Eric Kirby (1989 – present) is an American civilian who was involved with the 2001 Isla Sorna incident, in which he became marooned on the restricted Costa Rican island for a period of eight weeks between May and July. Unauthorized attempts at rescue by his family led to a major international incident culminating with the U.S. Armed Forces making entry into territorial Costa Rican waters to extract survivors including Eric.
While it is considered soft-canon (and particularly soft canon at that), the junior novel Survivor is narrated by Eric Kirby. At least in the junior novelization canon, Survivor exists as an actual in-universe book, indicating that Eric is a writer as well as a castaway survivor.
The given name Eric is of Old Norse origin, coming from the masculine name Eirikr. It translates to mean “sole ruler” or “ever powerful,” though a more common meaning “forever ruler” is often ascribed to it. The surname Kirby is also ultimately derived from Old Norse, with the words “kirkja” and “býr” (meaning “church” and “settlement”) being combined to name certain places such as towns in the British Isles. The resultant Anglicized name Kirby, or Kirkby, became a habitational surname for people who lived in such towns. Genealogical historians debate whether the surname Kirby originated in Southwest Ireland or Northern England, but the name appears in many English-speaking countries.
Both Eric Kirby’s first and last names are English via Old Norse in origin, which may give some indication of his family’s historic roots.
Most of Eric Kirby’s biography is taken from the junior novel Survivor. This book, though not its sequels, has been said to be soft-canon to the films; if Universal Studios decides to change its status in the future, Jurassic-Pedia will update this page.
Eric Kirby was born to Paul and Amanda Kirby in Enid, Oklahoma in the year 1989. His birth date is not exactly known, but falls between June and early July (he was eleven years old on May 30, 2001, but was twelve as of July 18, 2001). He was interested in dinosaurs as a child, recalling first becoming fascinated with dinosaurs at the age of five after reading Dr. Alan Grant‘s illustrated nonfiction book Dinosaur Detectives. His father owned a dog named Gray, who Eric appears to have loved well.
In 1995, a scientist called Dr. Ian Malcolm announced on television that dinosaurs were alive in the modern world. Malcolm claimed that a company called International Genetic Technologies had cloned the animals from prehistoric DNA found in mosquitoes preserved in amber. The dinosaurs, he said, had been created on a Costa Rican island called Isla Nublar for a theme park called Jurassic Park, but something had gone wrong, and the dinosaurs had escaped and attacked people. As a result, InGen’s CEO John Hammond never opened the Park, and instead chose to keep it a secret from the public. Few people believed Dr. Malcolm’s tale, and he was laughed out of the scientific field.
This changed in early 1997. When Eric was seven years old, soon to turn eight, the morning news on May 30 showed footage that confirmed truth to Dr. Malcolm’s story. A fully-grown Tyrannosaurus rex had been seen by civilians and authorities on the streets of San Diego, California, having been shipped there from an island called Isla Sorna by InGen in an attempt to open Jurassic Park on the mainland. Apparently this was where John Hammond had originally planned to build, before relocating to an island. The dinosaur had escaped captivity and caused havoc in the city, but was returned to the boat along with its offspring by Dr. Malcolm and his girlfriend Dr. Sarah Harding. Both tyrannosaurs were safely brought home to Isla Sorna, and an ailing John Hammond himself appeared on the news to urge the Costa Rican Department of Biological Preserves and the United Nations to declare the island a wildlife preserve.
While many people considered the de-extinction of the dinosaurs to be a bioethical can of worms, Eric could only be thrilled. He watched the San Diego footage over and over again, longing to see the great tyrannosaur himself in person. Despite the astounding reality of de-extinction and the many people excited by it, there was also a large amount of public opposition to it, not in the least bit because the tyrannosaur in San Diego had caused at least one death and a considerable number of vehicular accidents. As Eric grew up, many of his friends thought him strange for wanting to see dinosaurs up close.
Junior high school
He attended Waller Junior High School (now named DeWitt Waller Middle School) as a preteen, and despite Enid’s population of over forty-five thousand, Eric came to think of it as a small town full of small-minded people. As he formed his identity as a young person, his dream became to eventually leave Enid for the excitement of the bigger outside world. This sometimes caused problems for him. His community was conservative, resistant to change, and tended to look down upon anyone wanting to leave town. Rather than discuss his dream of seeing a dinosaur, Eric told people that his goal was to become an Air Force pilot, inspired by movies like Top Gun and the yearly Wings of Blue airshow. Enid is the home of the 71st Flying Training Wing, based out of Vance Air Force Base.
In school, Eric had a small group of friends and played center offense on the Waller Junior High Eagles football team; he also tried his hand at hockey, wrestling, and basketball. His football team’s main rival was the Temple Hills Lions, often said to be the strongest in Garfield County. Most of his friends though of him as a jock.
Although he lived a normal life for a middle-school-aged boy, he remained quietly obsessed with Jurassic Park. Eric learned more about the secretive history behind the Park; although John Hammond had passed away at the end of 1997, Malcolm was happy to speak publicly about his experience in 1993. Malcolm also brought to the public’s attention other survivors of the incident, including paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant and paleobotanist Dr. Ellie Sattler. Eric owned books by the survivors, including Malcolm’s God Creates Dinosaurs and two books by Dr. Grant: Dinosaur Detectives, which was the book that had first gotten Eric into dinosaurs as a child, and Lost World of the Dinosaurs, which was written more recently. Of these, Eric preferred the earlier book, in which Grant’s love for dinosaurs was untainted by life-threatening experiences and loss of funding. Eric was less fond of Malcolm’s book, finding it too preachy and believing that the self-righteous Malcolm overused chaos theory as a justification for all of his views.
At home, Eric found he had more in common with his mother than his father. While Paul was the family breadwinner, Amanda desired a more exciting life than the family fishing trips, tractor shows, and bingo nights that Paul enjoyed. Eric, too, wanted a life of thrills and adventure. Paul and Amanda began experiencing marital difficulties by the time Eric was nine or ten years old and their problems began to reflect in his behavior. He rebelled against his father’s safety-conscious approach to life, siding with his mother in their arguments. When they went camping in the mountains together, Paul warned them to keep their food hidden to discourage bears from raiding the camp; both Amanda and Eric thought Paul was being needlessly cautious. No bears appeared near camp that week, and Amanda and Eric teased Paul about this. Of course, the reason no bears had come by was because of Paul’s precautions, but neither of them understood this at the time.
Eric found creative ways around his father’s rules and restrictions, for example learning how to escape from the home when he was grounded without being caught. Eric began spending time with an older boy named Eddie Campbell, who was a notorious troublemaker. Eddie taught Eric to hide in trees around town, spying on people and learning their daily routines. Eric became very good at this, and would relay the information to Eddie. While Eric thought this was a game, and a welcome distraction from his parents’ fights, Eddie was actually selling the information to burglars who would then break into the homes Eric had been watching. Eddie taught Eric other skills of thievery aside from stealth, such as how to open a lock using a bottle opener without causing visible damage. Sometimes Eddie hotwired cars that were left overnight in the Westgate Shopping Center, but Eric did not manage to pick up this skill. Eric learned some non-criminal skills from Eddie as well, such as how to rollerblade. Paul had never let him own a pair, citing the risk of injury.
Eric and Eddie’s friendship culminated with Eric’s direct involvement in a serious crime rather than just being an accessory. They vandalized a police car belonging to Enid’s Deputy Thompkins, for which Eddie was sent to juvenile hall. Eddie ensured that Eric did not face consequences, telling the police that Eric had simply been walking by and was not involved. The police believed this lie, and while Eddie was institutionalized, Eric walked free. Amanda, however, figured out that Eric had been a part of the crime. This was one of many reasons that she insisted that the Kirby family move out of Enid and somewhere that Eric’s “energy” could be put to creative use. Paul disagreed, and their fights only got worse.
Sometime before 2001, Paul and Amanda divorced, and Amanda got custody of Eric. Though he primarily lived with his mother, he maintained a good relationship with his father. Despite his young age, Eric understood why his parents were not working out as a married couple and agreed that this was for the best; he knew that his father still loved him, and they visited often. Eventually, Amanda began dating again, seeing a website engineer named Ben Hildebrand. Eric was not ready to have a new father figure, but Hildebrand was happy to just be Eric’s friend for now. As a friend, he was everything Eric had hoped for, and everything Paul was not: a risk-taking thrill-seeker, always looking for adventure and with a love for the finer things in life. Hildebrand was wealthy, having made it big in the tech boom of the 1990s, and used his money to feed Eric and Amanda’s hunger for thrills.
Amanda and Eric soon moved out of Enid at last, joining Hildebrand in San Diego, California. The move came faster than Eric was expecting, but he had finally realized his dream of getting out of town.
Marooned on Isla Sorna
In the early summer of 2001, Hildebrand took Amanda and Eric on a high-end international vacation to three different countries, the final of which was Costa Rica. He had announced plans to surf Salsa Brava, the country’s largest wave break. But before he did this, Hildebrand had a surprise announcement, one that he had apparently talked about with Amanda beforehand. Eric initially suspected they were getting engaged, and was apprehensive about this, as he was not ready to view Hildebrand as more than a friend, nor was he ready to let go of Paul as his real father figure. However, the surprise was something entirely different. While they plied the waters off Costa Rica in Hildebrand’s yacht with his business partner at the helm, Hildebrand informed Eric that they were going to Isla Sorna to see dinosaurs in real life.
This was incredible for Eric, but he had his doubts. Not only was Isla Sorna under close watch by the United Nations and restricted to civilians, there were rumors that people had disappeared on the island, even died. Malcolm and Grant’s accounts certainly suggested the animals could be dangerous since their behaviors were so poorly understood. Hildebrand assured Eric that he had a way to access the island without any trouble, and that they would view the dinosaurs from the airborne safety of a parasail. The company that ran the tour, called Dino-Soar, had apparently been doing this for some time and had never run into any problems before.
Before leaving for this vacation, Eric’s father had made him promise to be safe. Only the four people on the yacht now, and the Dino-Soar operators, knew about this part of the trip; Paul was in the dark. Eric considered telling his father where he was going, but decided against it, knowing that Paul would try and stop them from going. Encouraged by Hildebrand, Eric agreed to go on the excursion without his father’s knowledge. Amanda would tell Paul about the tour, but only after they had safely returned.
On May 23, Hildebrand and Eric met with the Dino-Soar tour guide, a local man called Enrique Cardoso, and his boat operator. In a small speedboat they traveled over two hundred miles off the western coast of Central America and toward the open sea. Isla Sorna was the centermost and largest island of the Muertes Archipelago, a secluded volcanic island chain with no current human inhabitants save the United Nations patrol planes that occasionally flew in from San Juan. After several hours on the ocean, with the mainland far out of sight, they reached the island. Cardoso kept them offshore and out of sight as an airplane flew overhead, keeping an eye on it; despite this Eric did not appear to suspect that their tour was illegal. Once the patrol had passed by, Cardoso moved the boat forward, assuring Hildebrand and Eric that they would get as close to the dinosaurs as they could safely get. The parasail was unfurled and they took to the air, towed along by the speedboat.
At the moment, nothing was visible. The tropical forest spread out to the left of them, small craggy islets to the right, but the dinosaurs remained hidden. Below, the Dino-Soar boat passed into a fog bank and was out of sight for a few seconds. While it was out of view, there was a sudden tug on the rope attached to the parasail. The boat was being jostled around, as though there was strong movement on deck. A few moments later, it passed into view again, but whatever had happened was over: the boat’s canopy was damaged, and both of the crew members were missing. Blood stained the deck, but whether it was human or otherwise was impossible to tell. Eric and Hildebrand had no time to try and puzzle this mystery, though: without any driver to steer it, the speedboat was bound to strike one of the many exposed rocks or reefs in the shallow water. In fact, it was now careening toward one. If it ran aground, the parasail would be in danger of falling into the sea. Eric panicked, but Hildebrand kept his cool and managed to unbuckle them from the rope before the boat hit the rocks, but now they were faced with a new peril: making a safe landing on Isla Sorna.
Hildebrand steered them eastward, aiming for any open space where they could land, but the forest in that part of the island was thick and the winds were not in their favor. They had no choice but to crash through the canopy, the parasail becoming entangled in the trees. Hildebrand helped Eric get down to the forest floor; Eric noticed that their camera was still filming, and Hildebrand shut it off. Eric, now that he was on the ground, noticed that Hildebrand was much weaker than he was acting. His friend did not want to frighten him, but he had sustained far worse injuries in the crash than Eric, and lacked the strength to get himself down. Hildebrand was bleeding internally, and severely. He told Eric that everything would be fine, and to go to the beach since this was where rescuers would arrive first. Again, he reassured Eric that things would be all right, and then fell silent. His eyes stayed open, but Eric realized that he had died, right then and there, from his internal wounds.
The loss had been sudden and shocking. Eric was mentally numb as he made his way toward the beach, going the opposite way the parasail had flown in. When he arrived, there was no rescue in sight; no one save Amanda knew where they were, and the islands were far from civilization. However, he was not alone on the beach. There, right in the open and no more than fifty yards to the south, was Eric’s first dinosaur. Tyrannosaurus rex had been many people’s first dinosaur, thanks to the San Diego incident, but few had seen it this close. So far, the dinosaur had not spotted him; he recalled from Lost World of the Dinosaurs how Dr. Grant described InGen’s Tyrannosaurus as being sensitive to motion (which he had hypothesized in his earlier works). Eric realized that if he stayed still enough, he might survive.
Eric tried to cautiously make his way back toward the treeline, moving only when the dinosaur was looking away. He was inadvertently aided by a second creature, a Pteranodon, which was harassing the tyrannosaur while hunting for fish in the nearshore water. Eric had almost made it to the forest when he bumped against a tree trunk, the tyrannosaur nearly spotting him. As he stood still, he noticed the tyrannosaur moving its head back and forth, as though it were watching something. Moments later he saw what had gotten its interest: a dinosaur tail swaying slowly about. The tree trunk he had backed against was a dinosaur’s leg, a huge sauropod that was sleeping standing up. If its tail kept moving, the tyrannosaur might not go away, making escape impossible.
Things went from bad to worse almost immediately when the sauropod’s rear end emitted a large quantity of digestive gases, accompanied by a sound of incredible volume. The scene on the beach became chaotic as the offended tyrannosaur roared in response, causing the sauropod to wake and panic; Eric was kicked away, and as he was thrown into the open, the Pteranodon swooped after him. He fled toward the treeline, managing to squeeze between a pair of trees which the pterosaur could not fit through. Momentarily dazed, the Pteranodon could no longer give chase, and was instead killed by the tyrannosaur. Eric managed to escape the huge predator’s notice, as it was busily driving the sauropod away. Eric also vacated the beach, not wanting to be around when the tyrannosaur returned to eat its kill.
Eric fled eastward, deep into the jungle, until he calmed down. Alone with the wildlife of the forest, Eric had time to consider how he would be rescued. Isla Sorna was far from the mainland, restricted by the United Nations, and on top of that was a decently large island covered in thick tropical forest. Before he had long to consider how dire this situation was, he had another encounter; something large moved through the underbrush toward him, and he hid in a tree until the unseen animal passed him by. From then on, he kept to the trees, hoping to remain out of sight. While here, he found a pair of two-toed sloths, which he followed to a banana grove. This gave him a source of food, and he sheltered there for the evening. Now, the hopelessness of his situation began to sank in, and he screamed himself hoarse before falling asleep in the canopy.
In the morning of May 22, Eric encountered a small family group of Diplodocus feeding on the banana plants, which caused him to panic and fall to the ground. His fall was cushioned by a large pile of dinosaur dung. While he stopped to admire the large dinosaurs, he tumbled down a small embankment, landing in a stream near another family of herbivorous dinosaurs, this time a mated pair of Ankylosaurus and their two offspring. The adults were wary of Eric at first, but calmed down momentarily. Then, Eric noticed a large snake in the nearby trees, which appeared about to attack the smaller juvenile. He threw a rock at it, driving it back, but the adult ankylosaurs assumed he was threatening their young and charged him. One of the parents made an aggressive display by slamming its tail club into the ground, throwing rocky debris into the air. An airborne rock struck Eric’s right shoulder, injuring him as he fled downstream. The dinosaurs gave up the chase after a short distance, not wanting to leave their offspring unguarded.
Isla Sorna was proving to be an unforgiving environment, even more so than Eric would have assumed. Bananas were not enough to survive off of, and he spent the day searching for new food sources. That night he slept in a tree again, and after another full day of searching for food, he nearly collapsed from hunger. At the last minute, he was able to kill a fish in one of the island’s tidal rivers using a spear he fashioned from a sharp stick. On the night of May 25, he was able to prepare himself an actual meal using fish from Isla Sorna’s waters cooked over a fire he started with a lighter he had on hand, but this attracted animal life. A large number of Compsognathus, and a larger dinosaur he could not identify due to the darkness, surrounded his campfire and he was forced to abandon his dinner to the island’s hunters. Once more, he ascended into the trees to escape the danger, and stayed the night in the canopy.
Luck finally found him on May 26, the third morning after Hildebrand’s death. He stumbled across the parking lot of Isla Sorna’s largest facility: the Embryonics, Administration, and Laboratories Compound. There were no signs of recent human activity, and no rescue helicopters, but it was a safer place than the jungle. Eric entered through the rear of the administration building, discovering the kennels, vending machines, and other features. He was thrilled to find backup radios, but the only way to charge one would be to find a working source of electricity; unable to locate emergency generators that day, Eric slept on the couch of an office. Midway through the night, he woke to find a rat nibbling on his hand, and barricaded himself in the room after chasing the rodent away.
When he woke up in the morning of May 27, Eric was again determined to locate the emergency generators and searched through the building for them. Finally he located the generators, but they were locked in a windowless room that required electronic keycard access. With power down to the entire facility, the keycard reader would not work, meaning the room was effectively deadlock-sealed and totally inaccessible. Frustrated, Eric turned his efforts to further exploring the facility to see what it had to offer. He located a recreation room with games he could entertain himself with, and a food depot (the meat was long expired, and the soy patties were unpalatable). Armed with a crowbar and various other handheld tools he recovered from the compound’s main building, he was prepared to defend himself. To signal rescuers, he ascended to the roof and spray-painted the words “Eric Is Here” on the top of the building.
Days passed, and he lost track of the date. Eric whiled away the time at the compound entertaining himself however he could. He ate from the vending machines, drank from a nearby stream, explored the whole of the facility, built a latrine, wrote letters to his school friend Jenn, read technical manuals and informational printouts from the offices and labs, and tried out the games in the rec room. At one point he tried, unsuccessfully, to hotwire a Land Rover from the parking lot. Eventually, he used debris to build himself a one-person hockey rink in the parking lot, using a soy patty from the food depot as a puck. While he was playing, he suddenly caught sight of unexpected movement, spotting a theropod on the roof of a nearby building. The animal leapt onto the hood of a car in the lot, and Eric tried to hide; he was lucky enough that the dinosaur was sniffing a candy wrapper left lying around and had not yet seen him. At first, he assumed that the dinosaur was a Deinonychus, but soon realized it was instead a Velociraptor, recalling Dr. Grant describing these animals as genetically engineered to be much larger in size than normal.
As he hid, the raptor got dangerously closer, and Eric suddenly heard something rushing up behind him. He was pinned in place against the ground, preparing for the worst. But, for some reason, the dinosaur pinning him did not attack, and instead sounded afraid. The raptor, meanwhile, never noticed Eric or the other dinosaur and moved on. Once it was gone, the second dinosaur got up, allowing Eric to stand. Though he was prepared to defend himself, he saw that his supposed attacker was in fact a juvenile male Iguanodon, who had been hiding from the raptor just like Eric. The four-foot-tall herbivorous dinosaur had only pinned him down while trying to stay concealed, and was now more interested in eating Eric’s soy patty hockey puck than attacking anything. Realizing that he had carelessly left candy wrappers around, Eric cleaned up after himself, hoping that this would avoid luring in any more animals.
Shaken by his close call, Eric took the time to barricade a section of the administration building where he could safely stay until rescue arrived. He ensured that he had all the supplies he needed, plus access to food, and that there were no ways in or out that he could not control. The windows were already barred, so all he had to do was place barricades on the doorways. By the end of the day, he had safely secured his home.
Nightfall came, and Eric’s sense of security was challenged. A crashing sound from outside his barricaded section of the building suggested that something had broken in. With a penlight to guide his way in the dark, he searched for the cause, discovering a collapsed bookshelf and the young Iguanodon inside. The dinosaur had accidentally spilled a bottle of quick-dry glue, stepped in it, and then stepped on a book from the collapsed shelf, getting its cover stuck to his foot. Eric was pleasantly surprised to see that the book was Dr. Alan Grant’s Dinosaur Detectives. He owned a copy of this book himself, of course, but it was a welcome sight here on Isla Sorna too. It took Eric most of the morning to lead the dinosaur, who he named Iggy, through the building to the food depot where he could feed. When this was done, Eric went to the rec room with snacks and Dr. Grant’s book to settle in and read. In the rec room, he found some free weights moved, and the room slightly disturbed. Assuming it had been Iggy as he stumbled about earlier in the morning, Eric thought nothing of it and ended up discovering a hidden compartment under the carpet. Here, with a tag indicating they had been confiscated from an InGen employee, was a pair of roller blades. Nostalgic for his earlier years in Enid, he tried them on, finding that they fit well enough.
As he reminisced, Eric heard dinosaurian growls. He had failed once again to notice danger as a pair of raptors appeared in the rec room with him. It was these predators that had broken the outer barricade that morning, not Iggy. The raptors attacked, and with no choice but to put his rollerblading skills to use, Eric pushed off out of their way. He fended them off using the objects in the room, throwing free weights and darts at them and upending a Foosball table on top of one. With the raptors slowed down, Eric fled into the hallway and made for the lobby. Even on rollerblades, the raptors were faster, and they quickly gained on him. He swung into an office and defended himself using a thick computer printout as a flimsy shield and tossing a disconnected monitor. Again he slowed his pursuers enough to flee toward the entrance. Outside the building, he fell on the muddy ground, and cut off the rollerblades using a tile knife. He fended off his attackers by kicking a rollerblade off in projectile fashion, using a second printout as a shield, slashing with the tile knife, and bashing one raptor’s head with a stone he managed to pick up. The predators were winded, both having been hit in the head and wounded, but Eric still had to flee at top speed. At the edge of the parking lot, he found a hatch that he escaped through, hiding within a small storage bunker buried in the ground. The raptors milled around outside, but made no attempt to breach the bunker. A thunderstorm passed over, and they departed, Eric staying hidden inside.
This was the closest brush with death he had so far, and it was nearly too much for his mind to handle. He was able to calm himself down by reading from Dinosaur Detectives, in particular a passage about the dinosaurs’ extinction and how one lineage, the birds, escaped extinction by adapting. Eric realized that no one on the mainland knew he was alive, and that rescue was unlikely. If he was going to survive, he would have to do it himself. His choices were to adapt or perish.
He kept reading the materials he found in the bunker, not just to while away the time as the storm passed but also to keep his mind off of abandoning Iggy just now. While he read, he found a blueprint and maps of the island showing a system of safe houses. Only one had actually been constructed, in a bowl-shaped valley to the north of him, but it was supposed to be equipped with an independent power supply. It was intended for InGen employees to shelter inside in the event of an emergency, so it was impervious to dinosaur intrusion. If he could make it to the safe house, he would be able to find a power source and a defensible position, allowing him to call for help and then hunker down until his rescue.
Journey to the safe house
It took several more days for Eric to prepare for his trek. Miles of inhospitable jungle separated him from the safe house, and he was well aware of the many, many horrible fates that could befall him on the way. He made several supply runs to and from the compound to stock up on whatever he might need, but also to delay his harrowing departure. One of the items he acquired was a small handheld mirror which he used to peer around corners, checking for danger before exposing himself. While he built up his courage, he re-read Dinosaur Detectives three times through, and memorized the maps of banana groves and the path to the safe house.
Eric had made two false starts already when he set out one cool, misty morning. Hitting the tree line, he stopped, again deciding he could not make it today. Vowing to try again tomorrow, he turned around and headed back toward the bunker, but was stopped by a Triceratops that had gotten in his way. A shaft of sunlight, the only light piercing the clouds that day, was shining directly on the metal of the bunker door and the trike sought out that warmth. The dinosaur lay down on top of the bunker hatch and quickly fell asleep, making it impossible for Eric to reenter. The two-ton animal blocked the narrow gaps in the hatch frame that allowed air into the bunker; Eric had just narrowly missed death by suffocation. Though he was not mentally ready to go, he now had no real choice but to start his journey today.
Along the way toward the safe house, Eric passed a small marsh where he saw a 1966 GMC HM-Series sunk headlights-deep into the muck. There were no communication devices or weapons inside, but it would make a useful hiding place if he came back this way again. It seemed like InGen had taken nearly all the weapons and radios off the island during the evacuation, but they had left behind enough to be useful, and for this Eric was grateful. He began to feel a little more confident, sure that he would reach the safe house without trouble. This confidence nearly cost him; after a short time moving through the jungle, he tripped right over a tyrannosaur’s tail. The dinosaur was lying on the ground, and as Eric froze to avoid detection, he realized this predator appeared to be malnourished or sick. It was in a dense region of the jungle, too thick for such a big animal to move easily, and he speculated that it had become trapped and was starving. He was not the only one to notice the sickly tyrannosaur. Raptors soon moved in on the scene, and Eric was forced to flee into the trees as the raptor pack attempted to kill the larger carnivore. Even in its sickly state, the tyrannosaur made a formidable foe and killed one of the raptors in the struggle.
Eric made his way through the canopy away from the scene of the fight, remaining still for about two hours. He relied on his stealth skills to remain hidden among leaves as a trio of raptors tried to track him. They nearly located him, but the smell of tyrannosaur urine near the tree drove them off. Eric noted that the tyrannosaur’s fluids could be a useful way to keep himself safe, if he could bottle some.
From here, Eric passed northward through a valley that had been stripped of foliage by sauropods feeding. A passing Pteranodon forced him to hide, and he realized he needed better ways to camouflage. When he had been spying on houses near Enid with Eddie Campbell, he had used spray-painted blankets and other disguises to keep hidden against buildings or in trees. Now, this skill could be put to a better use. He began fashioning himself a ghillie suit out of foliage and vines that evening, also realizing that mud would help hide his scent. While assembling his ghillie suit, he found a large garlic tree with a sizeable hollow inside where he could hole up for the night, and there he bedded down.
In the morning, he had himself a small breakfast of the food he had gathered and prepared for a day of trekking again. He used his mirror to check outside the vines he had used to hide the entrance to the hollow tree, but a raptor had been waiting for him to show himself. His mirror was destroyed and he was slashed on the arm. Now, the raptor was inside the hollow with him, and Eric defended himself using his crowbar to strike the raptor’s head. He activated a powerful flashlight he had recovered, blinding the animal. This also disturbed a flock of bats that were roosting in the tree. The bats took to the air, confused. Eric was spared because of his flashlight, which the bats avoided, but the raptor was surrounded by the little mammals. While the raptor was distracted by the bats, Eric made his escape.
Over a series of hills, Eric found himself closer and closer to the safe house, and stopped at a waterfall to refresh himself (while keeping a respectful distance from a couple of Stegosaurus also using the watering hole). From here, it was only three miles more until the valley where the safe house was located. Eric passed through patches of grazed-over land, no longer inhabited by herbivores, as well as thick forests. He used a tall tree to gain a vantage point of the valley ahead, spotting a huge herd of Iguanodons there. Before he could descend, though, he also saw several Velociraptors, which seemed to be patrolling the valley perimeter. Upon closer inspection, Eric realized that the valley was not one of the lush parts of the region, but rather one of the heavily-grazed areas that the herbivores normally abandoned. If they had not left for greener pastures, it meant they could not. In a moment, he realized why: the raptors were intentionally keeping them trapped there, herding them like cattle for slaughter.
From the tree, Eric witnessed the raptors’ plan in action. They rushed the valley, surrounding the herd and looking for a weak link. A juvenile accidentally stumbled into the open as the herd shifted, and Eric realized by the book cover stuck to its foot that it was Iggy. Eric was unable to do anything for the little dinosaur, but as he watched, one of the subadult Iguanodons broke from the herd to save Iggy instead. Three raptors fought it, eventually pulling it to the ground. Then a dozen raptors swarmed the downed Iguanodon, killing it while the rest of the pack formed a defensive line to cut it off from the rest of the herd. Eric identified the raptors’ leader, a male with red rings on his chest and back. The raptors fed on their kill into the evening, then made their way back up to the ridge around the valley where they kept watch over their prey like ranchers guarding livestock.
That night, a light rain turned into a thunderstorm, and lightning struck a tree on the opposite side of the valley. Branches were singed and broken off, startling the raptors. Eric realized that, in order to get into the valley, he needed the raptors distracted by something, and fire would do the trick. Back home, he had watched his father install a lightning rod on their house, a must-have for any safety-conscious Midwesterner. Eric’s crowbar would serve a similar purpose. He made his way to one of the taller trees, fastening the crowbar there. He was in the next tree over, trying to secure both the crowbar and himself, when lightning struck. The tree with the crowbar took a direct hit, bursting into flames and toppling over.
Eric only had time to react on instinct and jump from the canopy as the flaming tree crashed into the one he had been in. He tumbled down the valley rim, careening into a raptor on the way down. Before the raptor had realized what was going on, Eric mashed its head into a rock, and they both rolled to the valley floor. Eric came to rest some distance away from the raptor, which got to its feet in a daze. Fortunately, this raptor seemed not to realize that a person had struck it, possibly assuming it was debris from the lightning strike. The fire, another bolt of lightning, and the cries for help from its fellows held the raptor’s attention. Eric spotted what looked like caves in the opposite side of the valley and ran for them, hoping to reach shelter before the raptor came fully to its senses and realized he was there.
The caves offered shelter, and Eric nestled into a small cavity within. He had no intention of falling asleep, but his exhaustion got the better of him and he was unconscious for an uncertain amount of time. When he came to, he was still alone, and the storm was mostly abated. A small amount of sunlight was now visible. He started exploring the cave, which connected to a larger system of caverns within the valley wall. The caverns were far more extensive than he would have guessed; it took him several hours to become familiar with the layout. By the time he was done, it was full daylight. A few of the raptors stood between Eric and the hatch to the safe house, which he could identify by a tree stump in the ground next to it. To draw the raptors away, Eric used candy bars, like at the compound. He led a false trail, waited for the raptors to follow, and then made for the exit. One raptor lagged behind the others, spotting Eric and attacking, but he struck it in the head with a rock to render it unconscious before it could summon the others. Now, he had a brief window of opportunity to reach the safe house hatch, and he ran for it.
Reaching the hatch was an ordeal in itself, as this part of the valley was where the Iguanodons were gathered. Iggy moved toward Eric upon seeing him, but Eric’s panicked movements made the adults wary and aggressive. They moved in to protect Iggy from what they thought was a threat. One of the big adults placed its foot directly on the hatch, making it impossible for Eric to enter. To make matters worse, the raptors were beginning to amass. The alpha male, Red Rings, was leading the attackers toward Eric, who tried to slow them down by throwing rocks. Even with this reliable defense, the raptors’ superior numbers would overwhelm him. He took a risk and fled into the Iguanodon herd, dodging thumb spikes, tails, and feet. Once he reached the herd’s center, he was knocked over and disoriented for a moment, but his brief vulnerability meant that the dinosaurs saw he was not dangerous. Instead, they focused on presenting an impenetrable front to the raptors, who gave up the attack and returned to their posts. Eric was now safely within the herd, near Iggy. The adults were still wary of him, but not aggressive, and the one on the hatch had moved when the raptors charged. Eric was finally able to get the hatch open and descend the stairs to the safe house.
A small subterranean antechamber led the way to the safe house, with a heavy metal door blocking Eric’s path forward. Specs that Eric had read described a heat sensor entry lock, which would be activated by a pressure plate. By pushing on the plate embedded in the wall, Eric could activate the heat scanner; if a human’s body heat signature was within range, the door would open. However, years of neglect had left this technology barely functional, and it took all of Eric’s efforts to get it to work. Finally, he had the door open, and moved inside. Lights and ventilation activated, and Eric shut the door behind him to keep the raptors out. For the first time in days, Eric felt not just cautiously hopeful, but confident that he could get help. Unfortunately, this was short-lived. The safe house held just about everything he needed to survive, but the communications equipment and computers were missing. Electrical plugs, and phone and coaxial jacks, were left unused. Eric managed to pry open one of two huge lockers at one end of the safe house; this locker contained stun guns, tear gas canisters, and padded clothing, as well as a portable charger for the stun guns. In the second locker, there was nothing. Eric discovered that one of the clipboards bore a construction schedule: the safe house, intended to be the first of several on Site B, was one week away from completion when Isla Sorna was abandoned by InGen. The communications equipment had not been installed yet when the evacuation order was given.
With all hope seemingly lost, Eric had a total psychological breakdown. He anguished for most of the night, finally calming down once he had screamed himself raw and expended all his energy. Giving up appeared to be the only option he had left, but Eric was still unwilling to forfeit, resolving to find another way to get off Isla Sorna alive. It was at this point that the safe house’s power failed.
Eric was trapped in total darkness with limited air. The pressure plate on the interior of the safe house did not seem to function at all, turning the safe house into a tomb. Steadying his breath to conserve oxygen, Eric used his penlight to search the bunker for the stun guns, learning how the weapons worked. Currents of electricity could be sent down their barrels at the pull of the trigger, though they could only carry a certain amount of charge. But one good jolt might be enough to activate the door locks. Eric battered the pressure plate off the wall using the weapon’s handle, exposing the wires, and sent a jolt of electricity into the circuitry. This briefly started the power, but blasted Eric across the room; the power failed again moments later. Fortunately, Eric had succeeded. Electrifying the circuits in the pressure plate had disengaged the door locks. He propped the door open with his shoe to save himself from being trapped again, and began to formulate a new plan. With the hatch open above and the low light indicating it was dawn, it was only a matter of time before the raptors found their way in, so he had to work fast.
Donning the padded clothing, a helmet, and safety goggles, Eric maximized his protection and armed himself with the remaining charged stun gun as well as some tear gas grenades. He also lugged the gun’s charger with him, hoping to use this to charge a radio back at the compound. No raptors came to attack upon Eric clearing the hatch, and instead the Iguanodons were nearby, bleakly facing another morning and the daily slaughter that awaited them. Using a candy wrapper to remind Iggy of their experiences together, Eric bonded with the young dinosaur and got him to relax. The portable generator was not too heavy to carry, but if he tried to make the trek with it, the raptors would catch him in no time. Instead, Eric used a nylon cord from the safe house to strap the charger to Iggy’s back, intending to lead the herd in rebellion against the raptors and then migrate to the compound. Red Rings was watching intently, recognizing that Eric was interfering with the raptors’ food source.
Once Eric had finished securing the charger, he left the safety of the herd and headed toward Red Rings, who was waiting at the entrance to the valley. This gentler slope was the only easy way in or out, and the best means for the herd to make its escape. Eric had hoped that his confidence would inspire the herbivorous dinosaurs to fight, but they stayed put as the first few subordinate raptors dashed in to ambush him from the sides. He defended himself with the stun gun, astonishing Red Rings. Now, Eric took on the alpha directly, throwing a gas grenade at him. The gas startled Red Rings and disrupted the raptor pack; a few subordinates came in to defend their alpha, but were scattered by another gas grenade. Eric had turned the slaughterhouse into a war zone.
Rather than join the fight, the Iguanodons were fleeing the other way, and the raptors desperately tried to herd their food source back into the valley. Eric rushed into the fray to provide support, hoping to keep Iggy and the portable generator safe. Red Rings confronted him directly, pouncing on Eric and tearing the faceplate off of his helmet. Eric managed to get one final charge out of the stun gun, hitting Red Rings directly in the mouth and stunning him. Red Rings’s toe claw was broken off in the fight, and Eric grabbed it; this would serve not only as a weapon but as a way to intimidate the raptors. The pack was demoralized by their leader’s defeat, but refocused on the fleeing Iguanodons. A few of the herbivores had managed to escape the valley, but the raptors were making a final panicked attempt to retain the rest. Raptors and Iguanodons clashed, and Eric joined the bloodbath.
For the most part the raptors ignored Eric, and he managed to save a few of the Iguanodons. Most of the herd was able to escape, using their size and strength to defend themselves. Three Iguanodons fell, and three raptors continued the chase while the others descended into the valley to feed. Two of these raptors closed in on Iggy, who had become snagged by his nylon cord on a low-hanging branch. The generator had taken a direct hit, and was damaged beyond repair. For a moment, Eric froze, knowing that his last hope for rescue was gone. But the raptors did not stop, unknowing and uncaring about Eric’s plight. Remembering how helpless he had felt when Ben Hildebrand was dying, Eric got himself back into motion and dispersed the two raptors with a gas grenade while the third pounced on him from behind. His padded clothing took the brunt of the impact, but the raptor’s claws became entangled in the clothes and broke the sash Eric had used to hold his defensive outfit together. Fortune smiled on Eric one last time that day, as the raptor was unable to free itself. Eric hit it with a rock, driving it off, and used the severed claw to free Iggy from the cord. Abandoning the generator, he fled the battleground as the last Iguanodons escaped and the raptors gave up chase.
Eric sheltered in a tree as the raptors feasted. He could not safely move until they were gone, and it took them a full day to finish eating. Once they were satiated, though, they left, and did not return. The Iguanodons had been in limited supply, and there had not been enough food in the valley to sustain them. Sooner or later, the herbivores would have been too weak to defend themselves, and the raptors would have slaughtered the lot. The raptors, too, would have faced starvation once their food was gone. By causing the fight before things had gotten any worse, Eric had given the herbivores a chance at survival, and indirectly saved the raptors from their own lack of foresight. Now the battle was over, and the valley fell silent. Eric headed back south.
Rescue from Isla Sorna
After his failed effort at the safe house, Eric gave up on ever escaping Isla Sorna. He made his way back toward the compound, resolving to simply survive for as long as he could. On the way back, he stayed overnight in trees again, witnessing a Tyrannosaurus combat a Triceratops to no avail. As astounding as these natural events were, Eric was becoming used to Isla Sorna’s ecosystem, understanding its uniqueness and finding his own role in it. Like the birds had done when the other dinosaurs went extinct, Eric had carved a niche for himself in this strange world where he could live. The derelict tanker truck in the marsh became his new base of operations, its sturdy hull protecting him from most attacks.
Of course, peace did not truly fall upon Isla Sorna after Eric’s defeat of Red Rings. The raptor pack was scattered, but remained in the area. Eric also faced threats from the other animals, and eventually managed to bottle a sample of Tyrannosaurus urine to help with this. Its smell frightened off the raptors, but he discovered that it aggravated another carnivore, a rival apex predator called Spinosaurus. Eric needed to be cautious about where and when he used the urine, judging whether it would save him or only increase the danger.
Time lost any significance to Eric, and days or weeks would pass by meaninglessly. At some point, Eric’s birthday came and went, and he turned twelve years old without realizing.
Finally, one day, when he was on a supply run, he heard a human voice. A part of him that had gone dormant now stirred. He had nearly forgotten about escaping, but someone else had come to Isla Sorna. But when Eric found the man, it was in a perilous scene: a group of Velociraptors had him surrounded. Dismayed that his rescuer was himself in need of rescue, Eric used the last of his gas grenades to drive the raptors away, helping the man to his tanker truck where they could be safe.
The man Eric had rescued was, astoundingly, the paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant himself. He told a tale that seemed unbelievable, even to Eric: both of his parents, working together, had recruited the famous Dr. Grant and flown to Isla Sorna in spite of international law to rescue him. They had become stranded like Eric, and were now looking for a way off the island too. Grant had become separated from the others during a raptor attack. Eric explained to Dr. Grant some of how he had survived over what he learned had been eight weeks; it was now July 18, though Eric was actually surprised that it had not been longer. They closed the hatch to the truck upon hearing a group of Compsognathus approaching, and spent the night there.
In the morning of July 19, Eric and Dr. Grant tried to make their way for the island’s central tidal channel where they had spotted an abandoned barge. It was not much, but it floated, and was enough to get them off the island. They were cautious on the trek there: carnivores tended to nest in the island interior, away from the exposed outskirts, and the biggest animals congregated near water sources. Since the deep channel extended into the middle of the island, it was an especially dangerous area.
Along the way, Eric heard a surprisingly familiar sound. A ringtone reached his ears, the jingle for his father’s company (“Kirby Paint and Tile Plus, at West Gate!”). No one but his father would have that set as a ringtone, and it meant Paul Kirby must be nearby. Eric ran, overjoyed at the thought of seeing his parents again, and Dr. Grant followed. He reunited with both his parents in a field, and they were accompanied by Dr. Grant’s assistant Billy Brennan; now the only thing in between them was a large decommissioned security fence. Paul and Amanda were just as tearfully happy to see Eric at last, and Paul was astonished that Eric had found them so quickly. Eric revealed that he had followed the jingle of Paul’s satellite phone, but this was a problem: Paul, it turned out, did not have the phone. No one in his party did. Paul had given the phone to a man called Nash yesterday, and that man had been eaten by the Spinosaurus.
The phone rang behind them and they all realized that the sound was coming from in the theropod’s digestive tract. It was in the field with them, watching them from afar. Grant warned Eric to run, and they fled for their lives as the dinosaur gave chase. Eric and Grant managed to slip through a doorway in the base of the fence that the Spinosaurus could not fit through, physically reuniting Eric with his parents and Grant with Brennan. Their reunion was short-lived as the determined Spinosaurus body-slammed through the deteriorating fence, chasing them into a nearby observation building. They locked the doors before it could get to them, and soon it gave up. Fortunately, the building they were in seemed to be built right above the tidal channel where the barge had been seen. Not all was well in the group, though; Grant discovered that Brennan had stolen raptor eggs to sell on the black market, and reasoned that this was why the raptors had attacked their rescue party. This led to Grant rebuking Brennan, though Eric stayed out of it.
Traveling down to the river meant descending a series of catwalks on the side of a cliff, which was shrouded in morning fog. The metal catwalks were caged in, likely to keep animals out, and had borne the brunt of Isla Sorna’s harsh tropical weather over the years. It was not easy for the group to find a safe way down; many of the paths were broken or unstable, and eventually they had to cross an unprotected bridge across the canyon. Grant and Amanda made it across without issue, but when Eric attempted, he felt a rush of wind and something heavy on the bridge. Hoping that this was his mother coming to see him across safely, he carefully continued, but was greeted by an inhuman silhouette. He was now facing a gigantic Pteranodon, and he screamed and fled. The pterosaur launched after him. After so many weeks of evading these creatures, he was now in its talons, and the enormous reptile carried him to the rocky pinnacles away from the bridge. The fog was beginning to lift, but this was little comfort as Eric was dropped into a nest. There were several flapling pterosaurs awaiting a meal, already quite capable of killing their own prey. He tried to flee, using his jacket as a distraction and defending himself with bones he found in the nests. Disturbingly, some of these looked like human remains.
As he fought off the ravenous flaplings, Eric was aided by Brennan, who suddenly appeared using the same parasail that had dropped Eric onto this island. Brennan and the others had harvested it from the crash site. Eric sent the last of the flaplings fluttering away and held onto Brennan for dear life, gliding away through the aviary with several adult Pteranodons in aggressive pursuit. Their claws tore through the parasail fabric with ease, and Brennan carefully dropped Eric into the river where he landed unharmed. Meanwhile, Brennan tried to steer, but collided with a cliff face. Eric met up with the rest of the group on the canyon floor, insisting that they save Brennan. Unfortunately, there was no way to reach the man, and they were forced to abandon him as the Pteranodons attacked him in the river. His body, battered and bleeding, was washed out of the aviary as Eric and the others fled. Amanda led Eric out through the aviary’s lower-level access doors while Paul and Dr. Grant swam out underneath the base of the structure. With the pterosaurs no longer chasing them, they boarded the barge and headed south.
The trip down the river toward the ocean was slow going, and along the way, they mourned Brennan. He had saved Eric’s life, and for this Eric was grateful. Eric comforted Dr. Grant, who was regretful that his last real conversation with Brennan had been so harsh. Grant explained how he was content to learn about dinosaurs from a safe distance, but how Brennan’s youthful enthusiasm demanded a closer look. Ultimately, Brennan’s theft of the raptor eggs had only been a misguided effort to gain more funding for their paleontological research. As they passed by a field filled with grazing dinosaurs, Eric expressed his belief that Brennan was right, and that seeing the dinosaurs in person had truly been a life-changing experience. With Paul at the wheel, they continued south toward the sea.
Night fell, and they stayed on the barge overnight. Soon after sunset they heard the ringing of Paul’s satellite phone and prepared to face the Spinosaurus, but fortunately, the ringing was coming from a pile of fresh dung. They had missed the giant carnivore by minutes. Grant and the others went to retrieve the phone, leaving Eric on the boat in case the spinosaur returned. They found the phone, and despite a close encounter with a Ceratosaurus, no harm came to any of them. Once they reached the beach, hopefully they would be able to get a decent signal and call for help.
In the early morning of July 20, a fierce thunderstorm struck Isla Sorna and hindered their progress. Eric noticed a shoal of fish, which Dr. Grant identified as bonitos, flashing underneath the boat as it passed a construction site. While the presence of marine fish meant they were nearing the estuary, Eric noticed that the bonitos were fleeing from something. Grant instructed Paul to start up the boat and get them out of the area while he made a phone call, but soon after the motor started up, the boat was rammed. The Spinosaurus surfaced, confronting them a final time. Now they were in its home, and it defended its territory by destroying the barge’s wheelhouse and threatening to sink it. Everyone sheltered inside the barge’s cage. Grant managed to snatch the satellite phone as it slid past them, the dinosaur rocking the boat back and forth as it tried to drag the cage off the deck. It finally succeeded, and Grant barely managed to alert his ex-girlfriend Dr. Ellie Sattler to their peril. The cage was then dragged into the water where it sunk to the rocky riverbed.
Paul and Dr. Grant managed to get out, and as a team, they distracted the Spinosaurus. Eric and Amanda managed to get past its teeth and claws while Paul shouted at the dinosaur from atop a construction crane, and Dr. Grant used a flare gun to ignite spilled gasoline on the river. The burst of flame startled the spinosaur, surrounding it with fire and driving it away. As it fled, Eric watched in horror as it rammed the crane, throwing Paul into the inferno. For a moment, it looked as though Eric had lost his father. Fortunately, Paul had submerged quickly enough to avoid serious burns, and he swam beneath the fire to get to the riverbank and rejoin his family.
The day dragged on without much further incident as they headed south on foot. It was not much farther to the ocean now, and the Kirby family reminisced on happier times. Soon, the sound of waves crashing on the beach met their ears, and they rejoiced, but moments later they were caught in an ambush: the Velociraptors from whom Brennan had stolen eggs caught up to them. Grant had kept Brennan’s camera bag where the eggs were kept, and fortunately they had not been damaged in the ordeal of the past two days. The raptors’ alpha female approached the group, discerning that Amanda (as the only female among the humans) must be the leader. Grant cautiously passed her the stolen eggs, and she presented them to the alpha female with encouragement from Eric. The alpha raptor accepted the eggs, and meanwhile Grant had come up with a plan to possibly help them. He used a replica of the raptors’ nasal resonating chamber, the organ they used to produce noise, to mimic their calls; this confused the raptors. Coincidentally, the sound of a helicopter was heard moments later, and the raptors assumed that the humans had summoned help. Eric and the others were able to escape with their lives as the raptors left to return home.
At the beach, the group encountered a government agent who had been tasked with finding them. The man was accompanied by the might of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, ensuring that any animals would be no danger; Eric was greatly appreciative of Dr. Sattler’s help in enabling their rescue. Eric and the others were taken by helicopter to one of the aircraft carriers stationed offshore, learning that during the military’s initial sweep of the river they had found Brennan in critical condition. He was severely wounded, but alive. On the flight to the aircraft carrier, they spotted three Pteranodons leaving the island; they were the ones from the aviary, having gotten loose when the door was not properly latched. The pterosaurs ignored the military helicopters, flying off to explore their new world. Eric and his family prepared to return home.
Aftermath of the incident
Eric’s troubles were not completely over simply because he had left Isla Sorna. By encountering certain animals on the island, particularly the Spinosaurus, he had unwittingly stumbled into a shady plot by InGen’s holding company Masrani Global Corporation. This and several other dinosaurs now known to be on Isla Sorna had actually not existed there when InGen abandoned the island, and had been cloned after the San Diego incident during a brief period of illegal research and development. When Eric and the others gave their testimonies about what had happened, their accounts were censored by government agents. Eric was restricted in what he could tell the public. It is unlikely he knew the real reason, that Masrani Global administrators had paid off key government officials to bury evidence of InGen’s crime.
Paul and Amanda probably also faced consequences for their involvement in the incident, such as causing the deaths of three people and trespassing in a foreign wildlife preserve. They had also brought Dr. Grant and Brennan to the island under false pretenses. Without Hildebrand’s money to protect them from consequences, and Paul having likely spent most of his savings on mercenaries, they would have had no choice but to answer for what they had done. It was not all bad, though; not only was Eric saved, but Paul and Amanda’s feelings for each other had been rekindled. They began living together in Enid again, and according to the junior novels were remarried by 2002.
The junior novels tell a longer story about Eric’s life during the year after the incident, though only Survivor is considered loosely canon to the films. Eric’s (JN) page gives a detailed account of this, but in summary, Eric became an advocate for research on Isla Sorna and convinced a reluctant Dr. Grant to get involved. Between the two of them, they established a United Nations bureau to monitor and study de-extinct animals on the island, and a research station was constructed. Eric and Grant strongly disagreed about Isla Sorna’s ultimate fate, though they remained friends. An account of Eric’s experience on Isla Sorna, titled Survivor, was published in 2002 and Eric toured the United States to sign copies. He became a minor celebrity.
The world goes Jurassic
In 2002, Masrani Global Corporation’s CEO Simon Masrani made a groundbreaking announcement: Jurassic Park would be resurrected on Isla Nublar, renamed Jurassic World. This new park was to open in the summer of 2005. A mere four years after Eric’s harrowing experience on Isla Sorna, the whole world would now be able to witness dinosaurs just as close, but without the threat of death. So far, Eric has not given any known public comment about this.
Scientists at Isla Sorna reported an alarming drop in animal populations in the early 2000s, with 2004 seeming to have the worst of it. Speculation as to the cause raged, with poachers, disease, and territorial combat all being blamed, though the real cause was simply Isla Sorna’s small size and the vast needs of such big animals. Masrani Global enacted an operation to relocate the surviving dinosaurs to Isla Nublar where they could be tended to; operations on Isla Sorna were taken over by InGen, and laws restricting genetic research were watered down by the government. Access to Isla Sorna and knowledge about its condition was heavily restricted, with only the assurance given by Masrani Global that the island was emptied of prehistoric life. The Spinosaurus, supposedly, died.
Jurassic World opened its gates on May 30, 2005 to incredible success. It continued to add new species over the years, growing its roster of animals well into the triple digits. With prehistoric plant life factored in, the number of species it housed exceeded two thousand. At the moment, it is unknown whether Eric ever visited Jurassic World; he was nearly sixteen at the time it opened. One can assume he would have been a VIP guest, considering his history with the dinosaurs and potential to draw crowds to the park, but he also had seen things that InGen would rather have kept hidden. If Eric saw the mounted display of a Spinosaurus skeleton cast, for example, he would have immediately realized that it was not the same animal he had encountered. Noticing this seemingly innocent lie might have led Eric down a rabbit hole of coverups and conspiracies at InGen, all tied back to Isla Sorna.
What had transpired on Site B was actually only the tip of the InGen iceberg. On December 22, 2015, when Eric was twenty-seven years old, Jurassic World experienced a severe safety incident that resulted in its indefinite closure. The cause was revealed to be the escape of its highly-anticipated upcoming attraction, an artificial species of theropod called Indominus rex. This animal had caused several deaths to staff members and animals before dying, and InGen’s lead geneticist Dr. Henry Wu was blamed for conspiring to make the animal combat-ready. Apparently Dr. Wu had engaged in conspiracy with InGen Security’s leader Vic Hoskins, the man who had captured the escaped Isla Sorna Pteranodons, to bioengineer military animals and sell them to the United States government. Now, Dr. Wu was nowhere to be found and Hoskins was dead.
Meanwhile, InGen secrets were exposed by Jurassic World’s former Operations Manager, Claire Dearing, who turned whistleblower after the 2015 incident. One of these secrets directly involved Eric: the reason that his 2001 testimony had been so heavily censored. This was revealed on February 23, 2018 through the Dinosaur Protection Group, an organization founded by Dearing in 2017. Isla Nublar had been abandoned by Masrani Global since December 2015, and the company had ignored the dinosaurs’ welfare as volcanic activity on the island threatened their survival. The DPG was the main force behind advocating for the dinosaurs, but the United States government had turned against such things in recent years. Eric was not a prominent voice in this controversy, perhaps having outlived his celebrity status.
The volcanic eruption of June 22, 2018 was supposed to have killed off the remaining de-extinct animals, save those that could leave the island of their own accord. However, not long after the eruption was confirmed, reports came in from the Pacific Northwest that dinosaurs had been released into the wild there. From the small town of Orick, California, the animals spread throughout wild spaces in North America. Once, Eric had dropped into Isla Sorna and become a part of the dinosaurs’ secluded world. Now, the dinosaurs had become a part of his.
Knowledge of dinosaurs
Eric’s first and oldest strength is his extensive knowledge about dinosaur biology. While most American children are taught basic science concepts using dinosaurs as a way to keep their interest, Eric was genuinely fascinated by these animals and their ancient world from the age of five. He was first introduced to paleontology through a nonfiction book by Dr. Alan Grant, Dinosaur Detectives, which remained his favorite book for many years. The book is well above the reading level for a five-year-old, but it is fully illustrated. Because of his lifelong history of reading paleontology literature, Eric is skilled at visually identifying various types of dinosaurs in the flesh.
Throughout his life, Eric has maintained an active knowledge of paleontological science including reading further books by paleontologists such as Dr. Grant. He also has the uncommon experience of actually living among de-extinct animals in the wild, extensively observing interactions between different types of creatures. He especially noted the relationships between different types of theropods, including the conflicts they had with one another. While InGen animals are not wholly true to their prehistoric ancestors, knowing how they behave is a useful skill when living side-by-side with them.
Skill with animals
Fascinated by living things, Eric has always done fairly well with animals because of the empathy he holds for them. His first animal companion was his father’s dog Gray, who Eric was skilled with. He has learned much about human-animal relationships from his father, who enjoys camping and fishing, though it took some time for all of his father’s lessons to really sink in. When traveling through the wild, Eric learns about the wildlife of the area and acutely observes the ecological relationships between different creatures.
He also is one of relatively few people who observed de-extinct animals in the wild prior to 2018, during a brief period of history in which Isla Sorna was only infrequently visited by humans. During that time he bonded with a juvenile Iguanodon, though efforts to befriend other herbivorous dinosaurs were not particularly successful. His experiences on the island reshaped his understanding of animal behavior by reminding him, sometimes painfully, that animals do not perceive their world in the same manner as humans. Strangely enough, Eric had an easier time understanding the carnivorous animals, and was most skilled at predicting the Velociraptors. Most people struggle to predict raptor behavior because of their highly complex intelligence. The cognition of these dinosaurs is the most humanlike of any, and while this makes them harder to predict for the average person, Eric actually excels at it for the same reason.
When he was starting middle school, Eric made a friend named Eddie Campbell who provided him with welcome distractions during his parents’ messy divorce. Eric and Eddie would play a “game” in towns near Enid where they hid and observed families in their homes, making note of their routines until they were completely predictable. In order to stay unobserved, they disguised their hiding places. Eric learned to use spraypaint on blankets to camouflage against buildings and in shadowy areas, and to hide himself among the branches of trees and bushes. It appears he got very good at this, since he was never caught. Eddie was later selling their information to thieves who would break into the homes while the families were away. Along with this, Eric also learned a few other skills, such as how to open locks without leaving suspicious damage, but hotwiring vehicles seemed to be beyond his capabilities.
The stealth skills he learned helped him to escape being grounded, much to the consternation of his parents. On Isla Sorna, though, the stakes were much higher, as he faced life-and-death situations on an almost daily basis. He increased his stealth by fashioning a ghillie suit using nothing but the natural materials he was able to gather, learning the lay of the land and where to find the best trees in which to hide, and observing animal life to find safe places. Eric also found ways to disguise his scent using water, mud, and even the urine of large predators. This latter strategy was risky, though: the smell of a tyrannosaur frightened off smaller and mid-sized predators, but drew the ire of Isla Sorna’s biggest carnivore. He had to be cautious about where and when he used tyrannosaur urine as a scent mask.
Beginning at a young age, Eric was an athlete, and in middle school he was considered a jock. Eric was a member of the Waller Junior High School Eagles football team, playing the center position on the offense line. His team appears to have been quite good, and Eric proved himself a skilled leader; he took them to face off against the Temple Hills Lions, which had the strongest defensive line of any middle-school team in Garfield County. Along with football, Eric was on the wrestling team, and tried out basketball and hockey. Eric was not on the track team, but he has always been a good runner and has excellent balance. As a boy, he wanted to learn how to rollerblade, but his father discouraged this due to safety concerns; Eric learned to rollerblade against his father’s wishes.
Eric’s athletic prowess was put to the test in 2001, when he was turning twelve years old. A parasailing accident left him stranded alone on Isla Sorna, living among de-extinct animals for two months. While there, Eric’s strength helped him climb trees, fight off small predators, and build shelters, as well as walk for miles at a time. He was able to find food by scaling banana plants and spearing fish. His strength also lent itself to resourcefulness, a good combination with his stealth; Eric was able to use numerous tools and objects as improvised weapons and survival equipment. Despite his smaller size compared to most of his foes on the island, he was able to use the same natural agility and strategy that benefited him on the football field to defend himself against attacking animals.
During his time on Isla Sorna, Eric Kirby was faced with the possibility that he might never be rescued. At only eleven years old, he was marooned on a remote and hostile island, watching a man die before his eyes within minutes of the accident. From then, he was alone, except for the wildlife. The stress, danger, and isolation pushed Eric to the brink of his sanity on several occasions, but he always managed to pull himself through. He accomplished this not by drawing on some hidden inner strength, but by recalling the lessons taught to him by people back home: his father’s safety-conscious decisions no longer seemed silly, and the love of adventure his mother and Ben Hildebrand had taught him served as motivations for when he needed to make a risky move. He also took advice from people he had never met, such as famed Jurassic Park survivors Dr. Alan Grant and Dr. Ian Malcolm. The natural world itself also served as inspiration, as he watched every living creature pushing through the hazardous environment in the name of survival.
Even when all hope of rescue was truly lost, Eric managed to avoid complete despair by devoting his existence to living another day, every day. Days and weeks blurred together, but he did not give in. He was no longer hopeful; that had been replaced by stalwart determination. When humans finally arrived to Isla Sorna, they ended up finding themselves in danger too. Eric had not anticipated rescue in weeks, so he quickly got over his surprise and came to aid his would-be saviors. Since his rescue, Eric has returned to civilian life, and hopefully has not had any further experiences quite as extreme as those on Site B.
Eric usually eats ready-made food, and as a child usually had other people cooking for him, but he is able to cook on his own if need be. While on Isla Sorna, he speared fish from the coastal waters and prepared a cooking fire for himself, starting to prepare the fish. Unfortunately he lost a good amount of his food to scavengers, which were drawn to the smell from his fire and forced him into the trees to avoid being eaten himself.
Generally speaking, Eric supports de-extinction because of the massive scientific potential it holds. Although InGen animals (and in the modern day, those created by other companies) inherently have genetic modifications that result in their being altered from their ancestral forms, Eric disagrees with paleontologists such as Dr. Alan Grant that this robs them of any scientific value. According to the junior novels, Eric endorsed the creation of a United Nations research station on Isla Sorna to monitor, study, and care for the animals and their ecosystem. However, Eric describes the genetic engineering process used to perform de-extinction as “mad science,” indicating he does not wholly support it.
In addition to its scientific merits, Eric also values the thrills that come from bringing back dinosaurs. Although his own experience with dinosaur tourism ended in a grueling two-month-long ordeal, he considered the incident a genuine accident and did not blame the animals, even those which attacked him during his time on Isla Sorna. However, he has not given any comment on Jurassic World that we know of; his personal relationship with InGen is a strange and rocky one. He also was not a prominent voice in the de-extinct animal rights debate of the late 2010s and 2020s, though we can assume that his earlier views (that the dinosaurs should have legal protection) still stand.
On animal cognition
Eric was taught in middle school biology that animals have no sense of morality or empathy, a conservative view which remains commonplace in the Midwestern United States. This view places humans as exceptional, and higher than all other species, by their ability to think and develop a sense of right and wrong. Eric, however, seems to have always doubted this idea. His descriptions of animal behavior in Survivor ascribe meaning to all of the animals’ actions, and firmly interpret many of their social behaviors as having genuine emotion behind them. He used this interpretation to guide his interactions with Isla Sorna’s dinosaurian inhabitants, judging whether they were more likely to help him or harm him. However, he was not always correct; on more than one occasion he anthropomorphized the animals’ thoughts too much. This was especially an issue with the less intelligent dinosaurs, which Eric often assumed would understand his intents better than they really did.
Initially, Eric found his father Paul’s safety-conscious lifestyle as an unnecessary burden. Caution slowed things down, and more often than not, disaster never struck. Eventually he learned that this was due to survivorship bias; the fact that he had not yet experienced a major catastrophe was in no way indicative of real-life risks. In fact, it was his father’s caution that had prevented danger.
Being stranded on Isla Sorna forced Eric to prepare for any situation if he was to survive each passing day. He already had some observational skills, taken from his days watching local families to track their routines; now he turned these abilities to learn his environment to stay safe. He expanded his skills, making a habit of surveying any area he was staying in for resources, shelter, and threats. Maps became one of his greatest tools. Eric also learned to take stock of any item he could acquire and how to use virtually any object as a multipurpose device, even making use of some items in very unconventional ways. For example, he used a crowbar as a lightning rod, and a thick printout made from standard printer paper as a shield. He did not abandon his willingness to take risks, but tempered it with caution. Since this experience, Eric has become adaptable and more observant than ever, enabling him to take advantage of whatever situation he finds himself in.
Since he was a child, Eric has desired a life of adventure and thrills, more like his mother than his father. He has always been deeply interested in science, but he never wanted to be a researcher; he wanted to experience the world directly, be a part of events. Living in the city of Enid, Oklahoma as a child, he often grew restless as there was little to do other than school activities and making trouble. His mother described him as having too much energy for life in the Midwest and insisted on moving him to a bigger city with more creative outlets for him, which Eric agreed with.
Eric also felt as though he had to hide his lifelong dream of seeing dinosaurs in person, since many people in Enid were opposed to de-extinction and thought InGen’s work was a nightmare scenario. Rather than admit that he wanted to experience prehistoric animals up close, Eric led the lifestyle of a jock, and told people his dream was to be an Air Force pilot. He did actually enjoy sports, and liked the film Top Gun which got him thinking about joining the military, but these ideas took second place to his real dream. Shortly before the 2001 incident, he lived in San Diego, California and appeared to like this far better than Enid. He was brought on a round-the-world vacation trip by his mother’s boyfriend, who gave him a taste of the finer things in life. Though Eric was thrilled by this, his experience on Isla Sorna ultimately exhausted his desire for adventure. Since then, Eric’s thrill-seeking behavior has been tempered. He still enjoys a good adventure, but has a better appreciation for quieter, safer pastimes as well. Few things could beat the adrenaline of a dinosaur attack, and at least for now, Eric has no desire to go through that again.
Eric is not a scientist by any means, but his love of the natural world goes beyond thrill-seeking. He also wants a deeper understanding of what he experiences, which led to him consuming a large amount of literature on both paleontology and de-extinction history. One of the first books he ever owned was Dinosaur Detectives, an illustrated non-fiction book written in the early 1990s by paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant. This book, and others by Grant and his colleagues, informed much of Eric’s knowledge on dinosaur paleontology. Some of the theories discussed in Dinosaur Detectives relate to dinosaur evolution and extinction, such as the idea that the biggest sauropods became extinct because their ecosystems were unable to support them.
One concept which has particular significance to Eric is the fact that birds were the only dinosaurs to survive the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction event. Paleontologists had long suspected that birds should be classified within the theropods, and research performed in the 1980s and 1990s heavily supported this taxonomy; it is almost universally accepted now. Alan Grant was one of the major proponents of this theory in the 1990s, even before the general public believed it. Eric in particular valued this theory because it gave him hope while he was stranded on Isla Sorna. If a lineage of dinosaurs could survive such a drastic extinction event by being adaptable, he could withstand the wild by doing the same.
Eric Kirby’s relationship with his family has been a convoluted and troubled one, though they have worked out many of their problems in more recent years. When he was a young boy growing up in Enid, his love of dinosaurs was fed by his parents, but as he grew to be a preteen he found he had more in common with his mother, Amanda, than his father Paul. Eric was enamored with the idea of adventure, wanting to leave Enid and explore the wider world, but Paul was quite content to stay at home. Amanda, like Eric, wanted to leave town and experience the finer things in life. In addition, Paul did not like taking risks, nor did he allow his family to do so. Amanda and Eric found this restrictive, paranoid, and unnecessary, even making fun of him on camping trips for taking precautions against bears. Paul was the family breadwinner, owner of Kirby Paint and Tile Plus; however, Eric eventually came to find the company jingle annoying since he heard it all the time.
The Kirbys’ marital difficulties eventually turned into divorce. Eric acted out frequently during this time, eventually getting involved with small crime culminating with damage to police property. Amanda gradually discovered Eric’s misbehavior, but while both she and Paul disciplined him for it, Amanda believed that Eric was not really to blame and it was the boredom inherent to Enid that had driven him to such bad behavior. Eric’s relationship with his mother was not perfect, as he spent a lot of time on her last nerve, but he and she sided together in most family spats. Being grounded also tested Eric’s resourcefulness; he got very good at escaping without being caught.
When the divorce was complete, Amanda got custody of Eric, and they moved out of town with her new boyfriend Ben Hildebrand. In the summer of 2001, they moved to San Diego, California. Now, in a big city with a wealthy boyfriend, Amanda was able to give Eric the adventurous lifestyle that they had both wanted. Still, Eric missed his father, and took the opportunity to contact him often. Finally, after vacationing in three different countries that summer, Amanda told Hildebrand about Eric’s childhood love of dinosaurs and dream of seeing one. She was able to make this dream come true for her son at last with Hildebrand’s help: they went on a parasailing trip to Isla Sorna, where InGen had genetically engineered dinosaurs. All members of the tour went missing.
Amanda cooperated with Paul to organize a search party, a process which took two months and ended with a not-inconsiderable amount of criminal activity. The search for Eric brought Paul and Amanda back together, and meanwhile, Eric gained newfound appreciation for Paul’s cautious attitudes while struggling to survive on his own. However, his willingness to take risks also paid off, so Eric used the strengths he learned from both his mother and father to make it in the wild. After eight grueling weeks, the Kirbys were reunited through great difficulty. Going through such an ordeal repaired their family’s broken bonds. Amanda and Eric moved back to Enid, and according to the junior novels, Amanda remarried Paul within the year.
Paul Kirby owned a dog, named Gray, during Eric’s childhood. Eric and Gray seem to have gotten along. Paul also had a brother, Stan Kirby, Eric’s uncle; however Paul considered Stan untrustworthy.
Citizens of Enid
While living in Enid, Oklahoma, Eric attended the local Waller Junior High School (it has since been renamed DeWitt Waller Middle School). The student body is relatively small, and most of Eric’s friends were his teammates on the school’s football and other sports teams. Few of his peers shared his enthusiasm about dinosaurs; most of them were opposed to re-creating the creatures, echoing the views of adults in their community. Because of the conservatism commonplace to Enid, he had to keep this life goal private.
One of Eric’s close friends during his parents’ divorce was a boy named Eddie Campbell, a known troublemaker. Eddie appealed to Eric because he offered one of the few escapes from the difficulties of everyday life. Eric’s father did not allow him to rollerblade; Eddie let Eric borrow his pair. Eddie also gave Eric ways to exercise his resourcefulness and test his abilities. They played a kind of commando game, in which they would hide out in the surrounding towns and spy on families in their homes. This was where Eric learned to camouflage himself. Unbeknownst to Eric, though, Eddie was selling the information they learned about the families’ routines to thieves, who would then break in while the houses were unattended. While Eric did not know this specific detail of their game, he did know Eddie was involved with petty crime. Overnight at the West Gate Shopping Center, Eddie would sometimes hotwire cars that people had left over. Eric did not pick up this particular skill, though he did learn other things. Eventually, Eddie was caught; he and Eric had vandalized a police car belonging to Enid’s Deputy Thompkins. Both boys were suspects in the vandalism, but Eddie covered for Eric, claiming that his friend had only been passing by when the crime was committed. For his crime, Eddie was sent to juvenile hall; Eric was found innocent and allowed to walk free.
Eric had fairly few friends, and largely considered Enid a place to escape. He spent the first part of 2001, and possibly some of the previous year, in San Diego instead. It is unknown if he lived there long enough to make friends in one of the local schools. He returned to Enid after the death of his mother’s boyfriend that summer. During the fifty-eight days he spent stranded on Isla Sorna by himself, he spent some time recalling the skills he learned from Eddie which helped him get by on the island, but he also makes mention in Survivor of a friend named Jenn. Whether she was one of his classmates at Waller Junior High or someone new he met in San Diego before going on vacation is unknown, but she is the only other friend he mentions in Survivor. While sheltering at the InGen compound, Eric wrote letters to her, though he did not believe they would ever be delivered. Whoever Jenn is, she was clearly an important friend to him during his childhood.
U.S. Armed Forces
Enid, Oklahoma is home to Vance Air Force Base, where the 71st Flying Training Wing is based. Eric grew up watching the Wings of Blue show every year and admired the paratroopers; he also watched the movie Top Gun, which had the intended effect of making him consider becoming an Air Force pilot. However, even though Eric said that becoming a pilot was his main goal in life, his actual dream was to see dinosaurs up close and in person.
Strangely, these two interests converged in the summer of 2001 when Eric was twelve. He became stranded on Isla Sorna, an island where InGen had performed de-extinction research. On July 20, he and his would-be rescue party (including his parents) were saved by troops from the United States Navy and Marine Corps. They were led by an unidentified government agent, presumably one who worked with U.S. State Department official Mark Degler. It was Mr. Degler’s wife, Dr. Ellie Sattler, who alerted him to the crisis on Isla Sorna; Eric was grateful for Dr. Sattler’s help.
It is not known if Eric was ever actually involved with the U.S. Armed Forces, or if being a pilot was a passing childhood fantasy. Since he returned home to Enid after the incident on Isla Sorna, he probably went back to watching the Wings of Blue each year and cheering on the 71st Flying Training Wing like he had before.
At the end of an international vacation financed by Ben Hildebrand, Eric was brought on a parasailing tour with a company called Dino-Soar. It was owned by questionable Costa Rican tour guide Enrique Cardoso and his unidentified boat operator, who would take adventurous tourists closer to Isla Sorna than anyone else was willing. This was against international law, but Eric was unaware of the illicit nature of the tour at the time.
Cardoso was enthusiastic about the tour, sending his customers up in a parasail tethered to his speedboat. Unfortunately for all involved, this tour was to be Cardoso’s last. The circumstances that followed are unclear, but he and his operator disappeared from the boat in what appears to have been an animal attack. Without anyone to steer it, the boat careened into exposed rocks and forced Hildebrand and Eric to detach. They had nowhere to land but Isla Sorna or the deep blue sea, and so they crash-landed on the restricted island. Hildebrand died due to severe internal injuries sustained in the crash, while Eric survived alone on the island for the next eight weeks until his rescue.
When Eric was seven years old, the news first broke that extinct animals had been brought back to life through a combination of genetic engineering and advanced cloning techniques. Television footage showed a bull Tyrannosaurus rex in the streets of San Diego, causing mayhem. Many people considered this a nightmare, while others saw opportunity to learn about long-gone animal life. Eric was one of the latter, making it his life’s dream to see dinosaurs in person.
He got his wish through his mother’s boyfriend, Ben Hildebrand, and an illegal tour company that took him near Isla Sorna where the dinosaurs lived. Unfortunately, this was no day tour. Instead, a terrifying accident left Eric stranded on the island alone. The first dinosaur he encountered there was a Tyrannosaurus rex, a relative of the one that had rampaged through suburban San Diego. It was not long before he saw other creatures, such as the pterosaur Pteranodon and the herbivorous sauropod Brachiosaurus, all of which were incredible yet terrifying all in one. Some animals threatened him just by being so large, like the Diplodocus, while others such as the Ankylosaurus attacked him out of an instinct for survival. Then, there were the carnivores, for whom Eric would have made a decent meal. Pteranodons and Compsognathus were among the first predators to attack him, but they were far from the last.
Two dinosaurs that Eric had a particularly intense relationship with were the Velociraptors and Iguanodons. A juvenile male Iguanodon who Eric named Iggy inadvertently saved him while hiding from a predatory Velociraptor, though later Eric had to defend himself against a pair of raptors alone. During a plot to retrieve a portable generator from a safe house farther north on the island, Eric discovered the unusual relationship between Isla Sorna’s raptors and the Iguanodons, in which the herbivorous dinosaurs were being corralled in the safe house’s valley to act as a food source for the raptors. The island was heavily populated, and with food in such high demand, the raptors sought to corner the market on Iguanodon meat. However, trapping them in the valley and slaughtering one at a time would only last so long, since the herbivores would soon run out of food. When that happened, Eric believed that a huge violent conflict between predator and prey was inevitable.
Eric ended up starting this conflict early as a part of his plot to get the portable generator to his hiding place. To get past the raptors, he needed to use the strength of the Iguanodons, and in the process would save them from being slaughtered into extinction. By confronting and demoralizing the raptors, including severely wounding (possibly killing) their alpha male Red Rings, Eric spurred the Iguanodons on to make their escape. During the process, he saved Iggy from being killed, but the portable generator was irreparably damaged in the fight. Despite this, Eric had prevented the wholesale slaughter of the herbivores and inadvertently also saved the raptors from their own shortsightedness.
During his eight weeks on the island, Eric encountered a few other dinosaurs, such as Triceratops, Stegosaurus, Parasaurolophus, and Ceratosaurus, which he had limited interactions with. Over time, he learned the dinosaurs’ behavior patterns and got better at avoiding conflict. For example, he knew that the smell of Tyrannosaurus urine would deter Velociraptors, so he obtained a sample to frighten them off. However, this same scent aggravated the much larger Spinosaurus, so Eric had to be careful where and when he used this tactic. There appears to only have been one Spinosaurus on Isla Sorna, but its sheer size and power made it an imposing threat. It hindered rescue attempts during the last couple days of the incident.
After a few confrontations with the Spinosaurus, an incident with Pteranodons in the Site B aviary, and a tense standoff with an alpha female Velociraptor, Eric finally managed to escape the island with his parents’ help. He took with him a broken toe claw from Red Rings, along with a newfound appreciation for the boring life he had once led. The aviary’s inhabitants were also unintentionally released during the conflict, so they escaped Isla Sorna too; they were eventually returned. The junior novels suggest that Eric visited Isla Sorna once more at the end of 2001, by which time the United Nations had established a research and monitoring station there, but this is not confirmed in the film canon.
Had Eric not gone on his fateful parasailing tour, he would have had the chance to see live dinosaurs anyway four years later when Jurassic World opened. The park operated for ten years before shutting down due to a security incident; three years after this, de-extinct animals were released into the wild in North America. Many of the animals from Isla Sorna had died by this time, making it unlikely that Eric will encounter any of his old nemeses again. Instead, the wild dinosaurs are largely new to him.
International Genetic Technologies, Inc.
Eric Kirby was an ordinary Midwestern schoolboy during much of InGen‘s early history, being born in 1989 well after InGen had begun researching (and even performing) de-extinction. He was three years younger than the first de-extinct animal, a Triceratops bred in 1986. But when Eric was seven years old, going on eight, InGen changed his world and everyone else’s by revealing the existence of de-extinction. Eric watched the footage of the incident in San Diego over and over, and probably learned about Isla Sorna from John Hammond‘s famous television interview given the morning after the incident. Hammond was no longer the CEO of InGen at the time; his nephew, Chairman Peter Ludlow, had taken the company but went missing in San Diego that fateful morning. Because of the San Diego incident, InGen was in shambles during Eric’s childhood and was soon bought out by Masrani Global Corporation. Hammond passed away at the turning of the new year.
Isla Sorna was more or less abandoned when Eric illegally toured the island’s western coast, becoming marooned on the island due to a parasailing accident. No one was there to save him, and all that was left on the island was whatever InGen employees had been unable to carry with them during the evacuation. Communication was down all over Site B, and nearly all of the weapons had been taken. The dinosaurs, meanwhile, had been turned loose when Isla Sorna was evacuated, meaning Eric was left with minimal supplies among untamed prehistoric animals.
Still, some useful things were left over on Site B when Eric arrived. He collected a variety of items to help him survive, including tools, maps, and instruction manuals. He also utilized abandoned infrastructure and vehicles for shelter. With the meager supplies he scrounged up, Eric managed to last the eight weeks until rescue arrived. When he was finally removed from Isla Sorna, his account of his experiences was censored by the U.S. government. This was because high-ranking Masrani Global officials bribed members of Congress to protect InGen from having criminal activity on Isla Sorna exposed, a fact that Eric was not made aware of until seventeen years later. Eric had unwittingly stumbled across evidence of InGen’s wrongdoing and was silenced to protect Dr. Henry Wu and other members of the company.
Dr. Alan Grant and Billy Brennan
Eric Kirby first became interested in dinosaurs thanks to a book called Dinosaur Detectives, which he first read when he was just five years old. The book is fully-illustrated, giving the young Eric a glimpse into the prehistoric world. As he began to grow older, Eric was enthralled by the idea of these bygone worlds in Earth’s past, and kept up to date on other works by the author of Dinosaur Detectives, the paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant.
During the time when Eric was stranded on Isla Sorna, he found a forgotten copy of Dinosaur Detectives in the embryonics facility and used it as a source of comfort and inspiration. Grant’s explanations of how the dinosaurs had adapted for hundreds of millions of years as their world changed was motivational to Eric, encouraging him to adapt and withstand whatever happened on Isla Sorna. The idea that birds, rather than bigger or more frightful types of dinosaurs, had survived the extinction event thanks to their small size and adaptability gave Eric hope that he could survive in much the same way. After about eight weeks on Isla Sorna alone, Eric rescued a man he spotted in the jungle, only to discover that it was Dr. Grant himself, having been recruited by the Kirby parents to help save their son. Eric and Dr. Grant bonded while sheltering for the night.
In the morning, they reunited with Eric’s parents as well as Grant’s assistant Billy Brennan. Though Eric only knew Brennan for a short time, their connection was instantaneous. Brennan shared Eric’s love of adventure and willingness to take risks. However, Eric’s time on Isla Sorna had taught him the value of caution, which Brennan lacked; the young man had stolen Velociraptor eggs to try and sell on the black market to finance his and Dr. Grant’s research, for which Grant rebuked him. Brennan quickly made up for his mistake by saving Eric from a Pteranodon attack, nearly sacrificing himself to do so.
Eric and Grant both mourned Brennan as they made their way to the coast. Along the way, Grant described to Eric an analogy he’d come up with to explain the different attitudes young people have to science: those who want to be astronomers, and those who want to be astronauts. The astronomer does his research from a safe vantage point, but it is the astronaut who gets to go into space. Grant is an astronomer in this analogy; people like Brennan and Eric are the astronauts. Eric appreciated Grant’s understanding, and despite all the peril he had faced, seeing dinosaurs in person had still been a life-changing experience.
Grant aided Eric and his family in facing down more theropods on the way to the beach, including using his research to save them from a Velociraptor ambush. Finally they were saved, the U.S. Armed Forces arriving to extract them from the island after Grant managed to reach his ex-girlfriend Dr. Ellie Sattler. The military had swept the river for them, locating Brennan and saving his life.
The junior novels indicate Eric remaining friends with Dr. Grant, though their relationship was sometimes rough. Eric wanted to see Isla Sorna protected by international law, and enlisted a reluctant Grant to appeal to the United Nations to establish a bureau to monitor the island and its inhabitants. Grant, in turn, tried to prevent Eric from getting himself into any more dinosaur-related danger. They disagreed on Isla Sorna’s fate; Grant was still upset about his research being superseded by de-extinction in the public eye, and did not want civilians ever setting foot on Isla Sorna. Eric, on the other hand, thought that de-extinction had scientific merit and that people should be allowed to see the dinosaurs. Ultimately, the one thing they agreed upon was that the dinosaurs ought to be kept safe.
Masrani Global conspiracy
When he encountered a gigantic Spinosaurus on Isla Sorna, Eric unwittingly became entangled with a shadowy conspiracy involving InGen‘s holding company Masrani Global Corporation. Between 1998 and 1999, InGen scientists including Dr. Henry Wu had illegally returned to the island to conduct research during a time when such scientific endeavors were banned by the U.S. federal government. The spinosaur was among their products, and since it was not on a publicly-known list of species cloned by InGen, revealing its existence to the public could prove that de-extinction research and development in violation of the 1997 ENPGR Bill had occurred. Wu had performed valuable studies during the illegal operation, developing new gene splicing techniques. To protect this research and InGen, high-ranking officials in Masrani Global Corporation bribed key members of the United States Congress to censor Eric’s testimony of the incident and bury evidence of the crime. Masrani Global’s CEO, Simon Masrani, may have been kept in the dark. Eric did not know any of this either, only that the government had removed his comments regarding the Spinosaurus and certain other species.
Official Masrani Global records indicated that the Spinosaurus had died, its remains being used to cast a skeleton display that was erected on Main Street in Jurassic World. However, anyone who had seen the spinosaur when it was alive would immediately recognize that the skeleton only loosely resembled that animal. The skeleton had been assembled based on current paleontolgical knowledge, not the genetically-altered creature InGen had bred in the late 1990s. Eric, upon seeing the skeleton, would have known it was not the same animal. In reality, InGen had no idea where the creature was: it had actually been poached from the island by one of its corporate rivals, Mantah Corp, and held at a privately-owned island for several years. Meanwhile, Dr. Wu’s research into gene splicing hit new highs as he engineered not just a genetically-altered animal, but a species that could never have occurred in nature. The first animal result, Experiment E750, was a failure, but he deemed its successor Indominus rex suitable for public display.
Wu’s Indominus proved to be the downfall of Jurassic World as his secrecy led to corporate mishandling of the intelligent animal and it escaped captivity. The ensuing incident caused the park to close for good, and legal inquiries soon discovered more and more incriminating evidence against Dr. Wu, including testimony from the park’s former Operations Manager, Claire Dearing. Wu was accused of colluding with InGen’s Head of Security, Vic Hoskins, to engineer his hybrid animal for military use; in a bizarre twist of fate, Hoskins had been hired by Simon Masrani after capturing the Pteranodons that escaped Isla Sorna’s aviary during the incident in 2001. In a roundabout way, Eric had been an integral part of creating the Indominus and ending Jurassic World.
Eric was, probably, unaware of all this for most of his young adulthood. We have no evidence that he was investigating InGen, nor that he knew the significance of what he had stumbled across on Site B. During the investigations into InGen following the 2015 incident, Claire Dearing and other Masrani Global employees acted as whistleblowers revealing many of the secrets InGen had tried to hide. Most damning was information leaked by an anonymous hacker going by the username JUR@55!_H@K3R which directly showed evidence of InGen’s violation of the Gene Guard Act. A report online in 2018 by Dinosaur Protection Group paleoveterinarian Zia Rodriguez brought this information fully into the public eye, and while Eric was not named directly, her report mentioned that survivors of the 2001 incident had their accounts censored. The reasons why were fully explained, making Eric’s unknowing role in InGen’s twenty-year-long conspiracy clear at last.
Eric Kirby is portrayed by Trevor Morgan. He is not based on any character from Michael Crichton‘s novels, being an original character created for Jurassic Park ///, though he bears some superficial similarities to some of Crichton’s talented young male characters such as Tim Murphy and R.B. Benton. Earlier drafts for the film gave him a different backstory and name; he was originally called Miles Roby and came from a wealthy family.