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Newsletter August 2015

Dear friends and colleagues, we gladly salute you once more! This time we would like to share with you the activities that have taken place after the end of whale watching season and the setting for the following one.

Gathering funds while having fun

The international Altruism festival “De Vallarta by Vallarta”, took place on May 17th, 2015. In this festival, 20 civil associations participated, including ECOBAC. The event was held at Hotel Marriott Casa Magna in Puerto Vallarta Jalisco, under the coordination of Kelly Traynor, consul of the USA in Vallarta.

All associations were benefited by equal, by being responsible for selling and invite nearly 2000 attendees who along with us had the opportunity to enjoy an extraordinary gastronomic show with over 30 of the best restaurants of the region, plus enjoy music and dance shows, raffles and more.

During the event, we set up a booth with information ECOBAC and activities undertaken; publicity was given to the campaign “I do care to Whales” and attendees were invited to join the campaign or volunteer.

Funds raised during the festival were destined to cover part of the training of two RABEN Banderas Bay instructors and tools for our Banderas Bay RABEN team (Big whale Disentanglement Network).

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Making new friends!

On June 5th, the Biol. Astrid Frisch along with M. C. Iyari Espinoza gave a presentation at school Campo Verde where they talked about the different conservation activities carried out by ECOBAC.

The lecture was attended by a total of 81 people, including students from middle school and high school as well as teachers.

The small ones also participate!

Activities for young preschool involved meeting Kuikani, a whale-size inflatable baby humpback whale that amazed everyone, as much teachers as students and administrators. This activity was excellent as it was used to gauge the actual size of an offspring and imagine the size of an adult whale.

Always constantly learning

RABEN Instructor Training

We gladly inform that after two years of efforts, ECOBAC finally brought together the resources and conditions to send 2 persons to conduct a training program for instructors regarding net removal from great whales.

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The course lasted three weeks, and took place at Provincetown, Mass., USA. Both Ricky Rebolledo and Karel Beets, from RABEN Banderas Bay team participated, with over 10 years’ experience and availability to be absent from their workplaces during the needed time.

As you all know, Karel and Ricky are part of the team that supports us, since they conduct training workshops and updating, hence this is a great achievement for everyone, as we will have our better and more qualified personnel for our workshops.

On  August  2nd , Ricky and Karel had the opportunity to participate in a maneuver which lasted 11 hours. The rescue was conducted by the Center for Coastal Studies (MAER) to free a young humpback whale entangled in lobster traps,. With this experience they learned a lot and were congratulated for their excellent performance.

If you would like to learn more, I hereby share the link so you can read the full story

CCS MAER team frees entangled humpback whale after 11 hour operation

We sincerely thank the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, World Animal Protection, ECOBAC and specially David Mattila and Scott Landry for the support so we could achieve this RABEN training.

More Training RABEN!

As every year, in ECOBAC we are already preparing for the next training of RABEN teams. This time the venues will be Huatulco and Puerto Angel in Oaxaca on the 2nd and 3rd of September; Mazatlan, Sinaloa on the 1st and 2nd of October and Guerrero Negro, Baja California Sur on the 6th and 7th of October.

During these workshops we will practice at sea in order to update and improve the techniques. There will also review difficult cases in each region in order to enrich the technique and / or learn new things. All these looking for the teams’ optimum preparation for the whale season, therefore having a prompt and adequate response when entanglement events that may occur.

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Together we can do it!

Prevention workshops

Fishing nets are the working tools and support of a large part of the population of the coastal zone, however they have become a serious problem because of marine mammals entanglement in them, not only because it economically affect citizens but also because such accidents endanger the lives of these animals and their populations.

We know that the best way to find a solution is meeting with those directly involved, meaning the fishermen. That is why in addition to the RABEN training, an Entanglement Prevention Workshop will be held with the various fishing fleets at Huatulco, San Blas and Guerrero Negro.

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A knowledge and conservation oriented party

Ballenarte Festival

The need for a whale festival in the region arouse just a couple of years ago, with the thought of dedicating a day to these spectacular animals that winter on our shores each year.

In March 2016 we will be conducting our 2nd Conservation festival Ballenarte. As part of our activities will be located in different parts of the city where people can come to our stands and participate in different games, as well as retrieve information that we will share.

As part of the activities, various conferences will be held in places yet to be confirmed, which will be announced further on.

We hope you can join us in all our activities and have the opportunity to have fun and learn with us.