The Leatherback Trust

By Lauren Hackney Upon arrival for my second field season with The Leatherback Trust in Costa Rica, I was eager to return to Playa Grande for its unique biodiversity. Playa Grande’s pristine white sand beach hosts nesting leatherbacks, the same species who swam our oceans 110 million years ago when dinosaurs roamed the Earth. Now...

By Jenell Black and Christian Díaz Chuquisengo This year, as Field Manager at The Leatherback Trust, I was lucky enough to witness an extraordinary event in Las Baulas National Park (Parque Nacional Marino Las Baulas) on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast. Leatherbacks typically nest under the cover of darkness, but once in a rare while our...

By George Shillinger, PhD One of the most exciting moments for me in 2016 was President Obama’s decision to expand the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. With 582,578 square miles off the coast of Hawaii designated for permanent protection, the U.S. created the world’s largest protected area, hosting more than 7,000 marine species, many of which...

By Nathan Robinson, PhD Our planet is in the midst of its 6th mass extinction event. The first five events were caused by natural disasters, such as intense volcanic activity or asteroid collisions. This modern extinction event is unique because it is the only mass extinction event directly caused by human activities. Not only does...

By George Shillinger, PhD Leatherbacks and other sea turtles are ancient creatures. When dinosaurs roamed the earth 110 million years ago, sea turtles were present, in abundance. But today, numbers have dropped to 0.1 percent of their historic highs. Pacific Leatherback Conservation Day, established by the State of California in 2013, is a day to...

By Nathan J. Robinson, Ph.D Sea turtles have been swimming in our oceans ever since the time of the dinosaurs, enduring meteor collisions, ice ages, and the shifting of the continents. Yet human activity has recently brought many sea turtle populations to the brink of extinction. Even the largest of the sea turtles – the leatherback...