New Paper Published

A new paper titled Gender difference in biospheric values and opinions on nature management actions: The case of seal watching in Iceland was published in the peer-reviewed journal Ocean & Coastal Management. It can be accessed here. It was written by Cécile M. Chauvat, who works for the Northwest Iceland Research Center in collaboration with the Icelandic Seal Center, Dr. Sandra M. Granquist from the Marine and Freshwater Research Institute and Head of the seal research department at the Icelandic Seal Center, and Dr. Jessica Aquino, Assistant Professor in the department of Rural Tourism at Hólar University.

Gender differences in biospheric value orientation and opinions on wildlife management have the potential to be used as a management tool in wildlife watching settings. This research note builds on a dataset from Chauvat et al. (2021) to investigate gender differences in biospheric value orientation and opinions on seal watching management of visitors at seal watching sites post hoc. Questionnaires (n = 597) were collected at three sites in Northwest Iceland. It was found that when genders were compared, women had stronger biospheric value orientations, were more aware of potential anthropogenic impacts on seals, believed to a higher extent that regulations were useful in terms of decreasing impact, and were more positive towards most management actions suggested in the questionnaire. It is argued that further understanding of the gender dynamics regarding pro-environmental attitudes may be a valuable element in the context of sustainable wildlife tourism management.

New manager at Icelandic Seal Center

Notice from the Icelandic Seal Center. The ISC has hired Örvar Birkir Eiríksson as managing director as of the beginning of the year.

Gunnlaugur Ragnarsson is chairman of the board ISC and Örvar Birkir Eiríksson is the new manager.

Örvar is born in 1976 and grew up in Syðri-Vellir in Kirkjuhvammshreppur in Vestur-Húnavatns county. He has been a frequent visitor to the homestead through the years, where his parents still live. Örvar, therefore, has a great and strong connection with the community in Húnaþing vestra.

Örvar has a Bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Iceland and also studied for an MA in the same subject and a diploma in marketing and export studies. Most recently, he completed his M.Ed. degree in teaching social studies from the University of Iceland. Örvar is married to Erla Björgvinsdóttir, a developmental therapist, and they have a total of five children.

Örvar worked i.a. for about 7 years in Viðey in cultural tourism and for 9 years as a store manager in an international retail chain. In recent years he has worked as a teacher.

The board of ICS welcomes Örvar to work and looks forward to working with him. At the same time, the board thanks Páll L Sigurðsson very much for his cooperation and work well done and wishes him all the best in the future.

Old and new manager of ISC

Gunnlaugur Ragnarsson
Chairman of the Board ISC

Icelandic Seal Center renews its agreement with the Marine & Freshwater Research Institue

The Icelandic Seal Center (ISC) and the Icelandic Marine & Freshwater Research Institute renewed their cooperation agreement at the end of October 2022. The agreement stipulates the strengthening of research on seals in Iceland at the Hvammstanga facility. In particular, monitoring the population size of wild and land seals. In addition to carrying out data collection and research that contributes to the improvement of advice in accordance with the management objectives of the government.

The parties agree to look for ways to increase the number of employees so that the research activities of the Seal Center and the Institute of Marine Research in Hvammstangi can be strengthened. The agreement is open-ended and Seal Center s is optimistic about the future.

Seal site and research area in Illugastaðir Vatnsnes

Good attendance so far this year 2022 – over 19 thousand visitors

There has been very good attendance at the Icelandic Seal Center so far this year, and over 19,000 visitors have already visited us. It is therefore safe to say that the Selasetrið and the new Rostunga exhibition have attracted the well-deserved attention of domestic and foreign tourists this year.

Individuals from 58 nations have visited us from all continents. Most of the visitors have come from the USA, Germany, Iceland, and France.

Create memories at Iceland’s Seal Center 😊🦭💙