Home NewsPeninsulaBeach Communities Sargasso ‘floods’ Yucatan’s eastern coastline; tourists stay away from beaches

Sargasso ‘floods’ Yucatan’s eastern coastline; tourists stay away from beaches

by Magali Alvarez
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A huge contrast can be observed between the coasts of the northern and eastern coasts of Yucatan, because while in one of them the expulsion of sargassum continues to be reported, in the other the situation has stopped and the beaches look very clean.

The unstoppable expulsion of sargassum continues to be registered on the Yucatan coast, from the port of Progreso to San Crisanto, leaving large extensions of beach covered with sea grass, which has generated the absence of visitors since last weekend.

Locals indicated that this sea grass has been arriving in large quantities to several ports of the Entity, and experts pointed out that this natural condition would no longer be produced by the entrance of bad weather as in past seasons. The most curious thing about the phenomenon, indicated locals, is that the entire edge of the coast is covered, while five meters ahead, the water looks crystal clear, and rocks and fish can be observed.

This event has caused tourism to decrease, as they cannot enjoy the sea water, since sargassum is always floating in large quantities. Due to the current condition of the landscape, most people have begun to leave the tours to one side and look for other tourist destinations, which has caused a decline in the local economy.

Since the expulsion of the algae began, there has been no record of cleanup by the City Hall or private agencies to remove some of the garbage that has accumulated. However, the only thing that is known is that a communiqué has been issued by the State Government together with the Secretariat of Sustainable Development in which they call for a beach cleanup for Saturday morning.

Due to the quantities of sea grass that continue to be registered, it is believed that this weekend the phenomenon will affect the number of visitors to the ports again, since since the end of the Easter and Easter vacations, very few visitors have arrived to the beaches, especially in this small port, which registers up to 5 thousand tourists during the high season.

This problem not only affects the State, but also Entities such as Quintana Roo, specifically Cancun, where year after year hundreds of tons of sargassum are removed from the beaches in order to support tourism. As has been reported, specialists from the Merida Unit of the Center for Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM); the Center for Scientific Research of Yucatan (CICY) and the Autonomous University of Yucatan (UADY), conduct studies with the various microalgae that arrive to the peninsula, better known colloquially as sargassum.

So far, a strong arrival of this algae that is expelled from the bottom of the ocean continues to be observed, so it is expected that measures will be taken to combat it and generate cleanliness on the beaches to avoid affecting the ports economically with the absence of tourism that has occurred since last weekend, when there was a record of the arrival of the sea grass.

East Coast

While from Progreso to Telchac the arrival of sargassum was reported, in the eastern zone so far very little seaweed is arriving, so the beaches are clean and the waters are ideal to spend a weekend with the family.

The port of El Cuyo, one of the most visited sites by tourists so far, does not have so much presence of sea grass, unlike the ports located on the northern coast, where algae have covered the shore of the beach.

In this part, the ports of San Felipe, Las Coloradas, Cancunito and Ría Lagartos are free of sargassum for the moment, as this phenomenon has not yet begun to affect this coast.

In El Cuyo, the municipal commissioner, Neydy Yolanda Puc Gil, revealed that until today there is very little algae reaching the shore of the beach, but in August of last year, during the summer vacations, the presence of sea vegetation was reported, although not in large quantities that affected tourism.

According to the fishermen, perhaps the marine currents are favoring this area, in the same way that the red tide did not affect it at the time.

In San Felipe, so far the waters are clean, but there is little presence of tourism, so they hope that this phenomenon that is being registered in other ports will help visitors to look towards the eastern coast and take advantage of the benefits it has to offer.

Meanwhile, in Río Lagartos, tourism is continuous throughout the year and, like the beaches in this area, they are clean and free of sargassum for the moment.

Finally, Cancunito, Las Coloradas and El Cuyo also offer visitors a sea free of seaweed, making them a great option for healthy coexistence.

TYT Newsroom

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