s like being at home and all of the sudden random people walk through my house taking pictures of me eating, showering, or even sleeping. It’s actually very creepy now that I think about it. Can a safe balance be achieved for the sake of the animals? Will economic gain be more important than the overall well-being of the animals?

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Ecotourism:The Pros & Cons

  1. Rebecca George

    Well this is sort of like my paper. People are apart of the whaling community to earn money. Their liing is to kill whales! Therefore, the answer to your question is yes, I think the economy will always be more important than the health of the animals. However, as I am doing more and more research, I am starting to learn that some organizations are fighting hard for the sake of animals and ther habitat.

  2. I agree with you Rebecca, it really does seem like the money is more imporant than the animals which is really sad considering how majestic these animals truly are. And I have read about different animal activist group trying to help protect the animals, but it almost seems like a battle of David vs. Goliath.

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