Sign Up for Our Newsletter! »

June 19, 2012

Sea Turtles, Mangroves and Hurricane Carlotta in Southern Oaxaca

Working with local communities and agencies to pursue shared conservation objectives
WiLDCOAST staff with community leaders and Mexican Sea Turtle Center staff at Morro Ayuta (Rio Seco), Mexico's second most important sea turtle nesting beach

As Hurricane Carlotta descended on the coast, WiLDCOAST visited sea turtle nesting beaches, mangroves, and coral reefs and met with community partners and agency representatives to evaluate our work in the region and to identify emerging conservation objectives and opportunities.

In January 2012 WiLDCOAST began carrying out education and outreach in Oaxaca, in partnership with the Mexican Sea Turtle Center and Mexico's Protected Area Commission. The focus of the project are increasing support for sea turtle and mangrove conservation among children and their families in the mainly indiginous Chontal communities of Barra de la Cruz, Playa Grande, and Rio Seco. The beaches bordering these coastal communities are among the most important in the world for the endangered leatherback and olive ridley sea turtles.

Luz del Carmen, a secondary school teacher in Río Seco, spoke to the importance of environmental education with local youth. 

"Seven years ago we had trainings with the youth, and now many of them have their own kids and are teaching them the importance of protecting sea turtles and not eating their eggs. We need to make sure that each generation of children get the message that sea turtles are a key part of our environment and support our quality of life."