Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Updates from X-Ray 4

Jed from Bravo 1 has returned from the road trip and brought with him some blogs from X-Ray 4 bloggers Monisha and Flor.

A day in the life of X-Ray 4

06:00: Everyone gathers in our camp kitchen for breakfast, fuelling up for the hard day's work ahead of us.

07:00: We make our way from camp to the rangers' station which is a short walk away. Our charismatic maestro Don Marco and the other rangers have kept us very amused by communicating in Spanglish. Our mornign work has involved building a barrier between the beach and hatchery to protect from high tide and tsunamis, improving the road leading the rangers' station and smartening up the wildlife refuge.

11:00: Before the afternoon heat sets in, we return to camp for lunch. The middle of afternoon is spent resting, recouping our energy and playing cards with the rangers.

15:00: We make our way back to the rangers' station for some more work clearing the paths to the beach by removing driftwood that has been washed to shore. The afternoons are also spent in the hatchery excavating the new-born turtles from their nests. it's an incredible feeling to pull each turtle out and then release them in to the sea.

17:00: Dinner time! Our group has been blessed with some awesome chefs that have treated us to delicious gallo pinto and empenadas with soya mince and beans. Perfect meals to keep us all going for the night shifts.

20:00 - 05:00: Hatchery
Two people start the first hatchery shift at 20:00 - 00:30 and then swap with the second shift who do 00:30 -05:00. Every 30 minutes we check certains nests to see if any turtles have hatched. If they have, we count and collect them and bring them back to the rangers' station. If the turtles are very active and the tide is low we can release them into the ocean. The turtles are placed in a line about 10 metres away from the water and we watch them take their first steps in life.

22:00 - 05:00: Patrols
The patrol timings vary depending on the tide but usually patrol 1 starts at 22:00 and patrol 2 sets off at 03:00 for either a 7km and 14km distance with one of the rangers. We walk along the beach in the moonlight searching for turtle trails that lead to a nest to uncover eggs that have been laid. If we;re lucky we can catch the turtles laying their eggs or making their nests and then watch them silently make their way back to the sea. We collect the eggs which can way up to 7kg and continue our patrol. Initially we thought patrol would be a leisurely walk along the beach but we soon had to get used to the fast pace set by ranger Jonny.

It has been fantastic time so far in Playa Hermosa. working with the turtles and living in our beach camp has been incredible. Our body clocks are slowly getting used to the challenging but rewarding night shifts!
Pura Vida!

And now some thoughts (in Spanish) from fellow blogger Flor.

Qué hay en el misterio de la vida?
Qué hay en la vida de cada ser humano que le hace tan importante and especial?
Qué hace que todo se mueva?
Eschuchar el mar, sentirlo tan vivo, alegre y fuerte; pensar que dentro de él existen milliones de seres los cuales no conocemos y que forman parte importante en el ciclo diario de la vida.

Cada vez que salimos a patrollar es tan interesante caminar y sentir la naturaleza, ver cuando las tortugas salen a desobar y dar inicio a un nuveo ciclo de vida. Pesnar que somos parecidas: naceoms, crecemos, nos reproducimos and morimos, pero nosotros tenemos el poder de la decisión, depende de cada uno darle sentido a la vida y marcar la diferencia, dejando huella en otros corazones, transformando vidas, asi que: sea bueno o malo nuestro dia, siempre trae buenas razones para cantar y reìr.

Pienso que en los momentos de adversidad siempre hay que tener una visión emprendedora, y si nos vemos frente a un abismop, dar un paso atras, razonar que estamos haciendo y buscar un nuevo horizonte, no ver el cielo gris que nos rodea, si no, agregarle estrellas y pintarlo de colores, al final despues de todo los obstaculos son solo para probar el guerrero que tenemos dentro.

Exitos en tu vida, vievela y no dejes que nadie, nunca te diga como, cada quien anda a su paso, lento o rapido. Buena suerte! Camina como te de la gana, claro siempre es bueno escuchar consejos, y toma nota de tus experiencias, para no cometer el mismo error dos veces. Buena suerte y brilla brilla!

One of the friendly locals...don;t worry they keep their ditance!

PM Ken joins the team after a spell in fieldbase.

The team is called X-Ray in case you weren't sure!


  1. Alice Hall X-ray 1
    Hi Alice,
    Sorry I keep forgetting to post on the blog, I've been emailing you with all my exciting news instead! We've all been following the blog every day. Hope you're having a good time and that your feet aren't too sore!
    Lots of love, your favourite sister! xxx

  2. To Eleonore Vollebregt, XRay 5

    Lieve Noor, Hoe is het allemaal daar, nog steeds druk in de rivier aan het werk! Nog een kleine week en dan is helaas het 2e stuk alweer voorbij! Wat gaat het snel!
    Ik moet wel lachen om Fluf, hij is zeer kieskeurig wat eten betreft, lijkt op z'n baasje zeker!! Ha, ha! Dus poot van Fluf hierbij!
    Wel geestig dat je zo alle blogs van iedereen kan lezen, Jur had je ook iets moois gestuurd, ik heb gisteren gebeld hoe het met z'n "kater" was maar hij was op tijd naar huis gegaan dus niets aan de hand, het verhaal had hij lekker aangedikt, gelukkig maar! Had ik al geschreven dat er een dode muis in z'n kamer lag? Het rook zo raar!!! Enfin waarschijnlijk toen Jur een zijkant van de computer opzij had gezet heeft hij de muis geraakt! Per ongeluk dus en de muis lag daar dus al een paar dagen.... Altijd wat te beleven!
    In het week-end gaan wij naar W'mond, komen even met z'n allen bij elkaar, was de verjaardag van oma.
    Ik hoop dat de post jullie met enige regelmaat bereikt en ik ben benieuwd hoeveel brieven je inmiddels al van ons hebt gekregen!
    Duc is met z'n stage begonnen, geniet nu extra wanneer het week-end is! Heeft het volgens mij erg naar z'n zin!
    Lieverd ik ga wat doen, geniet nog maar even in Nicaragua, hoop nog een blog met foto's van jullie binnenkort op de site te vinden! Veel liefs van al mijn vriendinnen, speciale groet van oma en big hug van pappie en mammiexxx miss you.

  3. Konica Ying Bik Kwok 11L X-Ray 4

    Nth much going on lately! But lemme update you a bit.
    1. Gonna have a xmas party at my home. Parents as well as my dear neighbout will be in china to attend the opening ceremony of Uncle kwok's shopping mall. But there is a restraint, we are trying not to leak any news of this party because:-
    a. to control the amount of ppl (we had too many last year), tho we will hopefully have 18 this year.
    b. to avoid someone to trace this party up and come uninvited (you know who, not hard to guess)
    hope we gonna have fun!!
    2. Jo's dog is very cute!!!! you must pay a visit when u come back
    3. Wing's sister is in the last AW and she got passed! them two look quite similar, you won't miss them. haha
    4. I am very good these days...spent most of my nights in the library after work if i have nth to do. 7-1045pm.......
    I am bored without you here......

  4. For Kate Wilson X-Ray3

    Hi Kate

    Just writing to let you know that I saw your Mum yesterday. She is absolutely fine, there is no need for you to worry about her. She had a fantastic time in Antigua. I am following your blog and have shown Sarah the pictures of you. It looks like you are having an amazing time. Enjoy all the new experiences it will be over all too soon. Look after yourself.


  5. To Ken Lo (X-Ray 4)

    Hi again from seoul. it's late autumn entering early winter here in korea, but it's still a very comfortable 10-15 degrees mostly, although you wouldn't notice that looking at the locals here. In the kind of weather where you would be prancing around in your shorts and t-shirts (pommy you!)the locals here parade around in ski jackets and a minimum of 3 layers! Mum and I found it a sight to behold since we don't find it cold here at all. Anyways, hope you're enjoying your stint doing your bit for the turtles. You look far too thin in the photos! Also, please stay away from little children with that incriminating mustache lest they mistake you for someone more sinister! :P hahah much love! xx thel

  6. This a super tuanis message for chuta in X Ray 2!
    hey mate how'sit going???
    MAE!!!!! como esta??? mae beunisimo saber que esta haciendo el mejor trek de todos!! en serio me imagino q le esta encantando!!! ojala puedan subir al rincon!! y junquillal simplemente es magico!! el fin pasado andaba en el cebollal en el fin de seleccion de los nicas! fue demasiado cool! ahi vimos a bruce! ya kiero toparmelo pa escuchar las historias!! cuando vuelva a Field Base saludeme a los otros dos lokillos que lleve a field base!!! nos vemos pronto una abrazo NAcho!

  7. Trevor Littlewood17 November 2011 at 10:55

    To Jonathan Littlewood, X-ray 4

    Jonny, just read the X-ray 4 blog - sounds fantastic and I'm really jealous. Hope you are having a fantastic time and enjoying the night shifts! I'm back from San Francisco on Monday and then it's only 6 days till you are back. Can't wait to see you and hear all the adventures although I suspect you may be a bit sad leaving the turtles and Costa rica. Love you lots, Dad, Nicola and Caitlin.

  8. Jonathan Littlewood X-ray 4
    Hi Jonny
    Wonderful to read "a day in the life of X-ray 4" and to see the brilliant photo of you all. You really look as if you are enjoying yourself and it was good to learn what your days are filled with. What an amazing experience, working with such beautiful creatures, and a real privilege to be a part of helping the species. Am so envious! Am in Jersey at the moment - really busy day today, and have a grotty cold, sniffling runny nose! But enjoying staying at the Merton Hotel, nice and quiet and all meals in the Bonnetti restaurant. Home tomorrow, seeing Granny Haze and Auntie Ange and cousin Kevin for Aunty Erma's funeral next Wednesday, and then soon be the weekend and you'll be home. Looking forward to seeing you and hearing all about the trip. Love you lots. Mum xxx

  9. Kelly Pitt X-Ray 4
    Hello Kelly - It's Linda & Jan here, love and best wishes from Stroud Police reception. We have just, I mean how long did you have to be gone before we put your blog on favourites!!:)
    We hear you are having a fabulous time and not really wanting to come back, I am sooo not surprized.
    We will check in from time to time
    Love Linda & Jan

  10. Jayne Deegan X-Ray 4
    Jungle Jayne!
    Hope you are good, I've been thinking about you lots. Just been reading the blog, sounds like you are having the most amazing time, really sounds like a fab experience. Can't wait to hear all your stories.
    I'm sure your all all taking great care of the turtles. I'm even a wee bit jealous, your night shifts sound way better than mine!
    I'm off home on Tuesday for a week, really looking forward to it but will be strange not to have you there, but if we can't have you Jayne we are having the very next best thing . . . Moragh! We are going to her 50th on Friday night, I'm looking forward to it.
    We were all so happy to hear from you in your letter, made my wee day!
    Please stay safe and keep up the good work! Keep in touch whenever you can!
    Love you and miss you lots!
    Dianne xoxo



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Pura Vida!