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Animal Prints Banderas Bay

Animal Prints Banderas Bay
By: Fabio Cupul / Guadalajara University

Banderas Bay region which includes the urban development of Puerto Vallarta and Nuevo Vallarta, is embedded in a diverse landscape that includes islands, ocean, beaches, mangroves, rivers, mountains, forests and tropical deciduous subcaediza, palm trees and even forests pine and oak. The wide variety of environments and ecosystems of the bay, supporting the growth of a wide range of animal and plant life that represents your true wealth and which supports its appeal and tilt tourism.Banderas Bay is geographically shared by the states of Jalisco and Nayarit, housing over half of the vegetables that are environments in both entities. It is considered one of the richest regions in butterflies from Mexico and the state of Jalisco, as they have been little more than 480 species. It is also recognized as a hot spot or “hot spot” for birdwatchers, who enjoy the contemplation of about 369 species of birds (about 35% of species documented for the country) of aquatic and terrestrial habits.

Bay of Whales
Life is constantly renewed in the mosaic of habitats that make up the bay. So, every year during the months of November to April, gentle giant mammals become the warm coastal waters in a maternity ward in an enclosure watery for love and sex. It is precisely the humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) who, after a long journey of several thousand kilometers from their summer feeding grounds in the Bering and Chuckchi-move into these waters to give birth to their calves and sow seeds that will become the next generation of cetaceans. In the past, the bay was known as “whales”, probably because the impact caused mammals in the minds of those early observers.

The arrival of life
The sandy beaches are fertile fields for the development of new litters of living beings. This is stated in the annual arrival of turtles, reptiles adapted to the ocean environment but linked to its ancient past Earth, which forces them to return to the sandy shores of the bay to deposit their precious cargo of eggs. Of the five species of sea turtles that potentially reach the Mexican coast, olive ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea) is that almost all nests on the beaches of the region. Importantly, the work of protection and conservation of nests and eggs of turtles annually make the government, educational institutions and NGOs.

Corals
Also, below the surface of the ocean life is recreated in strange animal forms which by their booths structures, we would risk calling plants. These vegetables are ways that resemble coral, real animals that form colonies in limestone structures that give strength to his biological organization. The bay is home to at least twelve species of coral, stone called (by its rigid nature), which form colonies in which they gather great diversity of fish and other species that forage, shelter, rest or partner.

Natural Nursery
The islands and mangroves are nurseries where natural cycles of creation constantly occur. The Marieta Islands, north of the bay, purely marine species such as blue-footed boobies (Sula nebouxii) and brown (Sula leucogaster), the terns and bridled tern species (Sterna anaethetus), brown booby (Anous stolidus ) and real (Sterna maxima), Heermann’s gull (Larus heermanni), the Brandt cormorant (Phalacrocorax penicillatus), among others, breed in large colonies ranging from 300 to 30,000 individuals. On land, mangrove systems as the stream El Salado, Laguna El Quelele, Boca de Tomates estuary and Boca Negra, adequate space to provide food and protection for the reproduction of aquatic species. But of them all, stands for filing Boca Negra nesting thirteen species, most aquatic herons.

Magnificent reptiles
Mangroves are environments in which still includes the magnificent figure of the crocodile, beings whose ancestors witnessed the birth and demise of the dinosaurs. Despite having survived the natural world by some 250 million years ago, today we see with sadness how are diminished and corralled into the bay by thirst expansionist human limits (in the past were depleted by commercial hunting for obtaining your skin), and the innate fear we experience the presence of a predator.More than eight decades ago there were hundreds or even thousands in the region, but now only survive in the bay a couple of hundreds of species of crocodiles in the river or American (Crocodylus acutus), native to the Pacific coast of Mexico and much of Central and South America, manages to live and reproduce successfully in this environment almost urbanized.There is a crocodile that represents danger to humans, however, he fears and flees from his presence.

From fantasy to reality
Other animals that have captivated people in the bay, are those that recall the fantastic, mythical, cruel sea snakes. For many years people of all ages and social status, recount their encounters with mysterious large marine snakes that ply the coastal waters of the town. These snakes have the peculiarity of occasionally beach themselves attracting the attention of people.But a detailed analysis of inert bodies, can transmute from snakes to fish chimeric peaceful. In reality the snake is a long chimeric fish called golden body rowing (Regalecus Glesner), up to 11 meters in length, holds his head in a fin-shaped scarlet plume. Its silhouette resembles those described in sea snakes medieval bestiary.

From reality to fantasy
Contrary to the myth oarfish that became reality, some other animals that inhabit the bay have been transported from reality to myth. The transformation experienced allowed them to play important roles within the cosmic culture of the peoples of indigenous Mexico. Of all animals, white-tailed deer (Odoicoleus virginianus) stands out from the point of view of nutrition and ritual. For the Huichol ethnic group in western country, was and is a symbol of life and fertility. The jaguar (Panthera onca), which fortunately can be found in the rainforests of north and south of the bay, he was associated with political power and the hidden forces of the wizards. The ancient Mexicans said their beautiful mottled skin was the night sky. The green feathers of the macaw (Ara militaris) had great value as an ornament of the gods and men of yesteryear. Today sees its bright green color copies the skies rumbled and nest high in trees in the southern mountains of the bay. Hummingbirds, whose diversity in the area is about thirteen species are of small size and erratic flight faster than in the past were identified by the Aztecs as symbols of blood and war. They believed that the souls of warriors killed in combat, were transferred to the bodies of the hummingbirds.

The dye of the snail
The ethnicities Mixtec, Nahua, and huaves Chontal of Mexico, are appreciation, respect and veneration for a particular species of snail, the purple snail, which is distributed along the coast of Oaxaca, Michoacán, Colima and Jalisco. This particular snail secretes a whitish fluid, frothy, milky, that gradually changes color when it is ejected to the outside. In contact with air, the fluid acquires shades ranging from yellow to blue-green until it finally reaches its stabilization in a beautiful and intense purple hue. The purple dye gives its name to the snail (scientifically called Plicopurpura pansa patula) and is responsible for its use by the pre-Hispanic men to dye their clothes, because that shade a symbol of greatness and power. A story that loses its origins in real time, that during the conquest of Mexico, took a combative encounter between the natives of the bay and the Spanish adventurers. The story goes that about 20,000 Indians had dressed in their clothes carrying weapons of war and decorated with small flags pigment dyed purple shell. In this not very pleasant meeting, was derived the present name of the bay: flags. New to science Banderas Bay is a tremendous box biological surprises because, when it was believed that the tenants knew everything about animals, science discovers a new species: that is, bring to life creatures that neither deep our imagination conceived their existence. In 1994, he achieved the discovery of a beautiful tarantula Brachypelma ocher klaasi dubbed. Three years later, the mud turtle, Kinosternon Chimalhuacan, described for the southern state of Jalisco, but it was not until 2003, when it is discovered in the bay. More recently, in January 2006, published the discovery of a new species of freshwater leeches (Haementeria lopezi). The discovery of new species as described above, invites us to reflect on the need to know and understand the animal nature within the Bahia de Banderas, because only then can the conservation and use to ensure their future existence. But the enthusiasm and financial resources to do so should not be limiting, the constraints are time and indifference, unfortunately, have the table set for a couple of decades (unless we do something drastic), annihilate what nature has built millions of years of evolution. As quoted by Dr. Juan Luis Cifuentes Lemus, a leading Mexican biologist and naturalist, “who knows the nature and its elements, wants and who wants to protect and conserve.”

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Mythology Entomological

Mythology Entomological
By: Fabio Cupul

Throughout history, not all human cultures have viewed with disdain upon the insects, since some of them came to link with the divine, which no doubt gave an important place in its system of myths and legends. The role of insects in the worldview of the ancient cultures is highly symbolic, as it came to represent both religious values, and philosophical and even psychological. That is, the image display of an insect derived directly from a cultural meaning. For example, “Cora,” a town in western Mexico, that the soul of a dead body flies away material in the form of a bumblebee. For its part, Papalotl was the word used by the ancient Aztec civilization to name the butterflies. The Aztecs believed that these beautiful insects were fire related and were the reservoirs of the souls of soldiers killed in combat. The butterfly was also related to the supreme god Quetzalcoatl, who resurrected to life as a chrysalis. Today, the modern inhabitants of Mexico with Spanish continuing to use the word “kite” to refer to comets that children thrown into the air. The use of butterflies as symbols of resurrection, is quite widespread in human cultures. Most authors believe that this symbolism is related to the particular history of life as the insect, which involves an egg stage which gives rise to a caterpillar (life), it is transformed into a chrysalis (death) and which freedom emerges a completely different organism: the reborn butterfly (resurrection). On the other hand, an Australian Aboriginal legend tells how the tribe spent much of his time by storing food for winter. This good deed, caused them to eventually be transformed into bees and survive. In contrast, another tribe of the same locality, lazy and frivolous, not made any provision to survive the winter, so that its members were transformed into flies and died. This ancient story, portrays much of the widespread idea that humanity has on the fly as being obnoxious with negative connotations. Meanwhile, bees symbolize positive aspects around the world. For example, in Hinduism it is related to the love aspect of the god Krishna. Denote royalty in Egypt, but one of the most consistent and significant symbolism is that of sexuality and fertility, mainly for their participation in the processes of pollination of plants. One of the most appreciated of the bees is honey for sweetness same as was used by the Egyptians to flavor their food, although it was also a basic ingredient in the process of mummification of the dead. The Babylonians and Sumerians offerings of honey to their gods in religious ceremonies. Curiously, the former German Christians believed that bees were created by God to provide the wax used in the manufacture of the sails of their churches.The insects are beneficial and transcendental beings in the functioning of biological cycles, since a large variety of them are important agents in the pollination of plants, some others provide products of commercial value or are a source of food for birds, fish and even man himself. In addition, parasites or predators to other insects, helping to keep them under control.Certain species, being scavengers, they act as scavengers preventing infectious outbreaks. There is no doubt that the conduct described above was admired by the ancient Chinese culture, as some representatives of this tiny world, like ants, were and remain a symbol of patriotism, virtue, self-interest, order and bonded indefatigable. Such was the admiration that had some people by the ants, the native Hopi, the Southwest, they believed that the first settlers were people of the world shaped ant. For the Nahua people in western Mexico, the ants are still part of their agricultural cycles, and to ensure that the rains of the season, put ears on the nests to attract it. By contrast, some West African communities in the nests are home to demons.

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The dolphins in Banderas Bay

The dolphins in Banderas Bay
By: Biol. Astrid Frisch Jordán

Banderas Bay is considered a place of great importance among cetólogos commercial whalers and some from the late nineteenth century. Studies conducted in 1988 by Salinas and Bourillón in the Bay are 12 different species of Cetaceans, 9 of which belong to the suborder Odontoceti suborder Mysticeti and 3. In the odontocetes are the mottled Sthenelus (Stenella attenuata), the whirling Sthenelus (Stenella longirostris), bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), the false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens), rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis) dwarf sperm whale (Kogia sinus), Cuvier’s beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris), killer whales (Orcinus orca) and Mesoplodonte. (Mesoplodon sp.) Of the baleen whales are the humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae), the Bryde (Balaenoptera edeni) and gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus), the latter being an occasional visitor.

 

The greatest concentration of species occurs during winter and summer decrease significantly in the spring, and being the most common species Stenella attenuata, Stenella and Tursiops truncatus longisrostris. Tursiops truncatus and Stenella attenuata are present all year and both species have been recorded in the coastal form (Stenella attenuata and Tursiops truncatus gilli graffmani). Among these species, one of the best known and appreciated is the bottlenose dolphin, known by some as the famous “Flipper.” Bottlenose dolphins belong to the Order Cetacea, suborder Odontoceti and Family Delphinidae. The genus Tursiops Tursi comes from the Latin meaning porpoise and the Greek suffix meaning ops face and the truncatus species comes from the Latin root meaning truncated truncated, this in relation to their short snout, compared with those of other dolphins.

The bottlenose dolphins or tursiones are medium in size ranging from 2.4 to the 4.2mts. are robust, short face, conical and thick. The dorsal fin is triangular, slightly falcate and broad-based. Their coloration is highly variable, but usually the back is gray to almost black (Watson, 1981; Urbán, 1983). The tursiones are distributed worldwide, avoiding high-latitude waters only. In Mexico you can find them in coastal and oceanic waters in both the Pacific and the Atlantic. In the Pacific gilli recognized subspecies of coastal habits distributed from the U.S. border to the south including the Gulf of California to the border with Guatemala, extending throughout Central America and the subspecies nuannu habits in the ocean tropical Pacific (Walker, 1981; Urbán, 1983).

In Bahia de Banderas are distributed throughout the bay, and you can submit birth throughout the year, being the most common time of the autumn-winter. The tursiones have been observed in interspecific associations with different species and in the specific case of the bay have been found with Sthenelus spotted (Stenella attenuata), false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens), killer whales (Orcinus orca) and humpback whales ( Megaptera novaeangliae). They are known as an opportunistic species in their habits, and type of animals being fed is very diverse and includes fish, molluscs and crustaceans, in the case of Bahia de Banderas have been observed feeding mainly on horse mackerel (Caranx hippos) and mackerel (Scomber japonicus). Usually found in groups of less than 15 dolphins and grouped in herds consisting of several mature females and their offspring up to age 2, where regular, adult males and subadults, and young females swim in the periphery.

 

 

There are also herds of juveniles, which in some cases can be single sex. Sometimes several herds can meet in one group forming large flocks of up to several hundred people traveling together during very varied. They have a complex social organization open structure where members can be exchanged continuously and, in the case of coastal species may also possess a defined home range. However, different species and even different populations of the same species have variety in their social structure in response to environmental conditions, such as availability and distribution of food, the density of predators and physical characteristics of the environment (Scott et al . 1990). It seems that females play a more important role than males in the training and integration of the groups. It is usually associated with other females in groups known as very stable bands.

 

 

Descripción: C:UsersClauDocumentsWoRkecobacsitioimagenesnovedades-01-c.jpgOn the other hand, males are not associated with any particular band, rather they move from one band to another in search of receptive females, and this search can even take them beyond the limits of their communities. Sometimes males can associate in groups even more stable than those of females in pairs or threes, apparently in such associations to cooperate males corral steal them females or other males, and to establish some control over the community and thus have greater reproductive success (Connor et al. 1992). Similar associations between males are also present in some primate species with a strong dominance hierarchy, as is the case of macaques, chimpanzees and baboons, where such associations to improve their social status and access to receptive females and to defend them from other young males. In all cases the male partnerships are part of a strategy to obtain greater reproductive benefit (Felix, 1997).

 

 

Bottlenose dolphins are also known for their interactions with ships, as they enjoy the advantage of the waves and currents they generate, but it is important not to harass them because we can interfere with activities of breeding or feeding.Remember that you can not use jet skis or engage in commercial and sport fishing or close to the dolphins. Please do not throw any kind of objects into the water, especially plastics, cigarette butts or any synthetic material as they can cause problems for animals if the were to accidentally swallow. We want the dolphins still cheering the waters of our beautiful bay, they are counting on you to survive.

 

 

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The Crazy Yellow Ant: Anoplolepis gracilipes

The Crazy Yellow Ant:
Anoplolepis gracilipes
By: Fabio Cupul / Guadalajara University

One of the most common ants can be found in our homes, mainly in the kitchen and garden. Although he has made the region of Bahia de Banderas home, is a species native to Asia or Africa. Currently has invaded much of the world’s tropical regions.

Its common name refers to the pale color of its body (the abdomen is a bit darker than the head and thorax) and rapid and nervous walking. It is an ant reaches 5 mm size and has long slender legs and antennae. Formicid is a forage that is, made long journeys in search of organic materials for food. This behavior has done to compete with native species, which can be displaced or even removed from an ecosystem.

It also has the ability to shepherd and care for other insects such as aphids and scale insects, to get them sugary fluids to supplement their diet. Unfortunately, the care they provide to these insects that suck sap from plants, makes these disproportionate increase in their numbers, causing dry plants and deforest large chunks of forest (deleted or indirectly affecting other species of animals or plants depend on the forest to survive) or end with ornamental plants of houses, parks and gardens.

They also attack and prey on small insects, snails, spiders, centipedes, among others. The ease with which colonizes and destroys environments with their activities, has led the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) considers in its list of 100 most harmful invasive species in the world. Although not bite or sting for not having itchy, produce formic acid and expels it through an opening in the tip of the abdomen (acidóporo). This acid is used to repel potential attackers. In humans, it can cause burning and irritation upon contact with eyes.

The mounds are home an average of four thousand people, but if certain conditions can generate supercolonies calls, which have approximately 20 million individuals per hectare.