Whale researchers recognised abroad

THE ANNUAL trek to Hervey Bay for whale researchers Wally and Trish Franklin has seen them record and photograph more than 3000 whale tails from their research boats.

Yesterday, the Franklins received international recognition for that research after being awarded the prestigious International Fund for Animal Welfare Lifetime Dedication Award.

Mr and Mrs Franklin accepted the award from IFAW President Mr Fred O'Regan and IFAW Oceania Director Isabel McCrea at a ceremony in Brisbane.

"Trish and Wally Franklin's research and community awareness work has made an enormous contribution to conservation and IFAW would like to congratulate the Franklins on 30 years of hard work to protect humpback whales," Ms McCrea said.

Since 1988, the Franklins have made hundreds of week-long research expeditions in Hervey Bay through the Oceania Project, a not-for-profit research and information organisation.

"Thanks to the Franklin's incredible work communities can play a vital role in whale protection by adopting and naming individual whales through the Humpback Icon Project, set up by the Oceania Project and IFAW," Ms McCrea said.

Trish and Wally Franklin will receive one of seven IFAW Action Awards, which recognises people who have made outstanding contributions to animal welfare.

The winners have been chosen from Australia-wide nominations from friends, family and work colleagues of people who do exceptional work to benefit wild or domestic animals.

Visit www.oceania.org.au for more information on the Franklin's.

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