|Native name: Spanish: Isla del Tiburón or Isla Tiburón; Seri: Tahejöc|
Location of Tiburón Island
|Location||Gulf of California|
|Area||1,201 km2 (463.7 sq mi)|
Tiburón Island (Spanish: Isla del Tiburón or Isla Tiburón; is both the largest island in the Gulf of California and the largest island in Mexico, with an area of 464 sq mi (1,200 km2). It was made a nature reserve in 1963 by President Adolfo López Mateos. Tiburón is Spanish for shark. Although the Seri name was first recorded by Alphonse Pinart in 1879, its etymology is unknown.
Tiburón Island is part of the state of Sonora, as well as the municipality of Hermosillo, and is located at approximately the same latitude as the city of Hermosillo. It is located along the eastern shore of the Gulf of California, opposite Isla Ángel de la Guarda. It is part of the chain of islands known as the Midriff Islands or Islas Grandes.
Tiburón Island is part of the traditional homeland of some bands (or clans) of the Seri people, probably for many centuries if not millennia. In 1975 the Mexican government, through a decree by President Echeverría, gave the Seris recognition and title of communal property ("reconocimiento y titulación de terrenos comunales") with respect to Tiburón Island.
The island is presently uninhabited (except for a military installation on the eastern side of the island) and is administered as an ecological preserve by the Seri tribal government, in conjunction with the federal government. Bighorn sheep were introduced to the island a few years ago; hunting permits are highly restricted. It is also home to a subspecies of Coyote (Canis latrans jamesi) that is found no where but the island.
The island can be reached from Punta Chueca, which is the nearest community, inhabited by members of the Seri tribe, and from Bahía de Kino, a (non-Indian) community 34 km (21 mi) to the south. The distance from Punta Chueca to Punta Tormenta, the nearest point on the island is 3 km (1.9 mi). The channel between the mainland and the island is called Canal del Infiernillo ("Hell's Channel"), due to the strong tidal currents and shoal water that occur there, which can make for challenging navigation. The island has a prominent mountain system of volcanic origin.
Two permits are currently required for day hiking and overnight stays on the island: one from the Seri Governor's office in Punta Chueca and another from the ISLAS office in Bahía de Kino. In 2012 a television episode of Survivorman Ten Days (Les Stroud) was filmed on Tiburón Island.
- Geography of island
- Comisión de Desarrollo de la Tribu Seri. (1976) Tribus de Sonora: Los seris. Hermosillo, Sonora.
- Pinart, Alphonse. 1879. [Vocabulary of the Seri] Manuscript. Bureau of American Ethnology collection, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. [Locator number in the Smithsonian: NAA MS 1146 , where the name “D. A. Tenechio” [sic] is used, with A. Pinart as co-creator.] ms.
- Moser, Edward W. (1963) "Seri Bands". The Kiva 28.3:14–27. (online Spanish version)
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