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Jul 31, 2007

Park rangers honoured by Audubon Society

Story PictureIt may not be marked on your calendar but today is being observed as the first annual World Ranger Day. That’s ranger as in park ranger, and in Belize the Belize Audubon Society, manager of nine protected areas, is taking the lead in honouring its own twenty-four park rangers as well as others. Singled out for accolades is Ignacio Pop, the nation’s oldest ranger, who has worked in the field for over thirty years, primarily at the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary. While we could not be with Ignacio today, we did manage to catch up with him almost twenty years ago, when he showed Jackie Gray of Belize All Over, how to call a jaguar.

Jackie Gray
“Ignacio, what are you doing?”

Ignacio Pop, Park Ranger
“Well, I’m making a sound like a jaguar, so that if a jaguar is walking close by, anytime he hear this he can say it’s a next one, so that he can come and see if it’s a jaguar.”

Jackie Gray
“So you take it out on the trail with you … and you just sit and?”

Ignacio Pop
“Just sit at one spot and…” [Makes noise]

Jackie Gray
“How do they make that?”

Ignacio Pop
“Well they make it with a gourd. This is a gourd, and they cut to the bottom and then they put a leather, a skin, an agouti skin. You can use agouti skin and antelope skin and the brocket deer skin. And in there, they put this, so that it could sound good.”

Jackie Gray
“And what is this here?”

Ignacio Pop
“This is a horse-tail here which they cut and they connect it to the back here, and they put a wax around it, so that when you pull it so, it makes a sound like a jaguar.”

Jackie Gray
”Oh, can I try?”

Ignacio Pop
“sure”
Jackie Gray
“You pull it from the top?”

Ignacio Pop
“Yes”

[Jackie makes noise with gourd]

The question, of course, is why anyone would want to call a jaguar and what you would do if one actually showed up.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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