North of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, this sea turtle camp helps save the endangered species.
All Boxed Up
Newly hatched olive ridley sea turtles at Platanitos Sea Turtle Camp await transport to the sea.
Volunteers assist in gathering hatchling sea turtles from their golf ball-size eggs. A group of Mexican biologists, an American developer, local schoolkids, and stateside volunteers have spearheaded the effort to protect the turtles.
Ready, Set, Release
High school volunteers from a nearby village help release the turtles. Every night during late summer and early fall, volunteers let go hundreds of baby sea turtles.
Race to the Sea
A volunteer lines up turtles on the sand for their crawl to the Pacific Ocean.
Smaller than the palm of a hand, baby olive ridley sea turtles will grow to 2 to 2½ feet in length and 80 to 110 pounds in weight.
The Time is Right
As the sun drops into the Pacific, volunteers and Plantanitos Sea Turtle Camp workers release the turtles. The hatchlings are released at dusk, when predators are less likely to spot them on their journey out to sea.
Baby olive ridley sea turtles scramble into the surf's edge to begin their oceanic lives.