Costa Rican Sea Turtles

Expedition Briefing

 

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The Research

The project began in 1988–89 with the goal of protecting and monitoring the population of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) that nested within Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas. The leatherback turtle is the largest of all the sea turtles, growing up to lengths of 3 meters (9 feet) , and can weigh as much as 916 kilograms (2,020 pounds). The leatherback turtle received its name from its carapace (shell) that, unlike other sea turtles, is made of leathery skin, not bone. Leatherback turtles are found in all the oceans of the world except for the polar oceans.

When the project began, and before the establishment of Parque National Marino Las Baulas almost all of the leatherback nests laid within its boundaries were poached by humans who removed the eggs for consumption. Poaching was effectively eliminated in the early 1990s with the establishment of Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas, but a number of other threats to the survival of the leatherback turtles have now arisen, including: incidental capture by commercial fisheries (Roe et al. 2014), boat strikes, predation of nests by invasive dogs and raccoons, and climate change (Santidrián Tomillo et al. 2012, Saba et al. 2012). In addition, leatherbacks frequently ingest plastic bags as they look deceptively like their main food sources: jellyfish. At this project, we continually strive to discover and implement new methods to eliminate and/or mitigate the threats faced by the leatherback turtles in the Eastern Pacific Ocean. Since 2010, we have expanded the scope of our program to also include the East Pacific green (Chelonia mydas) and olive ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea) turtles that nest alongside the leatherback turtles in Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas.

Research Aims

On this project, the researchers study the population status, nesting ecology, and in-water behavior of sea turtles and assess the impacts of human activities on these species. Understanding their population status and nesting ecology has been integral to protecting their nesting beaches. In addition, identifying their migration routes and the effects of fisheries has been critical to the development of international treaties and conservation management strategies. We aim to inform and improve all conservation management strategies for Eastern Pacific sea turtles by continually uncovering more about the secret lives of these majestic animals.

This research has been instrumental in establishing and maintaining the Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas and the Goldring-Gund Marine Biology Field Station. Additionally, it led to a management plan for the entire area that impacts all land development and water use. This national park is now being used as a model for beach protection and preservation in Costa Rica and throughout Central America. In addition, we are part of the Laúd OPO network (savepacificleatherbacks.org) and collaborate with all countries in the eastern Pacific to protect leatherback turtles throughout the region, both on the nesting beaches and in the ocean.

The team maintains a long-term database on the population biology and nesting ecology of leatherback turtles nesting on the beaches in the national park complex where you will work—one of the longest population datasets for sea turtles worldwide! Recent years have shown a dramatic decline in the number of nesting leatherbacks recorded, with some teams reporting zero throughout their time in the field (although they have seen other turtle species nesting). Scientists and policymakers need this information to understand impacts from poaching, fisheries by-catch, beach development and pollution over time. In addition, we now have enough years of data that we have been able to assess the impacts of climatic processes on the reproductive behavior and success of sea turtles. This information is critical to understanding how sea turtles will be affected by climate change. In addition, this information has led to current experiments conducted on the beach aiming to mitigate the adverse effects of the warming weather conditions on sea turtle nests, and help create an updated nest protection protocol that will be used as a model to other sea turtle projects as well.

The team also works to involve the local community in our research and conservation efforts. We run a program to educate school children on the benefits of turtles and the natural resources of the area. Further, we have both a “Lights out” and a “No straw, please” campaign going as we try to educate visitors and locals about threats turtles face due to environmentally harmful human practices. In Addition, we have created and supported local guide cooperatives, which provides income for several local families, as well as a cooperative of artisans who make and sell handicrafts created with renewable local resources.

We have helped foster a sustainable local economy that works in harmony with the management and protection of the Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas and the leatherback sea turtle, and they look forward to ushering you into the community.

How You Will Help

On the first day, you will be oriented on how to assist the scientists in working with the turtles on the beach. Informal presentations about the main project, other research projects, and need for conservation may be given during the evenings prior to the activities.

In the research portion of the project, you will be working mainly at night. Possible activities include the following:
  • Walking the beaches in search of nesting turtles and recording data on their nests. The number of leatherback, green, and ridley turtles seen per night varies. Typically participants will see anywhere from 1 to 5 turtles during walks, although it may happen that no turtles are seen at all during the night. During the 2019-2020 season, volunteers from each expedition did get to see turtles nesting (even if not always leatherbacks) and they got to help protect several turtle nests!
  • Collecting eggs from newly laid clutches in danger of tidal inundation or predation by mammals (especially raccoons) for relocation to the hatchery (depending on the season).
  • Assisting in scanning and reading the tags (PIT or metal depending on the species) of all nesting females and measuring their carapace length and width.
  • Counting eggs as the turtle lays them within the egg-chamber.
  • Helping to check each turtle for scars from boat-strikes or from interactions with fishing gear. If necessary, removing any hooks found.
Possible daytime activities include the following:
  • Walking the beaches at dawn to verify the number of nesting turtles from the night before (approximately 10 kilometers [6 miles]; 2 to 3 hours).
  • Taking nest temperatures and recording location of nests.
  • Carrying equipment and assisting in excavations of hatched nests to obtain data on hatching success.
  • Cleaning equipment, preparing tags, and packing for the next night’s activities, and possibly getting involved with other research projects, depending on the expedition.
  • Assisting with the local education program, which includes visits by schoolchildren to the beach and hatchery. These activities are strictly dependent on school schedule and timing. You will be informed upon arrival if such events are planned during your stay.

Life in the Field

PHOTOGRAPHY AND LIGHT POLICY

Research activities will mostly take place at night. Bright lights disturb sea turtles and disorient hatchlings, which can be deadly for them. Nesting females may return to the ocean without nesting, and young hatchlings may die from exhaustion and/or getting predated as a result of them not finding their way to the sea. These worries have caused many governments to impose very strict rules for light management on sea turtle nesting beaches.

The following rules apply to your expedition:

  • Photography is NOT allowed on nesting beaches at night. Therefore, cameras are NOT allowed on nesting beaches at night. This even includes cameras with high-speed film and no flash, as well as smart phones.
  • If you are interested in taking photos for a professional display, a government permit is required. These permits are difficult to obtain, expensive, and designed for large film crews. If you are interested in applying for such a permit you must contact us at least 45 days before the expedition.
  • The project staff creates a shared folder each year containing photos from the current season that they will happily share with you. Proper copyright acknowledgement must be given at all times.
  • Flashlights and headlamps: Only red light is allowed to be used on the beach at night. The project will supply you with a red filter for your light appropriate for beach work if you need one. To preserve the serenity of the nesting habitat, flashlights will only be used when necessary for research tasks, and cannot be used to aid in walking along the beach.

The restrictions mentioned above only apply during nighttime activities. Photographs can be taken during all daytime activities, including nest excavations and morning walks. There is also a small chance of seeing a daytime nesting turtle. If this happens, we thoroughly recommend that you bring your camera to this once-in-a-lifetime experience, keeping in mind that all photography needs to adhere to Park regulations (e.g. no selfies with the turtle allowed).

Alcohol Policy

It is the policy of the National Park that volunteers who have consumed ANY amount of alcohol* during the day cannot be permitted on the beach to participate in that evening’s turtle survey, for their safety and the safety of the turtles. Please respect this policy.

If you plan to join the evening survey, be sure not to consume any alcoholic beverages during the day—not even a single beer or glass of wine at lunch. If you do consume alcohol during the day, you will be ineligible to resume surveys until the next morning.

*Minors (under age 18) are prohibited from consuming any alcohol at all during the entire expedition as per local law and Earthwatch policy.

Itinerary

Weather and research needs can lead to changes in the daily schedule. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding.

  • Day 1: Arrival and Orientation—After meeting the team at the Goldring-Gund Marine Biology Field Station, the project staff members will introduce themselves and provide an orientation talk. They will guide you in what to expect regarding Park and field station regulations and rules, safety, eating arrangements, daytime activities, night work on the beach, and recreational time. That night the biologists will take you out on your first night patrol and hopefully you will see you first nesting sea turtle for the trip!
  • Days 2–8: Fieldwork—Work and activities will be posted at the station, and you will often work in small groups. An estimated schedule follows:
    • Night: We will spend around five or six hours on the beach per night, arriving three hours before high tide and staying for about three hours past high tide. With your team members, you will walk the beach, collecting data on each nesting female observed. From October to mid-December, we will relocate nests into the hatchery, and from mid-December to February, we monitor nests in the hatchery and then release the hatchlings after we see them emerge from the nest. Depending on the tide, we will leave the beach between 12:00 a.m. or 5:00 a.m. If necessary, the night work is completed in two shifts (7:00–12:00 and 12:00–5:00).
    • 5:30 a.m.–10:00 a.m.—Volunteers on morning beach surveys will leave around 5:00 a.m. You will walk up to 10 kilometers (6 miles) while counting nests, fixing markers, and doing other fieldwork.
    • 11:00 a.m.—Breakfast. We eat together each day and discuss the previous night's turtles and plan for the day. You can walk the quarter-mile to Kike’s (the restaurant where we have most meals) or go in the project van.
    • 12:30 p.m.–3:00 p.m.—You will generally have free time during this period. We organize activities for volunteers to go on particular tours that we offer such as guided tours (be sure to go on the Tamarindo Estuary tour!), snorkeling and swimming at Playa Carbón, or a trip into Tamarindo for shopping and relaxing by the beach.
    • 3:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m.—Those visiting nests to measure temperatures leave at 3:00 p.m. and work for a few hours on the beach. Other groups will fix markers and perform any hatchery maintenance work. Maintenance work on the hatchery and excavation of hatchery nests will be done during the afternoon. If nests are found the previous night, nest marking, relocation, and excavations will occur. These duties typically take one or two hours and there is always time to go swimming afterwards!
    • Other work relating to student projects will occur on an as-needed basis and will be posted along with other daily activities. Visits to local schools for the education program will take place during the day while school is in session and will be announced when available.
    • 6:00 p.m.—Each night, we will have dinner together at Kike’s. Some evenings, either before or after dinner, depending on the work schedule, a staff member will present a slideshow or give an informal talk on the research.
  • Day 8: Evening—On Day 8, we will share a wrap-up dinner and take a trip to a beautiful spot to enjoy a breathtaking Costa Rican sunset.
  • Day 9: Departure—It is best to arrange late morning flights because you may be on the beach until early morning. It is not possible to stay at the accommodations past 2:00 p.m. on the day of departure.

Accommodations and Food

Your team will stay at the Goldring-Gund Marine Biology Field Station, located in Playa Grande just behind the beach.

At the station, you’ll have access to a kitchen, dining area, and lounge/classroom area. You can also enjoy a number of amenities in your free time. The freshwater swimming pool at the station is open during the day, and the beach, only 25 meters away, provides a pleasant spot to relax during your time off. One hammock will also be setup to that hang at the station. We have a large library of paperback books. Many visitors also take walks through the local habitats to bird watch.

You may do laundry by hand in an outside washbasin, but keep in mind that things dry very slowly due to the humidity (especially in October–December). A laundry service can also be provided for a fee (typically about US$3–5 for a small bag of clothes).

From December–February, there is nominal rainfall in the local area. We experience water restrictions during this dry season and so we ask all volunteers to please conserve water whenever possible. This may include shorter showers and restrictions on washing clothes.

* Please note that not every expedition has couples’ or single's accommodations available. Please call or email Earthwatch to check for availability prior to reserving your space(s) on the team.

SLEEPING

The station has three bedrooms for volunteers. When possible, people of the same gender will share these rooms or they will be used to accommodate couples. The number of volunteers per room will depend on the size of the team. Each room has bunk beds. Privacy in the house is limited and depends on the number of volunteers at the station.

* Earthwatch will honor each person’s assertion of gender identity, respectfully and without judgement. For both teen and adult teams, where logistics dictate single-sex accommodations or other facilities, participant placements will be made in accordance with the gender identity the participant specified on their Earthwatch Participant form and/or preferences indicated in discussions with Earthwatch.

BATHROOMS

The station has two bathrooms for volunteers, each of which has a toilet, hot water, and a spacious shower. Sinks and mirrors are located outside the toilet areas. Both bathrooms are unisex and shared by everyone.

ELECTRICITY

You can charge digital cameras or other electronic equipment at the station, and it has air conditioning. Voltage is 120, 60 hertz, generally with flat two-pin plugs and some three-pronged plugs.

PERSONAL COMMUNICATIONS

A wireless Internet connection is available. You may bring your own laptop, but we caution you to take responsibility for any expensive equipment you bring along.

Telephone Dialing Codes: When calling Costa Rica from an international phone, dial 00506 and then the number. When calling within Costa Rica from a domestic line, omit the 506 and dial the local number. When calling another country from Costa Rica, dial 00, followed by the other country’s country code (e.g., 1 for the U.S. and 44 for the U.K.) and the number. PLEASE NOTE that all landline phone numbers in Costa Rica are preceded by a 2, and all Costa Rican cell phone numbers are preceded by an 8 (following the country code 506 if necessary).

Check with your cell phone provider to obtain any carrier- specific dialing codes you may need; many providers have dialing procedures that differ from these directions.

FOOD AND WATER

We’ll eat breakfasts and dinners at Kike’s, a local restaurant about a quarter-mile away from the field station, but we typically will not have sit-down lunches. If you wish to make something to eat at lunchtime, some staples will be provided at the station. Volunteers on past expeditions have generally found that two meals per day are sufficient.

Local dishes tend to include meat and fish, and while vegetarian meals are usually available, the restaurant can’t offer much variety. Vegan meals can be more difficult to arrange, depending on what the restaurant has available. If you prefer several small meals or need snacks, you may wish to bring your own supply to supplement the menu.

The following are examples of foods you may find in the field. Variety depends on availability. We appreciate your flexibility.

  • Breakfast: Fruit, pancakes, eggs, vegetables, toast, French toast, omelets, and rice and beans. Fresh fruit smoothies are also available.
  • Lunch: You might want to bring your own snacks to eat between breakfast and dinner. Basic food items such as sandwich materials, fruit, cookies, crackers, and cereal will be available at the station.
  • Dinner: Vegetables, rice, beans, salad, meat, poultry, fish, pizza
  • Snacks: You may prepare your own sandwiches, cookies, crackers, cereal, biscuits, etc. (a small grocery store near the station sells food and bottles of water inexpensively).
  • Beverages: Fruit juices, coffee, soft drinks, and water. The tap water is potable, and we encourage drinking tap water over bottled water to reduce plastic consumption and aid in our conservation mission. Please bring two water bottles that you can refill and carry with you in the field.
SPECIAL DIETARY REQUIREMENTS

Please alert Earthwatch to any special dietary requirements (e.g., diabetes, lactose intolerance, nut or other food allergies, vegetarian or vegan diets) as soon as possible, and note them in the space provided on your volunteer forms.

Project Conditions

Temperatures are usually in the mid-80s to upper-90s°F (30–35°C) during the day, but cool off significantly in the evening, usually to about 60°F (20°C). The rainy season runs from July to mid-November, with dry, hot, and windy conditions the rest of the year. Volunteers on expeditions in October and November will experience rain and high humidity, so we recommend a light rain parka and a light, long-sleeved sweatshirt for cooler nights. The dry season extends from December to the end of March, when it tends to be warm, windy, and dry. Rolling hills and grassland surrounds the beach.

GENERAL CONDITIONS

For weather and region-specific information, please visit Wunderground.com and search for your project location.

Essential Eligibility Requirements

All participants must be able to:

  • Move in soft sand for most of the night (walking a total of more than 10 mi/ 16km for 4–6 hours per night). This activity is quite strenuous and may take place under difficult conditions (high tides, rain, high humidity, etc); consider doing preparatory back, calf, and thigh strengthening exercises well before participation. See the briefing packing list for suggested footwear for these walking conditions.
  • Follow verbal and/or visual instructions independently or with the assistance of a companion.
  • Enjoy being outdoors and be able to handle all types of weather.
  • Enjoy being outdoors all day in all types of weather.
  • Endure tropical (hot and humid) work conditions.
  • Shift their sleep cycles throughout the duration of the expedition; we will work through the night and catch up on sleep during the daytime.
  • Stay with team and avoid obstacles while patrolling beach in the dark or very low light.
  • Communicate with team leaders and fellow team members by voice, rather than visually, in the dark or very low light.
  • Get low to the ground, often on one’s knees or belly, to excavate turtle nests if and when needed.
  • Take an active role in your own safety by recognizing and avoiding hazards if and when they arise (including, but not limited to, those described in Earthwatch materials and safety briefings). Comply with project staff instructions and recommended safety measures at all times.
  • Be able to effectively communicate to the staff if you are experiencing distress or need assistance.
  • Be able to get along with a variety of people from different backgrounds, often in close proximity, for the duration of your team.
  • Be comfortable being surrounded by a language and culture that is not your own. Be respectful of the local community that is hosting our project.

Health and Safety

EMERGENCIES IN THE FIELD

The project will have cell phones and two-way radios for communication among the team while conducting fieldwork.

A doctor’s office and a dentist’s office are within five minutes of the project site. Anyone with an emergency can receive care at a clinic within 15 minutes of the site and a hospital within 45 minutes, in Santa Cruz.

Physician, Nurse, or EMT on Staff: Project staff members are not medical professionals.

Earthwatch has a 24-hour, 7-day-a-week emergency hotline number. Someone is always on call to respond to messages that come into our live answering service.

IMMUNIZATIONS & TRAVEL VACCINATIONS

Please be sure your routine immunizations are up-to-date (for example: diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella) and you have the appropriate vaccinations for your travel destination. Medical decisions are the responsibility of each volunteer and his or her doctor. Visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization for guidance on immunizations.

If traveling from countries or region where yellow fever is endemic, you must have a certificate of vaccination.

Please note that the Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas requests that each volunteer be approved by a medical professional to participate on this project. To fulfill this request, please have your doctor or primary care provider complete the Doctor’s Signature Form at the end of this briefing and submit it to Earthwatch as soon as possible.

Project Risks and Precautions

Walking/Hiking/Climbing

Walking in soft sand on the beach can be strenuous, especially at night in the dark. You must be in good physical condition and have good vision. Comfortable, closed-toe footwear (such as sneakers or hiking boots) and socks are essential to reduce the risk of broken toes, blisters, twisted ankles, and other injuries. Some of the field biologists recommend Crocs sandals with thick socks as a possible option.

Animals/Plants

Venomous snakes are present in the area, but are notably rare. The venomous snakes present in Guanacaste are coral snakes, the fer de lance (terciopelo), and the Central American rattlesnake (cascabel).

Bees and bugs are plentiful, though insects are not as bad on the Pacific side of the country due to the wind and dryness. Mosquitoes in the accommodations are quite common. Sand fleas are possibly present on the beach during night patrols. People who have adverse reactions to insect bites are advised to bring anti-itch ointments and/or oral medication. Those with insect allergies should bring the proper emergency kits and inform staff of the problem and the location of the kit.

The Manzanillo Tree, also known as “Beach Apple”, can be found in the area. Please stay clear of it, as all parts (bark, leaves, sap and fruit) are highly toxic.

Climate/Weather

Dehydration, heat exhaustion, sunburn, and other heat-related illnesses can occur, but you can protect yourself by drinking sufficient water, wearing high-SPF sunscreen, and wearing appropriate clothing. Dehydration from sweating can be a problem; please bring your own water bottles that you can easily carry and refill them with electrolyte-replacing packets if necessary.

Project Tasks/Equipment

Digging up nests with your hands while kneeling in the sand is physically tiring and could cause muscle sprains or strains.

Personal Security

The station is guarded and locked at night, and a fence surrounds the entire complex. You should store valuables securely in your own locked suitcase. While we have a locked safe where you may store money and passports, regular access is limited.

Swimming

You may swim in a nice pool at the Goldring-Gund Station during recreational time, although we will not swim as part of the research activities. Dangerous rip tides and high waves may occur off the local beach. In addition, sharks and crocodiles may also come near shore. As a result, we strongly discourage swimming in the ocean. Doing so is at your own risk and not endorsed by the project. Body surfing is prohibited. Always alert project staff when, where, and with whom you plan to go to the ocean.

Sleep Deprivation

We will work for about 6 hours each night and a few hours each day, which interrupts regular sleep patterns. Sharing quarters with many other people and sleeping during daylight hours may also impair sleeping. Earplugs and eye masks may help. Also, your hard work will tire you out, which will greatly help with falling asleep in these conditions.

Disease

Consult your local travel physician well in advance for personal recommendations for immunizations. Beyond routine immunizations (e.g., measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DPT), varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot), Hepatitis A and Typhoid vaccines may also be recommended for travel. Playa Grande, Arenal and San José are not considered malaria-risk areas; malaria prophylaxis is not needed. However, mosquito-borne diseases like Zika virus, dengue fever and chikungunya have been reported in the region. The best protection against infection is to limit mosquito bites by wearing protective clothing (long-sleeved shirts and long pants) and using insect repellent. The CDC recommends EPA-approved mosquito repellents containing 20% concentrations of DEET or natural repellents made with lemon oil eucalyptus. Our team has tested lemon oil eucalyptus repellents at Playa Grande and found them to be quite effective—and friendly to local ecosystems! Mosquito repellents based on Picaridin are also now available in the U.S., although we have not tested these.

Travel Planning

RENDEZVOUS LOCATION:

The Liberia International Airport, also known as Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport, Costa Rica

* Additional information will be provided by Earthwatch to meet your team. Please do not book travel arrangements such as flights until you have received additional information from Earthwatch.

ABOUT YOUR DESTINATION

Earthwatch strongly recommends that travelers investigate their destination prior to departure. Familiarity with the destination’s entry/exit requirements, visas, local laws, and customs can go a long way to ensuring smooth travel. The U.S. Department of State's Traveler’s Checklist and Destination Guides are helpful resources. For LGBTI travelers, the U.S. Department of State's LGBTI Travelers page contains many useful tips and links.

COUNTRY AND PROJECT ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

Entry visa requirements differ by country of origin, layover, and destination, and do change unexpectedly. For this reason, please confirm your visa requirements at the time of booking and, again, 90 days prior to travel. Please apply early for your visa (we recommend starting 6 months prior to the start of your expedition). Refunds will not be made for volunteers cancelling due to not obtaining their visa in time to meet the team at the rendezvous. You can find up to date visa requirements at the following website: www.travisa.com.

If a visa is required, participants should apply for a TOURIST visa. Please note that obtaining a visa can take weeks or even months. We strongly recommend using a visa agency, which can both expedite and simplify the process.

Generally, passports must be valid for at least six months from the date of entry and a return ticket is required.

Resources

ARTICLES
  • Reina et al. (2002) Nesting ecology of the leatherback turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, at Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas, Costa Rica: 1988-1989.
  • Spotila, J.R. et al. 2000. Pacific Leatherback turtles face extinction. Nature 405: 529–530.
  • Morreale, SJ, Standora EA, Spotila, JR and Paladino FV, (1996). Migration corridor for sea turtles. Nature 384: 319-320
  • Dornfeld et al. (2015) Ecology of solitary nesting olive ridley sea turtles at Playa Grande, Costa Rica. Marine Biology.
  • Santidrián Tomillo et al. (2014) High beach temperatures increase female-biased primary sex ratios but reduce output of female hatchlings in the leatherback turtle. Biological Conservation 176 :71-79.
  • Robinson NJ et al. (2014) Multidecadal trends in the nesting phenology of Pacific and Atlantic leatherback turtles are associated with population demography. Endangered Species Research.
  • Santidrián Tomillo et al. (2012) Climate Driven Egg and Hatchling Mortality Threatens Survival of Eastern Pacific Leatherback Turtles. PLoS ONE 7:e37602.
  • Saba VS et al. (2012) Projected response of an endangered marine turtle population to climate change. Nature Climate Change 2:814-820.
  • Shillinger GS et al. (2012) On the dispersal of leatherback turtle hatchlings from Mesoamerican nesting beaches. Proceedings of the Royal Society B Biological Sciences 279:2391-2395.
  • A.I. Troost et al. What can we learn from confusing Olivella columellaris and O. semistriata (Olivellidae, Gastropoda), two key species in panamic sandy beach ecosystems? Biota Neotropica 12(2).
  • G.S. Blanco et al. 2012. Movements and diving behavior of interesting green turtles along Pacific Costa Rica. Integrative Zoology.
  • G.S. Blanco et al. 2012. Reproductive Output and Ultrasonography of an Endangered Population of East Pacific Green Turtles. The Journal of Wildlife Management 76(4): 841–846.
BOOKS
  • Spotila JR, Santidrián Tomillo P (2015) The leatherback turtle: biology and conservation. John Hopkins Press.
  • Spotila JR (2011) Saving Sea Turtles. Johns Hopkins Press
  • Safina C (2006) Voyage of the Turtle. Henry Holt.
  • Spotila JR (2004) Sea Turtles. Johns Hopkins Press
FIELD GUIDES
  • Blake, B. 2005. The New Key to Costa Rica. 17th Edition. keytocostarica.com.
FILM
  • Red Turtle Rising. 1999.
PROJECT-RELATED WEBSITE
LITERATURE CITED
  • Roe JH, Morreale SJ, Paladino FV, Shillinger GS, Benson SR, Eckert SA, Bailey H, Santidrian Tomillo P, Bograd SJ, Eguchi T, Dutton PH, Seminoff JA, Block BA, Spotila JR (2014) Predicting bycatch hotspots for endangered leatherback turtles on longlines in the Pacific Ocean. Proceedings of the Royal Biological Society B Biological Sciences 281:20132559.
  • Saba VS, Stock CA, Paladino FV, Spotila JR, Santidrián Tomillo P (2012) Projected response of an endangered marine turtle population to climate change. Nature Climate Change 2:814-820.
  • Santidrián Tomillo P, Saba VS, Blanco GS, Stock CA, Paladino FV, Spotila JR (2012) Climate drive egg and hatchling mortality threatens survival of Eastern Pacific leatherback turtles. PLoS ONE 7:e37602.

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