Playa Caletas Turtle Project
This project is run by Turtle Trax, who work to monitor and protect the sea turtles around the coast line of the southern part of the Nicoya peninsula. They have a variety of projects, of which the team will be working on playa Caletas, one of the remoter spots.
Playa Caletas is a nesting site mainly for Olive Ridley turtles but also green turtles and leather backs later on in the season. During the time the team is there you should be lucky enough to see a turtle laying and possibly even baby turtles hatching from their nests. You will be taught the basic skills for monitoring the turtles and collecting the nests so as to be able to help out with this essential work protecting the sea turtles.
The main part of the project work is with the turtles. The beach is monitored for turtles 3 hours either side of high tide. Once a turtle is found it is measured/ tagged etc. The eggs are collected and put in the hatchery safe from predators. The hatchery also has to be monitored at night for hatching turtles. These are then released into the ocean. Any un-hatched eggs are recorded.
The majority of the work is carried out at night, so generally volunteers relax during the day. However there is always maintenance work to be done at the camp. There is a local project coordinator on site at all times, as well as a couple of long-term volunteers. Other tasks will include litter picking and clearing the beach and general maintenance of the camp and the hatchery.