Secrets of the Salvadoran sea

Latest update June 25, 2019 Started on June 5, 2018
sea

Salvadoran marine ecosystems have been barely explored. Together scientist and local communities are giving a step forward to discover, learn and protect the nature beyond the seashore in Salvadoran seas.

June 5, 2018
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In The Field

All the fun inside of the water!


While we were doing the fieldwork, we just watched the fish inside of the pools and started our job. However, sometimes we ignore the things that they could do when we are not bothering them. Therefore, with my friends decided to put a camera inside of the pools and see what is going on with fish there. I was (and still I am) surprised for the things they do, how they feed on the substrata, how some of them can live or fight with another fish for territory and also, how some of them can do different moves when they see strange things on their home. Some of the children get excited every time they watch fishes on their natural habitat and in short videos; although they know them very well, the expression of surprise on their faces is always rewarding. If we just watch this inside of small pool, imagine the things that we could see inside of the sea, with the ROV!

Mientras hacíamos nuestro trabajo de campo, sólo observábamos a los peces dentro de las pozas y empezábamos nuestra tarea. Sin embargo, algunas veces ignoramos las cosas que pueden hacer cuando no los estamos molestando. Por ello, con mis amigos decidimos poner una cámara dentro de las pozas y ver qué pasa con los peces allí. Me sorprendí (y aún lo estoy) por las cosas que ellos hacen, cómo se alimentan en el sustrato, cómo algunos de ellos viven o pelean por territorio con otros peces y también, cómo algunos de ellos pueden hacer diferentes movimientos cuando ven cosas extrañas en su hogar. Algunos de los niños se emocionan mucho al observar los peces en su hábitat natural y en vídeos cortos; aunque los conocen muy bien, la expresión de sorpresa en su cara, siempre es valiosa ¡Si esto lo observamos dentro de una poza pequeña, imagina las cosas que podríamos ver dentro del mar, con un Vehículo de Operación Remota!

Hello, great post. I like to see those fish swimming around. I would like to cooperate in your research if possible.
It would be nice your help, thanks for your interest.

Getting the people from El Zonte interested in my research required a bit of luck and a lot of understanding, as dedication from my side. Fortunately, at the initial stage one local leader and some kids decided to join my fieldwork routine and became fascinated about all the organisms that are usually overlooked in the intertidal habitats. The impression was so good that in all the trips after that, I have enjoyed the persistent company of Eduardo and his loyal dog “Tuti”. Locals’s admiration about all the marine biodiversity around them and their recognition of that biodiversity importance is a very special reward for me. Nevertheless, their enthusiasm does not stop here! Many local leaders and the majority of the people from El Zonte are anglers and dive to harvest oysters… Nowadays, they not only bring food for their families to the surface, but also many interesting questions about the animals they see underwater. Despite their comprehensive stories and meticulous descriptions about the organisms they observe many meters below the surface, I have not been able to identify all the creatures that they refer to in their anecdotes. However, exploring and documenting marine biodiversity in the coast is now part of my research and El Zonte’s community fascination. This adventure could be facilitated and achieved by using a Remote Operated Vehicles (ROV).


Para que la gente en El Zonte se interesara en mi investigación, requirió un poco de suerte y mucha comprensión, así como dedicación por mi parte. Afortunadamente, en la etapa inicial, un líder local y algunos niños decidieron unirse a mi rutina de trabajo de campo y se fascinaron acerca de todos los organismos que usualmente pasan por alto en los hábitats intermareales. La impresión fue tan buena que en todos los viajes después de eso, he disfrutado de la compañía persistente de Eduardo y su perrito leal “Tuti”. La admiración por parte de los lugareños sobre toda la biodiversidad marina que les rodea y que reconozcan la importancia que tienen, es una recompensa especial para mí. Sin embargo ¡Su entusiasmo no para aquí! Muchos líderes locales y la mayoría de las personas en El Zonte son pescadores y bucean para recolectar ostras… Hoy en día, no sólo llevan alimento a la superficie para sus familias, sino que también muchas preguntas interesantes acerca de los animales que ven bajo el agua. Pese a sus historias exhaustivas y descripciones meticulosas acerca de los organismos que observan muchos metros bajo la superficie, no me ha sido posible identificar todas las criaturas a las que ellos se refieren, a través de sus anécdotas. No obstante, explorar y documentar la biodiversidad marina en la costa es parte de mi investigación y la fascinación de la comunidad en El Zonte. Esta aventura podría ser lograda con el uso de Vehículos de Operación Remota.

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Imagino las preguntas y las historias. Que bueno que tengan este gran entusiasmo y que admiración por tú proyecto. Pocos tienen el valor de iniciar este tipo de activdiades. Estoy seguro que existen muchos organismos interesantes y ojalá pronto podamos ver sus rostros.
Expedition Background

Marine environments are the source of diverse goods and services enjoyed for people from El Salvador. These wonderful benefits have been scarcely appreciated and seldom studied. However, some communities are now more involved and determined to explore and protect, the ecosystems that gently provide them jobs, food and recreation. This change in their perspective about marine ecosystems is crucial under the global warming scenario. Exploring, understanding and gathering information about marine ecosystems around them is the way to go now. In this expedition, I will tell the story of how through my scientific work I have been sharing my experiences and knowledge with local leaders, kids and tourists of El Zonte, providing them information about organisms that inhabit adjacent marine environments and how they have gotten committed to share their knowledge and protect their ocean.

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Creo que es una iniciativa brillante, es tiempo de abrir la ciencia a las comunidades y ayudarlos a conocer y proteger sus recursos marinos
¡Gracias por su interés! Espero poder continuar con este proyecto y seguramente les estaré actualizando sobre el progreso. Thanks for your interest! I hope to keep going with this project and surely I will be updating you about the progress of it.

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