Thai tourist apologises for taking selfies with starfish

BANGKOK (THE NATION/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A Thai tourist has apologised for taking selfies with a starfish that she had picked up from the sea in the national park area in the province of Trang, saying she did not know her action was wrong.

The Thai tourist's selfies with the starfish went viral on social media on Thursday (May 4). She was widely condemned, as there is a ban on picking marine animals up from the sea, especially in the national park area. Netizens called on the authorities to take action against the tourist.

The tourist, who used the Facebook name ohaee nutcha, later apologised for her action and said she was not aware of the rule.

She also explained on her Facebook post that the pictures were taken in Trang and her guide had told her she could take a starfish from the sea to take selfies.

Wittaya Khunsan, Krabi Marine and Coastal Resources Preservation Centre chief, stated that investigations had showed the incident had taken place in Trang's Had Chao Mai National Park and the officers had already contacted the guide.

Wittaya said catching marine animals in the national park area is illegal. He urged all tourists to comply with the rule and preserve the marine resources for others as well.