Pledge About

Ecuador

Aggie and Buck: Environmental Sniffers in the Galapagos Islands

The Galapagos Islands are a place of unsurpassed beauty and home to an abundance of wildlife. In addition to spectacular vistas, there are over 3,000 species of marine plants and wildlife. Visitors to the area may encounter sea lions at play, slow moving tortoises, iguanas, and sea turtles and other native creatures - all living without fear of predators. But the ecosystems are extremely fragile, and the boost in tourism has become a threat to the unique flora and fauna of the Galapagos.

Sea Cucumber Bust in Galapagos

On February, 7th, 2008, the Environmental Police in clandestine collaboration with WildAid seized 126 kilos of sea cucumbers valued at $18,900 in the city of Guayaquil, Ecuador. The operation which began in Galapagos took over one month to develop and resulted in the arresting of three individuals: Henry Villamar Ortega (42), Jose Macias Cuenca (28) and Jose Solarzano Vera (32). Sea cucumber populations have been overexploited in recent years and there is currently a moratorium on the harvesting of sea cucumbers.

Successful Raid in the Galapagos

Two new successful raids against marine species brokers took place in Puerto Ayora, in the Galapagos. The first one was February 22 which found 554 lbs of dried sea cucumber and allowed the capture of one person while the second one took place February 23 and found 180 lbs of dried sea cucumber. One person was arrested within the second raid.

WildAid's Galapagos Program featured as an Interactive Game

Every year in the Galapagos Island, poachers illegally kill thousands of sharks, a practice that has brought sharks in the region to the edge of extinction. Elf Island, the virtual world that empowers kids to make a difference in the real world through online game play, this week announced its second GoodQuest,Ô challenging kids around the world to help protect these endangered animals through a partnership with WildAid, a non-profit working to stop the illegal "fining" of sharks in the Galapagos.

Satellite Monitoring of Vessels Soon to be a Reality in the Galapagos Marine Reserve

Edgar Muñoz, GNPS Park Director, Fernando Ortiz and Oswaldo Rosero, local representatives of the conservation organizations Conservation International and WildAid, respectively, recently met to review advances of the Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) project for the Galapagos Marine Reserve (GMR).

Currently, the project is in its final phase and over the next four months, we will procure and install the equipment and software required for the operation of the control center located at the GNPS Headquarters.

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