Colum’s Column. News from Gustemala: ARCAS 2014 Annual Report

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Hugh Paxton’s Blog is always delighted to hear from Colum in Guatemala. It means nobody has shot him. He threatens a June visit to Bangkok. That will be fun! It’s been a while since I was in C.America although my esteemed wife spent some time in Corcovado’s mangrove forests in CR last October. I love that turbulent, blessed/cursed, achingly beautiful part of the world but I’m not sure I could live and work there without losing my mind. Colum can and does (live and work there) and for this I, on behalf of this blog and all the animals he is rescuing, extend profound gratitude!

His latest report is in English and Spanish, the Lingua Franca of Guatemala.

From: Colum Muccio [mailto:colum_muccio@hotmail.com]
Sent: Thursday, May 07, 2015 9:34 AM
To: Hugh and Midori Paxton; Charlie & Kim Paxton; Jane Paxton; Midori Paxton; Midori Paxton
Subject: ARCAS 2014 Annual Report

Dear Familia Paxton,

Greetings from ARCAS. Before all, our most sincere condolences for the passing of your father. I hope he went peacefully and you are all there in England celebrating his life.

Attached I am sending you our 2014 Annual Report. 2014 was a challenging year, but also one of advances. The sea turtle project on the Pacific coast continues growing and we are now carrying out population monitoring activities along the entire Pacific coast, and hope to expand to the Caribbean. The training program at the Rescue Center in Peten continues evolving, and in 2014 we hosted 5 training courses participated in by nearly 60 students, researchers and conservationists from around the world.

We have also laid the groundwork to carry out the first reintroduction of scarlet macaws in Guatemala, which we hope to carry out this year in the Sierra Lacandon Park in Peten near the Mexican border. This is something we have been working towards for for the last 8 years. It’s an exciting new program, but also involves a bit of risk and we need to manage perceptions of the program over the long run. Environmental education is really important so that local communities know what we are doing and don’t recapture the birds. As we speak, we have a BBC crew here that is filming a documentary following the journey of a scarlet macaw from capture, to confiscation, rehabilitation and release. The scarlet macaw release program will need to be long-term – at least five years, preferably permanent – so we are looking for long-term sources of funding if you know of any.

Hugh and Midi, I may be participating in a WWF workshop in Chang Mai in June, and it would be great to see you. If you think there are any opportunities to investigation and networking in terms of wildlife trafficking, let me know. I’d be happy to share experiences with fellow conservationists there. Have you seen any trafficking of animals or products from Latin America? We are working on setting up a trafficking/CITES/marine conservation position here in ARCAS, and if you know of any sources of funding for this, please let me know.

As always, many thanks for all of your help. Please let me know if you have any questions about the Annual Report.

Big hugs to all there,

Colum

Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Association, Guatemala
Asociación Rescate y Conservación de Vida Silvestre, Guatemala
(cc502)5704-2563, 7830-1374
www.arcasguatemala.com
Colum_Muccio
arcasguatemala

memoria arcas014 Financiero.pdf

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