Marine Mammals and Predators in Costa Rica
Climb aboard a motorboat and sail a tropical “inner sea” in search of endangered dolphins and whales in Costa Rica.
Golfo Dulce, a narrow inlet on the southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica, provides a rich habitat for cetaceans (whales and dolphins). It remains fairly pristine, since the many tourists who visit Costa Rica each year haven’t quite discovered it yet—which makes now a crucial time to investigate what the ecosystem needs to remain healthy. By understanding the behavior and tracking the abundance of the marine mammals and predators in this region, we can ensure we have the information needed to best protect them when tourism starts in earnest in this beautiful, wild place.
For about a decade, this project has gathered information on three species of cetacean in the gulf: the pantropical spotted dolphin, the bottlenose dolphin, and the humpback whale. In studying these cetacean species, researchers hope to understand how to preserve the entirety of this beautiful marine ecosystem.
This project is now entering a new stage and will be expanding to understand of how the entire Golfo Dulce ecosystem functions by gathering data of the presence of other top predators, including sharks.
Through this research, and with your volunteer involvement, this project will help to develop conservation plans to protect the marine biodiversity in the gulf in the future.
Activity Level: Easy
Location: Golfo Dulce, Costa Rica