Timeline and Events

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Plan and Timeline for Whales of Guerrero
March 2020 – March 2021

Science
One-year Goal: Enter, analyze, organize, publish and disseminate scientific results of 5-year study (2014-2018) and get data and photos into a place where they are easier to access, work with and share

2020-2021 Activities:
• Publish 2014-2018 whale study findings
Enter, correct, organize 2019-2020 opportunistic survey data and share flukes catalogs with collaborators in Latin America and US + IWC and other international organizations
Tag and organize full body of 150,000+ photos in Lightroom for easier sharing and analysis
Publish Rough toothed dolphin paper
Opportunistic seasonal humpback whale data collection, organization and analysis
Set up app gocambas template and train whale watch guides to use it. Integrate gocampas data into our existing database

Safe Whale Watching in Guerrero
One-year goal: Set up team, strengthen relationships and systems so that government- and community-backed safe whale watch awareness and practices are the norm

2020-2021 Activities:
• 
Submit seasonal report to SEMARNAT and get permission for authorization as WW zone for 2021
End of season meeting and closing ceremony with guide group
Safe whale watch training with SEMARNAT and safe WW guides
Look for the flag/Busca la bandera campaign
Self policing guide network support and development
On-water monitoring
Informal whale watch training program at piers
Season beginning/end awareness campaign (radio, television, newspapers, social media, lonas, handouts – hotels, businesses, boat operators, government bodies, visitors)

Education, Community Building and Public Awareness
One-year goal: Complete committed to education and hands-on citizen science conservation and awareness programs  

2020-2021 Activities:
• National Geographic Seeds of Hope Program
• Women on the water – bring Barra de Potosi women onto the ocean to see whales and dolphins
• Public presentations at ecotianguis, community event participation
• Mangrove restoration project
• Bring kids from village, surrounding areas whale watching
• Clean Barra de Potosi awareness campaign

Capacity building and community organization
One-year goal: Reinforce community progress and new identity as sustainable ecotourism providers and pass the knowledge on to neighboring communities

 2020-2021 Activities:
Teach our strategy to Petatlan Tourism Department and tourism vendors in Petatlan (e.g., Valentin and la Chole)

Ecotourism Development
One-year goal: Bring ecotourism and other non-extractive financial opportunities to community of Barra de Potosí in order to motivate ongoing environmental commitment and stewardship activities

 2020-2021 Activities:
• 
Strong campaign to revive tourism in Barra. Collaborate with the OCS with videos, spots, etc.
• Sunwing – more opportunities for Barra guides (cooking classes, laguna visits, Morros visits, get in passport)
 • Develop cooking classes and market with the women in Barra de Potosi

Fishery/Conservation
One-year goal: Lay groundwork for regenerative marine environment and fishery practices that will bring Guerrero’s oceans back into balance

2020-2021 Activities (Pending Funding)
• Catch composition study (community run with a scientist/administrator to facilitate and organize)
• 3D farming (Seaweed, sea greens, oysters, and other mollusks – find partners, research, present to community, begin fundraising, learning exchanges, proof of concept test)

Administration and Finance
One-year goal: Create robust organizational infrastructure and get $200,000 USD annual budget in place to support long-term health and survival of Whales of Guerrero and make all activities above possible

 • Bookkeeping and accounts for FY 2019 (June 2019-June 2020)
• Complete Guerrero Salvaje, A.C. process
• Annual report
• Board meeting
• Strategic planning meeting with team + advisors + board + community
• Annual whale fiesta
• Annual dinner
• Road shows, donor dinners and presentations (Orange County, Los Angeles, Monterey, San Francisco, Napa, Portland, Seattle, Vancouver, New York, Philadelphia)
• Fall fundraising drive
• Rebuild and update website
• Donor database software
• Whale adoption program organization
• Business sponsorships and partnerships developed in Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo
• US-based business sponsorships and partnerships
• Apply for grants

2019-2020 Project Activities 

  • Community-led empowered leadership program
  • Safe whale watch training and support program
  • Sustainable ecotourism training and development
  • Citizen science research expeditions
  • Fishery and Conservation Leader (FCL) development work
  • Community-guided vision and strategic planning process
  • Scientific results presented at World Marine Mammal Conference (Barcelona)
Scheduled Season 7 Milestones

The first official Whale Watch Season in Guerrero is complete! 50 authorized whale watch guides worked beautifully together between  December 15, 2019–March 20, 2020 to keep humpback whales safe during the whale watch season.

Weekly National Geographic Seeds of Hope Program Activities with 20 Local Youth Leaders will be occurring between August 2019-August 2020.

WildSea/California Whales and Wildlife joined us for an expedition January 13-20, 2019

A very special evening and world premier of a song by Gabriela Quintero of Rodrigo y Gabriela for the whales to benefit Whales of Guerrero took place in February 2020.

The first Fiesta de las Ballenas took place in Barra de Potosí in February 2020.

Oceanic Society Expeditioners joined the Whales of Guerrero to study whales and  Guerrero’s extraordinary biodiversity on February 15-24, 2020.

In 2020, Barra de Potosí’s Young Leaders and Champions of Nature:
  • planted 700 germinated mangrove plants
  • launch eda garbage reduction and awareness program
  • and beautified the village through a public art program 
Recent Activities
  • Official Government Acknowledgement of our region in Guerrero as a whale watching site – September 2019
  • Participatory vision-making and planning process for Whales of Guerrero with community, Board and Advisors May 2019
  • January-March 2019 – 100 hour whale survey
  • February 2019 – Fishery and Conservation Leader Learning Exchange in Baja
  • Responsible Ecotourism training and development programs
  • 2000+ kids participated in marine biology programs in 12 schools
  • 250+ kids participated in field-based science programs
  • 30 kids conducted in-depth photographic nature study
  • Safe Whale Watch Training Program December 2018
  • May 2018 – Present 5-year study results at SOMEMMA (National Marine Mammal Science Conference) in Tabasco
  • May 2018 – Planning trip for Fishermen’s learning Exchange in Baja
  • January – March 2018 – 300 hour whale survey
  • September 2017 – Scientific Advisory and Project Partner Meetings – Mexico City
  • 22-28 October 2017–Society for Marine Mammalogy Biennial Conference – Halifax, Nova Scotia

Project work presented in Halifax:
Marine mammal monitoring in the Southwest Pacific state of Guerrero, México. Andrea J. García Chávez, Terra Hanks, John Calambokidis, Elana Dobson, Luis Medrano González and Katherina Audley

Site fidelity and association patterns in rough toothed dolphins in the Southwest Pacific state of Guerrero, Mexico. Victoria Pouey Santalou, Katherina Audley

Behavioral responses of marine mammals to drones. Eric A Ramos, Brigid Maloney, Nataly Castelblanco-Martínez, Iain Kerr,Andy Rogan,Katherina Audley, Marcelo Magnasco, Diana Reiss.

Migratory destinations of humpback whales that feed along the US West Coast: Implications for management under the newly recognized Distinct Population Segments. Gretchen H. Steiger, John Calambokidis, Paul Wade, Katherina Audley, C. Scott Baker.

  • November 2017 – Presentations for Hotel and Tourism Professionals in Ixtapa, Zihuatanejo and Playa Blanca
  • November 2017 – Zumba para las Ballenas Fundraiser. Ixtapa
  • January 3–March 15, 2018: Season Five!
  • 2018: January 26 – February 2 – Oceanic Society Volunteer Vacation Expedition
    Hop onboard this Volunteer Vacation and come play marine biologist with us! Secure your spot here