Interview With a Biologist in Cerro Chincua
By Blake School students.
Q. What is your name?
A. My name is Benigno Salazar Martinez.
Q. What do you do in your work?
A. It consists of the conservation of the habitat of the monarch butterflies. He works towards the restoration of land and soil erosion and addressing the needs of the communities.
Q. What is the most difficult part of you work?
A. It is hard to get a lot of the things done here. It is hard to change the attitudes of the owners of the forests regarding the conservation of the monarch butterflies. The people do not have any money and are tired. To help in this conservation the people need to be educated first for them to be able to help.
Q. What do you like most about your work?
A. Everything! It is good work. I like the region, and the mystery of the of the monarch migration. It's fantastic and is good for Mexico.
Q. What did you need to study to reach your level of profession?
A. I studied six years in elementary school, three years in secondary school, three years in high school and four years training at the University at Morelos in Cuernavaca. I would like to study towards a master's degree or a doctorate, but I would have to look for a scholarship. I believe that knowledge is derived from good training and preparation. I prefer to always be studying.
Q. Do you have a family here in Angangueo?
A. No. I was born in Cuernavaca in the state of Morelos. My parents have ten children and all of them went to school.
Q. What are some factors that impede your work with the monarch butterflies or in the communities?
A. The politics, the climate, economic resources, rain and hail and economic problems impede my work.
Q. What do you see for the future of the monarch butterflies in Mexico?
A. The death of the monarch butterflies would produce a great imbalance in nature. For example, the monarch butterfly is a great pollinator of plants and the birds eat the plants that the butterflies pollinate. But, there is some good news- The number of monarch butterflies has increased from the first count of 120 million to 162 million in the last count.
Q. What do you think about the Internet and do you think it is something important in the conservation of the monarch?
A. Yes, it is very important. Right now we are able to communicate with the whole world about the situation and about conservation. It can become another resource base and contribute to education. Also, the messages are very fast.