Conservation wins out over Aphrodisiac

A Tiny Nation Making a World of a Difference

In the small country of El Salvador, VIVAZUL, an organization dedicated to educating people in saving turtles is making an important impact in marine life conservation and the education of coastal communities in having a positive role in saving turtles. Enriqueta Ramirez, a marine biologist, conservationist and founder of VIVAZUL, has been working with coastal communities for a number of years.  The strength of her conviction and her focus on people rather than the species has resulted in changing life ways and traditions that have previously threatened turtles.
“By engaging people who for decades have been accustomed to sell turtle eggs in the market as a means of economic survival, to a strategy that benefit both, has been transformative” said Enriqueta in a recent interview.
Salvadoran long-held tradition of eating turtle eggs as an aphrodisiac has had a detrimental effect on sea turtles.  Enriqueta’s efforts have paid off this year by rescuing over 200 thousand turtle eggs and putting more than 170 thousand baby turtles into the sea.  Vivazul El Salvador is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting positive changes in the conservation and restoration of Salvadoran seashores along with an integral development of coastal communities. Enriqueta’s work has been endorsed by Plant a Fish Foundation and recently was also validated by signing an agreement of support from AGRISAL both dedicated to the conservation of ocean life and the education of coastal communities.
Follow Enriqueta Ramirez on her twitter blog @ERtortuga – Facebook: VIVAZUL-El Salvador –



Changing Planet

Meet the Author
Fabio Esteban Amador is an archaeologist, science communicator and visual artist. He uses visualization tools to get people excited about seeing, understanding and preserving their world and history. He is currently using gigapan technology, underwater imaging systems and aerial photography and video to capture art and culture around the world. Lately he has focused in the development of a new concept, strategy and workshop called the Art of Communicating Science, aimed at using creativity and visual technologies in exploration, discovery and story telling. He started his career as an art student at the School of Visual Arts in NYC and followed his interests in becoming an expedition artist by graduating as an archaeologist from the State University of New York at Buffalo. Lately, he has focused on the archaeology and exploration of caverns in Quintana Roo, Mexico, photo-mosaicking shipwrecks in Latin America and the Caribbean and capturing images and video from aerial platforms to document archaeological sites to create digital elevation models. Amador’s continued effort in communicating science has allowed him to use photography, cinematography and other multi-media tools to reach large audiences through his public lectures at universities, presentations at international scientific and professional symposia, publications in scholarly journals and on National Geographic’s Explorers Journal and NatGeo News Watch online blogs. Currently, he is a senior program officer for the National Geographic Society / Waitt Grants Program, promoting and coordinating scientific and exploratory research around the world. He is also an associate research professor at George Washington University and Executive Director and President of Fundacion OLAS, an organization devoted to capacity building for Latin American scholars dedicated to the study and preservation of the submerged cultural heritage.