On February 15th-25th John and Kari hosted a trip to Cayo Largo, Cuba to participate in an environmental sustainability program. The program was hosted by Cuban marine biologists and fishing guides focusing on the human ecological footprint, a fly fishing fish counting project and their Marine Park protection plan.
They were accompanied by 9 guests from across the US. The trip began in Havana with a city tour and sampling of local culture. Next was a flight to Cayo Largo, a small resort island off the south coast of the northwestern part of the main island in the Caribbean Sea. The cay is about 25 kilometers (16 mi) long and 3 kilometers (1.9 mi) wide and is the second largest island in the Canarreos Archipelago. The fish counting program was a huge success with many species accounted for. Several group members visited the Centro de Rescate de Tortugas Marinas, a sea turtle farm and conservation center hatchery/rehabilitation center, learning much about the ongoing protection effort. The Cuban people involved in the program were outstanding hosts and teachers and demonstrated a real understanding of the marine environment involved.