A Whale Watching Adventure with Nico Ransome

Central America

 

Who is Nicky?

Today I am meeting the British Nicky Ransome from ‘The Orca of Sayulita’. She has invited me to go whale watching with her, and I am beyond excited to meet both this passionate young woman and the whales of Sayulita. As we chat easily I am instantly drawn to her happy and almost childlike ways. She’s an open, free-spirited soul who has lived all over the world, following the singing of the whales. We soon come to realize that, following the sound of the waves, we have lived in many of the same places. Today, the whales and waves are bringing us together in Sayulita, Mexico.

Nico won an international full paid scholarship (which was very competitive) to undertake her project, researching and eventually protecting the whales, for her PhD at Murdoch University, Australia. She is also part of The Orca of Sayulita that is Sayulita’s FIRST and ONLY pure whale watch and whale research company. She offers everyone a chance to experience the whales first hand. She hopes to inspire and create awareness for these beautiful animals that are in need of our protection. Going whale watching with Nico is not just pure entertainment (although lots of fun!). She makes sure that whale watching in Sayulita is of a high quality, respectful of both the animals and whale watching regulations, and that some of the money spent on whale watching goes back directly to help the whales.

 

 

The project 

With this project, Nico hopes to collect as much data as possible. Her ultimate goal is to protect the whales by making the waters of Nayarit a whale sanctuary. Nayarit is perfectly situated on the Pacific coast of Mexico at the entrance to the Sea of Cortez, which is one of the most biodiverse and productive marine ecosystems in the world. It is also protected by the Baja Peninsula, and therefore gets relatively less shipping traffic. This is important because sadly, one of the major global threats to large whales is collisions with vessels, with humpback whales being one of the two most commonly reported species involved in vessel strikes. Now the coast of Nayarit is undergoing major development due to tourism and will receive increased shipment traffic due to the expansion of nearby ports, and the planned major construction of a large container port, research has become increasingly important. So far, no one has ever intensively studied the whales in this area. Luckily, Nico Ransome is here to turn the tide and has taken this task on her shoulders. Already there are amazing results, like the pod of 20-30 sperm whales she came across, that had never officially been documented before!

‘’To protect what we have here, we have to first know what is here’’, says Nico Ransome

 

What can I do? 

As a community, we can create awareness. We can create little sparks in our hearts, and the hearts of others, for nature and in particular the whales. We can make sure we only participate in low-impact whale watching where the well-being of the whale always is of the highest priority. We can all support Nico, and ‘The Orca of Sayulita’ in order to make Nayarit a safe haven for the whales.

If you feel inspired, connect with Nico here !

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