News & Stories
Cosme Damian Becerra: Kino Bay Boat CaptainCosme Damian Becerra: Kino Bay Boat Captain
“Empecé en el 2007 como capitán de pangas, como se fueron dando las circunstancias me fui integrando a los diferentes programas de la estación. Estoy muy contento de participar en conservación, los programas, y proyectos comunitarios, como el de las tortugas marinas. He aprendido mucho sobre los ecosistemas de la localidad, como identificar aves, peces, mamíferos marinos y cuidar nuestro ambiente. Me gusta mucho mi trabajo.
Los primeros meses aquí fueron duros para integrarme a un cambio de vida, donde antes yo pescaba para sustentar a mi familia, sin importarme los aspectos ecológicos, aunque si respetaba tallas y vedas, pero vivía de eso, de lo que ahora estoy tratando de cuidar. Fue difícil adaptarme a un sueldo jo, cuando antes yo decidía cuanto ganar. Antes me echaba al mar y le tiraba a todo lo que tuviera signo de pesos ($), ahora si me echo al mar, solo pesco lo que me voy a comer. Ahora mi mentalidad ha cambiado a conservar las especies del mar, porque se están acabando.”
-COSME DAMIAN BECERRA
“I began as boat captain in 2007 and as circumstances developed I began integrating with the different programs at the field station. I am very pleased to be participating in conservation, through the programs and community projects like the sea turtle monitoring project. I have learned a lot about local ecosystems, how to identify birds, fishes, and marine mammals and to care for our environment. I really like my job.
The first few months here it was hard for me to adjust to a change in lifestyle; I used to fish to support my family without regard for ecology; although I did use to respect minimum-size limits and closed seasons, I lived from this – from what I am now trying to protect. It was difficult for me to adapt to a fixed salary, when before I could decide how much I earned. I used to dive into the sea and catch everything that had a peso sign attached to it; now I go to sea and catch only what I am going to eat. Now my mentality has changed to conserve marine species because they are disappearing.”
-COSME DAMIAN BECERRA
Maria Johnson-Research and Conservation FellowMaria Johnson-Research and Conservation Fellow
“I first came to the Center as a Prescott College student in 2009 and quickly fell in love with the Gulf. I completed my undergraduate studies in marine conservation and my senior project through the Center, then returned to work as a Research and Conservation Fellow in Media, Communications, and Fisheries for two years.
Through the Kino Bay Center I have found what I am most passionate about-- art for conservation, fisheries science, the Gulf of California region--and have been fortunate enough to immerse myself in those subjects throughout my studies and my job. The Center has provided me the opportunity to combine my interests and develop professionally and personally through a wealth of varied and rich experiences that have been absolutely life-changing. I look towards a future built on this solid foundation and pointing towards a life and career continued in art, science, and conservation in this area that I call home. ”
López Family, Ecology ClubLópez Family, Ecology Club
“I have belonged to the ecology club network since primary school; there I took ecology classes and participated in the club. In the secondary school ecology club I was motivated by the activities and by my friends, but some of them did not continue. I got more involved in caring for the environment. I have learned different uses for things that you would never think had any benefit. At home we are learning, little by little; we reuse water from the washing machine to water the patio, we use less chemical products, the water we use to wash the vegetables goes to the plants and there have been growing tomatoes and watermelons."
- JUDAS ALFREDO BECERRA LÓPEZ, Ecology Club Student
“These activities have brought me closer to my son Judas. What he has learned has helped us a lot at home. Also, my son’s character changes when it’s about the club; you can tell he is more excited and motivated.”
-ROXANA DOLORES LÓPEZ, Judas' Mother
Leonel Perales Hoeffer, Comcaac University StudentLeonel Perales Hoeffer, Comcaac University Student
“I did my professional practicum in ecology with Prescott College, involving myself in the mapping and biogeography course on San Esteban Island. I learned new techniques which I could apply in my work with the Comcaac community. I went to San Esteban for the first time – a place that is very sacred for us – and it impacted me deeply since my family had shared stories about the legacy and survival of the Comcaac on that island. My experience with Prescott also helped me to connect with other Comcaac community young people working in ecology and conservation, which is very important for me after so much time living outside to pursue my studies. I am very happy to be able to continue working with them in the conservation of our territory. Through my experiences, I was able to better understand their problems and integrate with other initiatives and entities that work with communities to resolve problems and conflicts like in the case of the proposed mine.”
-Leonel Perales Hoeffer, Comcaac University Student
Astrea Strawn, Senior Project StudentAstrea Strawn, Senior Project Student
“As a marine studies student, many of my college courses utilized the Kino Bay Center. I was inspired by my time at the Center and in the Kino Bay community, particularly around the nearby Estero Santa Cruz. My time at this estuary prompted me to devote my senior project to creating a proposal for an interpretive trail that may eventually be placed around the estuary. Before attending courses at the Kino Bay Center, my interests were focused on sustainable agriculture and food systems. My time studying coastal and marine ecosystems was greatly enhanced by the researchers based at the center, inspired professors and interaction with the Kino Bay community. I am now interested in marine food systems in relation the fishing industry and marine conservation concerns. The Center has not only impacted my life, it represents a shift in my interests and my intended professional direction.”
-Astrea Strawn, Senior Project Student
Alejandra Burgos Ríos, High School TeacherAlejandra Burgos Ríos, High School Teacher
“We began working with a group of young people at CBTA No. 64 high school from Miguel Aleman. We found “Los Jovenes Delfines” Ecology Club in Kino and thanks to them we found Prescott College. We are from an agricultural community and you are from the fishing community. Our learning complements each other; you learning about the fields and us learning about marine life. It has been a radical change in terms of educational, professional and personal learning. I have become very close to marine environmental education and it has been a beautiful experience. I am proud to work with Prescott College and its people, its way of working, its sense of responsibility and respect toward the natural environment . . . I have taken all of it with me. In any eld situation, the first thing I do is pick up trash because we care for nature. All of the support you give me, your efforts, your work . . . I take them with me and I am grateful to everyone with whom I have shared this ecological work through these years.”
-ALEJANDRA BURGOS RÍOS, High School Teacher
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