For the past several years, Gran Pacifica and Tranquilo Tours & Travel, have been participating in the preservation of the Giant Sea Turtles in Nicaragua by housing a turtle sanctuary on the grounds. A few days ago, 60 baby sea turtles were released into the ocean. It is expected that another 40 will hatch in the next few days and also be released. Our very own Gran Pacifica Property Consultant, Merle Peters was there to assist in the release. He said “I had the opportunity for another first here [at Gran Pacifica]. I had the pleasure of helping release baby turtles into the sea.” You can see his Gran Pacifica Baby Turtle Release video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdp82OJtYuY.
It was several years ago that the Help Them Help Themselves Foundation decided to get involved in the preservation of sea turtles by building a small sanctuary, with the support of Gran Pacifica Beach and Golf Resort. It started with meager beginnings but attracted many volunteers. And even though in the first year there were only a few nests with eggs, seeing the first batch of 80 little baby turtles hatch was very exciting.
Why did Help Them Help Themselves become involved? It is because baby sea turtles have only about a 2% chance of making it on their own out in the wild, but a 95% survival rate when protected in a sanctuary. Poachers are one of the biggest threats to their survival. Since the eggs are known for being a delicacy in the local culture, egg hunters (“Hueveros”) constantly scan the beaches looking for giant female turtles that come out of the ocean to lay their eggs. That’s where Help Them Help Themselves comes into play. They work peacefully with the Hueveros by buying the eggs from them directly on the beach and bringing the eggs immediately to the sanctuary.
In return, the Hueveros support the cause because they are still earning a living. But instead of selling the eggs at a local market, where they will be eaten, they are helping preserve the species. A win-win for everybody.