Saturday, August 3, 2013

View of Playa Grande, and a comment about turtle conservation

This is a closer telephoto view of Playa Grande, across the mouth of the Tamarindo Estuary.  The protection of the endangered Pacific Leatherback turtles who travel from the Galapagos Islands to nest here is critical.

There was a controversy recently because a person who was convicted of poaching turtle eggs was convicted, but the Judge reduced the sentence so that the man has to serve only 3 years of probation, without any jail time.   The person was arrested with 200 turtle eggs.  Conservation groups have bee pressuring the government to take stronger action against poachers.

Taking turtle eggs is illegal throughout all of Costa Rica except for a stretch of beach in Ostional, which is in our region of Guanacaste in northwest Costa Rica.  An agreement between the government and local citizens in that area allows about 200 people to harvest and sell turtle eggs from one part of the beach in exchange for the locals protecting the remaining 7 km of beach in that area.  The turtles who nest in that area are olive ridley turtles, which are not endangered.  In fact, they lay about 10 million eggs each year in our region.

The locals in Ostional are complaining, however, that the public campaign against poachers and to promote protection of sea turtles is also causing people not to buy the turtle eggs that they legally harvest and try to sell.

My niece is finishing up her Ph.D. in Marine Biology, and she got a fellowship to spend a year researching how turtle conservation programs are impacting local populations in various parts of the world.

This week we are showing photos from Cabra Castle, a castle-hotel northwest of Dublin Ireland, on our Viva la Voyage travel photo site.

7 comments:

JM said...

Great information, Dave.

Lowell said...

One of the problems along Florida's east coast is not only that people steal or destroy turtle eggs but that the wee turtles see the lights of the buildings and instead of heading for the sea, head for the lights and the roads and get run over.

Kate said...

I've watched the turtles return to the sea in Mazatlán, México, and it's a thrilling sight. I would love to read your nieces study when she is finished. Important work.

Sharon said...

I guess it could be a bit confusing but, I would think that locals would understand the difference.

Judy said...

I can't imagine why anyone would destroy the eggs but I don't doubt that they do.

Jack said...

A fine educational post, Dave. Conservation issues are usually a lot more complicated that they at first appear.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

It seems that whatever arrangements are made there is always a good and bad side to the situation, not just on this one Dave but in many other areas. What a wonderful career path your niece has chosen, will be interesting to see what she discovers..

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...