Bighorn Sheep Sighting

Tiempo de lectura | Reading time: 2 minutos

By Antonieta Valenzuela / Communications and Public Relations Coordinator

On November 15, 2015, five Bighorn Sheep were seen at the Valle Tranquilo Nature Reserve, an area located in the southern part of Ensenada that is protected and managed by Terra Peninsular.

Jim Riley, friend and collaborator of Terra Peninsular, shared his experience with us. He went on a field trip to this reserve during mid-November along with a group of researchers. Despite the rain, the group first camped at El Rosario to go on an excursion into the valley afterwards. During their trip, they had the opportunity of seeing a herd of five Bighorn Sheep (Ovis canadensis).

What is remarkable about this is that this endangered species was seen for the first time in that part of Baja California. For Terra Peninsular, this event represents an accomplishment, for its presence indicates that the reserve is working. Thus, we will continue working to guarantee the protection of the fauna and flora of the reserve, as well as other natural areas.

Cleaning and Restoring Wetlands in San Quintín

Tiempo de lectura | Reading time: 3 minutos

By Bárbara Ramírez / Development and Communications Leader

As part of Terra’s Participation and Awareness Strategy, a couple of months ago we began to work with the Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) and the communities of Chapala and La Chorera in a Temporary Employment Program (PET). The main objectives of this program included cleaning and restoration of the wetlands located in San Quintín Bay, as well as the construction of two interpretive stations (interactive and informative stops for visitors).

For the first part of this project and thanks to the enthusiasm of 130 people of both communities, at the end of the day 30 tons of trash were collected within an area of approximately 60 miles.

As a result of this joint effort, Terra Peninsular established trust and friendship with the residents of San Quintín Bay.

Meanwhile, the second part of this program alongside SEMARNAT focused on the construction of two interpretive stations named La Ola (located in Punta Mazo Nature Reserve) and Mirador Valle Volcánico. For this project, our friends from Taller Ciruela helped us with their creative abilities, while our friends from the communities contributed with the technical part of the project.

The results of this collective effort, which began with the Temporary Employment Program, are captured in a series of videos that also express Terra’s achievements of the last couple of months. These videos were made thanks to our friends from Cactus Films and Meltí.

You can see the results achieved through our collective efforts in the videos below. By showing the beauty of San Quintín Bay and its natural landscapes, we invite the community to help us protect these beautiful places, there’s always room for more volunteers. Terra Peninsular would like to thank everyone who has helped us with our projects, we are very happy with the results and are sure that by continuing to join forces we can achieve a lot more.

This project is just a small part of the work we do at Terra Peninsular. It’s also a closer view at what we have achieved in San Quintín Bay with the help of the people who believe in us as an organization.

1st. San Quintín Bay Bird Festival 2015

Tiempo de lectura | Reading time: 6 minutos

By Bárbara Ramírez / Development and Communications Leader

Saturday, October 24th 2015, 6:50am, San Quintín Bay. The October sun begins to shine. Fresh air comes with the sunrise mist that covers the Volcanic Valley. The sun’s golden light bathes the dunes of Punta Mazo, the shorebirds are aligned in groups in front of the ocean. The bay begins to awake: today is Terra Peninsular’s First Annual Bird Festival.

There’s excitement in the air at La Chorera, the women prepares the food for the party, you can see them walking around the place carrying food, tomatoes, salsa, condiments and seafood. The kids are laughing and excited, they’re outside the school’s classroom waiting to participate in the illustration workshop.

Meanwhile, the early-rising residents are at the area they use for hosting parties, where they’re installing the tent and chairs. Kids of all ages keep arriving, they cannot wait any longer. The program has been rescheduled. Half of the kids are at the workshop with Gaby, and the rest are heading to the beach where Jonathan is waiting for them with bird guides, monocles, and interesting information about birds. The midmorning sun is reflected on the ocean and the wetlands. The kids are having fun, some of them are drawing or bird watching, and today the shorebirds are the center of attention.

The colors of the ocean and the wetlands look intense under the midday sun. The autumn weather is leaving us and a trace of summer still refuses to leave. The sea air is blowing, but it’s not enough to dry the sweat of the people who are under the tent. The people in charge of sound are preparing the equipment, Rafael prepares the power generator that we needed, and women arrive carrying food. Agustina, “Guti” as everyone calls her, is in charge of everything and orchestrates the parade, she lights the fire easily and feeds it with firewood.

The kids are back from bird watching, now is the adults’ turn.  The different types of birds are still in the minds of the kids, except for Santiago, a 5-year-old boy who spent the rest of the afternoon showing his bird guide to everyone, he wants to go back to the beach and continue watching “little birds”.

All the guests are here, including the San Quintín delegate, Luis Reyes, and the subdelegate of the Secretary of Tourism, Ramón Villavicencio, both have joined the celebration.

Every person takes a seat under the tent to listen to Jonathan talking about migratory birds. After just 40 minutes, the whole community now has a new vision about birds. Those pacific animals have flown more miles than any of the people here, and more than one is amazed by that fact.

Estamos muy agradecidos con todos los que nos apoyaron para hacer de este festival una realidad. Gracias a Luis Reyes…

Posted by Terra Peninsular on Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Later, Luis Reyes and Ramón Villavicencio shared some words about the importance of joining efforts towards conservation. Terra Peninsular’s executive director, César, also offered some words of gratitude to both communities and to everyone who helped organizing our First Annual Bird Festival.

Don Pancho, sitting in the front row, asks for the microphone and he thanks for the attention given to the community La Chor
era, he insists on the importance of working hand in hand with residents to protect the birds and San Quintín Bay. To end with a flourish, Vero shares the meaning of the Festival and that our friends from Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Panama are aware of this place. Don Pancho gets excited, the name of his community will be known worldwide.

Suddenly, a yellow bus arrives, and a stringed musical group from the local high school, CBTA 146, gets out of the bus, and begins to play music, they’re the entertainment of the Festival. The food is ready: creamy clam with chipotle, shrimp cocktail and ‘’9 mares’’ soup (as baptized by Guti). The party just began! And the people are enjoying it.

Before the sun went down, all the participants gathered one more time under the tent for the premiere of a video, in which some of them participated. Everyone is quiet now and the music begins. On the screen the incredible images of the bay are shown, the people are hypnotized. Suddenly, a voice breaks the silence, one of the community’s women is in the video talking about San Quintín Bay, and the scene is followed by laughs and applauses.

Don Pancho appears in the video, too, and everyone is cheering, he blushes a little bit. You can hear people whispering “I know her,” “Look, there’s Marisa,” people identify the residents that collaborated in the video. Luis turns around and tells me, “I’m not in the video;” I smiled and said, “Maybe next time.” The video ends and everyone is clapping, they’re shouting, “Again! Again!” And the video is played once again.

The day is about to end and we begin to say goodbye. We leave tanned and tired, but happy and smiling because we did it! The residents invite us to come back; they tell us that we can visit them even if it’s not for work. Our new friend Marcie says goodbye to me with a big hug and promising a girl’s night out. The last pictures are