'History' Category

Frozen Specimen of the ‘Vaquita Marina’ Being Brought To Puerto Peñasco

Thursday, January 17th, 2008

Specimen to be shown to skeptical fishing community to prove the species still breeding and endangered

By Ivan Bravo Lopez
Issue #450

After confirming that the Vaquita Marina (‘sea cow’) does exist and that it is being monitored in the Alto Golfo, the authorities at PROFEPA revealed that they will continue to provide support and resources to the Vigilance Committee in Puerto Peñasco, with the goal of protecting the endangered species from extinction. Lazaro Espinoza Mendivil, the President of the Vigilance Committee, indicated that the Vaquita Marina still exists and that reports of its extinction are false. There are two vessels in “El Piedron” that are monitoring and taking care of the species.

“Our committee consists of nine agents, we are all fishermen that have been commissioned to monitor and make sure that no one fishes in the Vaquita Marina’s habitat.”

He recognizes that the fishing community thought the Vaquita Marina was extinct for years – but despite the skeptics, there are still 150 specimens in their natural habitat of the Alto Golfo.

“The fishing community does not want to believe that this species exists. Federal authorities from PROFEPA are monitoring 150 specimens of the sea cow in the Alto Golfo. Fishermen only see what they fish, in other words, if they catch shrimp, they always see shrimp, if they mostly fish, all they see is fish. We need to keep up the vigilance of the Vaquita Marina – we want to make sure that it keeps on reproducing.”

He also mentioned that they have a frozen specimen of a Vaquita Marina and that the PROFEPA authorities will bring it to the port to end speculations of its alleged extinction.

“We have a frozen specimen of the Vaquita Marina, and the authorities of the PROFEPA made an agreement with the Vigilance Committee to bring the specimen to Puerto Peñasco and put it on display for the fishing community to observe. There are many fishermen that have never even seen the Vaquita Marina. Even though they have been fishing all their lives, they have never seen one,” said Lazaro Espinoza.

The President of the Vigilance Committee mentioned that the natural habitat of the Vaquita Marina ranges from the Alto Golfo of California, including Puerto Peñasco, the Golfo de Santa Clara, and San Felipe. Authorities from PROFEPA allocate resources for the purchase of gasoline and food for the vigilance of the designated area. They enforce the designated boundaries so that fishing vessels do not enter them. Lastly, Espinoza Mendivil said that the main reason for the disappearance of this species is their accidental capture by dragging nets in the buffer zones, as well as changes to their overall habitat.

Posted by http://defrente.puerto-penasco.com/index.html

The Story of Lukeville

Sunday, January 21st, 2007


Article appears courtesy of

the Rocky Point Times.

Please Visit their site at www.RPTimes.com

Earl MacPherson

Gringo Pass Gazette
January 1970


In 1924 the present patriarch of Lukeville, Mr. Syde Kalil brought his beautiful bride Josie here and opened the town’s first store and service station on the present site of the U.S. Customs. Of course that’s stretching the point at little since they were the town’s only inhabitants and, for awhile, Syde’s only customers. However, if you live in one of Arizona’s most beautiful spots and are surrounded with game, others will find you and soon a comfortable hunting lodge, sporting house and hotel was built just across the border. Tho’ the hotel is deserted now, in its heydey counts and dukes from Europe as well as well heeled Americans paid a hundred dollars a day just to stay there. Then Syde Kalil named the town “Kalilton”.

Kalilton did not survive due to the arrival of one Charlie Luke of the well known Arizona Luke family. Charlie promptly laid claim to the other side of the street and, with powerful political connections, had the town’s name changed to Lukeville, a name the local post office still bears. (more…)

Sea Lions

Saturday, January 20th, 2007
Article appears courtesy of the Rocky Point Times.
Please Visit their site at www.RPTimes.com

There are five different kinds of sea lions in the world. The species shown in the photograph is the California sea lion, which is found all along the Pacific Coast, from Mexico to British Columbia and on the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador. Male California sea lions weigh as much as 600 pounds (272kg) and are up to 8 feet (2.4 m) long. Female California sea lions weigh up to 200 pounds (91 kg) and are up to 6 feet (1.8m) long. (more…)

Ironwood Tree/ El Palo Fierro

Wednesday, January 17th, 2007

LogoHead1.jpg Article appears courtesy of
the Rocky Point Times.

Please Visit their site at www.RPTimes.com 


By Eric Mellink, Gary Nabhan and Humberto Suzan

Ironwood (Olneya tesota) is a legume tree unique to the binational Sonoran Desert. Ranging from southern Arizona and southeastern California through Baja California and Sonora, Mexico, it plays a major role in the nitrogen and water dynamics of desert washes. In places near the Sea of Cortez coast, the palo fierro replaces mesquite and palo verde as the largest and most ecologically important tree along watercourses. The ironwood may also be the longest living tree in the North American deserts, attaining ages of at least 800 years. Its durable wood-second worldwide only to lignum-vitae in density and weight-may persist on the desert floor for over a millennium.

            It is worth considering ironwood as the “old growth” tree of ancient cactus forests. Giant cacti like saguaro, organpipe, cardon and echo all begin their lives in the shade of this “nurse plant.” Desert wildflowers and vines are more abundant in the shadow of ironwoods than they are in more open sites. Of the hundred-some plants at risk in the Sonoran Desert as a whole, several are strongly associated with ironwood habitat. They include two kinds of night blooming cereus and the acuna cactus, as well as certain vines such as the tumamoc globeberry. Although ironwood itself is not an endangered species, it provides critical microhabitats for numerous threatened plant species that are much more restricted in their range. Over the last two decades, large ironwood trees have been depleted over an area roughly the size of Massachusetts. This is likely to reduce the capacity of cacti and other restricted species to regenerate for the next 500-1000 years.

            Animals also depend upon this keystone species. Countless invertebrates depend on ironwood foliage, flowers, trunks, snags and mulch for forage or microhabitat. Several birds roost or nest preferentially in ironwoods, and use their corridors during migrations. Reptiles such as the desert iguana- endemic to the Sonoran Desert- use crevices in dead trunks for cover. Mammals consume its foliage and seeds as food. And man has found uses for this tree as firewood and material for carving. These and other human activities are posing threats to the ironwood habitats.




Foreign tourists show to have highest rate of noncompliance

Thursday, January 11th, 2007
Unfulfilled Sailing Safety Measures
By: José Antonio Pérez

Another Great Article from www.joinusrp.com

At least 20% of sailing vessels, both tourist as well as fishing boats, that take to the sea from this port do not comply with safety measures. This translates into potential risks in the event of an accident, as has been shown through prior experiences where human lives have been lost.

Javier Rivera Barrera, Port Captain, revealed that although so far this year there has been no registry of any shipwrecks, in many cases there continues to be a lack of giving notification concerning the departure and entrance of vessels, principally those crewed by foreign tourists.

Ideally, he stated, 100% of the ships would report their navigational itinerary, yet unfortunately this is not the case. Rivera Barrera indicated that despite the fact that there are still many people who do not heed the safety measures, the Port Captain is alert to prevent tragedies at sea, and has the magnificent collaboration of the Military Naval Sub sector.

It is important to point out that in this region, at least four shipwrecks have been registered since 2000, one of which cost the lives of five people.

On August 30, 2000, after 18 hours floating in the waters of the Sea of Cortez, following the capsizing of their boat, three local fishermen were rescued safe and sound. Alejo Montes, 28, and his two sons Noé Montes Liera and Jorge Montes Liera, 18 and 19 respectively, were the shipwrecked fishermen who managed to survive.

The Montes family members had been lost since the early hours of Tuesday, August 29, date on which they didn’t return to port as the ship in which they sailed, the Isla San Ángel number three, sank, leaving them stranded in the water.

On November 11, 2002, four people, among them a four-year old boy, were rescued from drowning after their boat also capsized and sank due to the tides and wind. After spending over three hours at sea floating with the help of their lifejackets, the stranded boaters were rescued in front of the area of Playa Miramar at around 12:30 by the shrimp boat Mónica M.

The rescued people were identified as Rubén Trujillo, 37, Scott Smith, 40, Oscar Culp, 70 and Tyler Culp, at only 4-years old.

On October 25, 2003 tourists Carl Hopper, Randy Howard, Joshua Howard, Mark Brinke, and Darrel Holland aboard the 24-foot catamaran “Manta” were sadly lost at sea.
Following various days of an intense search, the vessel, which had capsized, was found on October 29th without its occupants.

Eight days following the disappearance, the first body of one of the group was found, and the other four were declared dead.

On May 12, 2004, two fishermen that had shipwrecked and remained lost at sea for nearly 35 hours were located in the area between La Cholla and Cierro Prieto.
The stranded individuals, identified as Antonio Escobar Escalante and Bruno Amador Lauterio, made it to the puerto penasco port with the support of those who found and assisted them.

In accordance to information reported by the Port Captain and the office of Public Safety, Escobar Escalante and Amador Leuterio had gone fishing around 5 in the morning of May 10th aboard the boat “Almejas 28”, which then sank.

Puerto Penasco Port Capitan