IFOP organized carnival for sea turtles conservation in Arica
12 December, 2023

IFOP organized carnival for sea turtles conservation in Arica

January 10th, 2024 Periodista Gabriela.Gutiérrez

The Biodiversity Group of IFOP’s Oceanography and Environment Department, on November 18th and 19th in Arica city, held “Sea turtles conservation Carnival, Arica 2023” under the framework of “Improving the conservation of sea turtles through education and outreach to local communities in northern Chile” project with financing from the organizations SWOT (The State of the World’s Sea Turtles), Oceanic Society and the LaudOPO Network.

The carnival was focused on fishermen and their children and took place in the mornings at the Independent Workers Union of Artisanal Fishermen of Arica headquarters, located in city’s fishing terminal. Dr. Zárate commented on the activity “during the day children learned about biology and ecology sea turtles aspects, the species present in Chile and their threats, which was accompanied by videos and stories that served as motivation for them. The children will draw pictures and ask questions.

Dr. Zárate added “we focus on transmitting information to children about the importance of turtles and the environment in which they live, both their nesting beaches and the sea, and thus foster interest in the care of animals and nature. This activity brought them closer to sea turtles, animals that, despite not being observed so frequently, are a fundamental part of the marine ecosystem of our country.”

Between the two days of the Carnival, there was the participation of 42 children between 2 and 14 years of age, most of them fishermen’s relatives, but there were also some who visited La Caleta that day with their parents and who were motivated to be part of this activity.
We had the presence of “Laudita”, a leatherback turtle who told stories to the children and inspired them with her life story and adventures.

Msc Ilia Cari added “The link between science and citizenship is relevant for conservation, which is why these types of instances, aimed especially at the little ones, are important to raise awareness about the protection of the oceans and the species they contain. they live there. On this occasion, children were able to learn interactively about the sea turtles that live in Chile, and we hope that this type of activities can be replicated in the future.”

The carnival culminated with a friendly baby soccer match between fishermen and IFOP officials, an awards ceremony and a ceremony between teams.

The activity was led by Dr. Patricia Zarate, and researchers Ilia Cari and Ljubitza Clavijo from IFOP Valparaíso. Staff from the IFOP headquarters in Arica and Iquique and members of the local NGO Tortu Arica participated in the coordination and execution of the event.

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