The Magic of Playa Rio Oro
COPROT Tortugas de Osa was first founded in August 2018, with the aim to develop a sea turtle conservation project that supports local people and educates the future generations on the importance of protecting our natural resources. Since then, the organization has grown to the point where we are managing 8km of important sea turtle nesting habitat, registering more than 6,000 nests and ensuring that nearly 500,000 hatchlings make it down to the ocean every season.
We have also been able to provide paid employment to local people and develop a number of community initiatives, including marine plastic upcycling and women's empowerment groups.
Our main headquarters is in Rio Oro, close to Carate, a rural town on the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica. Our camp is settled right before reaching Corcovado National park. Carate is known for its biodiversity, which has led to its popularity as a tourist destination. Development in Carate and surrounding areas in the past 25 years is mainly due to the increase in ecotourism with the construction of eco-lodges. These developments, although financially beneficial for the area, have not increased opportunities for the local people of Carate.
The nearby beaches of Carate, Rio Oro, and La Leona on the Osa Peninsula are some of the most important sea turtle nesting beaches in the South Pacific. Each beach is close to 2.5 kilometers with approximately 7,000 nests laid by the Olive Ridley (classified Vulnerable by the IUCN) and more rarely the Pacific Green (classified as endangered by the IUCN) sea turtles. These beaches are essential for the protection of our marine wildlife. We lose approximately 25% of nests per annum because of high levels of poaching and predation on turtle nests in the area.