This summer with the help of the Principal’s Go Abroad Fund I was able to travel to the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica, to volunteer and help conserve the extremely diverse rainforest, named the “most biologically intense place on earth”. We carried out primate, otter, bird and turtle surveys to aid conservation of the local species and their environment.
After one flight cancellation, another flight delay we were finally on a teeny tiny plane from San Jose, the capital, to Puerto Jiminez on the peninsula.
Costa Rica by air (travelling by the world’s first carbon neutral airline)
Finally arrived! Friendly group of co-volunteers.
An example of our weekly tasks, including reforestation efforts, turtle hatchery building and survey patrols.
The Pacific Ocean, from Peje Piro, ten minutes from camp and one of the beaches we patrolled for turtles and their nests.
Trail system of the surveys we undertook
The reward for persevering through exhausting primate survey treks!
View from a satellite camp focused on primate surveys, tracking movements of families of Spider monkeys and Howler monkeys, sometimes with Squirrel monkeys coming straight through the camp.
Female squirrel monkey carrying her baby as she moves through the forest.
Piro river, home of the elusive neotropical river otters.
Data collection of location and size of otter scat, to track movements of families.
50+ species of trees planted by volunteers, grown in this greenhouse to then be replanted in the future.
Early morning turtle patrol of Piro beach, sadly the season was too early for any turtles to be seen and nests were sparse but every now and then we got lucky!
A view of the hatchery we helped build by digging trenches for the bamboo wall to protect the eggs from the harsh incoming tide. Half of the hatchery is under shade and the other side in the sun, this is to influence the genders of the eggs.
Moving eggs from a nest that was below the high tide line, therefore in danger of being flooded, into the hatchery, one of the first nests to be moved that season.
Saying goodbye at the local Aeropuerto!
Big thanks to the Go Abroad fund for helping me go on this amazing, educational trip.