San Pancho and Turtle News from Costa Verde Ecological Group
Frank D. Smith - Ecological Group of Costa Verde

December 6, 2018

Hola Volunteers and Supporters ~

Marine Turtle activities for November: The 2018 nesting season is all but finished, although, there will be a few nests through to next season which begins on May 1st, 2019. By the end of November, we had recorded over 984 nests, of which 639 were placed in the box nursery, producing 54,374 hatchings. Total nests relocated on the beach came to 314, producing 25,616 hatchlings. The beach hatching rate was very successful, in the high 80% range. Nests taken by poachers came to 1.5%, the lowest percentage to date.

If you see hatchlings on the beach, let them go to the sea on their own. Although, if the beach is too hot, collect them up and place them on the cool, wet sand. If there are dogs or birds (seagulls/frigates) in the area you may need to remain and protect them during their journey to the sea. Please, do not bring these hatchlings to us.

Volunteer-wise: Year-round volunteers: Manuel Murrieta, Julio and America Gonzales, Juan Flores and family, Karen Sorum and Hallie Loveridge. November through April volunteers are Gale Greer, Lorren Garliche and Robert Klusmeyer.

Weather-wise: Daytime temperatures were mostly in the mid to low 80°s. Night time temps were mostly in the high 60°s to low 70°s. Rainfall for September was 3.87 inches and for the year 49.22 inches. This year there were was only one tropical weather system that came close enough to cause some minor beach erosion. Willa, which passed about 125 miles to the north, was a category three. On November 28th, at 12AM, a sudden rain and lightning storm dumped 3.58 inches of rain.

For the time being, we have decided to discontinue the Homeowners Directory. We may be bring it back to life someday but, for now, its gone. The problems with its publication are many. Since 2007, we have lost most of our dependable donors and sponsors. Other problems include the expense of printing, materials, collecting information and gasoline. This also includes hundreds of hours of frustrated driving, trying to track down homeowners and collect donations. All this while the information was forever changing.

The poor dune buggy has received several hundred hours of welding along with the replacement of endless footage of rusted and broken railing. Every day, it seemed we were finding new problems which made what we thought would be a quick fix into a nightmare of endless work. Not to mention the hours it took to reassemble it and get it back on the beach. In any case, on November 23rd, it was back on the beach like a new sand-rail.

In place of the dune buggy, we had used my CRV Honda on the beach. It was nice. It has windshield wipers, radio, air conditioning, quiet, etc. However, after a thousand miles on the beach, it suffered untold damage to the body, seats, windows, wheels, etc. It has been used exclusively by the marine turtle program for the past eight years and now it now needs our help.

Town and Country.  For the first time since 2006, new home construction is at a near, all-time record high, both in the jungle and in town. The pesos is swinging from 19.5 to 20.5 almost daily. Regular gasoline is 20.25 pesos or $3.80 a gallon. The beach in front of Las Olas has a 2 to 4 foot bank. The arroyo has a little water and the lagoon is still open to the sea.

Frank Smith, Director
Grupo Ecológico de la Costa Verde, A.C.
Project Tortuga
Tel. 311-258-4100

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