International Conservation
Reef Shark, © Ed Gullekson

Additional Priorities

Sea Turtles

Through education, outreach, legal reform, and direct support for on-the-ground conservation programs, Defenders is working to enhance the conservation of six of the world's seven endangered species of sea turtles that nest in Mexico. We have succeeded in getting new regulations adopted to protect sea turtle nesting sites from disruption by light sources, vegetation removal, dune destruction and mishandling of nests and newborn sea turtles.

Whales

Despite a moratorium on commercial whaling that began in the 1980s, every year some countries try to overturn the moratorium and remove international protections for whales.  Defenders continues to fight these attempts through our work with international treaties.

Another major threat to whales accidental trapping in fishing gear.  In 2007, Defenders was successful in getting drift nets and surface nets banned in the shark fishery in Mexico.

Mangrove Forests

Mangroves are a very important coastal ecosystem that supports many endangered species like sea turtles, manatees, parrots and many types of fish. They also support 70% of all commercial fisheries serving as breeding, refuge and feeding sites—for example the shrimp fishery. Defenders has been instrumental in getting landmark legislation adopted in Mexico to protect mangroves from tourist and industrial developments, shrimp farms and other threats.

Birds

Migratory birds face many threats during their migration as a result of habitat destruction and pollution. In Mexico, wild birds are still being trapped for the pet trade and, in some parts, are still hunted for food. Defenders of Wildlife has launched a campaign to promote birdwatching to encourage bird conservation. We are working alongside environmental and tourism authorities and helping produce bird guides to help state and local governments and local conservation groups promote birdwatching in their areas. Our goal is to change the way Mexicans perceive birds and put an end to bird trapping for the pet trade.

More on International Conservation: Meet Our International Conservation Team »

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Photo credit: ©Fotohansel/Adobe
In the Magazine
When George Pakenham spotted a passenger-less stretch limo outside a Manhattan restaurant with its engine running, he decided he’d had enough and approached the driver to ask him to turn off the engine while waiting.
Wildlife trafficking, © John and Karen Hollingsworth/USFWS
In the Magazine
U.S. consumer demand fuels illegal wildlife trade, jeopardizing imperiled species around the globe
Sea Turtle, © Christina Albright-Mundy
Success Stories
April, 2013: Thanks to new regulations that Defenders proposed and worked hard to promote, Mexico is protecting vital sea turtle nesting habitat.