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

September 2, 2020

Hola Volunteers and Supporters ~

Turtle wise:  Total nests recorded this season has come to 396, while the poachers made off with a total of 19. The number of nests recorded in August came to 299. August total is slightly higher than last season.

Two volunteers and family members lost their home in Davenport and Santa Cruz. Wallace J Nichols of Davenport was a volunteer in 1994-95  He is today the world’s leader in the protection and research of the marine turtle. Carol Harootunian’s son Sebastian also lost his home in Santa Cruz on the same night. Carol has been a part-time volunteer over past several years.

Our problem in a nutshell is the pandemic which has caused the cancellation of over twenty-three program volunteers this season, and now we are faced with the loss of all our crucial winter renters.  Our failure to raise the necessary rent during the winter is a serious problem, but can be overcome. Needless to say, we are looking for winter renters (November through May)

The big mystery is why is there so few poachers on the beach this season, perhaps it’s the pandemic. Normally there would be a half a dozen poachers hang out in chairs in front of town. Loss of nests these days is more-or-less someone finding a nest that we missed, or did not have time to relocate.

We are asking members of the community and tourists to help us protect any nests that are hatching on the beach during the daytime.  If you find any hatchlings on hot dry sand move them down to the cool damp sand.

We would like to thank all our August’s Paypal contributors:  Karen Hope, Jenifer Nelsen, and John Cordova.  PayPal donations have dropped-off, this is not good since we have no other way to raise funds.

August Volunteers:  Karen Sorum and Hallie Loveridge, Ellery Newcomer, Maddie Wilson, Katherine Comer Santos, Julio Gonzales, America Rios Tejas and Juan Flores and family  We are in a serious need of volunteers that can drive the dune buggy, (could be one of a couple) through the entire month of September.

Weather-wise:  Temperatures during the day were in the mid to high 80° to low 90°, while night time temps were in the low to mid 70°. 20.86 inches of rain in August, the total rainfall for the year came to 38.35 inches.  No tropical storm activity yet, although hurricane Genevieve and Hernan came close to shore, but no heavy rains, winds or high waves

Why does no one read this paragraph? Lights on the beach are seriously confusing and killing both hatchlings and adult turtles.  If you own a house that has lights that face the beach, tell your renters to keep their outside lights off after 8 PM.  

The Dune buggy:  We replaced a flywheel problem in late July thinking this replacement would solve its starter problems, but unfortunately it didn’t. We sent the buggy back to the mechanics in Sayulita in early August, this time they found the problem. It turned out that to be a bent driveshaft coming out of the transmission which was causing the flywheel to wobble. The buggy was returned to us on the 19th with a rebuilt transmission and new flywheel at a cost 9,100 pesos. We temporarily replaced the buggy with my Honda CRV.

Don’t drop-your-guard, the pandemic is not over yet, you need to protect yourself, family and others. The virus is not responsible for a spike in corona cases, the spike is caused totally by human carelessness and nothing else.

•  The virus is primarily spread by fine droplets from the mouth or nose, if you cough, sneeze, crying, singing, shouting, or boisterous you can if infected spread the virus like wildfire. if possible keep your voice down and always use a handkerchief when coughing, sneezing.
•  You are not protecting yourself and friends if you’re not wearing a good face mask.
•  The minimum distance from others is six feet, although this is only a minimum safe distance, as far from others as possible is considerably better. Also when talking to others have the wind or breeze at your back.
•  Wash your hands as often as possible, and keep your hands off your face.
•  When shopping or visiting with others wear some sort eye protection.  
•  The virus falls to the surface so leave your shoes outside the house.
•  For recreation or hikers, keep your trips to isolated wild areas.
•  It is a good idea to limit your trips, any interaction with large groups of people you should limit them and consider them risky.
•  To help your immune system try vitamin C, D3 and Zinc. (Take Vitamin D3 in the morning.)

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

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