Hola Volunteers, Supporters and Friends ~
The last of 584 nests within the box nursery hatched in mid-January, the overall total for this nursery was 47,352 hatchlings, a survival rate of 85.4%. The number of nests left or relocated on other beaches came to 79 nests, with an estimated yield of 5,400 hatchlings, or a survivable rate of 72%.
The first beach nursery (nests collected from mid-June to mid-September) contained 324 nests yielding a total of 8,445 hatchlings with a survival rate of 27%. The low yield from this nursery was a result of being overrun by heavy storm waves.
The second beach nursery (Same location, mid-November to present day) contains 36 nests of which 16 have hatched, yielding a total of 1,195 hatchlings, or a survival rate of 84%. The remaining 20 nests should yield another 1,634 hatchlings by the by mid-March. Due to heavy wave action this nursery is now less than 12 feet from a steep bank that for now keeps waves from reaching the nursery. (See photo below)
Poachers were able to carry off about 119 nests or 10.3%. Total nests recorded by February came to 1,145, representing a total 97,558 eggs. Total hatchlings released the sea came to 64,026, with an overall survival rate of 65.6%. This is an increase of 82 nests over the 2008 record of 1,063.
With little notice or time to prepare for the invasion, the owners of our apartment complex (my house and the two other volunteer apartments) began construction of the fourth and last apartment, unfortunately on top of my house. The positive aspect this event is having a third apartment available to accommodate volunteers this summer. (See photo below)
With the loss of income from T-shirts revenue, (now at an all time low) and the difficulty of renting the two apartments over the next six months because of the construction noise, we may encounter financial problems this year. On the bright side, we still have the income from the Homeowners Directories and our upcoming yard sale.
The regular and half size Homeowner’s Directories are available at my house, and our yard sale will be held on February, 6th, 7th and 8th, and again on the 20th, 21st and 22nd. We urgently need more yard sale items. If no one is home, set them on the white tables at the gates.
Town-wise, the reconstruction project on Tercer Mundo has once again come to a stop because of fiscal problems, not because the contactor vanished with the money. As for tourism, after a fairly normal holiday San Pancho once again returned to being a near ghost town, although home construction is on a small rebound. I spent an hour at a café on Tercer Mundo, and only saw only three vehicles moving in that time.
Weather-wise, the first half of January was pleasantly warm and it looked as if summer was on its way, that is until mid-January when clouds, sprinkles and winds tossed us into the deep-freeze where nighttime temperatures dropped into the low 50’s. By the third week, nighttime temps were in the low 70’s and daytime temps were generally in the low to mid 80’s.
Heavy waves over the past two months have temperately narrowed the width of our beach, especially at the north end where surf had come within twenty feet of property walls. The last set of waves topped twelve feet on the morning of Sunday the 24th, fortunately at the same time as the lowest tide of the month. If these waves had arrived during the new or full moon high tide, (an extra 4.2 feet) the beach nursery would have been history.
A newly released report sights rising sea temperatures and not rising sea levels as the most immediate growing threat to our beaches. Aside from creating hurricanes, rising sea temperatures are causing hyper storm activity in the Pacific, which in turn is causing 43 foot waves to slam into the coast of Oregon and Washington. The report states that maximum wave height has increased by 4.5 feet over the past year, and will continue to rise with sea temperatures. The impact of high waves may destroy marine turtle nests and their beaches in the decades to come.
Frank D. Smith
Grupo Ecológico de la Costa Verde, A.C
Mexico tel. (311) 258-4100
America Latina #102
San Francisco, Nayarit, Mexico
The fourth apartment being build on top of my house Wave stopper, a twelve bank in front of the beach nursery