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Fire consumes 500 acres at Celestun Biosphere Reserve

Blaze centered on important migratory spot

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A 2016 fire in El Palmar, at the the Celestun Biosphere Reserve, can be seen from Hunucma. Photo: Diario de Yucatan

Mirroring the huge blaze on the other side of the Peninsula, a fire at the Celestun Biosphere Reserve has consumed about 200 hectares / 500 acres of land.

Civil protection authorities said that the fire is under control, thanks to efforts from the National Forestry Commission (Conafor) and Firefighters from the Ministry of Public Security (SSP).

The center of the conflagration is about 40 kilometers from the municipal seat in a muddy, remote area known as El Palmar. The spot is considered an important habitat for birds that migrate from as far away as Canada.

The reserve is home to some 234 species, including ocelots, jaguars and spider monkeys, along with crocodiles and three species of sea turtles.

Two helicopters aided crew in reaching the flames. A Naval chopper will continue to fly over mangroves considered to be highly flammable.

Authorities did not speculate on the cause of the blaze.

Source: Diario de Yucatan

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