Saturday, August 25, 2012

Day 56 - Back to Back

Date: 8/25/12

Location: Costa de Oro, Costa Rica

Word of the day: Dolor del paquete - Back Pain

Turtle Fact: During long dives, blood is shunted away from tissues tolerant of low oxygen levels toward the heart, brain, and central nervous system.


3:00am wake up. I patrol solo on foot. I walk down and back. Nada. I get back by 4:15am and prepare for the rest of day. "This early" you ask yourself? Yes. Courtney and I head out at 4:30am to Punta Coyote to help Eric with another day of Fisheries work. As we walk along the beach (very low tide) we enjoy the sun rise. You always forget how quickly the dark skies brighten at dawn. This always makes for a some picturesque skies.

As we near the river (or pick up location) we notice a familiar site - turtle tracks. Tracks down here, in the south end? We easily find the nest and relocated it (as we were not prepared to take them back to the hatchery) a little ways away (so that poachers do not follow the original tracks to the nest). As we continue down the beach we find 3 more tracks. Unfortunately all these nests were poached. OK OK, we learned out lesson. Turtles do nest in the south of Costa de Oro.

We arrive slightly tardy (due the eggs and tracks). Immediately a boat comes for Courtney and I and bring us to the other side of the river

SIDENOTE: Remember that cute puppy that was at our house for the last couple of day? Well the mom had followed us down the beach towards Punta Coyote. When we found the eggs and relocated them, this dog was watching the whole time. Well to ensure this dog didn't eat the eggs, we may or may not have "egged" it on to follow us to the river banks. Once there Courtney and I jump in a boat and headed 300m upstream. Little did we know, Momma dog followed. She swam across the river, upstream. Now that is some desire for attention/love/possibility for food. For the next 1.5 hours we work with Eric.

We end up back at the house at 8am - so much accomplished by so early of a morning. Breakfast.

Today's project is adding a terracotta border to the walkway in the hatchery. With that said, I had locate the best of the broken pieces in a rubble pile on the side of the road (in front of our house), wash the dirt off and soak them in bleach (in order not to contaminate the hatchery). I get to this part and all the neighborhood kids stop by the house, wanting to go over their English Homework. Matt and Courtney lead the charge. It turns out that I ended up getting a Spanish lesson from them!

Lunch. Siesta. I reorganize my room as I have been a bit of a slob and also wanted to steal the mattress from my top bunk and add a second one to my bed. NOW this is what I call soft!

I head outside for a little project work. I add a new locking mechanism to the hatchery door. Essentially this is a piece of rubber from a used bicycle tire, that is stretch over a side of the door to keep it shut tight. I also start working on the terracotta outline with Matt in the hatchery. We didn't quite finish as we ran out of broken pieces. I shall continue this another day once I bleach more pieces.

By this time the sun is setting and it's another beautiful view from sector 22 on Costa De Oro's Beach. I head inside and work on tonight's dinner - Spaghetti. HT Updates. Siesta.

Patrol. I walk solo on the beach heading south on foot, while Courtney and Matt head north. During my walk I stop by the eggs we hid earlier this morning, and take them back to the hatchery. No other signs of Tracks. Sleep.

Lesson: 
  • Rubber really is a great universal building material
  • Terracotta is fragile
  • Cheap Mattresses are thin- soft in numbers though.
  • Don't believe it till you see it


Food: Spaghetti Pasta with Sausage - kicked up a notch with cajun pepper, soy sauce and some Italian seasonings
Animals: Snapper, Eel, Turtle (eggs), Dogs, Crabs, Birds


Something I am thankful for: Mattresses. Who would have imagined that a clump of hay, would evolve into a synthetic giant piece of material that makes sleeping in the worst of conditions bareable, simply because your body is comfortable.
Something I don't want to admit: I feel like an old man. While washing the the dirt of the Terracotta pieces, I was leaning over the whole time. Well little did I know, that 45min in this position would cause so much pain 6 hours later. Sitting down and walk kills if I move in the wrong direction. I make noises only people with canes should make.


Days of Rain: 36/52
Total Turtle Eggs I have saved: 258
Total Nest I have saved: 16
Total Nests Poached on my Patrol: 13

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