Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Isla Mujeres Daily News & Events Wednesday, July 31

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From the City...

TRAFFIC ADVISORY!! Today at 5p there will be painting (curbs & crosswalks) & cleaning work being done along prolongacion Rueda Medina from the Car Ferry area (at the southern edge of downtown) to Kash Keken Chuc/the Navy Hospital (which are a block north of Chedraui) as part of the Isla Verde campaign. This is along the bay/westside in front of the whale shark monument & various marinas.

There's an article about registration for the student center in Valladolid, Yucatan for islanders who will live there to pursue higher education; “La Casa del Estudiante Isleño”

A twenty-hour course in making figures out of felt will be held at the Community Development Center, starting Aug. 6th Participants must be at least 15 years old and bring the documents listed to register.

TVisla Mujeres    

Preparation courses have begun at the high school, Colegio Bachilleres VIDEO  

Hoteliers complaining about low occupancy rates   
Gerardo Magaña Barragá, who is the vice president of the association for small hotels, Asociación de Pequeños Hoteles Fascinantes, and also a former mayor complained that Isla Mujeres is having the worst season in many years for overnight tourism. He said although many people visit for the day, there is not much economic benefit, especially because few stay overnight. He said unfair competition from rental houses has left some hoteliers on the verge of closing. 
    He says other causes of low occupancy are the issues of insecurity and the issue of sargasso, which has been widely disseminated, and has prevented tourism from reaching Isla Mujeres (although sargasso hasn't been a problem here, this summer.) Low occupancy is expected to worsen during the months of September, October, and November.  LINK 

Flames consumed a small boat a little after 11:30am yesterday, when the captain tried to start the motor, in front of the Patria & Progreso cooperative. (according to the caption) LINK 
    The 25 foot boat "Alecrim", an IMENSA model, had returned from Puerto Juarez after a mechanical inspection. A few minutes after arriving at the Patria & Progreso cooperative, there was a spark when he was trying to turn OFF the engine (according to the article), which caused a fire that couldn't be contained. Attempts by the crew to quell the fire were unsuccessful, because there was fuel spilled inside the boat from the mechanical work.
    The captain was on board at the time of the incidents, with a young man and a minor, and all three were unharmed. Fortunately the accident occurred when they had reached the dock and not during the crossing, which could have been more serious.
    Personnel with the Navy arrived aboard a vessel (actually two boats) and were responsible for putting out the fire, and they towed the remnants of the boat to the Naval dock area to deliver it to the Harbor Master.  LINK    VIDEO    (There are photos in yesterday's edition

From  Por Esto :

Fishing boat consumed by fire   (There are photos in yesterday's edition)

Arde una embarcación pesquera

See previous information. This article notes that events occurred by the Patria & Progreso cooperative dock when boat had just arrived from Cancun and the crew had barely descended when the motor set on fire, apparently because of a spark. The fire quickly spread to the fiberglass, generating huge clouds of dark smoke, whose smell was noticed distinctly at the Tortugranja facilites in Sac Bajo, on the other side of the Makax lagoon, where the cooperative is located.
   The fishermen who were at the cooperative at the time did everything possible to attempt to quell the fire, including using a fire extinguisher, but since their efforts were ineffective, they decided to tow the "Alecrin" to the entry to the harbor (puerto de abrigo), so that the flames wouldn't reach the wooden pier or any other boats, which being made of fiberglass could have quickly propagated the conflagration.
     One of the fishermen quickly called 911 when he saw the boat begin to burn, and shortly thereafter a Public Security (municipal police) patrol arrived, and the firefighter truck, and a unit from the Navy, as well as personnel from the Harbor Master's office. 
    The boat was practically charred after the flames were put out and it was towed to the Navy dock, where it is under the protection of the Harbor Master, and the owner will have to report the mishap and complete the procedures. 

Uncertain future for Patria & Progreso fishing cooperative 

Incierto futuro para pescadores

 The Patria & Progreso cooperative is the only local group of fishermen dedicated to capturing shark faces an uncertain future when their permits to catch sharks and rays expire in August, which will no longer be renewed. This year the ban on shark fishing was applied normally, beginning on May 1st and ending on June 30th.
   In February 2018, the national Senate approved the General Biodiversity Law whose Article 53 prohibits commercial fishing of Elasomobranchii, which includes sharks, skates, and rays.  This is expected to have a server economic impact on the fishermen of Quintana Roo who are dedicated to the capture of these animals, and the head of the state fishing organization, Baltazar Gomez Catzin, siad they will file an appeal for an amparo/injunction regarding this decree of permanent closure.
    This permanent ban will affect about 500 fishermen in Quintana Roo, of whom about 100 are in Isla Mujeres. Some fishermen with the Patria & Progreso cooperative said officials with CONANP, National Commission of Protected Areas have suggested they exploit sharks and stingrays as a tourist attraction and encourage snorkeling and diving in the areas where they can be encountered in the open, which the fishermen see as unfeasible.
    They pointed out that each season the whale shark tour licensees are subject to new rules that eliminate those who only own one boat and favor the large companies. One said, "The same would happen to use; at CONANP they tell us that we can take tourists to see the sharks, but for this we will need permits and adapted boats, which we don't have." Mr. Gomex Catxin commented that although CONANP promised them permits for tourist activities in reef areas, as an alternative, they are still waiting at this time.

Hoteliers had expected higher occupancy rates  

La ocupación no repunta como se esperaba

   The Tourism Department reported occupancy rates as of July 24th were 73% overall in the municipality with the island at 57% and the Continental zone at 82% occupancy.


Did you know Spiny Lobsters molt repeatedly as they grow? Or that Jacques Cousteau came here to film them 'marching'?
>They're in season now, after the annual four-month ban while they're spawning. The larvae begin as plankton that travel long distances before settling in shallow 'nursery' habitats. After young lobsters move to the reefs, they molt several times annually, but this slows with age.
>It takes 5-9 years for females to reach maturity (3-6 for males). They mate during the day & the eggs take ~10 weeks to hatch. Males leave their holes to hunt for a partner, and use their front legs to grasp her gently and yank her out of her cave headfirst, mating with her externally, belly to belly, before she retreats immediately back into her hole. He leaves his sperm sac with her, which she opens to distribute among her eggs when they're ready. She carries 120,000-680,000 bright orange eggs on her underside, which become hard and black before she deposits them in a protected area when they're ready to hatch.
>Spiny Lobster live under ledges and in caves & crevices, emerging at night to forage on urchins, crabs, snails, clams, decaying matter & plants. They're sensitive to temperature changes & when the autumn & winter cold fronts arrive, they migrate across the seabed, sometimes 'marching' in long lines. The best lobster harvests usually occur just after a norte. Jacques Cousteau filmed a documentary about this at Isla Contoy.
>They wave their two large antennae to scare off predators & keep their two small antennae tucked against their bodies when not in use, which are sensory organs to detect water movement and chemical changes. They're covered in protective, forward-pointing spines. When threatened, the lobster flexes its tail to quickly escape backward, emitting a loud rasping sound, which comes from an antennae rubbing across a file on the antennal plate, in a similar fashion to a cricket or grasshopper.
>Lionfish, an invasive species, can consume 20 juvenile lobster in 30 minutes. Lobster predators include eels, octopuses, sharks, and, of course, humans. Their lifespans are estimated to be 50 years or more.
Thanks for the video, Tony Garcia! (showing lobsters & their recently molted shells)


  This blog is brought to you by....
View from the rooms.

MaraVilla Caribe   Bed & Beach    Three rentals with large glass doors overlooking our white sand beach and the beautiful Caribbean sea, with  kitchenettes & fast WIFI. In the coastal neighborhood of  Bachilleres, among upscale villas & boutique hotelitos, convenient to downtown or the colonias, yet separate.  Quiet & Private.   
 Kitchen in a large studio. (Sur & Norte are identical)
Kitchenette in small room, Medio. There's a table & chairs across from it & a double bed.
A large slider opens from each of the 3 rooms onto the patio where each has a table & chairs, hammock & clotheslines. The BBQ is behind the pole, and the outdoor shower is outa the pic at left.
Large studio (Norte), I'm standing in the kitchen. A queen & single bed.

Free amenities such as hammocks,bikes, BBQ grills, safes, portable beach chairs & beach towels, washer & dryer, loungers. Breathtaking panoramic views from the rooftop terrace. Large sliding doors open to a patio & our backyard-beach, overlooking the Caribbean sea. Upstairs room also available. Downtown is  ~ a mile away; if you don't feel like walking,  flag a $2 taxi. Parking. You can enjoy the music & crowds downtown, then come home our quiet neighborhood of Bachilleres where you'll  sleep to the sounds of the sea.$275/$325/$425 wk   $40/50/$65nt  Monthly Discounts

Large studio (Sur) with Queen & Single bed. Slider door & view are behind me.

Fine dining a few steps away at Da Luisa or try the neighborhood eateries a couple blocks farther. Within ten minutes walk are a variety of restaurants including Mango Cafe, Brisas, Manolitos, La Chatita, Green Verde, Kash Kechen Chuc, and the large department store-grocery , Chedraui. Visit marinas, bars, & beach clubs that are minutes away by bike or on foot. Attend Yoga classes a couple villas away at hotelito Casa Ixchel. Fresh juice, produce & tortillas a few blocks away in the village, as well as a variety of other stores and small local restaurants. It takes 20-30  minutes to walk downtown.
Full moon rising over the Caribbean 

July 16  7:35
July 17   8:22
July 18   9:04
July 19   9:43
July 20  10:20
July 21   10:54
Painting by Pamela Haase
Sunset  ~7:30p
Sunrise ~6:10a
July Events 
Provided by MaraVilla Caribe & Isla Mujeres Daily News & Events

On Saturdays at 8a-10a,  Plogging events to clean up the island are held,  meetup locations at this LINK . Bring your refillable bottle & they'll supply gloves, water, & bags,   Here's the Accion Isla LINK

Wednesday nights at 8:45p, a new bicycling group invite people to join them for healthy recreation, meeting at Juarez &  Abasolo. Lights required, helmet recommended. LINK   

In July,  fishermen in this region are banned from catching  Octopus, Shrimp, & Conch  LINK 

 The baseball games at the  El Pescador stadium in front of Chedraui are usually held on Sundays, starting around 1p, when there's a 'home' game.

The new date for the Women's Fishing Tournament "El Dorado del Caribe" hasn't been announced yet.

Turtle nesting season continues throughout July. The turtles nest along the eastern beaches in the wee hours of the night and Tortugranja staff and volunteers gather the eggs and incubate them in a pen outside the facility.  Three species nest annually in Isla Mujeres;  Greens, Loggerheads, and Hawksbills. The sex of the turtles is determined by the temperature of the sand, which is common in reptiles.

 Whale shark tour season continues throughout July, ending in mid-September. The eight-month lobster catching season begins July 1st, and this year's prices are: whole live- 400 to 450 pesos per kilo; whole dead-350 to 400; and tails- 580 to 600 pesos (~$16us/lb-tails).

 Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower July 12-August 23, peaking in late July

Saturday, July 6 Barracuda Fishing Tournament with a scooter for first prize, TV's for second and third, and cash for fourth and fifth places. It's sponsored by the political party PRI and will have a DJ & other activities starting at 11am.

Saturday, July 6th at 4p, Connor Williams, offensive guard for the Dallas Cowboys, will sign autographs & do photo-ops with fans at the soccer field in Salina Chica. Then the "Isla Mujeres Bowl 2019" will be held in two categories of players up to age 13; and those of 15 years and up in separate male & female teams. Free. This will be "touch football", played according International Flag Football rules.
Sunday, July 7 at 8p on the Town Square--Four Dance Troupes. The seniors & kids troupes of "Al Són del Corazon", a senior women's troupe & "El Corazon de Conchi". (Són is a style of dance & music, Corazon means heart. Conchi is a nickname of Isla's patron saint.)

Saturday, July 13 Plogging clean up 8a-10a Sac Bajo
Saturday, July 13 Town Square at 7p--Folklorico dancers from the state of Nuevo Leon. Free.

Firday, July 19 You're invited to the 1st International Festival of Children's Folklorico Dancing on Friday on the Town Square at 8p featuring troupes from Mexico City, Veracruz, Baja California Norte, Nuevo León, Guerrero, Tabasco, Nayarit, & Jalisco, as well as from Colombia.

Fri-Sun, July 26-28- 12th Annual Whale Shark Festival
   The events whose locations aren't given are probably on the Town Square, the talks in Spanish are probably inside the Palacio-Town Hall.

 Friday, July 26 
6p Motorcycle Clubs Caravan 
6:30 Inaugural Event on the East Malecon Esplanade, Downtown 
7p Grand Opening of the new tourism attraction "El Malecon del Sabor" Food Park
8p Folklorico Dance performance by "Mestizas de Agua Sallada" 
9p Performance by "Renatta Dance Studio Academy" 

 Saturday, July 27 
6p-8p Children's "Lightning" Basketball Tournament on downtown court by Town Square
 7p Presentations (in Spanish) on the topics "Acoustic & Satellite Telemetry of Whale Sharks" and "Estimations About Whale Shark Behavior" by specialists Emilio de la Parra Galván, Eugenio de la Parra Galván & Rafael de la Parra. 
7p-9p Cocktail Demonstrations by the "Isla Mujeres Bartenders Collectivo"
 9p Folklorico Dance performances by the troupes "Al Son del Corazon", "Abuelitas de INAPAM", & "El Corazon de Conchi" 

 Sunday, July 28 7p Presentation (in Spanish) by Pamela Vazquez of Saving Our Sharks organization 
7p-9p Cocktail Demonstrations by the "Isla Mujeres Bartenders Collectivo" 
8p Noches Magicas performance by "Latin Dancers Dance Studio"

Sources for Weather Information:
LINK to Civil Protection Q Roo weather bulletin  (Spanish)
LINK to Mexico National Weather Service (Spanish)
 LINK to satellite images for the Mexico National Weather Service
 LINK to GOES East Band 16 GIF (animation)
LINK to a private weather station on Isla Mujeres

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