Between one and two million baby turtles crawl from their birthplace along Nicaragua’s Pacific coast into the sea every year. This occurs between the months of July and December when hundreds of thousands of sea turtles migrate to Nicaragua’s coasts to lay eggs in the country’s white-sand beaches. For decades the migrations have been called “arribadas” or arrivals, referring to the waves of turtles that come to the countries shores each year.
Each coast sees different species of turtles, and there are specific stretches of beach that are reserved for this annual migration. A few of these areas include…
San Juan del Sur; La Flor Wildlife Reserve- just south of the fishing village of San Juan del Sur, this mile and a half stretch of beach attracts the largest number of sea turtles in the area each year, including more than 200,000 Olive Ridley’s, one of the world’s smallest turtles. While surfers from around the globe flock to San Juan del Sur’s amazing surf, turtles swim their way onto La Flor’s warm, sandy beaches. Other species to annually visit the La Flor stretch of white sand include Paslama Turtles and Parrot Turtles, the largest and most threatened of all species.
The untouched Caribbean Coast, specifically the Pearl Cays, are another favorite nesting place for Hawksbill, Green, Loggerhead and Leatherback turtles. It’s believed that the world’s largest population of Green Sea Turtles calls this area home, with its mangroves and white-sand beaches.
With each passing year the number of sea turtles diminishes as poaching and environmental effects take their toll on the population. Nicaragua’s government has begun working with agencies such as the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to help educate people about turtles and provide a safe place for the turtles to lay their eggs and for the hatchlings to make it back to sea.
Source: Nicaragua Tourism Board