The Whale Heritage Sites Steering Committee is delighted to announce that the Osa Pensinsula, Costa Rica, has passed the initial application process to become a Whale Heritage Site and has been approved for candidacy. The site can now plan how to undertake the rigorous audit process as it attempts to meet the criteria required for full Whale Heritage Site status.

The proposed site is off of the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica, where Humpback Whales arrive from both North and South America, providing almost year round whale sightings. This is unique to the region! The site boundaries will run from Marina Ballena to the Golfo Dulce, near the border of Panama.

In addition to the Humpback Whales, mega pods of Spotted Dolphins, Spinner Dolphins, Common Dolphins and Bottlenose Dolphins, as well as Rough-toothed Dolphins, False Killer Whales, Fin, Sei and Brydes Whales and the occasional pod of Orcas visit the area. There are three main research organizations and an established network of whale watch boats operating mainly out of Uvita, Drake Bay, Golfito and Puerto Jimenez. I have been working for almost 20 years now to create a protected marine area here. Work is in progress to create a marine protected area, supported by the long-term gathering of data on cetacean sightings. It is hoped that designation as a Whale Heritage Site could play an important role in furthering protection for the site and its cetaceans.