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  #1  
Old 06-02-2018, 10:17 PM
marcmaubert marcmaubert is offline
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Just some random thoughts... So today I was buying groceries in my nearby "tianguis" (open air market that sets up during a specific day of the week) and noticed someone was selling orchids. I noticed from afar a lot of Prosthechea vitellina, Prosthechea radiata and Euchile citrina in full bloom (I've been looking for them, but I've only found seedlings). I got really excited and asked for their price. Just $30 pesos (less than 2 dollars). That's really cheap even for Mexican orchids. I looked closely. They were wild orchids, the people selling them were clearly indígenas. I just walked away. I didn't know what to do or tell them. I know that my local orchid society warns us against buying wild orchids, because that will only cause people to collect more and more wild orchids to sell. I feel bad for the indígenas, cause they're only trying to make a living selling something that a lot of people crave (and most of them are living in extreme poverty). But I feel really angry that they're slowly driving a lot of Mexican orchids to extinction. Do you have similar problems in your country? What is your government doing? What should I do the next time I see something like that happen again?
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  #2  
Old 06-02-2018, 10:46 PM
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I'm not a social worker, you're probably not a social worker and indigenous people are caught in a tough spot.

If it wouldn't offend, I would give them $2 (or whatever) and tell them it is to preserve their heritage. It may be naive to think that will save a plant but someone at someplace at sometime might think it important.
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  #3  
Old 06-03-2018, 05:42 AM
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First thing is to put your feelings in check. They have no place in a situation which first and foremost concerns legalities. Next, learn and understand the pertinent laws. If the activities are again at the law, your course of action should be to notify the proper authorities. But what should you do if someone is legally selling something you don't think they should sell? Interfering in lawful activity can get you into legal trouble.
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  #4  
Old 06-03-2018, 07:58 PM
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Consider contacting the president of the municipality or ejido, and talking to him about the rare plants in his territory. There are other ejidos and municipalities throughout México who are protecting rare plants. Other indigenous people arrange eco-tours to see the plants and animals, and this usually brings in more money than taking out the plants and selling them for a few pesos.

I have seen Dioon caputoi growing on an ejido in Puebla. The people guard the plants and sometimes take visitors to see the plant. I have also seen Dioon rzedowskii in habitat in San Bartolomé Ayautla. I went to the president and asked to see the plants. He told me I would need to be accompanied by two police officers and I would need to hire them as guides. I was happy to do so, and I saw the plant in a very beautiful locality. On the way I noticed some other rare plants. I talked to the police officers at length about the plants growing in their municipality, and how it would be good to protect them for the future.

Your orchid society might also consider establishing contacts with a number of muncipalities and ejidos on which rare orchids grow. The society could take tours to see the plants, guided by the indigenous people.
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  #5  
Old 06-03-2018, 09:11 PM
marcmaubert marcmaubert is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Subrosa View Post
First thing is to put your feelings in check. They have no place in a situation which first and foremost concerns legalities. Next, learn and understand the pertinent laws. If the activities are again at the law, your course of action should be to notify the proper authorities. But what should you do if someone is legally selling something you don't think they should sell? Interfering in lawful activity can get you into legal trouble.
It is illegal to sell wild orchids in Mexico, I should have notified the authorities. Next time I'll know better.

---------- Post added at 08:11 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:07 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by estación seca View Post
Consider contacting the president of the municipality or ejido, and talking to him about the rare plants in his territory. There are other ejidos and municipalities throughout México who are protecting rare plants. Other indigenous people arrange eco-tours to see the plants and animals, and this usually brings in more money than taking out the plants and selling them for a few pesos.

I have seen Dioon caputoi growing on an ejido in Puebla. The people guard the plants and sometimes take visitors to see the plant. I have also seen Dioon rzedowskii in habitat in San Bartolomé Ayautla. I went to the president and asked to see the plants. He told me I would need to be accompanied by two police officers and I would need to hire them as guides. I was happy to do so, and I saw the plant in a very beautiful locality. On the way I noticed some other rare plants. I talked to the police officers at length about the plants growing in their municipality, and how it would be good to protect them for the future.

Your orchid society might also consider establishing contacts with a number of muncipalities and ejidos on which rare orchids grow. The society could take tours to see the plants, guided by the indigenous people.
That's a great idea! I think my local orchid society already something like that in a small scale, but I think we can do a lot better.
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Old 06-03-2018, 09:16 PM
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Call the cops? Brutal.
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  #7  
Old 06-03-2018, 09:25 PM
marcmaubert marcmaubert is offline
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Call the cops? Brutal.
Owww... stop making me doubt myself. Maybe a stern warning?
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  #8  
Old 06-04-2018, 07:48 AM
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Did you ask how they got them?

It's possible that they went around in an area being cleared for development and collected the plants off of downed trees. If that was the case - illegal or not - I'd have bought them.

In any case, I think that the next time you see them, you should point out the legal issues with their activity.
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  #9  
Old 06-04-2018, 12:41 PM
marcmaubert marcmaubert is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray View Post
Did you ask how they got them?

It's possible that they went around in an area being cleared for development and collected the plants off of downed trees. If that was the case - illegal or not - I'd have bought them.

In any case, I think that the next time you see them, you should point out the legal issues with their activity.
Well, it is possible. Thank you for the advice, next time I'll try to have a full conversation with them about where they got them, why it is wrong to sell them and how they could help preserve the orchids and make money like ES suggested.
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