Temporada 2022-2023 de Tortugas Marinas / 2022-2023 Sea Turtle Nesting Season

If you prefer to read this post in English, please scroll down.

Saludos desde Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli!

Estamos muy contentos de compartir con ustedes que la temporada de desove 2022-2023 ha iniciado de manera oficial.

Esta semana empezamos con los patrullajes regulares y ya tenemos 5 nidos con 430 huevos en nuestro recién construido corral de incubación. También hemos encontrado y marcado dos hembras y protegido un nido adoptado.

Nada de esto seria posible sin ustedes, nuestros leales patrocinadores. Por ello, queremos aprovechar la oportunidad para darles las GRACIAS.  Gracias por su apoyo a nuestro trabajo.

Como una muestra de nuestro aprecio, les compartimos una pequeña historia de esta semana.

Un mensaje en español  de nuestra fundadora, Damaris Marin-Smith.

Videos en ingles de patrullaje (video 1  and video 2) con Patty Sullivan.

Esta semana también tuvimos un patrullaje especial con dos jovenes de nuestro equipo. Sebastián y Julián iniciaron su misión como “Guerreros del Arcoiris” hace varios anos como participantes en el campamento de verano. Es tiempo de aplicar lo que aprendieron durante su entrenamiento. Les damos la bienvenida a la tribu.











Realmente esperamos que disfruten nuestra historia y nuevamente agradecemos su patrocinio. Amablemente les recordamos que pueden continuar apoyando nuestro trabajo, visitando nuestra pagina, adoptando un nido donando en las diferentes modalidades.

El equipo del Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli

Post in English

Greetings from Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli!

We are so excited to share the news that our 2022-2023 nesting season has officially started.  We began regular nightly patrols this week and already have 5 nests, containing 430 eggs in our newly built corral.  We have encountered and tagged 2 nesting females and collected one adopted nest as well.

None of this would be possible without you, our loyal supporters.  So, we would like to take this time to say THANK YOU.  Thank you very much for supporting our efforts.  To show our appreciation, we have put together a little story of this first week.

A message from our founder Damaris Marin Smith (Spanish)

Patrol videos (video 1 and video 2) with Patty Sullivan (English)

We also had a special patrol this week with two young men on our team.  Sebastian and Julian began their mission as “Warriors of the Rainbow” several years ago, as participants of our summer camp. It’s now time to apply what they were trained for. Welcome to the tribe.











We sure hope you enjoyed our story!  And thank you once again for your support.  We offer a gentle reminder that you can continue supporting our efforts by visiting the camp website and adopting a nest or making a one-time or sustaining member donation.

The Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli Team

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Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. Summer Program

Once again, this year, we are planning to have a summer program during the first two weeks of August, 1st to the 12th.   Children who are 7 to 12 years old will attend daily sessions Monday to Friday from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm.

The curriculum is very rigorous and integrates the areas of Values, Reading, Language, Mathematics, Environmental Science, Fine Arts, Physical Education, and Leadership Skills. The central themes this year are dinosaurs, reptiles, rocks, and minerals.

Three field trips have been scheduled:

One to “El Refugio de Potosi”, where students will participate in diverse educational and hands-on activities related to reptiles, rocks, and minerals. At the end, children will have the opportunity to release some baby iguanas into their natural habitats in order to preserve the species.

The second field trip will be at a nearby ecosystem where students will have the opportunity to observe various animal tracks and identify the reptiles. (Previous preparations are planned).

The third field trip will be a visit to “El Museo del Coco” in the community of Coacoyul. Some of the activities include a guided tour through the coconut plantation, learning about the process and making of several products. Students will have the opportunity to observe types of rocks, minerals, and endemic reptiles.

A night patrol will also be scheduled. Students will have the opportunity to search for sea turtle eggs and relocate them into the camp’s hatchery. Other activities include educational games and a lesson on astronomy.

At the end of the session, children will have a presentation for parents and sponsors who are able to attend.

Most of the children who attend summer camp come from unprivileged families who are unable to afford a decent education. During the pandemic, these children fell far behind on their grade level, due to the lack of jobs for their parents and the deficiencies of the online education.

This year, the cost of the program is $1,500 pesos ($75.00 USD) and includes school supplies, materials, field trips, t-shirt, and lunch each day.

Please consider sponsoring one or more student. A summary report will be provided at the end of the program, unless you request particular progress about your sponsored child.

Click here to sponsor a child.

Thank you so much for your generosity.

Damaris Marin Smith

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New Palapa THANK YOU!

Hello to you, our awesome supporters!

We want to share this video with you of Damaris Marin Smith, Camp Director, giving a tour of our improved Education space which was just finished thanks to your support over the last years.

As you may know, the elements on the beach (wind, salt, sand, humidity and rain) can be very hard things.  Because of this, our old palapa, where we do the pre-release educational presentations, summer camp activities, and various other volunteer activities was becoming unsafe.

Because of your generosity, we were able to repair and enlarge the palapa and improve the floor.  No more trip hazards, no more worries that we will have a collapse!








I hope you will take a minute to check out this video!


You will see that we are not completely finished, but we expect to have it perfect by the time of your next visit!

Again, thank you so very much for your continued support of our mission at Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli.  More to come…

With our appreciation and gratitude,

The Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli Team


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ATV Update!!!! Isn’t she lovely???? / Información sobre las cuatrimotos. ¿No les parece hermosa?






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We know it has been a while without an update on our ATV angels, and a lot has happened!

First of all, our angels doubled up on their match.  And if that were not enough, through a corporate connection, they got a match for their donation.  So, your donations doubled, doubled , and then doubled again!  How incredible is that?  We could not be more grateful!

That is the good news.  And the other good news is that we have been able to keep one of old workhorses plugging along (The other has become unusable) while we wait for our new ATV.  Oh, right…not ATV.  ATVs.  Yes, that is right!  We have the funds not only to get one, but two ATVs.

But wait!  There is more!  We also have funds to build a little garage for them to keep them safe from the harsh environment while they are resting.

The ‘not as good’ news (really, who could say bad about any of this?) has been the difficulty in obtaining a vehicle.  You may have heard about a delay in auto manufacturing due to a backlog of the needed computer chips.  Well, and ATV is not a car but it does use the same kind of chip!  We hunted high and low, considered buying used, and finally our local ATV dealer was able to get one ordered.  We jumped on it, and then waited.  And waited.




And now she is here!


One more step of installing a seat/rack for the assistant volunteer and those precious turtle eggs.  We are so very close.  The excitement is building.  Along with the nail biting as new problems occur with our old girl.


We will send more pictures when the racks and seat are installed.


Her sister is on order and we promise to wait patiently.





So, we end this post in appreciation and thankfulness.  Thanks to each and every one of you who donated to this campaign.  A big thank you to our ATV angels who still wish to remain anonymous.  For their generosity and also for their work getting the corporate matching funds.

We are left trying so hard to think of ways to repay this gratitude.  And look forward to being able to do so in person some day soon!

Until then, with much love and gratitude we remain!

Hugs, kisses, besos and abrazos,

The Ayotlcalli Team together with Warriors of the Rainbow (US 501.3c)


Sabemos que ha sido mucho tiempo sin noticias sobre la cuatrimoto y nuestros ángeles benefactores. ¡Han pasado muchas cosas!

Primero, nuestros ángeles duplicaron su donación, y por si esto fuera poco, a través de una conección con un importante corporativo, ellos duplicaron la cantidad donada. ¡Es decir su donación se duplicó dos veces!

¿No es increible?

¡No Podriamos estar más agradecidos!

Esa es una de las buenas noticias. La otra es que hemos podido mantener una de las cuatrimotos viejitas funcionando (la otra ya no dio para más), en lo que esperamos por la nueva. ¡Ah!  ¡perdón! no es una cuatrimoto, ¡son DOS! Así es, tenemos suficientes fondos para comprar no una, sino dos cuatrimotos.

¡Pero esperen, aún hay más! Tenemos también fondos para construir una pequeña cochera para resguardar los vehículos de las inclemencias del tiempo mientras no estén en uso.

Las no tan buenas noticias (¿Quien puede decir “malas” después de tanta buenas?) es que ha sido difícil conseguir el vehículo nuevo. Quizá han escuchado el retraso que hay en la manufactura automotriz, debido a la falta de chips de computadora. Bueno, aunque la cuatrimoto no es precisamente un auto, necesita el mismo tipo de chip. Nos dimos a la tarea de buscar por todos lados e incluso consideramos comprar una usada, pero finalmente la agencia local nos puso en la lista de espera.

¡Después de esperar y esperar, finalmente llego!

Un paso más es la instalación del asiento y parrilla para el asistente del voluntario líder y para esos valiosos huevos de tortuga. Estamos muy cerca y la emoción aumenta, junto con los nervios mientras nos mordemos las uñas cada que algo le falla a nuestra viejita.

Compartiremos más fotos cuando las parrillas y asiento queden instalados.

Su cuatrimoto hermana ha sido ordenada y prometemos esperar pacientemente.

Terminamos esta publicación con mucho agradecimiento y aprecio. Gracias a cada uno de los que donaron en esta campaña. Agradecemos enormemente a nuestros ángeles que desean permanecer en el anonimato. Gracias por su generosidad y por conseguir una cantidad igual con el corporativo.

Estamos pensando de qué manera pagar tanta generosidad y esperamos hacerlo personalmente algún día no muy lejano.

Hasta entonces, nos quedamos con el corazón lleno de gratitud y amor.

Hugs, kisses, besos and abrazos,

The Ayotlcalli Team together with Warriors of the Rainbow (US 501.3c)


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Beach Cleanup – New monthly activity / Limpieza de Playa – Actividad mensual

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We are very pleased to announce our monthly beach cleanup on Playa Blanca.


We had our first of the series on September 18th, and plan to do this activity each month.


Why don’t you plan to join us next month?




Sadly, there is no end for the need of beach cleanup.  But we are committed to keep a nice clean beach for our nesting sea turtles.

We will have a meeting point at the camp if you want to join us.  But you can join us in spirit as some of our neighbors along the beach have done by cleaning up in their area.  The beach is 15km long, so it literally does take a village to keep it clean.

If you are not here with us at the beach, you can STILL join us in spirit.  Unfortunately, some amount of trash can be found almost anywhere!  Take a bag, can, crate or whatever works for you and pick up some trash in your area.  No matter where you live, litter on the street will likely wind up in one body of water or another, and every little bit helps.  A lot of people doing a little bit adds up to a big difference!

If you decide to be a part of our team virtually, don’t forget to send us a picture…or a few.  Post it on Facebook and tag us or email it to us at info@ayotlcalli.org so we can include it in our posts.

Can’t get outside?  No trash to be found in your area?  No problem!  You can also support the effort by your tax deductible donation.  We need to purchase gloves, gas for the ATV, hydration for our volunteers, etc. for each cleanup, so that would be greatly appreciated too.

Thank you as always for your support, and we will be in touch when our October cleanup date is selected.

The Ayotlcalli Team and Warriors of the Rainbow (US 501.3c)


Nos complace anunciar nuestra actividad de limpieza mensual en Playa Blanca.

Ya tuvimos la primera el 18 de septiembre y planeamos hacerlo cada mes.

¿Por qué no hacer planes para unirse el próximo mes?


Tristemente, no se ve el fin de la necesidad de limpiar nuestra playa, pero estamos comprometidos a mantenerla hermosa y limpia para nuestras tortugas anidadoras.

Si desea unirse, el punto de reunión es el campamento, pero si prefiere, puede unirse en espíritu como lo han hecho algunos de nuestros vecinos limpiando su área. La playa tiene una extensión de 15 kilómetros, así que literalmente se necesita un pueblo para mantenerla limpia.

Si no puede estar con nosotros, considere limpiar su área. Desafortunadamente la basura se encuentra por todos lados. Llévese una bolsa, un costal, una cubeta, o lo que mejor le acomode y recoja algunos residuos en su área.  No importa donde viva, los residuos en la calle terminan eventualmente en algún cuerpo de agua, así que cualquier tipo de ayuda por pequeña que sea, cuenta. La suma de muchas personas apoyando aunque sea un poco, hacen una gran diferencia.

Si decide formar parte de nuestro equipo a la distancia, no olviden compartir una o varias fotos. Publíquenlas en Facebook y etiquétenos o mándenos un correos electrónico a info@ayotlcalli.org para que podamos incluirlas en nuestras publicaciones.

¿No puede salir o no hay basura en su area?  No hay problema, también puede apoyarnos con una donación deducible de impuestos. Necesitamos comprar guantes, combustible para las cuatrimotos, hidratación para los voluntarios, etc., para cada limpieza de playa. Esa ayuda también se agradece sinceramente.

Como siempre, agradecemos su apoyo y pronto les informaremos de la fecha de limpieza de playa para el mes de octubre.

El equipo Ayotlcalli – Warriors of the Rainbow (US 501.3c)



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Summer Camp

Hello everyone!

Just a note to let you know that we are planning an awesome “Guerreros del Arcoiris” summer camp.  We have a new program this year for more experienced campers, so there will be two separate sessions!

The first session will be from July 12 to 16 and is intended for those children who have attended prior summer camps and are ready to move into leadership roles. These leaders will then attend the next two weeks to support the young “warriors” program.

The second session, which will be July 19 to 30, is intended for our younger children ages 7 to 12 years old. These children will be immersed in a comprehensive and integrated program that includes learning about values, nutrition, reading, writing, math, environmental science, physical and artistic activities.  There will also be several field trips to local like-minded organizations.

The summer camp is always a fun time for our local children, but particularly this year after such a long time of distance learning!  As you know, these are underprivileged children who have gone through very difficult times due to the pandemic. There has been such a lack of exposure to educational opportunities.

Even though we have moved to Covid stoplight Green in the state of Guerrero, you can count on us to continue following all safety precautions.

The anticipated tuition for the leaders is 2,000 pesos and for the young warriors it is 1,500 pesos. That amount covers educational materials, a daily nutritious lunch, a camp themed t-shirt, and field trips.

Please consider sponsoring one of the 15 leaders, or one of the 30 warriors to attend the summer camp “Warriors of the Rainbow 2021”.

It couldn’t be simpler to do.  Just click below to make your (US) tax deductible donation!

Just for fun, here are some photos from the camp in 2019 (Sadly, but safely, we did not have a summer camp in 2020.)

And here is a video from our recent 1-day celebration for Earth day.

As always, thank you to our friends for your continued support.

Thank you from us!  Thank you from the children!

The Ayotlcalli Team

And just in case you missed it above, here is the link again 😉

ATV Matching donation

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Hey blog readers and camp friends!

We wanted to share this great news. We have ATV angels! Angels, who wish to remain anonymous, have pledged $5,000 of matching donations toward a much needed new ATV for the camp!


For every donation we receive, no matter how big or how small, it will be doubled! How cool is that?!?!?

We cannot express how grateful we are! This could not have come a better time, as our workhorse ATV has had a tough 4th season with us and is nearing retirement.

So…wouldn’t you love to help us and at the same time double your money? It is so easy to do! Just click here.

¡Hey lectores del blog y amigos de Ayotlcalli!

Queremos compartir estas excelentes noticias. Tenemos unos ángeles para nuestras cuatro ruedas, quienes desean permanecer en el anonimato. Ellos han prometido donar $5,000 USD para la compra de una nueva cuatrimoto.

Por cada donación que recibamos, no importa que tan grande o pequeña sea, ellos donarán la misma cantidad lo cual significa el doble. ¿No es genial?

No tenemos palabras para expresar nuestro sincero agradecimiento. Esto no pudo ocurrir en mejor momento ya que nuestro caballito de batalla, la cuatrimoto, ha tenido una cuarta temporada muy ocupada y su jubilación se aproxima.

Por lo tanto, ¿no les gustaría apoyarnos y a la vez doblar su donación? ¡Es muy fácil hacerlo, solo hagan click aquí!




More about our Classroom Adopt-a-Nest Program

Hello friends and supporters!

I hope this post finds you well. I wanted to follow up to share a Q & A with my favorite teacher, Kimberley Khouzam, who recently had an adopted nest for her 3rd grade classroom.

Currently, we are still in nesting season, which goes (more or less) through March, so new adoptions are available. These nests will hatch over 45 days, so likely we will have hatchlings till around mid-May. Our plan is to collect some nests with photos to have in our “Available for Adoption” bank for the off season as well. Then we should be back to patrolling in July collecting new nests. During the off-season you can adopt an existing nest or make a reservation for next season. We are flexible with timing, depending on your schedule so just ask!

So, now on to our Q & A with Mrs. Khouzam.

How did you become interested in Sea Turtles?

I had always been a fan of sea turtles. In 2016, I visited The Turtle Hospital in Marathon, FL while we were on vacation.  I ended up bringing back books, souvenirs, and tons of pictures that I shared with my class.   I was hooked!   

Have you talked about sea turtles in the classroom in the past?

Ever since my visit to The Turtle Hospital in 2016, I have read books on sea turtles during our units on Informational Writing and Reading. 

How did you use the Adopted nest in the classroom?

All of my students love to read about animals.  I figured the Adopted nest program would give the children a personal connection to the Sea Turtles and spark interest.  As soon as I mentioned the program and that it was a possibility, they kept asking about it.  When I told them we had a nest and pictures/videos of our Adopted Turtle they were just as obsessed as I was.  We viewed the pictures/videos as a whole group and I also posted them on our class webpage so the students could share with their parents. 

What activities did you do, what learning skills did you cover?

During our Morning Meetings we focused on sea turtle facts when we first began the project.  We also read non-fiction sea turtle books to become experts for our non-fiction writing. The class also discussed different aspects of the environment and how pollution of all kinds and land development is doing harm to the sea turtle population.

How many hours of classroom time?

I have spent a lot of classroom time on this project.  We have incorporated Sea Turtle information into some of our morning meetings, read aloud time, research to become “experts” on a subject, and then informational writing.  We spent 4+hours viewing/discussing the pictures and videos including our Zoom meeting with Patty.  You can spend as much or as little time as you like on this, depending on your class needs/schedule. It just happened to fit in timing-wise with our informational writing unit. 

How many of homework?

I did not give any homework but many of the children read additional books and brought in pictures/artifacts about their own experiences with sea turtles.

What was your favorite part?

My favorite part of this project was seeing the children so excited about learning. They are genuinely concerned about the future of sea turtles and are motivated to change some of their habits, like using plastic straws. They want to improve the environment make things better for the sea turtles.   (I also loved getting to spend time Patty!!)

What did your students like best?

The students LOVED seeing the pictures and the videos of our adopted turtle and the babies after they hatched.  They also adored the video segment at the end of the Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli with the baby sea turtle releases.   

Do you have any other thoughts to share?

I was so impressed at how organized and efficient everything was!  We got our letters and pictures about the adoption and hatch within hours.  I see this as a new yearly tradition.

This makes us so happy to hear, and we very much look forward to working with next year’s third grade class!

Thank you Kim for making this such a fun project!

If you have questions, please email us at info@ayotlcalli.org

To adopt a nest, click here


New Trashcan Celebrating our Leatherbacks

Greetings from beautiful Barra de Potosi!

To commemorate our amazing season of Leatherback nests (21 as of this post), we decided to decorate a trash barrel to help keep trash out of their environment.

We installed the can in front of the Kindergarten in Barra de Potosi.  The Kinder is located at the main intersection in the village, where a barrel can certainly be used.

We recently performed a (socially distanced, masked) puppet show here for the children in Barra and noticed the need for a place for folks to put their trash at this busy intersection.

An idea was sparked, and thank you to our artist and camp volunteer Ruben Ramirez, the can was decorated beautifully with a Leatherback! and our our logo too!

When the barrel was installed, a quick pickup of the immediate are got it started…

So, as you can see, we take care of our turtle friends, but are also committed to community outreach.  An educational puppet show for the children lead to us installing this can.

We feel very fortunate to be able to do these things thanks to your support!  Your continued support keeps us going!

With gratitude,

The Ayotlcalli Team

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Happy New Year!

As we start this brand new year and close out the last, we would like to take this time to count our blessings.

We are thankful for so many things, too many to list, but we will try!

We are thankful for our awesome group of volunteers, long-term and short-term, from near and far. We are thankful that our team has stayed safe and healthy this year.

We are thankful for our amazing supporters who have helped us weather the ‘2020 storm’. For those who visited, we are thankful to you for complying with our safety, distance, and occupancy restrictions. For those who supported us from home, our heartfelt thanks.

We are thankful for all of our nesting sea turtles, but we are especially thankful for our many nesting Leatherback mamas this year. It has been an absolutely incredible season so far! After not having any Leatherback nests last year, we are already at nest number 15! Our eastern pacific population of Leatherbacks is one of the most endangered populations on earth, so this is just so very exciting!

We are thankful to the International Sea Turtle Community for reaching out to us and providing us with a new way to tag these precious Leatherbacks.

We are thankful to Fundacion Ecológica Biomar and the director in Mexico, Monica Fadul for their help with funds for our corral, gas and despensa for local volunteers.

We are thankful that this season is turning out to be so much busier than last season. Part of this is that we have enough volunteers to run 2 patrols each night, but there are also more sea turtles nesting. To date this year we have 1,119 nest compared to 607 at this point in the season last year.

Most of all, we are thankful that, with your help, we get to continue this important and rewarding work for another year.

We are hopeful that we are making a difference.

We wish you a happy, healthy, peaceful new year, and want to express our sincere gratitude for your continuing support.

The Ayotlcalli team

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  • Non-Profit Information

    Online donations to Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. are processed through Warriors of the Rainbow, a US-based 501c3 non-profit organization (EIN 83-4698795) established solely to support Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. All donations are tax deductible and 100% of donations go directly to support the operations of Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. Email admin@warriors4turtles.org for additional details.