Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Hol Chan Marine Reserve

San Pedro celebrates Earth Day with a colorful beach event

San Pedro residents commemorated Earth Day on Saturday, April 20th, with an educational and fun fair at the Boca del Rio Beach Park. The family activity was themed ‘Neon Glow Night.’ The gathering included educational booths, mechanical games, music, lively presentations highlighting the importance of preserving the planet, and the presence of Miss Earth Reyna Choj.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve’s plan to combat sargassum yet to be implemented

The beaches of San Pedro and many others across the country have been experiencing a heavy influx of brown algae known as sargassum in the past few weeks. This inconvenience makes the shoreline unattractive as the seaweed rots and threatens the island's tourism industry. To address this problem, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve (HCMR) plans to obtain a "Harvester Machine" to help overcome the sargassum problem.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve begins monitoring seasonal sea turtle nesting sites

The sea turtle monitoring program at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve has begun and will continue until November. They anticipate egg clutches will appear on the beach this time of the year, as last year, the first turtle nest of the season was discovered on April 18, 2023. Due to that factor, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve team is now actively monitoring the island's northern beaches weekly to search for turtle nests or any activity. They have also started removing debris and cleaning up by picking up garbage and driftwood that could obstruct the turtles' path in known nesting areas.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve installs and replaces buoys at Caye Caulker Marine Reserve

In the name of conservation, the enforcement and compliance team from the Hol Chan Marine Reserve installed four new moorings buoys at the Caye Caulker Marine Reserve on Monday, February 12th. The Hol Chan team also replaced two damaged buoys in the popular marine reserve.

2024 Sargassum season is right around the corner

The eyesore of sargassum mats littering our beaches has not been observed in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, for months. This has led to clear and clean coastlines with beautiful sandy beaches. However, as Easter approaches, the threat of sargassum looms, and according to reports, there could be heavy seaweed invasion.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve recognizes staff and partners in appreciation gala

The Hol Chan Marine Reserve (HCMR) hosted an appreciation celebration at El Patio Restaurant on Saturday, February 3rd, where they thanked their staff for their hard work and recognized several island stakeholders for their continued support. The gathering celebrated the organization’s achievements and partnership with the island community, highlighting the efforts for better tourism, fisheries, and conservation management.

Visiting students help with beach clean-up in northern Ambergris Caye

Another beach clean-up occurred at Robles Point along the Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve on the northeastern coast of Ambergris Caye. Large amounts of rubbish were removed from this area, some nine miles north of San Pedro Town. It is a favorite nesting area for sea turtles, so organizers continue to ask those visiting the northern beaches not to litter, which can seriously interfere with nesting.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve celebrates annual seminar with tour guides and operators

The Hol Chan Marine Reserve management hosted their annual 'Responsible Tour Guide and Tour Operator seminar in San Pedro Town and Caye Caulker. The sessions served to inform the tourism stakeholders on the rules and regulations of the marine reserve, provide updates on the marine reserve management, and collect feedback from the tour guides and tour operators. This year's event ended with a round of raffles in which many attendees walked away with Christmas hams. Three lucky winners won the grand prizes, including a new stove, a refrigerator, and $1,000 cash.