THE CEO of the Pet Porpoise Pool has dismissed claims about the way the iconic tourist attraction is managed.
Paige Sinclair was responding to concerns aired by the founder of the Pet Porpoise Pool, Hec Goodall, about the direction the oceanarium has taken since management changed in 2004.
Mr Goodall said the centre has gone from a respected marine rescue and research enterprise to a profit-driven tourist attraction.
“The Pet Porpoise Pool was initially established by myself, like-minded and business people, for marine research, rehabilitation and education and was designed to be a progressive development for community benefit and to stimulate tourism,” Mr Goodall said.
“Since 2004 after the former chairman Jim Browning passed away and a small group of share-holders were brought in, the aims of the enterprise are no longer valid.
“The centre costs a lot to operate and we always intended to pay our way but not return a surplus profit, we only wanted enough to get by.”
But Ms Sinclair said the attraction was still very focused on research and rehabilitation.
“This past year alone has seen more than four research projects, one which lasted a year on how juvenile dolphins learn how to communicate,” Ms Sinclair said.
“We still continue to rehabilitate animals, each year we rescue and rehabilitate dozens of turtles.
“The Pet Porpoise Pool is a private company that needs to be profitable to continue to operate.
“Each year we spend a considerable amount of time and money to ensure the highest standard of care is available to our animal collection.”