Ecuador said on Monday (July 28) that it will take diplomatic steps to protect the Galapagos Islands from the threat of a fleet of fishing vessels, mostly Chinese flagged, there were spotted near the archipelago.
The Ecuadorean Navy last week identified some 260 boats in the vicinity of the exclusive economic zone of the Galapagos Islands, which raised the alert of the authorities of the Andean country.
Ecuador will raise the issue at a meeting of delegates from the Latin American countries for a common strategy to protect the marine fauna of the region, said Ecuadorean Foreign Minister Luis Gallegos.
Ecuador acknowledges the fishing fleet that was spotted had not yet entered the exclusive economic zone of the islands but it is seeking international consensus on preventing activity near the Galapagos that could affect its delicate ecosystem.
In 2017, a Chinese vessel was captured in the Galapagos Marine Reserve with 300 tonnes of species.
The Galapagos Islands is famous for inspiring British scientist Charles Darwin’s theory of the evolution of species in the 19th century, there is a wide variety of turtles, flamingos, boobies, albatrosses and cormorants. There is also a great wealth of marine flora and fauna. (Reuters)
As the death toll from victims of the coronavirus mounts, Ecuador is struggling to deal with various aspects of the health emergency, including where to put the deceased.
On Wednesday (April 01) Ecuador reported 450 new cases of the coronavirus bringing its total to 2,758 people of which 98 have died. Another 76 deaths are under investigation as possibly related to COVID-19.
The deaths have put a strain on hospitals as well as on morgues, funeral homes and cemeteries. To deal with the increased number of deaths, temporary morgues were installed outside a hospital in Guayaquil Wednesday.
Jorge Wated, the government official appointed by the president to deal with the disposal of the dead during the coronavirus crisis, said that 2,500 to 3,500 were expected to die from COVID-19 in the province of Guayas alone, where Guayaquil, the nation’s second-largest city is located. (Reuters)
Dozens of endangered baby turtles unexpectedly hatched at a popular Ecuadorian beach in the seaside town of Same on Monday (September 2), the first time it was known to happen in that area.
Some 11,000 turtles were born in Same’s province of Esmeraldas last year, but the shift to new breeding grounds indicate humans were disturbing traditional spawning, an environment official said.
“We understand that it can be because of the amount of light and infrastructure that exists in the common spawning beaches,” said Joel Casanova, the director of environmental management for Atacames municipality.
The low-lit beach of Same, surrounded by holiday homes, suited the Olive Ridley turtle better for their nests, Casanova said.
The Olive Ridley is among the smallest of the world’s seven species of marine turtles, usually spawning on the coasts of Central America, Ecuador, and Peru.
After 25 years they return to the beach where they were born to breed again.
Females dig a pit and lay more than 100 eggs which hatch together at night around 50 days later.
For anyone observing the hatching, Casanova recommends not intervene with nature.
Sanctions have been established to punish those who are caught stealing the turtles.
The local government cordoned off the areas where sea turtles were sighted on Same beach. These little ones hatched on a beach volleyball court.
Olive Ridley turtles, found in the Americas and Asia, are listed as endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, although their numbers seem to be rising in the Pacific because of conservation measures. (REUTERS)
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