May 22, 2012

Catemaco Crocodiles

Republished from January 2009,
because I saw a bunch of crocs at Nanciyaga the other day. But none on their menu.
Also saw a live one at Laguna Amolapan (see link below) and I have photos from visitors with some huge crocs around Las Margaritas.

As you lazily float on Laguna Catemaco on your way to visit monkey behinds, consider that there are crocodiles (Crocodylus moreletii)  in the lake. The last time anyone officially counted them, there were 5 in 2002.

Crocodile fat and oil is supposed to be a reliever of bronchial problems when rubbed over the neck and chest. Local healers say it works best when you catch your own croc. Crocodile tails are delicious when sauteed and taste somewhat like chicken.Guess why there are no more crocs in the laguna?

Nanciyaga, the ecological disney world of Los Tuxtlas, has a small crocodile breeding facility. Nobody knows what happens to the hatched eggs, because as said above, there only supposedly remain 5 swimming free.

The nearby Laguna Nixtamalapan supposedly was previously used as a crocodile experimental farm and had as many as 40 of these delicious critters. The same counter in 2002 reported 8 remaining, and rumors of a woman having been eaten. On a personal climb down to the laguna, I saw none, probably because a neighboring gravel mine has destroyed the lake's environment..

En 1995 Casas reporta 40 individuos para la laguna de Nixtamalapan Veracruz, una población de más de 20 individuos en el lago de Catemaco, y menciona que hay otras poblaciones no estimadas en Nanciyaga y Catemaco...Pérez-Higareda (1989) señala que en la Laguna de Nixtamalapan, Veracruz viven 36 cocodrilos de Morelet adultos (14 machos y 22 hembras), de los cuales 24 (14 machos y 10 hembras) ya se encontraban ahí, los 12 restantes se introdujeron en 1986 para balancear los sexos (1 macho por 2 hembras al menos), no se conoce el número de juveniles porque es difícil observarlos, al menos se sabe de 12. Gracias a ocho años de estudios por investigadores de la estación biológica tropical Los Tuxtlas, la laguna de Nixtmalapan en Veracruz de 4 has, es ahora una reserva natural para la protección, la cría y el estudio de los cocodrilos así como un ejemplo de conservación y ha creado entre la población una actitud de respeto hacia los cocodrilos (UNAM 1992). Conabio

a local croc delivered to Dematac to be released who knows where

A user, affectionally called "Fool on the Hill" made this comment:
Laguna Amolapan was used as an experimental croc farm, not Nixtamalapan. They screwed up, or did not know the correct name – common occurrence. I was there, dude. In ’86 – and after. I helped unload crocs. I loaned ‘em a canoe. They even had a f’ing sign. Don’t tell me, pinche gringo newcomer. They are also wrong for ’95; there were not 40 individuos then. Somebody doctored the books.

Also see: Laguna Amolapan in Spanish -

May 15, 2012

Catemaco's Carlos Fuentes

Carlos Fuentes, Mexico's Panama born author died today. 
His novel "The years with Laura Diaz" is partially set in Catemaco. His grandmother was born in Catemaco to a German/Mexican couple and his great aunt, Marìa Boettiger, also born in Catemaco, is the area's best known poet.

Read his obituary:
Read the book:

May 14, 2012

The Puntiagudo Cross in Catemaco

Looks like the Olmecs are back in Catemaco.
Without official support, appparently hundreds of local citizens are joining to construct a new cross atop Cerro Puntiagudo. 
You can see more photos and text in Spanish here:

May 9, 2012

World’s Largest Tegogolo Cocktail

republished from july 27, 2006
Sitting here in beautiful soaked downtown Catemaco I am thinking of what could make Catemaco more famous.

The World´s largest Tegogolo Cocktail, better known as THE WORLD’S LARGEST FRESH WATER SNAIL COCKTAIL.

Judging by the Guinness Book of Records, at present there are absolutely no entries in that category.

So, we would not want to insult them by serving one of those miniature cups served on the Malecon. Instead, we could use theabondoned garbage dump on the Coatzacoalcos entrance to Catemaco.

The surroundings could be cleaned up, the circular repositary could be filled with a plastic liner from Lopez Miranda, and the Maxacapan crowd could be urged to provide Tegogolos at wholesale prices. Around 200 kilos should do (maybe 450 pounds). Since tegogolos are supposed to be aphrodisacs, that quantity is just enough to give an erection to the state of Veracruz.

500 US dollars publicity via REUTERS or YAHOO would possibly attract thousands of erection seekers to Catemaco.

Hotels and the carretera whore houses would flourish. Brujos would flinch because they never promoted the substance.

And hopefully, all those tegogolos would have gotten big and fat after eating all the effluent discharging from the Catemaco sewer lines which at present lead directly into Laguna Catemaco.

Reference: How do I become a Guiness world record holder?