Mexico

The vaquita is currently listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN Red List
The vaquita is currently listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN Red List

Mexico enhances vaquita protection

The Mexican government has announced the successful conclusion of a project involving the placement of 193 cement blocks on the sea floor in strategic locations in the vaquita’s habitat.

Called the Concrete Block Planting project, the objective was to discourage the setting of gillnets within the Zero Tolerance Area, where the remaining vaquita population is localised. Large steel hooks protrude from the top of the blocks, trapping any gillnets they come into contact with.

Thinking of bringing a back-up housing to Mexico? Think again, as it may cost you a pretty penny.

Bringing camera equipment into Mexico may cost you

Following our report about divers being charged tax on their personal photo equipment, we wrote to the Mexican tourism minister and contacted some embassies to seek their comments and clarification on the matter. The Mexican Ministry of Tourism never responded to any of our inquiries or requests for comment, and we had to reach out to several Mexican embassies and press them for an answer before we got the following reply from Mexico's embassy in Toronto, Canada.  

Mexican customs charge dive travellers sales tax on their equipment

When it comes to must-see dive destinations, Mexico’s Socorro Islands tops many a diver’s wish list. Boasting up-close encounters with giant Pacific manta rays, dolphins, sharks and immense numbers of fish, the diving presents incredible encounters and surprises galore.

However, if you are an underwater photographer with lots of gear, you may get a surprise of an unwanted variety: paying duty on your own equipment.

Mexico's Quintana Roo: Cave Diving on the Yucatán Peninsula

Diver in Cenote Zacil-Ha, Quintana Roo, Mexico. Photo by Pierre Constant
Diver in Cenote Zacil-Ha, Quintana Roo, Mexico. Photo by Pierre Constant

As a cave diver, you do not come back from the Yucatán and say, “I have done Mexico,” boasting with pride and glory. It takes more than one visit to fully appreciate the enormous potential the peninsula has to offer underground. That means having not only the guts for it, but also the necessary training and experience to be able to do so. “Rome was not built in a day,” as the saying goes.

Mexico's Cozumel

Coney grouper, Cozumel, Mexico. Photo by Brandi Mueller
Coney grouper, Cozumel, Mexico. Photo by Brandi Mueller

As our boat headed to the dive site, it was hard to imagine the previous year. With the island of Cozumel to my back, the 180-degree-view of water in front of me was filled with dive boats. While sometimes in the past I would be annoyed to see so many other divers, it was a relief to see all the boats, and it gave me a bit of hope for the future of the dive industry as the pandemic (hopefully) comes to an end.

Mexico's Socorro: Sharks, Dolphins, Mantas & More

Oceanic manta ray, Socorro, Mexico. Photo by Kate Holt
Oceanic manta ray, Socorro, Mexico. Photo by Kate Holt

We leveled off at 25m and the visibility was perfect. I could see my two buddies to my left—Kate adjusting her housing strobes and Dominic turning on his GoPro action camera. A group of silvertip sharks were casually circling a cleaning station, this one manned by bright yellow angelfish. They gave us a glance, but mostly, they were unconcerned. A few whitetip sharks emerged from the drop-off below to join us. More sharks—my favorite.

The Pelagic Fleet is now the Pacific Fleet

While we have loved our brand The Pelagic Fleet, we see our rebranding as an evolution in continuing to create The quality and standards that we have will not change, in fact, we are working diligently on making your experience the most memorable. 

We still have the same incredible crews that will give you the best service in and out of the water. This combination of our incredible crews and the some of the most spectacular big animal diving anywhere in the world, makes us your premier adventure travel company.