The volunteers are in charge of conserving three different species of sea turtles, such as Kemp's ridley sea turtle
( known as Lora), Green and Hawksbill. These last two are in danger of extinction.
- Rural Development Institute photos -
Published Wednesday, November 18, 2020
$11,000-plus donated to turtle
protection volunteers in Golfito
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
Volunteers from the Punta Banco Community Association, in Golfito Canton, Puntarenas Province, received $11,112 in donations, announced the Rural Development Institute, Inder.
According to Harys Regidor, president of the institute, because the patrolling that the volunteers must do is extensive, the donation included the purchase of 8 bicycles, implements for the conservation of turtles, three computers, a projector, tools and supplies for the construction of new turtle nurseries.
“Helping a small newborn turtle reach the ocean for the first time, is an experience that every person should have in life," Paola Carrillo, vice president of the Association said. "That is why we are here, to support turtle conservation."
The association was created in 2004 by a group of community residents concerned about the looting of turtle eggs, the indiscriminate hunting of this animal, and at the same time, looking to develop an activity that generates income for the volunteers.
The volunteers are in charge of conserving three different species of sea turtles, such as Kemp's ridley sea turtle ( known as Lora), Green and Hawksbill. These last two are in danger of extinction.
The turtles arrive every year to reproduce, starting in June and until January of the following year. During this period the volunteers are in charge of the protection of the nests, and later the release of the baby turtles.
The members of the Association are 50 volunteers from the community, who were trained by biologists from the Ministry of the Environment for the care of turtles. They are in charge of patrolling more than 10 kilometers along the beach every night, to locate the turtle's nests and transfer them to the nurseries. There the eggs are monitored during the incubation period which is between 40 and 45 days. After that, the turtles are released onto the beach.
However, according to expert data, only one in every thousand released turtles manages to survive, reach adulthood and start the reproduction cycle. This organization, in the last seven years, has released about 200,000 turtles, said the institute.
Also, volunteers are paid $10 to locate and transport the eggs to the hatcheries. Just the previous year, the association generated $13,000 through donation collection activities such as the Turtle Festival, sale of t-shirts, donations from foreign foundations, bingo halls, among others.
The donation was given through the Institute's Food Safety and Production Promotion program. People interested in knowing more about the donations program should contact the institute at (506) 2247-7400.
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