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Audubon Society issues annual conservation award

Posted: Tuesday, February 20, 2018. 11;35 a.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: The Belize Audubon Society, in honor of exemplary conservation efforts in Belize, has awarded Roni Martinez with the prestigious James A. Waight Conservation Award.

The award, named after the Society’s first president, is given annually on the anniversary of his birthday, February 16th, to organizations or individuals in recognition of outstanding work in the protection and enhancement of Belize’s environment.

The Audubon Society presented Martinez with the award at a ceremony held last Friday at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza. Martinez, who was nominated for the award by both the Caves Branch Lodge and the San Pedro Sun, is a botanist, birder, wildlife photographer, trainer, teacher, advocate of sustainable tourism, and researcher.

Martinez, who is a Belizean bird guide by profession, is also one of two founders of Scarlet Six Bio-monitoring Team (now known as Belize Bird Conservancy), which was formed as an effort to protect Belize’s Scarlet Macaw from the illegal pet trade.

In accepting the award Martinez said: “We are all responsible for each other and for our environment if we don’t individually do it then who will? If we don’t protect the environment and train the younger generation to do so, then who will?”

He went on to encourage all conservationists in their respective fields to ensure that their efforts can be used as inspiration for others to make a difference.

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