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Re: Mexico


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Posted by chrish on January 24, 2003 at 00:45:37:

In Reply to: Re: Mexico posted by MXHerper on January 23, 2003 at 21:58:28:

This being said, anyone can go to Mexico (or any other country) and look for herps to photograph. This is ecotourism just like birding.

This is what we do. We go and look around and take photos of herps. (We also bird, but only when the herping is slow! ;-))

We do not have permits, we do not collect. I don't really want to frankly. I enjoy seeing some if the exotic wildlife, but I don't get any added thrill from bringing it back with me. Photos are memory enough.

I love herping Mexico but I wouldn't advise people who don't at least know basic Spanish to pack their vehicle and head south. There are plenty of safe places but there are also plenty of unsafe areas where tourists shouldn't be.

With all deference to Mexherper's experience, I have been going to Mexico and herping (all over, from Baja to Chiapas, from Sinaloa to Tamaulipas) for over 19 years. I never go alone, but mostly with one other person. Only on one of my 20+ trips have I ever travelled with anyone who spoke more than rudimentary spanish (I speak almost none). I have a good dictionary, and a little patience.

My experience is that if you learn the laws (particularly in regard to driving) and obey them (most of the people I see in Mexico driving like maniacs have US plates), you shouldn't have any "official" troubles.

And I have found that the people of Mexico are friendly and welcoming and go out of their way to help you, even if you don't speak their language!

It is a great country to travel in and explore, in my experience. The people I have run into who have trouble travelling in Mexico are generally those who go down there with a bad attitude. Go down and appreciate the fact that it is a different country (that rule applies to traveling to any foreign country, I might add).

There are unsafe places in Mexico. We modified our last trip to Chiapas because there had been some trouble near the towns of Bonampak and Ocosingo. We saw no sign of it from Palenque, where we were.
We also changed our itinerary about going onto the Oaxaca/Tuxtepec road and from going to the Sierra just southeast of Chilpancingo, Gro. We made these decisions by doing some online research at various state department (US and other country) web sites and reading travel warnings. There is good information out there.

The crime rate in Mexico is lower than that in the US. I'm not telling everyone to jump in their cars, but you don't have to be afraid to go there.



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