San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature ConnectionSDNHM Biodiversity Research Center of the Californias
Agua Verde–Punta Mechudo Binational Expedition
Log

Binational Expedition to Agua Verde and Punta MechudoDAY SEVENTEEN
Friday, November 21, 2003

San Evaristo, Baja California Sur (Map location 4)
Transmitted from camp by an Apple computer hooked to a Qualcomm/GlobalstarUSA satellite phone.

Breaking Camp

The time has finally come to wrap up our work and pack the gear for a final time. At daybreak, we started disassembling the kitchen and tents, cleaning up the area, and packing the trucks, jeeps, and vans with our equipment. It is safe to say that we are dirty, tired, and looking forward to coming home. The spirits of the researchers and logistics staff are extremely high and we left San Evaristo with the hopes of returning to the conservation corridor; this desert landscape between Agua Verde and Punta Mechudo. We have made significant discoveries, including an evolutionary convergent reproductive strategy for cliff-dwelling plant species and a possible new species of the Little Desert Pocket Mouse. We have explored remote canyons and climbed to the high elevation ephemeral lakes. But, by far, our greatest accomplishment is starting the process of documenting the biodiversity of the conservation corridor. By applying the rigors of scientific analysis, we hope that in the months and years to come, our understanding of the region’s biodiversity will not only add an appreciation to its beauty, but help conservation groups to better manage and target the most diverse habitats. Scientific sampling of plants and animals is a difficult and emotional task. We are all naturalists who have dedicated our lives to understanding the biological world. In our spare time, we meditate, photograph, ponder, and relax in the world outside of our urban centers. We look forward to the next time we have the chance to explore the wild places around the world. In an effort to help preserve these places, it is necessary to understand their diversity. Over the past 16 days, we have been able to jump-start the process of understanding the region's flora and fauna. The research specimens collected during this expedition will be used in the months and years to come, by us, as well as by many other experts throughout the world. The specimens represent a small percentage of the region’s total abundance and will last for hundreds of years in collections. Their importance will be borne out when descriptions of the region’s flora and fauna are published, when conservation symposiums are held, and when the conservation groups are able to stand firm with more detailed information about the region they are working hard to preserve.

Bradford Hollingsworth
Expedition Coordinator
From Ciudad Constitución at 11:00pm


View of Cerro El Mechudo from a distance     View of Islas San Francisco and San Jose.
Left, view of Cerro El Mechudo from a distance; Right, view of Islas San Francisco and San Jose.

Scott Tremor changing a flat tire.
Scott Tremor changing a flat tire.

Tents at San Evaristo base-camp. Photo by Dr. Monica Riojas
Tents at San Evaristo base-camp.
Photo by Dr. Monica Riojas.


Scott Tremor wandering around base-camp.
Scott Tremor wandering around base-camp.

Brad Hollingsworth`s Jeep loaded with gear
Brad Hollingsworth`s Jeep loaded with gear.

Jon Rebman at a rest break.
Jon Rebman at a rest break.

DAY EIGHTEEN
Saturday, November 22, 2003

San Evaristo, Baja California Sur
Transmitted from camp by an Apple computer hooked to a Qualcomm/GlobalstarUSA satellite phone.

Cataviña Camp
View of Ciudad Constitución from the Hotel Maribel.
View of Ciudad Constitución from the Hotel Maribel.

San Igancio town square.
San Igancio town square.

We started early from Ciudad Constitución and ate on the road. We only had a few stops to make. Yesterday we had visited CIBNOR in La Paz and parted with our Mexican friends and colleagues. Some were headed back to Guadalajara, while others were returning to their homes in Ensenada. We stopped in at EcoMundo to visit Roy Mahoff and his wife Rose (happy birthday again Rose!). Other than long hours in the car, there is nothing left to report. Everyone is becoming eager to get home to see loved ones. We aren’t too sure we're ready to return to the daily routine, but that is inevitable.

Bradford Hollingsworth
Expedition Coordinator
From Cataviña at 8:00pm


San Ignacio market    Dr. Mike White fishing for snacks at rest break
San Ignacio market; Dr. Mike White fishing for snacks at rest break.

Photos by Bradford Hollingsworth

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