With an incredible sunrise our morning start at Drakes Bay, Costa Rica. Our group was ready to explore the trails and fascinating ecologies of the region. Peninsula Osa is considered one of the most vibrating places on the world about abundance of wildlife. Today was just our first day of the trip and it was successful. Our first sighting was a troop of Central American spider monkeys, who were crossing over our heads braking branches and foraging for fruits. Those monkeys are unique cause are the only primates from the new world who lack thumbs. The calls of the birds were also notable on the surrounding forest even when the noise cicadas were loud as a chainsaw. We saw trogons, antbirds, and tanagers. We enjoy the walk to a waterfall, following a trail with a lot of roots and mud but with some huge trees, some of them so tall that you can see the shade that is created for them do not let anything else grow underneath. The tropical rainforest shows how humid and diverse this ecosystem is. It was a lot of fun in our first day in Costa Rica.
National Geographic Quest
I love my country. I love its people and food and more than anything else, its natural resources. After 29 years as a guide for Central America, especially Costa Rica and Panama, traveling widely around the world with the work I do (I am also a tropical biologist), the Osa Peninsula is my uncontested favorite. Not a single time in my life have I come here and not be wowed by its lush forest, green waters, blue mountains and unmatched biodiversity. Our itinerary was split between two destinations: This morning we disembarked onto Caletas Bay, owned by our friend Banbam (Enrique), and in the afternoon we went to one of the Estacion San Pedrillo ranger station. Choices this morning: A wonderful horseback ride to Rio Claro, a two-mile hike to Agujitas River, a longer paced hike through the forested trails of Caletas Wildlife Refuge, or a casual tour of the wildlife refuge’s gardens. We loved all, coming back with unforgettable wildlife sightings, including a mother three-toed sloth with her baby, a bird eating snake straight from the trail, and a lot of bird sightings such as riverside wrens and black-hooded antshrikes. With the afternoon came the icing on the cake: Corcovado National Park. Again, more opportunities: walking the longer, more strenuous trail to the San Pedrillo Waterfall, and a waterhole to come with it or the Pargo River trail to explore the lowland forests. What a way to finish our trip! From army ants, to basilisks, to pale-billed woodpeckers, howler-, spider- and white-throated capuchin monkeys, to the very scarcely seen Central American Tapir. We could not have asked for a better last day in our trip, and an amazing way to say farewell to Central America, for the time being.