Sea Shepherd Conservation Society Announces Sea Turtle Defense Documentary ‘Why Just One?’

Newly hatched Olive Ridley making a run for the ocean. Photo: Matthew Karsten,

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society announced the release of its first feature-length, in-house documentary, titled Why Just One?. The documentary addresses the dramatic decline in sea turtles and the organization’s efforts to defend them.

Today’s announcement corresponds with the launching of an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to finish post-production on its groundbreaking new documentary. Scheduled for release in the summer 2016,  this documentary will change the way people see sea turtles and those who risk their lives to defend the turtles.

Join Sea Shepherd volunteers on the sandy shores of Costa Rica. There is a war taking place between poachers and conservationists.  The conflict is over the most ancient of creatures,  one that witnessed the extinction of the dinosaurs and the dawn of humankind: sea turtles. In the documentary, Sea Shepherd defends the same beach where 26-year-old Jairo Mora Sandoval was murdered in 2013 while protecting sea turtles. The Sea Shepherd crew endures attacks and brave treacherous conditions to follow in Jairo’s footsteps. They tackle a vexing paradox: trying to prevent the poaching of sea turtle eggs in Costa Rica when the activity is legal in one beach town, Ostional, on the country’s Pacific coast. This legal loophole fuels and enables egg poaching throughout in Costa Rica.

In Why Just One?, Sea Shepherd explores the widely accepted statistic that just one in one thousand sea turtle hatchlings survive to maturity.  Experts, conservationists, government representatives and poachers are interviewed, including one of Jairo Mora Sandoval’s closest friends. This is a story of courage, action and hope that good will prevail before it’s too late. Why Just One? will move people emotionally – and move them to take action for the turtles.

Crew protecting nesting leatherback turtle at night: Photo: Sea Shepherd

“On May 31, 2015, we launched Operation Jairo to defend sea turtles in Costa Rica, Honduras, and Florida,” stated Sea Shepherd Conservation Society founder Captain Paul Watson. “We named the campaign after Jairo Mora Sandoval to honor his memory and continue his work to defend turtles. Without patrolling the beaches, we cannot tackle the problems of poaching turtles and their eggs. And without tackling the problems of poaching, we cannot save turtles from extinction.”

Last year, Sea Shepherd’s Operation Jairo saved more than 12,000 sea turtles and eggs in its campaign to protect the ancient mariners in Costa Rica, Honduras and Florida. By patrolling the beaches at night, Sea Shepherd volunteers were able to stop poaching in Costa Rica and Honduras. In Florida, volunteers ensured that turtle hatchlings made their way into the ocean without being disoriented by bright lights.

“This documentary highlights what we are doing for the turtles, what we can do for turtles, and what we must do for the turtles. Jairo made the greatest sacrifice known to humans to defend turtles.” continued Captain Watson.

Join us in making this important documentary by backing the film here:

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