About Us

My photo
We work as ecotourism guides (as well as biologist and boat captain) often on the BC Coast, but also as far ranging as the Arctic and Antarctic. We have an insatiable curiousity for the planet; all its hidden gems and what makes them tick. That and our love of sailing is what inspired us to sail around the Pacific in Narama, our tough and pretty little sailboat.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Turning South… sans Vaquita

Vaquita Statue on San Felipe's Malecon
We spent two weeks anchored inside the breakwater of San Felipe. A lot of that time was spent wandering the beautiful beach at low tide (looking at shorebirds of course) and ticking little projects off the perpetual “to do” list on Narama. But our main goal was to try and sight Vaquita marina (“little sea cow” in Spanish; Phocoena sinus is its scientific name). This tiny cetacean has the dubious distinction of being the world’s most endangered marine mammal and it only lives here in the very far north of the Sea of Cortez.

To learn more about Vaquita follow these two links:

http://www.vivavaquita.org/

http://vaquita.tv/

We weren’t very optimistic about glimpsing it due to these dwindling numbers (current estimate is 250 animals left) and it’s incredibly shy behaviour (most sightings are from the deck of a ship using 20x binoculars), but the weather certainly didn’t help either. We really only had 2 and a half days of good conditions for sighting. How much time should we spend without another decent anchorage for over 100 miles? When the next northerly was forecast we took it and ran south. Our only sighting was the bronze statue on the San Felipe malecon.

This was a significant decision as we won’t likely head north again until we arrive in Australia, which is another year at least. The Sea of Cortez has been a beautiful, year-long detour on our voyage, one that we don’t regret. It will still take us a few months on our southern course to leave the sea, but as the latitude in our logbook slowly dwindles towards the equator we get more excited about sailing on to new places. We wish the Vaquita well, it’s going to need some luck to survive.

1 comment:

The Intrepid II Crew said...

Once again enjoying your postings and hoping we will cross paths again in the Sea of Cortez this season. The Captain is working hard on Intrepid in Guaymas (missed seeing you there) and the First Mate won't head out til mid-December. Have a safe and special journey southward.