On The Ground Update: Huanchaco World Surfing Reserve

Huanchaco WSR is building climate resilience by restoring totora ponds. Totora is a reed that grows in coastal ponds and has been used for thousands of years to make one of the earliest surf crafts called caballito de totora. The caballito de totora is known as one of the earliest surf crafts when coastal fishermen used these vessels made from the totora plant to fish and also surf back to shore. The fishermen of Huanchaco still grow and depend on totora to practice their traditional livelihoods. Many of these ponds have been lost over the years to development and coastal erosion.

Supported by the Save The Waves Stewardship Fund the World Surfing Reserves project has created and restored 28 totora ponds in Haunchaco covering 3,000 cubic meters. Utilizing the ancient tradition of the caballito de totora Huanchaco is protecting their surf ecosystems for future generations. To track the impact of the pond restorations the WSR will gather data through the STW App and monthly drone flights.These totora ponds are a nature-based solution to the current and future impacts of climate change as rising seas and coastal erosion impact beaches globally. Utilizing traditional ecological knowledge and the wisdom found in nature, the Huanchaco WSR has created a local solution to protect their waves and surf ecosystem in perpetuity. 

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