Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Head Out to Isla San Jorge on Saturday

Hop in a boat, travel through the waters of the Gulf and get ready for some fun with sea lions and birds, because this Saturday CEDO's Isla San Jorge Sojourn is on deck. The boat tour and snorkeling is not to be missed! This extremely fun eco-adventure also includes an introductory slideshow and talk on Gulf island ecology and CEDO research.

The all day event then takes you out to Isla San Jorge, consisting of three main islands and four smaller islands, full of an abundance of wildlife, including fish-eating bats, magnificent tropic birds, and those California sea lions. The reefs and waters around San Jorge support a diversity of life. Marine invertebrates of commercial importance, like sea cucumbers, scallops, mussels, oysters, snails and octopi as well as a variety of fish live in the waters. Don't miss your chance! The outing begins at CEDO's Nature Center in Puerto Peñasco at 7 am and goes until 2 pm. Click here to visit our website for more information and to make a reservation. See you on the island!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Saturday = Tidepool Time!

Enjoy an amazing evening checking out tidepools! From 6 - 8 pm on Saturday, Sept. 27, CEDO naturalists will take you on a journey through the rocky intertidal zone. Get hands on and be ready to see an array of life: crabs, brittle stars, chittons and all of their invertebrate companions. The Tidepool Exploration begins at 6 pm at the CEDO Nature Center in Puerto Peñasco. Click here to visit our website for more information. We'd love to see you out there!

Friday, September 19, 2008

The world's your oyster!

This Saturday (and every second Saturday after) we will be running the Oyster Experience tour out to the Punta Roja cooperative in Estero Morúa. This is truly an incredible day out, read on to discover one individual's previous experience, then conact me on intern@cedointercultural.org to make your reservation!

“Escaping into the cool shade of CEDO’s castle–like main building, the day began with a natural history talk on the Gulf of California and it’s surrounding areas, before we made the short trip out to estero Morúa and the oyster farm.
Upon arriving at Punta Roja cooperative, we were surprised to discover how these local dedicated farmers live their lives completely intertwined with nature – working in accordance with lunar cycles and living in basic housing on the shores of these incredible wetlands, one of the most productive in the world.

Wading into the shallow waters we examined the floating boxes in which the oysters grow, and learned about the processes involved in maintaining them healthy and free of predators. During this talk however, an American Oyster Catcher, another inhabitant of the areas esteros, flew down and tried to steal a couple of tasty shellfish from the neighboring boxes!

Choosing our favorite shells carefully, we returned to consult Doña Antonia on the best way to cook our prizes. We experimented a little, using plants from the estuary, ginger and lots of butter to create ourselves a feast worthy of royal attention, and took our seats in the shade to eat and discuss the estuary, the cooperative and the future with Doña Antonia and the other members of the cooperative.”

- Preferred anon.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Cedo... but Not What You'd Expect!!

This week a wholly unexpected surprise dropped into my mail box- the delightful news that we have a dog named after us!! The Pepper/Martin family are huge fans of the work we're doing here in the Gulf, and felt for various reasons that our name would suit Cedo the dog - pictured right -fantastically.

Read on for the full story in Alisa Martin's own words:

" My fiancee's parents, Phil & Vicki Pepper have been visiting Puerto Peñasco for 30 years. The very first time they visited, Vicki was pregnant with Jacob! They have been supporters of CEDO for years. Now that they have their own home and a vacation rental in Las Conchas, they actively send visitors your way to learn more about the unique Sea of Cortez and it's ecology.
Jacob and I met...6.5 years ago at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). Since then, we have been vacationing in Peñasco with friends & family every chance that we get. We too have enjoyed numerous Natural History talks at CEDO and referred our friends to do the same.

About 5 years ago, Jacob and I decided to adopt a dog from a shelter. We took a trip to the shelter and saw many adorable dogs, but this one stood out. He was 6 months old and had an "interesting face", we thought "what is he"? We did not adopt a dog that day. But, a friend of ours in Santa Barbara had rescued 6 dogs from the shelter. These were dogs that she thought had great potential and needed to be rescued before their time ran out. We went to her house and there he was...that dog with the "interesting face"! We fostered him for a few days and fell in love.

For weeks we could not come up with a name for him. At this juncture, we were doing lots of the 9 hour long, drive through the night trips from Santa Barbara to Peñasco. I was thinking about some of the standout things in Peñasco. We were constantly giving directions to the Peppers' home in section 1, they endearingly refer to as, "The Shipwreck"...."it's the first right after CEDO and the whale bones. Naturally, people then wonder and ask..."what is CEDO?"Everywhere we went, people would see our dog and ask, "what is he"? Out of nowhere I finally said to Jacob..."Let's name his Cedo"! It was perfect, and it stuck! We are constantly explaining to people what his name means. So, you have advocates in Santa Barbara, California explaining that CEDO is the Center for the Study of Deserts & Oceans! He is also a German Shepard, Sharpei, Lab mix!"

Kat: Love it!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Fish Tales

This week one of our prominent CEDO researchers is off putting Peñasco's conservation efforts on the map! René has travelled to Acapulco to speak at a coastal fishing forum, on the successes of a subcommittee who have placed a temporary ban on the fishing of the Jaiba (or Swimming Crab in English) during it's reproductive cycle, allowing the jaiba to flourish unlike before.

The fisheries department is also working with local fishermen in the Northern Gulf, principally here in Peñasco, involving them in the monitoring of the jaiba, rock scallop and snails. CEDO seeks to work with the community and involve them directly in the conservation of the local areas, knowing that this is the way to successful conservation efforts - we can't do the job alone!

The estuaries of the Northern Gulf of Califonia are said to be the 3rd most productive ecosystem in the entire world, only following on the rainforests and coral reefs. The wetlands research team is currently disecting moluscs in order to analyse the carbon levels within the species. This is part of a wider project which, in short (!), is aimed at working out who eats who, and what, in these vital wetlands; information that will then help scientifically prove the value of the area, and hopefully further conservation laws.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Join CEDO for a Sunset Estero Excursion!

Head out with CEDO on Saturday, Sept. 13 to experience the beauty of a coastal wetland filled with the bountiful wildlife of the Northern Gulf of California: crabs, oysters, birds and so much more.

Prepare to get your hands and feet dirty all in the name of fun. Available for people of all ages. The adventure lasts three hours and starts at 4 p.m at CEDO's field station in Puerto Penasco, Sonora. For more information visit our website and to reserve a spot on the excursion, or ask any questions, email: info@cedointercultural.org.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Hearts and Souls

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, caring citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead.

Today, people throughout the world have come to accept degraded environments as staus quo, and yet this needn't be so. Here at CEDO we believe that education is the key to future conservation efforts, and it is our desire to reach as many people as possible, to get into their hearts and souls, and to inspire the green thoughts that reside in all ages and races.

It's no surprise that as we're growing up we often take our surroundings for granted having never known anything else, yet people care for the things they love, not those they take for granted. Knowing this the education team is busy preparing to take nearly 1000 5th graders from Puerto Peñasco under their wing in the 'Youth Towards a Sustainable Northern Gulf' program, and will soon be heading out to remote communities around the Northern Gulf in order to work with the next generation of conservationists!

The eco tourism team are also working hard with local hotels and developers to spread the word about our fantastic range of eco tours, ensuring that a greater number of people are aware of, and can enjoy, the wonders of the Sea of Cortez and the surrounding Sonoran Desert.