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Home > Support > HWF Sustainable Guidelines

HWF Sustainable Guidelines
for diving and snorkeling

> Responsible and Respectful Practices for Reef Users
  • Take only photos, leave only bubbles - do not collect shells or organisms.
  • Observe animals exhibiting their natural behaviors rather than stimulate them to entertain.
  • Do not feed wildlife.
  • Do not grasp coral, stand on it, or kick up sediments.
  • Practice neutral buoyancy and train others to do so.
  • Keep gauges, fins and other accessories from dragging on the bottom.
  • Handle wildlife as little as possible, if at all.
  • Do not harass protected species.
  • Give sea turtles at least a 20-foot radius of approach.
  • Give monk seals at least 100 foot radius of approach (law).
  • Give dolphins at least 50 yard radius of approach.
  • Give whales 100 yard radius of approach (law).
  • Practice sustainable fishing techniques and obey size and catch limits.
> Best Management Practices for Dive/Snorkel Sites
  • Cooperate with other divers to reduce or rotate human numbers and vessels at dive sites.
  • Communicate with other vessel operators to locate and share moorings.
  • Voluntarily rotate sites that are becoming degraded, letting them "rest."
  • Support the establishment and usage of artificial reefs in appropriate locations to lessen the impact on existing natural sites.
  • Obey the laws.
> Pro-Active Conservation
  • Participate in local conservation efforts (e.g., beach clean-ups and water conservation).
  • Use best management practices on land and sea (e.g., reduce use of fertilizers, properly dispose of toxic wastes and recycle).
  • Use mooring pins properly and assist the Coral Reef Network in maintenance through donating time, materials and funds.
  • Participate in projects that assess the health of the reefs and support such efforts with donations of time, materials and funds.
  • Get involved in local and state government processes such as public hearings and commenting opportunities on Draft Environmental Impact Statements for projects that may affect reefs.
  • Use your citizen power to praise the government when they have done a good job in conservation and speak out when they do something not in line with marine conservation.
  • Know the laws and rules designed to protect the environment and report illegal activities.
  • Support establishments that show care and respect for the ocean's inhabitants.

These guidelines were developed by HWF together with multiple stakeholders through a grant from the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund.

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Reef Use Photos
Snorkeler with turtle - photo by Carrie Robertson
Practice stewardship

Anchor carefully
HWF diver cleans up the reef - photo by Cheryl King
Participate in reef cleanups
Maui coast - photo by Carrie Robertson
Help protect shorelines
Whale watching on Maui - photo by Carrie Robertson
Know approach limits
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