Conservation at El Doradillo, María Cabrera Leading the Head

María Cabrera is the head of Conservation of the Protected Natural Area El Doradillo
Since 2005, María Cabrera is the head of Conservation of the Protected Natural Area El Doradillo. During the shore whale watching season peak from these privileged beaches, we take the opportunity to have a conversation with her.


What is the Protected Area El Doradillo all about?
The aim of creating a protected natural area at El Doradillo is to achieve the preservation of a truly magical place in time, not only for us here and now, but for future generations. It is necessary to create these vast stretches of preserved areas to restrict the fierce depredation we human beings are inflicting on unprotected areas.
Whale watching from the Protected Area El Doradillo
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This protected area was created by the Municipality of Puerto Madryn in 2001, and 2 years later, a management plan was drafted stating goals to carry out actions for preserving its biodiversity and natural resources, providing education, and offering services and equipment for visitors' public use.
During the Whale Watching Season, we are continually visited by the local media, as well as by provincial and national media, where we have the great responsibility of spreading the news on this wonderful place in the most serious way. We are the ‘visible face’ from El Doradillo.
She coordinates a team of local park rangers, who are in charge of carrying out field tasks, mainly controlling and supervising, educating on environmental basics, and informing visitors during the whole year.
ANP El Doradillo Facebook pageThis year, we are delighted to celebrate the 10 years of this program of environmental education with a photo contest. This sustained program is carried out by the Municipality of Puerto Madryn, and it is participative, as it includes voluntary students from high-school 728, who take part in recreational activities for children on the beach and are the tourist guides in charge of providing information during bus trips towards El Doradillo, and afterwards, of creating experiences with children for them to enjoy the wonderful behavior of whales in full reproductive period, and the environment in general. Each and every opportunity is taken.

Southern Mountain Cavy – The Rodent from El Doradillo
While the center of attention is the presence of whales, we take interpretative walks where we lecture about the flora, the birds, the southern mountain cavy, and we also share good environmental practices. We promote the importance of not leaving waste materials in the protected area, of not using local vegetation to make fire, and of taking care of dunes and beaches. We also underline the significance of respecting paths and of caring about a place as vulnerable as the Patagonic desert, where the human imprint immediately makes a mark.

 Patagonic Piche
 Patagonic Piche 
Creating environmental awareness in 4th grade children is the ultimate goal. During educational sessions at schools, we provide information on different topics, such as conservation and protected areas, tourism, steppe fauna and flora, biology of the southern right whale, and a specially dedicated approach on El Doradillo. With the intention of drawing the local community closer to the values El Doradillo holds as a protected area, since locals are the most frequent visitors to the different beaches, mainly in summer, we consider it significant to convey those values and to spread them among Puerto Madryn children.

educational sessions at schools

‘Getting to know the place helps to preserve it as it is. We promote the place for the general public, as well as for the local community, so that they can own El Doradillo and take it dear to their heart, and decide to preserve it themselves.’




Some time ago, I worked with a team of Patagonic referents, specialists in managing protected areas regarding ISO Standards for public use in protected areas.

 Protected Area El Doradillo
Last year, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) selected El Doradillo as the venue for a specific workshop addressed to Latin American and Caribbean referents in protected areas. It was an intensive one-week workshop featuring very prominent lecturers where we all learned a lot and shared experiences. At the end, we worked in groups and drafted proposals for public use, which now have been adopted in El Doradillo with a view to improving services for visitors without negatively impacting on the conservation of the place.

Whale watching from shore in El Doradillo Protected Area
These days, we are working with the national system for tourist quality of the National Ministry of Tourism to enhance quality in each and every process we implement in managing the protected area. We have already attained distinction in management guidelines, and we now head towards revalidating such guidelines and gaining the national award for quality. Receiving and assisting scientists who do research in El Doradillo is also part of our job. When I began to work, my office was the field itself. I spent my whole day collecting and sorting data, taking photos and talking to people, both in winter and in summer – either warmly equipped, or shrinking into the shadows. Always with the management plan in hand, looking for ways to fit the area out for visitors, while trying to minimize all impacts to the least. We also keep statistical records that serve us as input for planning.

ANP El Doradillo Facebook page

María reminds us that the Puerto Madryn Secretary of Tourism is launching the photo contest to celebrate 10 years of ‘Madryn Children Welcome Whales’ in which all children who attended the educational program since 2004 to 2013 can take part. The rules are simple, and available at ANP El Doradillo Facebook page.
Del Nomade Eco Friendly Hotel
We will gladly answer your question
 😀
Del Nomade Eco Hotel whatsapp
+54 92804635649
Hotel booking on line Puerto piramides Valdes Peninsula
Send an email to:
info@ecohosteria.com.arWe will respond promptly.
Thank You
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