On Sunday morning I had the privilege of joining Dr. Sylvia Earle and director Kip Evans on a scientific aerial survey over Las Baulas National Marine Park and surrounding areas. The Lighthawk team did an amazing job during the flight giving us the opportunity of filming some great aerial footage.
We were looking for sea turtles swimming near the Marine Park, or perhaps their tracks on the sand, left the previous night after they had nested – lonely impressions on the sand showcasing the resilience of these marvelous creatures.
During the afternoon we switched our mode of transportation hoping to find them in the water. Dr. George Shillinger joined us aboard the Boos Adventures boat, providing valuable knowledge on sea turtle behavior.
The winds from the Papagayo jet stream really kick up this time of year so we headed north of the park hoping to find nesting beaches. To our delight we were able to witness an amazing display of breaching mobula rays. Their aerial acrobatics went on for hours.
Soon after we saw the ocean bubbling to life as bait fish swam to the surface trying to escape predators. We jumped into the water straight away hoping to catch the bait ball on film. Schools of jacks and rainbow runners surrounded us darting in every direction fleeing from unseen predators. It was a perfect ending for a long day of work in the field.
By Dr. Erick Ross / MarViva