Egg poaching is killing off Costa Rica’s leatherback turtles.
Fusion recently went to Costa Rica to investigate the happenings of turtle egg poaching. The poaching started decades ago, prompting the Costa Rican government to pass a law in 1996 that criminalized the practice. According to the video, turtle egg poaching is a lucrative business that has spawned an underground market where eggs are sold to restaurants and markets for huge margins. For some Costa Ricans, egg poaching is the only way they can think of to provide for their families and survive. The thirst and popularity for the turtle eggs, which some think serve as an aphrodisiac, has led to the deaths of several environmental conservationists. Most famous was the death of Jairo Mora in 2013. The young environmentalist was found dead on the beach he regularly patrolled. He was dragged behind a car until he asphyxiated on the sand. Fusion’s exposé digs deep into the socioeconomic issues that lead to an increase in illegal poaching and paints a grim future of a world with a continued depletion of the turtle population.