About “Entangled in Costa Rica”

In association with filmmakers The Vegan Pirates, Innoceana produced the documentary “Entangled in Costa Rica”. This short film tells the story of a group of people who rescued two Humpback whales from entanglement in ghost nets. The film explores how everyone, when faced with unforeseen circumstances, can come together to facilitate positive change.

How you can help?

Our goal is to reach $100,000 and every donation counts!

Donating to the 501(c)3 nonprofit organization Innoceana is one way in which you can contribute to the protection of vulnerable marine species in the South Pacific Coast of Costa Rica and help rescue animals entangled in fishing gear. Let’s prevent this situation from happening again.

Your donation will help us to:

  • Purchase a boat to monitor the coasts and spot animals in distress.

  • Create a trained network of disentanglement experts: provide special disentanglement tools, train local communities and tour operators to perform rescues of whales and other marine animals such as entangled sharks, sea turtles, whales, dolphins, and rays.

  • Support Innoceana’s projects and research to develop new technologies and strategies to conserve and protect the area.

  • Develop citizen science programs to educate and raise awareness of the population on plastics and industrial fishing issues.

  • Apply pressure on local authorities, through a competent legal team:

    • to vote on a bill banning industrial fishing, gillnets, and fishing fleets, during the whale breeding season.

    • to define the corridor between Caño Island and Corcovado National Park in Costa Rica as a national Marine Protected Area (MPA).


More about budget and festivals release timeline HERE

Donation Progress Bar

All cash donations are tax-deductible up to the extent allowed by the IRS. Innoceana is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization and our tax ID number is 84-4780735.

Please contact the team.

About the rescue &  The Vegan Pirates:

On the 11th of July 2019, Zobeida an instructor at Drake Divers – South Pacific of Costa Rica, received a call about a whale entangled in fishing lines. She organized the rescue mission, prepared the boat, and called for support in the area. This call is how Carlos, Laura, and Yulian of the Innoceana Team became involved and jumped into the boat headed to rescue the whale, along with fellow dive guides.

When the improvised rescue team, equipped with machetes and kitchen knives, localized the whale, it was found entangled in more than 3 miles of fishing lines full of hooks and buoys, along with her young calf and 2 dead sea turtles.

After the rescue, Innoceana wanted to show the world what they had witnessed but did not have the resources and skills to do so. Fortunately, they met Coco & Pipa, an amazing couple with incredible skills that together form The Vegan Pirates. Without them, this documentary would not have been possible. Let them explain:

“When we first met Yulian on a dive trip to Isla del Caño, a small island in the South Pacific of Costa Rica, we didn’t know that it would change the course of the next few months and that it would also bring us in contact with more like-minded human beings. He was our dive instructor and he had also incredible knowledge about the humpback whales that migrate to Costa Rica every year to mate and raise their calves. He told us about the organization Innoceana and the rescue mission they participated in to save two entangled whales. So for us, it was just a logical step that – with our background in media production and our engagement in marine conservation – we decided to help and use our skills to create a documentary about this event. After months of more research and editing, we finally finished the documentary and are so happy and proud to already have been chosen for some festivals. This is a really big step to raise awareness for these events.”

This type of event occurs every day around the world and not only with whales: entangled dolphins, sharks, sea turtles, manta rays, etc. Rescuing any type of animal from entanglement is dangerous and difficult. We have to create trained rescue squads equipped to answer these types of life or death emergencies in a secure way; and involve all of the local boat captains and guides in the training. But to achieve that, we need YOUR HELP.