Ecuador and Costa Rica expedition along migravía arrived in Galapagos

14 May 2021 – 02:07

Quito, May 13 (EFE) – The scientific expedition that investigates the “migration route” between the Ecuadorian Galapagos Islands and the Costa Rican Isla Coco arrived this Thursday in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, after traveling more than 700 nautical miles from its departure point in Costa Rica on the 3rd of May.

The expedition, which is being held for the second time, was received by the Minister of the Environment, Marcelo Mata, who considered it “necessary every day to reaffirm our political commitment to achieve concrete objectives” in environmental matters.

The scientists and technicians participating in the expedition plan to study six sites along the 1,500 nautical miles of the itinerary, in order to study the ecosystems in this marine migration route between the Galapagos and the island of Coco.

“During the first phase, Isla del Coco, Las Gemelas and Medina were monitored, with more than 24 hours of fishing to mark migratory species, 216 hours of video, 12 vertical samples to measure oceanographic parameters at depth, six samples of environmental DNA and 18 transects of wildlife sightings and macroplastics,” according to a statement.

Jennifer Suárez, Ecuadorian scientist and park ranger of the Galapagos National Park Directorate and expedition member, described the mission as “tough but very rewarding” because it is “an opportunity to find out what is happening outside of our marine reserve, because the future of migratory species depends upon that [information].”

The migravía is a biological corridor that links the Isla del Coco National Park and the Submarine Mountains Marine Management Area in Costa Rica, with the Galapagos Marine Reserve in Ecuador.

With this expedition, the scientists hope to collect vital information about the ecosystems in the corridor and thereby provide information for decision makers.

The expedition is promoted by more than a dozen universities, foundations from both countries, and international NGOs, with the endorsement of the Ecuadorian and Costa Rican governments.

The next stop of the expedition will be Darwin Island, where they will stay for two days to continue with the investigations and, later, they will sail to the Paramount Seamount where they will mark, sample and count marine species.

The results of this research will provide scientific evidence on the migration of whale sharks, hammerhead sharks, manta rays, whales and other mammals that move between the two marine protected areas. EFE

Read the original coverage from EFE via SwissInfo.Ch at https://www.swissinfo.ch/spa/ecuador-costa-rica_expedici%C3%B3n-ecuador-y-costa-rica-a-migrav%C3%ADa-lleg%C3%B3-a-gal%C3%A1pagos/46617794


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