The Mexican Family Who Gave Up Fishing To Monitor And Rescue Sea Turtles
Prepare to be amazed by the incredible journey of Cosme Becerra and his family as they went from sacrificing sea turtles to becoming their ultimate protectors. It all started with a fateful encounter in the mid-1990s when Cosme received a live turtle for an upcoming festival. Little did he know that this turtle had other plans in mind. Night after night, the turtle made a noise, a peculiar wheeze that echoed through Cosme's family bathroom. It was like a never-ending "hoooo" that kept him awake. But it wasn't just the turtle that was giving him a hard time. His wife, Moni, was relentless, convinced that the turtle was crying and pleading for freedom. She wouldn't let Cosme sleep, bombarding him with questions like, "Did you see her tears? They're all over the floor. Let her go, please." And so, after much resistance, Cosme succumbed to Moni's persistence and released the turtle back into the sea. That moment, forever etched in Cosme's memory, changed everything. From that day forward, he and his family swore off consuming and killing turtles. It was a turning point that led Cosme to dedicate his life to turtle conservation in Kino Bay, a small fishing community in northwestern Mexico. Cosme bid farewell to the fishing industry and joined the ranks of the Prescott Center, an educational institution focused on environmental studies. As a boat captain, he sailed the seas, monitoring marine mammals and championing wildlife conservation. He convinced his family that their future lay in protecting these marvelous creatures. Now, picture the Becerra family, a tight-knit group of about 15 relatives, all coming together to save the turtles. They practice sustainable fishing, combining it with other professions, and dedicate their time to conservation efforts. To fund their work, they rely on programs offered by NGOs and Mexican environmental institutions. But it hasn't always been smooth sailing for them. Undeterred, the Becerra family dipped into their savings and purchased a boat, aptly named "La Tortuguera," meaning "The Turtle Boat" in Spanish. With this vessel, they set out to monitor sea turtles and rescue them from abandoned fishing gear. Together, they formed the Kino Bay Turtle Group, a force to be reckoned with in turtle conservation. Their dedication and hard work have paid off. Over the years, they have captured, documented, and released a staggering 814 green sea turtles and olive ridley sea turtles. Their efforts have earned them the respect and admiration of their community, the people, and even the children. Now, the Becerra family is on a mission to thank these magnificent creatures they once harmed. They've flipped the coin, devoting themselves to protecting and preserving these precious species. Their work is not only satisfying but also inspiring. They serve as beacons of hope, reminding us that change is possible and that we can all play a part in preserving the wonders of our natural world. So, let's raise a shell to the Becerra family, the true turtle superheroes of Kino Bay. Their journey reminds us that it's never too late to turn things around, embrace conservation, and make a positive impact on the world. Keep swimming, Becerra family, and may the turtles forever be grateful for your tireless efforts!