Picture this scene....you have to reach your goal. Your goal is a body of water over a mile away. Getting to this water is essential to your survival. In your struggle to reach this objective you will be going through hostile territory hunted by enemies 100 times your size. You will have no cover or protection. You could be discovered at any moment and destroyed.The terrain is difficult, and .....you will have to crawl.
Is this the new setting to a video game? No, this is the life of the baby sea turtle trying to climb from the nest where he was born and reach the ocean to survive. One of Tropic Joe's projects is to help these vulnerable creatures succeed in their missions.
The Sea Turtle Protection Project is taking place on the coastlines of Costa Rica with special concentrations in Papagayo, Playa Langosta, and Otional.
If allowed to live out their natural life in peace the three species of sea turtles can have a long life span. However, because of the serious obstacles facing these beautiful creatures, only one out of every 1000 baby turtle is able to reach adulthood and reproduce.
One of the largest obstacles for them is man and his greed. Each year hundreds of poachers dig up countless thousands of precious eggs and sell them. Because of this illegal practice many beaches that have been the homes of the turtles for countless centuries are now barren of turtles. And, where once there were tens of thousands of beaches in Costa Rica used by the sea turtles there are now approximately only 300 left.
This is where Tropic Joe and you come in. Tropic Joe´s Rangers are working with the Association of Volunteers for the Protection of National Parks in Costa Rica (ASVO) to protect the remaining 300 beaches. The work being done by the Tropic Joe Volunteers is amazing. They patrol the beaches,search for nests, protect the eggs, weigh and tag turtles, and maintain a vigilance agaist predators. While the greatest predator is man with the destruction of beach property and installation of damaging artificial lights (artificial lights hinder turtle reproduction), there are also natural predators. These include vultures, raccoons, pizote (similar to the anteater), and jaguars.
Each volunteer in this area works with an ASVO leader with experience in sea turtle protection. After receiving training, the volunteer is then sent to work in other locations along the coast. Tropic Joe also provides additional volunteers during the critical months when more turtles arrive to lay eggs. These volunteers stay and guard the turtle eggs while they hatch to help ensure a larger number of hatchlings make it to the sea. Over time this will increase the number of adult turtles returning to these same beaches where the populations are dwindling. All of this activity is recorded by pictures and notes for scientific research.
As this is an ongoing project, we need your continual support. Here´s how you can help:
1) Make a direct donation earmarked for the Sea Turtle Protection Project. For example, just a $25 tax deductible donation would help pay for several of these protection pens as pictured here. These little nurseries can mean the difference in a sea turtle surviving or not.
2) You can volunteer your time as a Tropic Joe´s Ranger during a Volunteer Vacation.
3)Make a purchase of any of Tropic Joe's merchandise and a portion of the profits go to sustain projects like this.
4)Help make others aware of this important project! Send this page to a friend!