In the far south of Chile, tourism and sustainable development progress in harmony. One of the most remarkable cases is the Scientific Tourism Center, part of the Center for Research on Patagonian Ecosystems (CIEP), which in early 2009 began a project to observe and to identify the cetaceans along the cold Patagonian coasts.
The main objective of the research is to identify the cetaceans individually according to their species. To do so, researchers took pictures and made videos that will allow them to analyze the behavior of these animals.
Three types of dolphins stand out among the species observed in the area: austral, Chilean and bottlenose. In addition, blue whales (the largest animals in the world), sea lions and different types of birds like pelicans, seagulls and albatrosses, among others, have also been identified.
The research will cover the areas of the Puerto Chacabuco, Puerto Cisne, and Raúl Marín Balmaceda fiords on the northern Aysén coast, while in the south it will cover the fiords of Tortel, the Baker Channel, and the Golfo de Penas.
Along these lines, CIEP Scientific Tourism Center Director Fabien Bourlon commented on the importance of this type of research, affirming that “it is proof of the great biodiversity of species in the Aysén Region, which is without doubt an important element that holds up and stands out as an important axis in the development of tourism in Patagonia.”