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PELICAN EXTRA!!! June 2016



Real estate company issues

warning that database hacked

  Investment Properties Mexico, a company with an ongoing construction project in Puerto Aventuras, has issued notice to clients that its database has been breached. Information it says was stolen from the database includes names, email addresses and phone numbers from the company’s mailing list.

“We have reason to believe,” wrote company executive Richard Houghton to people who might be affected, “that the hacker or an associate will try to contact you either via email or phone….to try to discredit IPM and dissuade you from doing business with us.

“We have traced the source of the breach,” Houghton continued, “and appropriately closed it and are working with our providers to add more layers of security.”

He asks that anyone receiving suspicious emails from someone they might know in Mexico but with a questionable topic, to please forward the email, if so inclined, to the IPM website. (See logo on this page)

Tear gas used to disperse mob

blocking 307 near main gate

Breakdown disrupts water flow for 3 days

By Staff
Apparently taking a page from the recent and disruptive Akumal uprising over beach access, residents of the Puerto Aventuras poblado and Puerto Maya housing development blockaded Route 307 adjacent to the Chedraui supermarket for three hours Tuesday evening because of a 72-hour water service shutdown that went on too long.

The blockade on both sides of the highway by 300 or more residents between 5 and about 9 p.m. was responsible for missed flights for tourists trying to reach Cancun airport and ended only when negotiations failed and the police had to use teargas to disperse the agitated mob. By that time, it was reported the service was slowly being restored as the company waited for sufficient pressure to build following a mechanical breakdown.

The event brought Solidaridad Mayor Rafael Castro to the scene 1.5 hours after the blockade began. The mayor tried to negotiate a dispersal for another 1.5 hours without success, which led to the use of tear gas.

As of this writing, 26 suspects had been detained and officials were searching for more individuals responsible for stirring the restive crowd into actions that also included burning four vehicles and damage to a security gate and palapa, actions that have now attracted federal prosecutors. Subsequent investigation alleged that members of the former PA political delegation had incited vandalism.

Poblado residents had also detained and later released three employees of Aguakan earlier in the day in an attempt to call attention to their problem and hasten the return of potable water service so essential to daily life. Local restaurants reported a sharp decline in sales during the unrest as residents remained at home to protect themselves from vandalism.

At issue was the apparent oversight of the Aguakan supplier, which was grappling with a major breakdown, to attempt to inform consumers of the problem and assure them the company was doing its best to repair and return water service as quickly as possible.

The company’s lack of communication, coupled with what the mayor believes were actions by instigators who began making other demands, brought negotiations to a halt and forced police to protect the mayor, his aides, the PA delegate and the three detained Aguakan employees and finally disperse the crowd with teargas.

Spokesmen for the tourist industry generally observed the residents could have used other means to showcase their plight with the slow pace of Aguakan’s repairs without tainting the tourist destination’s image.

The breakdown did not affect the Puerto Aventuras resort, whose developer has the concession to operate and control the resort’s water supply, distribution and sewerage system other than engender empathy for the people who had to make do without water for too long, said one observer from the resort..

Aguakan says it pipes drinking water to the municipalities of Benito Juarez, Isla Mujeres and Solidaridad (poblado and Puerto Maya). It also collects and treats wastewater, a long process that requires technology and expertise that, the company says, insures the communities receive quality service.

Hoteliers ask Pres. Pena Nieto

to intervene in Akumal conflict

By Staff
Mexico President Enrique Pena Nieto has been asked by hoteliers from Tulum and Akumal to intervene in the continuing conflict between private and public interests over beach access in Akumal.

In their appeal to the President, the hoteliers say the struggle has taken a more strident turn with road blockades, attempts to destroy fencing and the use of Molotov cocktails, actions that are causing considerable fiscal shortfalls in the tourism industry there.

The base issue spurring the turmoil is and has been the ambiguous law that both gives and takes away traditional rights of a given community’s residents access to the federal zone beach across private property.

In one version of the community’s history, it is noted the law forbids the denial of free resident access to the federal zone through private property BUT, it has a disclaimer that allows private property owners and developments to select where that access will be.

State, municipal and federal agencies have yet to forge a solution to satisfy both sides of the conflict that also impacts Akuma’ls ecological center. For its part, the center says it is striving to protect the turtle population along its reef from overuse by snorkelers and uncontrolled marine service providers.

The non-profit ecology center, on land deeded to it by Akumal founder Pablo Jose Bush Romero, is administered by a daughter, Laura Bush, and 26 other founders.

Q. Roo voters end 80 years

of PRI control in the state

Quintana Roo was among  seven of 12 states voting for governor and other local offices on June 5 that ousted the long-term political control of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) of President Enrique Pena Nieto. Mexico pundits are saying the loss sets the stage for the 2018 presidential election which, as in last Sunday’s vote, highlights voter discontent over rampant graft, impunity, corruption, scandals and a sluggish economy.

Carlos Joaquin, a former PRI member who defected from the PRI shortly before the election cycle, ran under a coalition of the PAN and PRD parties to rout PRI nominee Mauricio Gongora.

Asked to comment on the outcome, Puerto Aventuras developer Arq. Roman Rivera Torres replied: “Carlos Joaquin has occupied an important seat in the federal Secretaria de Turismo. I believe he understands tourism and that our economics is based on tourism.”

Nature Watch…









Recording the sounds of the manatee

PA’s dolphinarium offers more

than tourist entertainment

Science and study is in the background

Puerto Aventuras visitors and residents may not realize it, but there is more to the dolphin pools and manatee population here than passive and active entertainment. While thousands of visitors to the Dolphin Discovery sites annually watch with glee the interactions of entertaining dolphins swimming with humans and manatees lazily munching lettuce, there is some serious science and education going on in the background.

Curr3ntly, doctoral student Beth Brady is conducting a rare study of manatee vocalizations here in a controlled environment that she says is perfect for analyzing the various manatee vocal characteristics and repertoire. Their sounds, and when and how they are used help provide insight into their reactions to the environmental pressures and conditions in which they live.

The endangered West Indian manatee like those nourished here, Brady notes, face challenges from climatic and anthropogenic (human influences) sources that need to be understood better if the specie is to be preserved. Brady’s study began in May, 2013, with a dearth of written information on the subject, which will make her contribution that much more important to the understanding and preservation of the large, languid marine mammal.

The distinctive sounds analyzed in the study are of vital importance in estimating the distribution, densities and demographics of the manatee population in the wild, Brady notes. The effectiveness of broader studies depends upon a detailed knowledge of the manatee’s vocal stockpile and how it is utilized in communicating with its own specie.

“Dolphin Discovery has interesting facilities, really helpful to obtain daily recordings of the manatees and collect representative samples of the sounds of the various calls manatees utter. It’s a controlled environment that hosts 4 calves and 3 adults where I can record their vocal behavior-necessary for the investigation”, Brady said.

“My goal is to be able to describe the vocal expressions of the West Indian manatee species. In addition, I am investigating how these calls are used in different size groups, age classes and behavioral contexts”, added Brady.

Brady’s work in Puerto Aventuras is  supported by Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton and by Dolphin Discovery of Puerto Aventuras, which has contributed to the study and conservation of marine mammals for more than 21 years. It has sites in Mexico, Anguilla, Tortola, Grand Cayman, St. Kitts, the Dominican Republic, the USA, Italy and Jamaica, attracting more than 6 million visitors a year.

Brady’s study will conclude next February, after which she hopes to obtain her Ph.D. Her study adds to the scientific map and literature designed to assist and preserve the manatee population.

Audio recordings and photos can be downloaded at: http://bit.ly/22nG893

For more information about visit www.dolphindiscovery.org

PRODUCTION DEADLINES: The Pelican Free Press encourages and welcomes public announcements of events and activities. The deadline for publication during our monthly schedule beginning in May is the third week of the month for production at month’s end. Thank you.

The end – Previous edition below

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