One and a half months after the start of the sea turtle nesting season, specialists already report incidents such as turtle egg black market, species hunting, and disturbances on the beach.
Gisela Maldonado Saldaña, a member of the State Committee for the Protection of Sea Turtles, explained that the situation of confinement and mobility restrictions have made it difficult to monitor the beaches and turtle camps, which increases the risk of incidents.
“Here we have two cases of nest theft, one in Solidaridad and the other in Puerto Morelos. In the south of the State, there have also been cases of turtles that people kill to extract their meat. In Yum Balam every day the looting of eggs is denounced, ”she explained.
In addition to the difficulties in guaranteeing the protection of the species due to the health contingency, the budget cut has just been added to the Protected Natural Areas, which mostly have turtle camps for the safety of nests.
The same occurs with the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (Profepa), which already has limited human resources due to the health contingency.
“Unfortunately, the authorities cannot do what is necessary, they do not have money or personnel,” she said.
She indicated that the lack of surveillance is the main reason this is happening.
Given the situation, the specialist called on the community to contribute to the care of these marine species that year after year arrives on the shores of the Mexican Caribbean to deposit their eggs.
“We are in a contingency situation and we cannot leave, we are requesting the citizens to report us immediately if they see any situation.”
“These federal agencies were left without 75 percent of their operating expenses, which in the case of the National Commission for Natural Protected Areas in the region, was mainly used to pay for fuel for surveillance vessels and land vehicles, as well as their maintenance. Without this resource, they are unable to go out into the field”, says Maldonado Saldaña.