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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Back Home!

We got home from Costa Rica last night.  We only used carry-on luggage.  So, this is the tiny art kit I brought:  watercolor pencils, a little sketchbook, a water-filled brush, and a mechanical pencil.  We were on the coast, so enjoyed the ocean view.  Many days it was very windy, and blew the spray off the top of the waves.  It was so windy one day (maybe 80 mph winds) up in the mountains where we were supposed to have a canopy tour, and they had to close the park (after we drove 2-1/2 hours to get there!).  And according to other travelers, the rainforests near the volcanoes we had hoped to visit (but they turned out too far away to drive) were socked-in with rain and the butterflies, birds and monkeys were all hiding.  So, it was OK that we didn't try to go to that area.

But the highlight of our trip was to see the leatherback turtles nesting.  We got lucky there!  We made reservations at the marine preserve and went out at the scheduled time of 11pm.  After orientation from the park officials and guides, we were taken out to the beach at midnight (no moon and very dark) without flashlights (the rule).  The guide had a red-light flashlight to guide the group of only 60 people allowed - single-file.  At the beach I could make out a few turtles being protected by volunteers and researchers.  We were escorted to one turtle, digging a nest.  We got to view up close as he shown the red-light on the hole she was digging.  Then he escorted us to the beach to see her tracks in the sand, and he gave information about these endangered turtles.  Then we went back to her and got to see the eggs dropping into the nest. 

No one is allowed to use flash cameras.  So I had to take some pictures off the internet to share the experience here:

1 comment:

ti-igra said...

Hi, Carolyn!
Congratulations with wonderful rest!
On this week I saw Animal Planet chanal and they just showed the transfer of these turtles! As they lay eggs and then they collect and include in the incubator. And then the little turtles released in the ocean! :-)
You seen this miracle in reality! Wow!