Newsletter No. 217, February, 2020 ~ Grupo Ecológico
Hola Volunteers and Supporters ~
Turtle wise: to date we had placed 685 nests within the box nursery, including another 169 nests left on the beach in protected areas, while the poachers made off with 26. The grand total of all nests recorded came to 880, while a total number of hatchlings released came to 73,050 to date. There will be no scheduled releasing of marine turtle hatchlings until this coming August 15th.
When Coyote was seriously injured last year, members of the community donated funds to pay for several months of veterinarian work by Julio and America. The response was overwhelming as we received an amount that well exceeded the sum needed. Julio and America have moved their veterinarian clinic to a new location on Calle Libia, North of Pakistan. The group would like to help them by donating the remaining balance of 1,665 dollars to make much needed repairs and improvement to their new clinic.
While handling hatchlings our work is designed to never place the hatchlings lives at risk. Only during the last two hours of sunlight will we clean nest boxes or removing hatchlings from beneath the beach sand. All hatchlings well be released just after sunset. No hatchlings will be held in baskets during the day for public displayed. Holding hatchlings in captivity will only drain their energy and hamper their survival at sea. Also, if you find any hatchlings on the beach, especially if it is hot, take them to the damp sand and let them go free.
We would like to thank the following contributors and many people that have purchased T-shirts for tour financial support of our program over the past month.
Amber Cooper, Karen Hope, Jennifer Nelsen, Rachel Parker and Sally Munro
So why have we stopped placing nests within fenced in beach nurseries? To this question there are four good answers; tropical storms, parasites, dogs and the cost of repairing or replacing these nurseries.
* During the summer months tropical storms, including hurricanes frequently destroy or badly damaged these nurseries, destroying most if not all the nests within. (See image below).
* Beach parasites are a small fly that can find nests beneath the sand by the smell of decaying hatchlings; they are especially effective if the nests are located close together. The fly will quickly destroy the nest with hundreds of larvae.
* Dogs also have a keen sense of smell and can quickly find nests especially if there are several nests close together, they can will target the same area digging up nests and dig under the nursery fence.
* To replace beach nurseries can cost up to 10,000 pesos and take many days to repair.
When nests are positioned several hundred feet apart in good, safe locations they stand a better chance of not being washed out by the heavy surf, found by parasites, or dug up by dogs or poachers.
Winter Volunteer: Manuel Murrieta, and Joslin Carson, Julio Gonzales and America Tejas, Juan Flores and family, Karen Sorum and Hallie Loveridge, Nicole Sanders and Robert Klusmeyer.
Enlistment of volunteers can be a difficult job especially throughout the months of August through November. It is important that we enlist return or former volunteers which over the years have been a valuable tool in teaching newer volunteers. Join us if you can, and if you know someone that might join us have them contact us. Also take a look at our new application at volunteer website.
Weather-wise: Daytime temperatures were in the high 70°f to the very low 80°f, while night time temps were in the low to mid 60°f. January’s rainfall came to 1.97 inches, and for the year the amount came to 8.10 which is sort of a record for the first 35 days of the year.
Town and Country wise: If in the early morning you find an iguana that has fallen out of a tree stunned by the cold or windchill, bring it to our nursery and we will care for it. The vultures not totally satisfied with killing iguanas that have fallen out of the trees, are now killing them within the trees. Iguanas are reptiles and can’t move or defend themselves in the trees during the cold mornings which gives the big birds an opportunity to kill them.
Are we ready for the construction of high rise apartments across the beach front? San Pancho is already congested with little parking, narrow streets filled with potholes including a dangerous exit off highway 200. If this madness is not stopped we could someday be faced with a serious water shortage along with an inadequate sewage system, and weak internet service. Enough is enough. The Municipality plans will not improve our community in any way whatsoever, it will turn San Pancho into a congested hell-hole of never ending construction for profit.
Go to our newsletter website https://www.project-tortuga.org/newsletters.html there they will find the last eight newsletters and other information.
Grupo Ecológico de la Costa Verde, A.C.