Code of ethics for TH guides

About | Code of ethics | For TH guides

As Latin American tour leaders and biologists working in our own countries, and sometimes far from home, it is our responsibility to ensure that in every visit to a field locality, we leave the site better than we found it. For this to happen, all event participants (members of local communities, tour guides and attendees) should have a positive experience while contributing to the preservation of local wildlife.

For this reason, in April 2018, we created this first version of our code of ethics for tour leaders, to be implemented immediately in all our herping tours and photo safaris. It includes the following standards of behavior.

Tropical Herping biologists in the forests of Mindo

Wash your rubber boots with a bleach solution before visiting a field site, especially a new stream. This is to avoid the unintentional spread of infectious diseases that are affecting amphibians.

Make sure participants make all non-scientific photography of wildlife in-situ (in the specific microhabitat where the animal is found) from an appropriate working distance.

Remember that the handling of animals, white background photography and collection of scientific specimens are restricted. You can only carry out these activities if they are under the scope of a research project approved by the local environmental authority.

Whenever possible, encourage members of local communities and staff from lodges and scientific stations to be part of the fieldwork.

Encourage people in your group to photograph the two sides of the coin. Besides focusing on the beauty of wildlife, help them photograph the effects of deforestation, pollution and climate change to raise awareness about these problems among their peers.

Become empathetic towards wildlife and be sensitive about the effect the group’s presence is having on each animal. Above all, try not to disturb natural behavior of animals.

Remind your group to avoid sharing specific location of animal findings, poachers or illegal collectors of wildlife may use them.