Philosophy Whale Discoveries was formed with the goal of promoting whale watching in Tonga as a means of conserving the South Pacific humpback whale, which came close to the brink of extinction following decades of whaling. Whale Discoveries is not exclusively a commercial venture; it is more importantly an opportunity for us to celebrate with others the gradual recovery of Tonga's humpback whale population and to heighten awareness at the local, national and international levels of the value of preserving these magnificent creatures.
The name "Whale Discoveries" reflects our philosophy that the more we learn about whales the more there is to discover about these complex mammals. The name "Whale Discoveries" thus also serves as our reminder to maintain an attitude of humility as our understanding of whales, their habitat and behaviours increases.
Research Support Whale Discoveries is strongly in favour of scientific research and is open to supporting quality research based on sound methodology and ethics. Research studies of humpback whale demographics are vital to the recovery of Tonga's humpback whale population. For instance, population statistics may be used to argue against the resumption of whaling in Tonga in that such an activity would be unsustainable. Furthermore, objective information regarding whale behaviour aids in the development of minimal impact guidelines for whale watching and ultimately of a sustainable whale watch industry. Whale Discoveries guests have the opportunity to contribute to ongoing research studies of the humpback whale by submitting photos of flukes (tails) for inclusion in identification catalogues.
David Sheen From a very young age the ocean has been David’s Passion. Growing up in the surfing area of Yallingup Western Australia David competed on the world sailboarding circuit and gained 3 National Australian Wave Sailing Titles and ranked in the top ten wavesailors in the world. Maintaining a life on the ocean David moved into a carreer in the charter boat industry surfing/diving and exploring the worlds marine wonderland. Sailing tens of thousands of sea miles in areas of Australia, New Guinea, the Solomon islands, the Mediterranean, USA, the Carribean, South America, New Zealand and across the South Pacific David has through experience developed a huge respect and sense of responsibility to the welfare and environmental vulnerability of our ocean and its occupants.
Tristin Sheen Starting life in Zaria Africa Tristin Sheen was destine to love travel and adventure. She grew up seeing the sights of the world traveling Europe with her parents in a combi van and moving between living in Australia and Wales. Her family finally settled in Australia and moved to the South West at the time of Tristin completing high school. Tristin has always loved animals and endevoured to help and care for a variety of creatures. Having artistic parents it was also second nature to create. Drawn between animals and art she finished a B.A. and Post graduate studies in Fine Art and continued to create and exhibit inbetween a lot of global travel. Tristins art has always reflected her broad travel experiences and love and concern of the marine environment. Tristin and David merged lives and their passion for the sea and the animals with in. Together they sailed much of Australia, Mediterranean and with 2 children they continue to sail and explore into the USA South America and the Pacific.