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Previousleft arrow ................................ ......Newsletter No. 156 January, 2015 Nextright arrow


Hola Volunteers, Supporters and Readers ~

All but seven of the last thirty-one nests placed within the beach nursery since mid-November have hatched at 77%.   If we’re lucky, the last seven nests should hatch by mid-March, marking the end of this season.   By the end of January we recorded over 1,232 nests.  861 nests were placed in the box nursery, hatching at 86%.  318 nests were either left on the beach or placed within the beach nursery, hatching at 63.6%.  48 nests were taken by poachers and 5 others nests were washed out.  Total hatchlings released came to about 87,300 and overall survival rate came to 79.2%.  If available, hatchlings will be released in front of town at sunset.  Look for the yellow dune buggy around 6:45 PM.

I misspoke in the last newsletter. What I meant to say was, “Because we do not have a post office in San Pancho and no longer have a post office box in Puerto Vallarta, please, do not send us any snail mail.  All important messages should be sent to our e-mail address: grupo-eco@project-tortuga-tortuga.org

December volunteers: Joslin, with daughters, Starlie and Summer; Susana, all from the US; and Lisa Fisher, from Canada.

As has often been the case over the past seven years, we are having problems finding volunteers who are willing to join us for three to six months.  Conversely, every year we receive many applicants willing to join us from about mid-June to early August. This short period of time is problematic for two reasons.  One is training and the other is scheduling. The ideal situation would be to have all apartments filled with returning staff and new volunteers for the entire six-month season.

We must return to our policy of filling our apartments with volunteers that are willing to join us for three months or more.  Last season our apartments were often empty simply because we were unable to find occupants to fill in the vacancies around several short-term volunteers. One at volunteer who wanted to join us for six months preferred to rent a private home. As a result, vacant rooms went unrented for 41 weeks. Volunteers who want to join us for a short period of time can rent a private home if the apartments are occupied by long-term volunteers.

I think that many volunteers and people around town know Che, our twelve year-old tabby cat.  At two weeks old, he masterly wandered into our backyard crying and was quickly adopted and fed with an eye-dropper so becoming a loyal, loving, feline friend.  Around the 4th of January, he suddenly went blind.  We took him to a specialist in Puerto Vallarta where he was diagnosed with feline glaucoma.   After a week of painful eye drops, it appears that his vision will never return, for now he’s slowly adjusting to his blindness (see image below).

Weather-wise: Generally, daytime temperatures ranged from the mid 70°s to mid 80°s, while nighttime temps ranged between the low to mid 60°s.  Rainfall for November was 0.16 inches, while the total for last season came to 43.54 inches, not that bad!   No notable weather events, some clouds from the southwest, choppy high waves from the north.  On February 1st, at about 1:00 in the morning we began to receive heavy rain, by noon on the 2nd we had received 4.1 inches at my house, not that unusual for February.

The buggy’s entire ignition system was replaced, and for now, it is starts up like a new VW Beetle.  Scheduled for replacement is the entire front axle assembly, repairing the transmission so we can engage reverse gear, and perhaps a good paint job.  

Town and Country-wise:  It was a long one-month holiday ending on January 16th, with numerous tents across the beach, a nightmare of traffic jams and tourists crawling out of the woodwork.  A merchant's fondest dreams come true at last.  The planters along Tercer Mundo are remodeled and are now receiving their last coat of lime green and bright red paint - barf!!  (See image below.)   The peso varied around 14.3 throughout the month, with regular gasoline at 13.49 per liter or about $3.66 per gallon.

Our call for financial help was answered by many donors to whom we are very grateful. We are almost at the point where we have 90% of the funds for next season. The remaining funds will come from the sale of the directory.

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


Che our twelve year-old tabby cat,                                        La Patrona, Polo game on the new field.


The planters along main street have been remodeled and painted.


Two heads and not better than one in this case.

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