By Mission Blue Partner, Wallace J. Nichols
We’ve been studying and working to protect loggerhead sea turtles in Mexico for nearly 20 years. As a scientist and conservationist, one strives to acquire the best available information, build the best team possible and to use the most appropriate tools to solve a problem, be it pollution or dead endangered animals.
A combination of incentives, referred to as “carrots” and “sticks” are commonly used to nudge or force a solution ahead. Sometimes a “silver bullet” technology saves the day, but that’s rare.
The work of conservation is typically slow, incremental, and human.
It’s been our experience that those who would spend two decades or more working closely with fishermen to understand and protect sea turtles typically have the best interests of both people and nature in mind, although sometimes they are called “turtle-huggers” or scapegoated over another competing agenda. …