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Sea Turtle Template

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Beach towns, such as Tortuguero, Costa Rica, have transitioned from a tourism industry that made profits from selling sea turtle meat and shells to an ecotourism-based economy. Tortuguero is considered to be the founding location of sea turtle conservation. In the 1960s the cultural demand for sea turtle meat, shells, and eggs was quickly killing the once-abundant sea turtle populations that nested on the beach. The Caribbean Conservation Corporation began working with villagers to promote ecotourism as a permanent substitute to sea turtle hunting. Sea turtle nesting grounds became sustainable. Tourists love to come and visit the nesting grounds, although it causes a lot of stress to the sea turtles because all of the eggs can get damaged or harmed. [62] Since the creation of a sea turtle ecotourism-based economy, Tortugero annually houses thousands of tourists who visit the protected 22-mile (35 km) beach that hosts sea turtle walks and nesting grounds. [63][64] Walks to observe the nesting sea turtles require a certified guide and this controls and minimises disturbance of the beaches. It also gives the locals a financial interest in conservation and the guides now defend the sea turtles from threats such as poaching. Efforts in Costa Rica's Pacific Coast are facilitated by a nonprofit organization, Sea Turtles Forever. [65] Thousands of people are involved in sea turtle walks, and substantial revenues accrue from the fees paid for the privilege. [66]

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