Akumal sits in the center of a wonderful part of the world. The water, reef, beaches, plant, wild and marine life all make it so special. In order to do our part to help protect the enviroment of our little paradise, we offer the following bits of information, and resources -- the more we all know, the easier it is to protect paradise.
For information and ways to help protect the environment, go to www.ceakumal.org.
The Reef and the Turtles
It is our aim to give our guests some information about the dangers and results of mistreating the creatures, the reef and the environment of Akumal's Bays. Perhaps without knowing it, we are putting the welfare of this delicate ecosystem in peril everytime we go in the water.
1. Chase turtles or hover directly over them to get a better look or take a picture. When you do this you not only frighten them, you actually put their life in danger. They must come to the surface to breathe at regular intervals. When they feel threatened they will swim to try to get away instead of coming up for air. Swimming or hovering directly over them does the same thing, as they may feel threatened and will not come to the surface to breathe. How would you feel if someone was keeping you from breathing?
2. Touch or pick up a turtle. It is abuse, it is illegal and it is detrimental to the well being of the turtle. It frightens them. They will not remain in Akumal's Bays if this behaviour continues and we will all suffer the sad consequence of this behavior.
3. Stand on the reef or break off pieces (OK, don't even touch it). The reef is a living organism. When you stand on it, you kill it. When you break off pieces, you are damaging it. When you touch it, the oil and other products on your skin can damage it and make it sick. And beware, there are sharp, spiney sea urchins on the reef. Stand on one of them and you'll be very sorry.
4. Fish in the Bays. The fish are there for everyone to enjoy. Feel free to take pictures, but no fishing allowed. Fishing trips beyond the reef can be arranged in Akumal.
5. Litter. Turtles and some fish will try to eat things like plastic straws, bags, etc. It can kill them. Not only that, but do you want to look at garbage when you are snorkeling?
6. Touch, walk on or disturb turtle nesting sites. The CEA and neighborhood watch groups will mark these sites on the beach. Please do not touch them; respectfully walk around them. These babies are our hope for future generations of turtles in AkumalBay.
1. Try to use biodegradable sunblock or wear second skin or a t-shirt. The oils and ingredients in regular sunblock can damage the delicate ecosystem. Think of how many people snorkel here in one year and how much oil and chemicals are being added to the Bays and lagoons.
2. Pick up trash. We take plastic shopping bags with us on every walk into Akumal and to Yal-Ku (see the photo above). Pick up the trash and dispose of it in the bins -- Akumal now recycles!
3. Consider adopting a turtle, turtle nest, or turtle family. Stop by the CEA during your visit to file adoption papers (you can go online as well), sign up for a presentation, or take a turtle walk.
4. Have a great time, and help us protect the enviroment for the next generation to enjoy!
Please follow these suggestions, pass them on to others and if you see someone doing something that you know is wrong, ask them to stop (please, with an educational tone, not an attitude).