To promote and impel the protection and conservation of the wildlife and natural resources in the region of Puerto Vallarta and the Bay of Banderas in Mexico is what Western Ecological Society is all about.
Founded in the year 2004, The Western Ecological society is a non-profit organisation dedicated to conservation of nature. Their main project is the sea turtles protection and conservation program but they also work towards rescuing wildlife, Humpback Whale Research and environmental awareness.
Biologist Oscar Aranda Mena, one of the founding members of the organization, says “Since the day I started working with sea turtles, I fell in love with them. Their life is amazing and a miracle since the moment they hatch, facing enormous dangers and threats along their lives.”
According to Oscar, most of the dangers the sea turtles face are caused by human activities, and Puerto Vallarta, the city where he runs the conservation program is not an exception. His team tries to be at the beach all night waiting for turtles to come and lay their eggs, taking care of them and avoiding people and tourists to interfere in the nesting process.
Sea turtles are widely protected by the Mexican law, as other countries. However, there’s a realty one cannot avoid. There are hundreds and hundreds of sea turtles dying every day in Mexico and all over the world because of fisheries, boat collisions, poachers (illegal use of turtle meat and eggs), beach erosion and pollution. “It’s necessary to let the world know (the society and the government) what sea turtles are facing every day in our oceans and beaches.”, says Oscar.
Oscar was always interested in nature, rescuing as many animals as possible. He says, “I had the opportunity to become a biologist, and hence have a better understanding of life and how nature works.
I am convinced we can live our lives in a green way, reducing the negative impact we cause to nature, but we have to do some sacrifices and changes in our lifestyles.
I have a deep admiration for every animal or plant and the role they play in our world.”
The team has initiated a similar program in a town near Puerto Vallarta, but unfortunately there was not enough interest of beach-front owners to build a sea turtle sanctuary (a hatchery or nests incubator). They are in a partnership with 3 sea turtle projects in the north and south of Puerto Vallarta, and are also collaborating in some way with research and volunteer opportunities.
Author: Mansi Bagga
Mansi Bagga is an MBA student, pursuing a course in Communication Management. She is a highly enthusiastic person, always willing to learn more and do more. She is an Indian by origin and a Thai citizen by virtue. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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