6/3/15 The Guardian
A Mexican congressional candidate was shot dead in a town bordering the capital on Tuesday, becoming the fourth politician to be slain ahead of Sunday’s midterm elections.
Miguel Angel Luna, a former mayor of Valle de Chalco in the state of Mexico south-east of Mexico City, was attacked by armed men at his campaign office, according to a statement from his Democratic Revolution party. Luna died shortly afterward at a hospital. An assistant was wounded.
A judge in the violent Mexican state of Michoacan has ordered that a jailed vigilante leader involved in a firefight late last year that killed 10 people should be freed, a spokeswoman for the state judiciary said on Monday. Hipolito Mora and his followers clashed in mid-December with a band led by Luis Antonio Torres, alias “El Americano,” a former vigilante leader turned rural police commander. The shootout took place in La Ruana, a town about 150 miles (240 km) from Morelia, the state capital. Both men and 35 others were arrested in January and they have been behind bars ever since. Mora’s son was among the 10 killed in the shootout.
By Mark Stevenson, 1/27/2015
The number of Monarch butterflies that reached wintering grounds in Mexico has rebounded 69 percent from last year’s lowest-on-record levels, but their numbers remain very low, according to the World Wildlife Fund.
Last year, the Monarchs covered only 1.65 acres (0.67 hectares), the smallest area since record-keeping began in 1993.
This year, the butterflies rebounded, to cover 2.79 acres (1.13 hectares), according to a formal census by Mexican environmental authorities and scientists released Tuesday.
ABC News, 1/22/2015
Security envoy Alfredo Castillo will be replaced by an army general, Felipe Gurrola, who will play a more limited role leading federal security forces in Michoacan, a largely agricultural state known for its limes and avocados but also social unrest and drug gang violence.
Huffington Post, 1/20/2015
MEXICO CITY — Forty years ago the winter habitat of the monarch butterfly in Mexico was supposedly discovered. After searching for decades, on January 9, 1975 the Canadian scientist Fred A. Urquhart, an entomologist at the University of Toronto’s Scarborough College, received a phone call from an American living in Mexico City named Kenneth Brugger, married at the time to Mexican-born Cathy Aguado (known today as Catalina Trail), who told him that “We have located the colony. We have found them — millions of monarchs — in evergreens beside a mountain clearing.”
The “discovery” had taken place a week earlier in northern Michoacan, in an oyamel forest on Cerro Pelon, 10,000 feet up in the mountains of Mexico’s Transvolcanic Belt, and a few days later the Bruggers happened upon other monarch roosts at El Rosario and Chincua. The Bruggers were volunteer “research associates” in Urquhart’s longstanding monarch tagging program, in which tiny labels reading “Send to Zoology University Toronto Canada” were stuck onto thousands of southbound migrating butterflies.