Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#386002 - 08/20/10 02:39 PM Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message
Short Offline
Condoning Illegal Croc Feeding Sends the Wrong Message
San Pedro Sun: Editorial


Less than a month ago the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES) team from Punta Gorda traveled to Ambergris Caye at the request of the Belize Forest Department (BFD) to remove two problematic American Crocodiles from the WASA Lagoon south of San Pedro Town. Why did the BFD consider these animals problematic and potentially dangerous? For years locals have been illegally feeding them as a tourist attraction. Once these animals learn to associate man with dinner it is just a matter of time before someone will get hurt, or even killed. According to Belize law it is a CRIME to feed the crocodiles. Under Chapter 220 of the laws of Belize Wildlife Protection Act molesting (including feeding) wildlife is punishable by a $1,000 fine and/or six months in prison. This should be cause enough to deter people from partaking in this practice, and even though ACES and the BFD have campaigned tirelessly through this paper and other media sources on the many reasons why this practice should come to an end it falls on deaf ears.

Just last Saturday a huge crowd gathered at the WASA Lagoon to watch local guys draw in crocodiles with baited ropes to tease the animals while they entertained the audience of tourists and residents alike. At least five crocodiles from large (approximately 10 feet) to small participated in the feeding frenzy while reconfirming in their primitive brains, "MAN EQUALS FOOD". Although this ongoing practice seems to be a mainstay on the island there are a few factors here that are beyond acceptable.

First of all there is a HUGE sign posted by the BFD at the WASA Lagoon that clearly states that it is illegal to feed the crocs, so no one can claim they did not know the law. On Saturday one of the bystanders called the San Pedro Police to report the illegal activity and asked them to please contact the South Ambergris Caye Police Substation. The police never showed up and it is not known if the call to the sub-station was ever placed. But the most disturbing thing about this was Belize's very own Tourism Minister Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr. was a part of the crowd. This is not the first time the Minister has been seen at WASA Lagoon during these feedings and it is disappointing that he partakes in an activity that is not only illegal but could put an end to tourism as we know it on San Pedro. What kind of message does this tell the other locals who know and recognize him in the crowd? Won't they think, "If it is OK for the Tourism Minister to disrespect the law then what is the big deal?" Does the Tourism Minister understand the long and short-term effects of this illegal practice and does he not realize what the ramifications will be when someone is attacked by one of these crocodiles? It is not a matter of IF, but WHEN, and you can be certain the Internet and media houses will make it worldwide news when one of these crocs decides that a tourist tastes better than chicken.

I can just see the media spin, with accusations that the Belize Tourism Minister was not only fully aware of the illegal activities but enjoyed partaking in them as well. As a bystander who did nothing to enforce the law, our very own Minister of Tourism will be accused of condoning this illegal act. Instead of setting an example that there should be an end to this illegal feeding our Tourism Minister is all but promoting it.

San Pedro has faced enough challenges with the tourism industry and we have invested so much in promoting our island. What a shame it would be to have our hard work and dollars lost with an accident that could have been prevented. The far reaching negative publicity would be devastating. There are many ways for our tourists and residents alike to enjoy watching the exotic wildlife of Ambergris Caye, but illegally feeding them is not one of them.

We invite the Tourism Minister to join us in the campaign to end this island ritual and help send the message that not only do the residents of Ambergris Caye abide by Belizean law by protecting our wildlife, we are committed to protecting our guests from emanate danger as well.

http://www.sanpedrosun.com/news/condoning-illegal-croc-feeding-sends-wrong-message/
_________________________
Live and let live

Top
#386032 - 08/20/10 07:56 PM Re: Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message [Re: Short]
bywarren Offline
Since when are laws suppose to apply to government
officials? smirk

Top
#386037 - 08/20/10 09:31 PM Re: Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message [Re: bywarren]
Cayemen Offline
Originally Posted By: bywarren
Since when are laws suppose to apply to government
officials? smirk


This is the shortest and best definition of the Belize Law's
_________________________
Belize Real Estate Listings BREL

Top
#386081 - 08/21/10 07:18 PM Re: Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message [Re: bywarren]
Coconut Cowgirl Offline
good one!

Top
#386108 - 08/22/10 07:18 AM Re: Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message [Re: Coconut Cowgirl]
Gaz Cooper Offline
Its an obvious popular attraction and not likely to stop anytime soon so what not turn it into an attraction that is controlled and have the guys from PG run it and raise funds for the protection of the American Crocodile and fund there PG op.

Ive always thought it would be a VERY popular attraction that can be put to good use in conservation and education build some walkways and nice seating aread maybe a restaurant and Bar overlooking the lagoon have an education center explaining about the species that can be found in the lagoon ie crocs fish etc a breeding center to relase babys, sell souvenirs and put the money towards the conservation of the species.

Thats would solve the whole issue the Crocs would have a protected area on the island to live safely, instead of being exported from there natural enviroment and also stop the illegal dangerous feedings, it would create some employment and income for the island and provide a great additional attraction for Ambergris Caye which I think would be extremely popular.

The alternative is to keep encroaching on the crocs habitat and forcing them into even smaller areas to live in or keep exporting them off the island.

Lets face it they were there way before anyone and they are just another victim of the continued development of Ambergris Caye.

Gaz Cooper



Edited by Gaz Cooper (08/22/10 07:30 AM)
_________________________






Top
#386121 - 08/22/10 01:44 PM Re: Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message [Re: Gaz Cooper]
bywarren Offline
Now that is an idea. You could bring in other exotic creatures and call it "Beliken Gardens". smile

Top
#386134 - 08/22/10 04:52 PM Re: Croc feeding: Minister sends the wrong message [Re: bywarren]
JZB Offline
That would be wonderful, unfortunately, reality is that eventually that croc pond will be filled in and probably turned into condos. It has already been surveyed. I'm fairly certain that a portion of it is privately owned, and the larger (mangrove) portion is government land that I read might be giving to a 'developer' in lieu of other land in the back.

I think it should be turned into a reserve.

Top
#386379 - 08/25/10 05:16 PM Re: Croc feeding [Re: JZB]
Voxman Offline
Originally Posted By: JZB
I think it should be turned into a reserve.

I fully agree. See these recently posted vids of what locals do now instead of the dreaded "feeding". Taunting them just doesn't seem right either...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ignw3Zk1zvc
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=07tk59fGYV8

Top
#386405 - 08/25/10 09:37 PM Re: Croc feeding [Re: Voxman]
SnoopysMom Offline
Disgusting! Too bad the poor croc didn't take the idiot's head off (that would have made for better viewing).

You just can't fix stupid....

Top
#386426 - 08/26/10 07:24 AM Re: Croc feeding [Re: Short]
Coconut Cowgirl Offline
stupid is as stupid does

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Links
Click for excellent scuba lessons with Elbert Greer!


Things to do

News
Daily News
Daily Weather

Classified Ads
BelizeNews.com
San Pedro Sun
Ambergris Today
SP Town Council
Channel 7
Channel 5
Amandala
Love FM
The Reporter
Caye Caulker
Chronicles

PLUS TV
TV Newscasts
Radio Stations

Click for our
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites

Event Guides
Event Calendar
Specials & Events
Things to Do
SanPedroScoop
iTravel Belize
Paradise Theater

Blogs
San Pedro Scoop!
Tia Chocolate
Tacogirl
My Beautiful Belize
I-Travel Belize
Belize Adventure
Belize Hub
Romantic Travel
Bound for Belize
Conch Creative
As The Coconuts Drop
More Blogs...
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites
Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
White Sands Dive Shop - 5 Star PADI Dive Facility - Daily diving, SCUBA instruction and Snorkeling
Caribbean Inspired All Natural Condiments & Spice Blends, Over 100 are Gluten Free!
We manage a variety of homes, apartments, condos and commercial properties here on Ambergris Caye. Our minimum lease on ALL properties is six months.
Conch Shell Inn: All rooms are right on the beach in the heart of San Pedro, so within walking distance to anything and everything!!
Lilí Alphonse has snorkel equipment to fit anyone as well as Marine Park Tickets and flotation devices to assist those not as experienced.
Coastal Xpress offers a daily scheduled ferry run to most resorts, restaurants and private piers on the island of Anbergris Caye. We also offer  private and charter water taxi service.
Mini Chat

Cayo Espanto
Click for Cayo Espanto, and have your own private island
More Links
Click for exciting and adventurous tours of Belize with Katie Valk!
December
S M T W T F S
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Who's Online
1 registered (VoVoVo), 34 Guests and 4 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
18,673 Registered Members
44 Forums
64,040 Topics
462,248 Posts

Most users ever online: 1,262 @ 06/10/07 07:16 PM




AmbergrisCaye.com CayeCaulker.org HELP! Visitor Center Goods & Services San Pedro Town
BelizeSearch.com Message Board Lodging Diving Fishing Things to Do History
BelizeNews.com Maps Phonebook Belize Business Directory
BelizeCards.com SanPedroDaily.com Picture of the Day

The opinions and views expressed on this board are the subjective opinions of Ambergris Caye Message Board members
and not of the Ambergris Caye Message Board its affiliates, or its employees.