Our last full day and we split the group into two sections to rotate from river rafting and helping at Hacienda Barú’s turtle habitat preserve. Although not turtle season, we helped dig up the nursery, a large raised area of the property a short distance from the beach. This involved turning the sand so that that sun could clean off any bacteria left from the previous hatching. While some dug up the nursery, others added fresh coats of paint to signs while a third group cleaned up trash along the shore so as to prevent the returning turtles from ingesting items which could jeopardize their health. The efforts of the preserve increase the chances of the hatchlings’ survival from 1 in 500 to 15 in 500. Even with no direct contact with the turtles or the turtle eggs, our work was instrumental in helping give the turtles a chance at survival. Here’s an article from Hacienda Barú’s website about their work.
Here’s a clip about the work we did:
While digging in the turtle nursery, we found an iguana nest. It was odd to feel the leathery texture of the eggs and we were all surprised by the flexibility of the eggs as we squeezed them slightly and felt their give, very different from the hard shell of other eggs.
After the turtle preserve we went river rafting. Although the river was not as full as some wished, it did provide enough rapids to get everyone wet and made for some great photo opportunities.
And a video montage from my raft:
Tomorrow is our last day in Dominical. We’ll spend the morning at the beach before hoping on the bus and making our way back up north to San Jose to spend the night. Oh, and cell phones? I don’t think they’ve been missed!