I didn’t know much about leatherback turtles before I arrived in Trinidad. In fact our filming schedule was so crammed that I hadn’t given them much thought at all until I actually saw one. Our plan was to use infrared cameras and lights to film the turtles leaving the sea, climbing the beach and nesting, in a way that we would create as little disturbance as possible. The down side of course is that, on a dark moonless night without infrared goggles (we didn’t have them), you don’t really see a turtle until you trip over it. It’s only when you trip over your first turtle that you realize how absolutely massive and immovable these animals are.
|Infrared Leatherback Turtle, Trinidad. © Richard Kirby|