• photo: Corcovado Foundation

    Costa Rica: Sea turtles and community education in the Osa Peninsula

In Brief

Location:

Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica

Goal:

Increase the protection of wild areas and sea turtle populations, conduct environmental education, and promote ecotourism and community participation with sustainable use of natural resources in the Osa Peninsula. 

Conservation Value:

The Osa Peninsula is one of the most biodiverse places on earth, home to half of all species found in Costa Rica — and 2.5% of all species on the planet — in an area just 56 km long and 32 km wide.  

Threats:

The Osa Peninsula is Costa Rica’s last frontier.  Its isolation and remoteness has helped protect the amazing natural resources of the area. However, that remoteness has also proven to be a huge challenge for those who live in these communities.  Living in poor socioeconomic conditions, the local population exploit their natural surroundings for subsistence.

 
       The project is providing a safe place for sea turtles to nest.

"Changing lives: The Impact of Environmental Education in Drake Bay" (video).

Actions & Results:

With ICFC's support, in 2019 Fundación Corcovado safeguarded 118 olive ridley turtle nests – the largest number of nests protected in one season since the inception of the sea turtle program – and 7,722 turtle hatchlings were released into the ocean. The Environmental Education Program, in collaboration with the Municipality of Osa, held 37 workshops and a recycling competition among seven educational centers in six communities. This initiative resulted in the collection of more than 1,500 kg of recycled material. As well, Fundación Corcovado’s Single-Use Plastic reduction program, along with the commitment made by 22 companies from Bahía Drake, has led to the collection of an additional 2,398 kg of recycled material. More than 60 international volunteers assisted with environmental education, beach cleanups, marine turtle surveys, beach patrols, and the construction and maintenance of sea turtle nurseries at Rincón de San Josecito Beach. Through these, and other initiatives, Fundación Corcovado continues to provide key benefits to the local communities involved in conservation and sustainable development in the region.

Project Field Partner:

Corcovado Foundation

Cost:

2020 budget (ICFC portion): US$100,000
Cumulative cost to ICFC (2017-2019): CA$457,039

This project is entirely supported by a generous donor to ICFC.

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Children modelling sea turtle eggs (above).

Children displaying signs, asking the community not deposit litter in the river (below).

In More Depth...

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