To adopt a turtle, click here: http://www.corcovadofoundation.org/adopt-a-turtle.html
To find out more about how adoption helps to protect endangered sea turtles, read on…
People who visit the Sea Turtle Conservation Program in Drake Bay often ask us, ‘how can you tell whether what you are doing is making a difference?’, to which we have to confess that we simply won’t know for perhaps another 20 years. This is because sea turtles are long-lived and slow to mature, and the 55,000 Olive Ridley hatchlings that we have released so far at the program may take some 15-20 years to become sexually mature, at which point we should start to see increased numbers returning to Drake Bay to nest. We have good reason to be hopeful though, since the future is finally starting to look bright again for sea turtles in the Atlantic, thanks to the superhuman efforts of conservationists and environmentalists over the last 30 years.
First the bad news though. The situation in the Pacific Ocean is pretty desperate for sea turtles, since the numbers of Olive Ridley, Leatherback, Green and Hawksbill turtles are all in decline. Nesting Leatherbacks have all but disappeared from East Asia, and there remains essentially only one beach in the Pacific where significant numbers still come to nest – Playa Grande in Costa Rica – the last bastion for this epic prehistoric giant in the Pacific. This tiny strip of beach currently constitutes the Leatherback National Park (Parque Nacional Las Baulas), but it lies precariously in the shadow of real estate developers who would love to convert this pristine wilderness into a haven for tourists, like neighboring Playa Tamarindo; and so the future of the Leatherback, like all other Pacific sea turtles, hangs in the balance. The continued protection of nesting beaches offered by conservation programs, such as that of the Corcovado Foundation in Drake Bay, is absolutely critical.
The story is quite different in Atlantic Ocean where some sea turtle programs, such as the Tortuguero National Park in Costa Rica, have been running for several decades. Through a combination of the unfaltering effort of conservationists on nesting beaches and the enforced implementation of new ‘smart’ fishing gear, such as Turtle Excluder Devices and circular long-line hooks, some Atlantic sea turtle populations are now increasing exponentially! This includes that of the Kemp’s Ridley turtle in the Gulf of Mexico, whose numbers had fallen into the hundreds in the 1980s and was thought to be on the brink of extinction. There is no reason why this demonstrable success cannot be emulated in the Pacific too; but, time is not on our side, and we need to act right now! Here is how you can help:
Adopting a sea turtle is a wonderful way to lend your support to the conservation effort in Drake Bay and protect an endangered species, and it makes a perfect gift for a friend or loved one. Every year we register hundreds of female Olive Ridley turtles coming to nest in Drake Bay that do not have identification tags and who desperately need a name! By adopting one of these turtles you get the chance to give her a name that will stick with her forever, and you will be kept up to date will her story whenever we see her or whenever one of her nests hatches during the 2012 season.
Your donation will help to create sustainable conservation jobs for the community by paying for training and salaries for local contracted staff. It will also help to support the core team of biologists at the camp and will provide desperately needed cash to replace and maintain vital conservation equipment. Your donation will also support our environmental education and ecotourism initiatives in the region and will enable the program to become more self-sufficient, emulating the success of programs such as Tortuguero and SOS Tartarugas in Cape Verde who have become 100% sustainable through ecotourism. But most of all your donation will ensure that the nests left by your adopted turtle will be protected from illegal egg poaching, and that the maximum number of her hatchlings will make it safely into the sea.
Please follow this link to find out how you can adopt your very own endangered sea turtle and support the Sea Turtle Conservation Program in Drake Bay, Costa Rica.
Thanks for your support!
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