Meet Our Field Biologists: Rhys Pegrume

Have you ever wondered what daily life is like for a sea turtle biologist? We invite you to meet our sea turtle biologists!

We are so grateful for the many sandy miles our biologists walked at all hours of the night during the 2016-2017 nesting season. Together, we're creating a future for sea turtles. 

Learn about more opportunities to get involved.

Rhys Pegrume

Hometown: Cape Town, South Africa

Degree: Ecology & wildlife conservation, University of Bournemouth, England

Photo by Quintin Bergman

What attracted you to this field position?

Living on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. And working with a great organization to help the conservation of the leatherback sea turtle.

Describe your typical day on the job.

My day always starts with some Costa Rican coffee. Then off to the hatchery to see if any baby turtles have decided to make their way out of the sand, and start their new life in the open ocean. After that it’s off for a much needed breakfast at Kike’s where we always receive a warm welcome. Finally, we hit the beach for our night patrols in search of the always-impressive leatherback.

What is the best part of your job?

It has got to be working with the turtles!! Whether it’s a leatherback at night or a cheeky daytime olive ridley it is always an amazing experience.

How has your experience inspired you?

My time spent with The Leatherback Trust has inspired me to get more involved in marine conservation and I am currently looking at doing a master's in marine biology.

What has been the funniest moment thus far?

The funniest moment so far happened pretty early on in the season. It started out as a pretty slow night on the beach, no turtles and plenty of mosquitos. Dana and I were taking break and checking out the stars. When something hit my foot, we both looked down and to our surprise a little Ridley had come up to nest exactly where we were sitting.

Describe Costa Rica in three words.

Beautiful, friendly, laid back