Mother leatherback sea turtle coming to lay eggs
Welcome to S.O.L.O.!
Save Our Leatherbacks Operation's (S.O.L.O.) primary goal is to recognize and help correct the nesting issues on the beaches of Irian Jaya, Indonesia. The Leatherback sea turtle is the largest sea turtle and largest reptile on earth (females are over 2 m long, 3 m wide, and 1 m thick with weights ranging from 500 kg up to to 1000 kg in the males). In prehistoric days these turtles numbered in the 100s of millions. Now, since 1998, the nesting population is well below 1,000 at the remaining, very remote beaches in Papua Barat, Indonesia. The science data is lagging by about 2 to 3 years. Find out more about the Leatherback sea turtle »
Our Expeditions since 2005 to the largest Pacific Leatherback nesting beaches have revealed a far more severe situation than has been reported by others. Baby Leatherback turtles and their eggs are being destroyed in vast numbers in their nests by global warming, egg poachers, and predators such as wild pigs and dogs. The result is a negative hatch rate, which places the entire regeneration of the species in the Pacific Ocean in jeopardy of extinction. We have just 2 to 3 years to reverse the trend, or this gentle giant will be lost forever.
Humans have a direct responsibility to correct this. Not only to save a beautiful and majestic species from extinction, but also, if we do nothing, the entire symbiotic relationship of the seas will be altered forever. How? Simply because zooplankton, floating fish eggs, and baby fishes will be consumed by the massive emerging jellyfish blooms worldwide to the extent that remaining global fish stocks will suffer greatly. Leatherbacks and other sea turtles prey on jellyfish; without them, jellyfish populations proliferate, resulting in even more imbalanced ecosystems. Predictions of "what might happen - if..." are now what is happening to our fish stocks along our coastal fishery areas.
Our Goals & Objectives
The primary goal of this Foundation is the help reverse the rapid decline of the Leatherback sea turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, populations toward extinction, which is occurring at an alarmingly fast rate. Our goal to help achieve a significant reversal of population decline in the the largest Leatherback turtle nesting beaches in the Pacific, Irian Jaya, Indonesia, to increase the number of hatchlings. Find out more about our Goals & Objectives »
About Us & Our Advisors
Save Our Leatherbacks Operation (S.O.L.O.) had its beginnings in the spring of 2005 (details are chronicled in the book …”Almost Gone”…). It was then our Founding Director, Larry McKenna went in search of film file footage and photos of some large turtle which he was informed, was heading for a rapid extinction; the Leatherback sea turtle. Find out About Us and our Advisors »
TYPICAL GROUP VISITING THE LEATHERBACK NESTING BEACH AT NIGHT
We have developed a "sister web site" to display our coming Expeditions and travel information. Please click on the above site to obtain the information.