Wildtracks: Conservation, Research and Education

Wildtracks news

Wildtracks Update: Meet our nursery surrogate father - Phil. He's one of several Wildtracks volunteers who ensure the youngest monkeys at Wildtracks receive the social support they need to develop strong, cohesive troops that will stay together through rehabilitation and into release. These babies, four globally endangered Yucatan black howler monkeys, endemic to the Yucatan region, have a long way to go - but all four have already developed strong bonds with each other.

These monkeys were either confiscated or found abandoned at different times over a six week period...with the increasing awareness about primates in Belize, more people now know to hand in rescued monkeys or report illegal pets - whilst it means that we have had an influx of baby monkeys this season, it also means that these monkeys have survived...with their specialized diet, the majority of baby howlers taken from the wild die within the first three months when kept as illegal pets, from disease and malnutrition.

The Wildtracks babies, however, have settled in fine and are healthy, well balanced members of the nursery...
2017-05-20 17:55
Wildtracks Video: Wishing all those who have taken on the role of surrogate mother (or father) for the Wildtracks infants, we wish you a very HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY! Thank you for all your hard work towards ensuring that these infants grow with the skills they need to rejoin the wild populations... 2017-05-14 11:51
Wildtracks Link: Time to look at our relationship with Mother Earth. Despite the environmental destruction, despite the unsustainable use of natural resources, despite the blinkered and deaf politicians in the world, there is still hope - there is still a world worth fighting for.

This short video from Jane Goodall reminds us that there are still beautiful places - inspirational places - in this world, but that we need to make a conscious decision, individually, to keep it that way. Don't wait for someone else to save a species or save a wilderness - find a way to be a part of the action. Find a way to make a difference!

Jane Goodall - Mother Earth filmsforaction.org 6 minutes | “You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” Jane Goodall
2017-05-10 07:37
Wildtracks Update: A huge THANK YOU to one of our equipment sponsors - CAT Phones.

As we start preparing for this years howler monkey releases in June, the primate tracking crew returns to Fireburn to check up on the location of the current troops. Access to Fireburn is not easy - it is an adventure in itself, requiring both road and boat travel. The distance from the nearest road brings with it the need for good communication, so each tracking team is armed with a CAT s30 phone,improving their safety in the field.

Over the last year, the tracking crew have been trialing CAT phones in the field, using them in not just communication but also for field recognition of individual monkeys and geo-referencing and mapping of troop locations. With the harsh climate, occasionally flooded trails and torrential rain, the waterproof and shock proof ruggedness of the phones has withstood all that tropical nature can throw at them!

So, once again, a HUGE thank you to CAT Phones, in the UK

#catphone #racingextinction #wildtracks #keepthewildinwildlife
2017-05-03 06:31
Wildtracks Link: We are incredibly lucky and happy to receive a significant donation of milk from people in San Pedro for the nursery monkeys. Thank you to all who donated funds or cans of milk, and particular thanks to Rebecca Coutant and Colette Kase for organizing the milk drive!

We had the pleasure of hosting Rebecca, Colette and their partners at the Primate Rehabilitation Centre, and were able to show them the nursery...where the milk is used. pRebecca has produced an excellent blog that covers the visit...

Thanks again to all for the amazing donation!

2017-04-30 12:08
Wildtracks Update: Happy World Tapir Day!! Sharing tapir stories from Fireburn, the howler monkey release site - it isn't all just about the howlers and manatees! 2017-04-28 06:55
Wildtracks Update: Edgar Correa, (Wildlife Officer, Belize Forest Department), delivers the most recent howler monkey intake - thought to be an escaped illegal pet, found roaming the streets in Santa Elena, Cayo. She is now settled into her new enclosure in quarantine, and tucking into fruit and leaves. A huge thank you to Mike Salazar for rescuing her and reporting her to Forest Department, and to Dr. Isabelle for providing overnight care and veterinarian expertise. 2017-04-25 08:32
Wildtracks Link: Belize's World Heritage Site, the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, is highlighted in a new report on the illegal trade of CITES species - for the illegal transboundary fishing of CITES-regulated shark species.

"More than 50 per cent of Belize’s population, or 190,000 people, are supported by incomes generated through reef related tourism and fisheries. Illegal harvesting of iconic species, however, rapidly decreases animal populations and reduces the site’s attractiveness as a tourist destination, which can lead to a decline in the local tourist industry and jeopardize livelihoods."


Illegal wildlife trafficking occurs in nearly 30 per cent of world’s most protected areas wwf.panda.org A new WWF report published today urges for additional and immediate measures to halt the worrying trend in illegal trafficking for international trade of CITES-listed species in the world’s most ecologically important places, including World Heritage Sites.
2017-04-24 08:04
Wildtracks Update: A huge thank you to Colette Kase and Rebecca Coutant for organizing a milk drive in San Pedro, Belize, for the nursery monkeys here at Wildtracks!!!

If you are interested in participating, check out the link, which provides more information on which milk the monkeys need, and where the drop off points are for tomorrow and Tuesday (they include The Baker, about 1 mile south of San Pedro town, and the bar at The Truck Stop)..the milk will be transported to Sarteneja on Tuesday afternoon (25th April).

We have recently added two new baby howler monkeys to the nursery - one (Piper) rescued from a river bank, the second (Prim) confiscated by the Forest Department. Coming in within a day of each other, the two have been treated for giardia and other parasites, and Prim for mange, and are now going through quarantine together. This puts our nursery monkey numbers at eight...a lot of milk!! So we are especially appreciative of the support from the San Pedro community!

We are always amazed at the generosity of Wildtracks supporters...whether it is donating time to volunteer, funds to help support the programs or spreading the word about the work Wildtracks does....thank you to all those who have participated in the milk drive - those who have donated a tin of milk (or are about to!), those shops that have provided drop off points, and the biggest thank you to Colette and Rebecca for making this happen!!

Wildtracks' Program for Manatees and Monkeys: Help Me Deliver Formula to The Babies - San Pedro Scoop sanpedroscoop.com Just across the lagoon, just outside the mainland fishing village of Sarteneja, is an amazing AMAZING place. It's called Wildtracks. Started in 1990 by Z
2017-04-23 08:16
Wildtracks Update: The Yucatan black howler monkeys of Pre-release One (Finn, Innie, Vicky, Kenya and Maggie) are being prepared for release back into the wild...so here's a glimpse back at their time at Wildtracks - the last clip in this video is of Maggie - taken this morning - for all those people who have worked with this group.

While we are celebrating their success as a troop, and their success in pre-release, today we are also celebrating a new addition to the troop - yes...this morning, Kenya has had her baby! This may place their release plans on hold until the baby is old enough, but the addition of one more globally endangered Yucatan black howler monkey to the World's population is well worth celebrating!

Happy Earth Day!!
2017-04-22 13:43
Wildtracks Link: We are very pleased and excited that the globally endangered Central American (or Geoffroy's) spider monkey has been selected as the next focus for One Species...Thank You!

"When we went down to Belize, we had no idea what we would find. We knew it was one of the planet's richest biodiverse places. We knew it was hope to some world-class conservationists. And we knew that the search for the next species was going to be an adventure! The organization we've partnered with in Belize embodies everything we look for in a partner - dedicated, passionate and impactful. They're on the ground working to rehabilitate endangered Geoffroy's Spider Monkeys. Our newest clothing collection represents these spider monkeys, 10% being donated to the first release ever of a troop in Belize. Let's rep life and show our newest partner, Wildtracks, some support!"

One Species h in Belize embodies everything we look for in a partner - dedicated, passionate and impactful. They're on the ground working to rehabilitate endangered Geoffroy's Spider Monkeys. Our newest clothing collection represents these spider monkeys, 10% being donated to the first release ever in Belize. Let's rep life and show our newest partner, Wildtracks, some support! www.onespeciesapparel.com ...
2017-04-19 08:10
Wildtracks Update: A new arrival at the Rehabilitation Centre...another young Yucatan black howler monkey.

Not all arrivals are illegal pets that have been confiscated - some, like this one, get separated from their group especially if two groups are fighting, or a new male is taking over and harassing the females.

She was heard crying on the river bank by someone out fishing, who rescued her and contacted the Belize Forest Department....at only three months or so, she is far too young to be able to survive in the wild on her own.
2017-04-11 10:19
Wildtracks Thank You: A huge thank you to Henrick Carlsen and Beer4Beasts, of Denmark, for choosing Wildtracks as one of the organizations to support this year - and for raising US$700 towards the operational costs of the Manatee Rehabilitation Program. With five manatees currently in care, costs are high, and we really appreciate all the help we receive!!

Also...Thank you to all the Beer4Beasts customers who put in orders and drank the beer!

Located in Denmark, Beer4Beasts is based on the brilliant concept of saving endangered animals one beer at a time, by brewing and selling specialty beers. As someone who appreciates a good beer, I love the idea of being able to contribute to conservation by drinking to the health and well being of wildlife! There are many ways to go about #racingextinction ...and this one definitely deserves a round of applause!
2017-04-03 17:41
Wildtracks Link: The USFWS have announced the downlisting of manatees in the US. Good news? Perhaps not.... this doesn't take into account the global status of West Indian manatees.

Here in Belize, we are currently losing manatees at a rate of one per week, primarily to boat strikes in the Belize River...one per week...that we know about!

We have a population that is considered the best in the Central American region, yet we estimate that we have only between 700 and 1000....based on the last count of 507 individuals in 2012.

In 2015, we had 42 confirmed fatalities....that is almost double the rate of reproduction.

The downlisting and the perception that manatees are doing better, will make it harder for organizations in Belize to access funding to reverse this trend...and we will only be able to watch as we lose these gentle giants, one by one....

What does it take to save a species...before we run out of time?
Save the Manatee on Twitter twitter.com/savethemanatee… “Why do we consider downlisting premature at this time? https://t.co/kTVNcl4R5x”
2017-04-01 20:34
Wildtracks Update: Hope is continuing to do well...

She arrived in August as a result of Hurricane Earl...minute at 24lbs, and no more than two days old.

She is now seven months old and weighs in at 123lbs! She may still be the youngest manatee calf we have, but there is nothing small about her!!

Hope is now happily inhabiting the first large pool, and has a healthy appetite for seagrass...thank you to all those on the Manatee Team who have worked with her since her arrival to ensure her health and happiness!

Thank you also to Sarah for use of the photo...
2017-04-01 18:01
Wildtracks Blog: Today's blog comes from Paul, who volunteered at Wildtracks with his girlfriend, Suzie. Paul and Suzie were fantastic volunteers - we loved their commitment and enthusiasm, their great teamwork and their good humour. As Paul found out, volunteers don't need to arrive with prior experience - Wildtracks provides an orientation and training period on arrival...but volunteers do need to arrive with a good team attitude and willing to work long, hard days. As any Wildtracks volunteer will tell you, volunteering at Wildtracks is definitely not a holiday!!

A huge thank you to Paul and Suzie...and to all Wildtracks volunteers! You are the foundation for the success of the Wildtracks rehabilitation programmes, an essential part of the Wildtracks team, and we couldn't achieve what we do without you!!!

Thanks to Anthony for the photo of Penny...

2017-04-01 07:39
Wildtracks Link: We believe in the strengths of collaboration...and are always willing to work with other organization to increase the reach and benefits of our activities and learn more about those of others.

Yesterday we participated in the first Marine Science Conference held at St. Viator's Vocational High School, and organized by the Belize Audubon Society. It is always a pleasure to present to youths, and especially to be able to share with them the different ways in which we use science to inform and guide our manatee rehabilitation activities.

Great job, Belize Audubon Society!!
Belize Audubon Society - Belize, Turneffe Atoll Sustainability Association, Wildtracks, Oceana Belize, Ecosur Chetumal ...
2017-03-30 14:05
Wildtracks Link: So yesterday was Manatee Appreciation Day...and time to do something for these amazing mammals!

Why not join the 2017 Save the Manatee 5k marathon in May? You can run it or walk it anywhere! There are currently 500 virtual participants and 150 actual participants...find out more and take part to support manatees!

Do the run, get the t-shirt and support manatee conservation around the world!
Save The Manatee 5K ctual event to support the Save the Manatee Club! ...
2017-03-30 13:35
Wildtracks Video: Portraits of a manatee calf.

The youngest calf at Wildtracks at the moment is Hope. She arrived after being washed up 200m inland by the tidal surge of Hurricane Earl. She has grown exponentially, moving from the Intensive Care Pool to the Recovery Pool, and now the Large Pool. She enjoys both milk and seagrass, as well as 'swim times' with her carers, to strengthen her tail muscles, in preparation for her move to the Lagoon Enclosure.

Hope is easy going - a joy to work with, and a favourite of all (not that we admit to having favourites!!) Have you thought about volunteering at Wildtracks? Our manatee team usually consists of four volunteers plus Jaimy, our Manatee Team leader. Check out our website for information on how to apply...


#manateeappreciationday #racingextinction
2017-03-29 18:42
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