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EPI & Pacuare Reserve

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Preserve. Protect. Pacuare.

Once logged for timber, grazed by cattle, and threatened by encroaching plantations, Pacuare Reserve is now a protected haven for thousands of species, including the vulnerable nesting leatherback sea turtle, threatened jaguars, and the rare Agami heron.

Join us to protect this incredible biodiversity hotspot in collaboration with local Costa Ricans and the global conservation community.

Nestled on the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica, Pacuare Reserve is a 2,500 acre reserve and science station dedicated to protecting the thousands of species that call its jungles, beaches, and coastal waters home. Pacuare is also an integral part of EPI’s 16-year history.

EPI began in 2000, with just 61 Costa Rican students joining Co-founders Scott and Julie in the field for nightly turtle censuses at the Reserve. Like those first hatchlings the students protected, our partnership with Pacuare and its founder John Denham has only grown stronger in the years since that first course. Last year, 762 students and teachers participated in EPI field programs in Costa Rica, many of which were held at Pacuare.

This year, John Denham and the Endangered Wildlife Trust entrusted Pacuare to EPI, with the shared vision of protecting the Reserve in perpetuity.

Our deep committment to local community engagement and passion for conservation led Denham to think of EPI when looking for Pacuare's next stewards, and we plan to honor his legacy by protecting this biodiversity hotspot, increasing educational activities, and launching the new John Denham Award for Community Engagement in Conservation.

A vision of this magnitude requires a village of support, and we need your help to ensure that our shared dream of an ecological sanctuary for leatherback and green turtles, jaguars, sloths, and birds of all kinds thrives long into the future.

Help Preserve the Reserve!

Donate today to help us sustain Pacuare's conservation initiatives and support scientific research, staffing, local involvement, and more – all of which helps protect the thousands of species of flora and fauna that call Pacuare home.

Protect Pacuare Today

Pacuare is an experience that you cannot put into words. You can only live it. It is a privilege to visit Pacuare and an opportunity you will never regret.

Yeudin, EPI Alumnus, Costa Rica

Impact Stories

Student Stories: Meet Shanil

Shanil, a local Costa Rican student, recently joined us on an EPI field course, and her experience at Pacuare had a profound impact. 

On course, her instructors described her as an enthusiastic and upbeat student, a great leader, and a positive motivator. Before the course, Shanil admits that she felt she was doing her part to help the environment; but her time volunteering at Pacuare Reserve with EPI opened her eyes. She says it was at Pacuare that she realized she could be more involved in conservation in her own community. 

11 Amazing Trips Letting You Help Save The Sea Turtles

See the full story at Epicure & Culture 11) Tour A Giant Tortoise Breeding Center With Local Students (Galapagos, Ecuador) A unique partnership between Adventure Life and Ecology Project International (EPI) gives you the opportunity to spend a day on a conservation or research project on Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands. EPI is a nonprofit that inspires youth to actively participate in local conservation efforts. The organization’s students take tourists on tours around Fausto Llerena Breeding Center to see giant tortoises and land iguanas. They... Learn More

News Stories: About EPI

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At Pacuare Beach, where our students work in Costa Rica, 
the predation rate of nesting turtle sites dropped from
98% in 2000,
to less than 2% today