A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Check out more from the #ecocostarica trip on Twitter, FB and G+

By the time I climbed back into the van for the drive back to San Jose my clothes were drenched, my glasses fogged up and my camera worn out. Located right at the confluence to two croc-filled rivers, the air in the forest is so humid that every little step results in a torrent of sweat.  If you’re not drinking water, you’re not going to make it! If you didn’t bring extra camera batteries you camera isnt going to make it either!

I’m sitting in the airport in San Juan writing this post this morning and lusting for another cup of coffee.  I’m exhausted and emotional, not ready to face the cold of home but missing my kids to a ridiculous degree.  There is Christmas music blasting through the Lavazza cafe and a bunch of young American men are talking about guns.  The lady behind the counter is surly and her co-worked bored. The way home goes through Houston, then Denver and then a two-hour drive to my mom’s house where I can rest.  Finally.

As I fly home today I offer up just a sample…a taste…of what I saw yesterday at La Selva Biological Station in the wet tropical rain forest lowlands of northeastern Costa Rica. The station, at about 1,600 hectares (3,900 acres), offers up a stunning array of Costa Rican wildlife.

La Selva was originally established in 1954 by Dr. Leslie Holdridge, as a farm dedicated to experimentation on mixed plantations for the improvement of natural resources management. It was purchased in 1968 by the Organization for Tropical Studies and declared a private biological reserve and station. Since then, it has become one of the most important sites in the world for research on tropical rain forest. Over 240 scientific papers are published yearly from research conducted at the site……….

 

DSC 0220 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Brown-throated sloth (Bradypus variegatus)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0259 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Collared Aracari (Pteroglossus torquatus)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0282 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Central American Whiptail (Ameiva festiva)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0293 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Blue Jeans Dart Frog (Oophaga pumilo)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0326 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Keel-billed Toucan (Ramphastos sulfuratus)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0338 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Green Iguana (Iguana iguana)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0347 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Lineated Woodpecker (Dryocopus lineatus)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0367 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Salmon-bellied Racer (Mastigodryas malenolomus)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0384 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Keel-billed Toucan (Ramphastos sulfuratus)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0400 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Broad-billed Motmot (Electron platyrhynchum)
~ ~ ~

DSC 0440 A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

Parrot Snake (Leptophis ahaetulla)

I’m not sure the species of frog he is eating but it was a pretty stunning site to see him chasing the frog right across our path and onto a patch of grass where he grabbed the doomed little brown dude in mid-jump. I’ve never seen anything like that. What really stunned me was how fast the snake downed the frog and then moved on.

I’ll be posting more shots and stories in the coming two months.  Sign up on the  home page for email notifications of new posts.

##

You might also like:

Sugar Cane Fields in Central Costa Rica

Volcan Turriabla, Costa Rica

San Jose, Costa Rica at Night

The Incredible Quetzal of Costa Rica

, ,

43 Responses to A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife from La Selva Biological Station

  1. Marc d'Entremont December 7, 2013 at 12:35 pm #

    A "taste" – look good enough to cook….only kidding.

  2. Marc d'Entremont December 7, 2013 at 1:49 pm #

    This is one of Jim O'Donnell's great posts. (Didn't realize this was going to show up here).

  3. Marsha Kellogg December 7, 2013 at 4:05 pm #

    Beautiful Jim! La Selva is one of my favorite places on earth. Have taken family and friends there at every opportunity.

  4. Karen Hoppes December 7, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

    Beautiful shots

  5. Dudley Danielson December 7, 2013 at 5:39 pm #

    Excellent shots with lots of feelings.

  6. Laura Shields December 7, 2013 at 6:09 pm #

    Wow! This is terrific! Thank you for the micro-vacation. . .safe and easy travels back. Yes, it's frickin' COLD!

  7. Sheila December 7, 2013 at 12:25 pm #

    The colors of the parrot snake were so exquisite. You captured them beautifully. Costs Rica is a place I would like to see. I am always taken back by the differences in lifestyles in these countries when we go. I look forward to the future posts & pics.

  8. Charli | Wanderlusters December 7, 2013 at 2:32 pm #

    Fantastic shots Jim and superb article, I’ve loved following your #ecocostarica adventure. Love the definition in the colors of the brown throated sloth.

  9. Jessie Voigts December 8, 2013 at 4:06 pm #

    So beautiful!

  10. Jim O'Donnell December 8, 2013 at 5:56 pm #

    Thank you Karen. The animals were just incredible. And everywhere. It was so great to be right in there with them.

  11. Jim O'Donnell December 8, 2013 at 5:56 pm #

    I hear iguana tastes like chicken marc…. :-)

  12. Jim O'Donnell December 8, 2013 at 5:56 pm #

    THanks Jessie!

  13. Jim O'Donnell December 8, 2013 at 5:57 pm #

    Cold indeed! I'm stuck up in CO for the time being. Colder here but NM is getting the snow. I hope you're enjoying it!

  14. Jim O'Donnell December 8, 2013 at 5:58 pm #

    Ya. That was a special experience. I'd like to go back and do the 6 day trek from the top of the volcano down to the research station. Just imagine!

  15. Jim O'Donnell December 8, 2013 at 5:58 pm #

    Thanks Dudley! Yes. I pretty blown away.

  16. Marc d'Entremont December 8, 2013 at 9:03 pm #

    Jim O'Donnell actually, it does. I had iguana years ago when I lived in Puerto Rico.

  17. John Mata December 9, 2013 at 2:38 pm #

    Nice writing, and great shots!

    #Wildlife #Photography #Travel #CostaRica #TravelLogue #travellog

  18. Jim O'Donnell December 9, 2013 at 5:19 pm #

    Marc d'Entremont seriously? Well…I shouldnt sound so surprised. I've had rattlesnake several times and people always think that is odd.

  19. Jim O'Donnell December 9, 2013 at 5:20 pm #

    Thank you sir!

  20. Gaelyn December 9, 2013 at 10:49 am #

    These marvelous images just make me wish I was there, right now. Instead I’m bundled in layers with frozen pipes in central AZ. Look forward to reading more about this #ecocostarica adventure.

    • Jim O'Donnell December 11, 2013 at 9:31 am #

      Thanks Gaelyn! It was such a short trip and now I’m bundled up and trying to stay warm here in the mountains of northern NM. Good God. It was quite a hit to get off the plane in Denver to this weather!

  21. David Behrstock December 16, 2013 at 1:28 am #

    Really beautiful pictures!!! Inspiring. although it also makes me want to be there and not here in this frozen landscape! Thanks

  22. Jim O'Donnell December 16, 2013 at 1:28 am #

    I could not agree more. 8 days was not enough. I needed one more week.

  23. Matthew Karsten December 15, 2013 at 8:05 pm #

    Amazing photos. I love the woodpecker peeking out of the tree. And the parrot snake of course!

    • Jim O'Donnell December 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm #

      Thanks Matt! I loved your viper and frog shots too. So fun. I LIVE in a place with alot of great wildlife and yet Costa Rica blew it all away.

  24. Worldtravelfamily December 16, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

    Beautiful beautiful photos. Just gorgeous. Thanks, I shared them with the kids.

  25. Jim O'Donnell December 17, 2013 at 12:56 am #

    I really appreciate the kind words you said about these photos on the phone today. I am touched!

  26. Jim O'Donnell December 17, 2013 at 12:57 am #

    Cool! My kids loved them! What did yours think? My boy loved the toucan checking me out upside down. That was a fun one.

  27. Heidi Wagoner December 17, 2013 at 10:23 am #

    The photos are to die for. I remember being on a bus in Costa Rica and we had to pull over to the side of the road as a sloth took its sweet time to cross. It was incredible. I just love Costa Rica and the amazing wildlife.

    • Jim O'Donnell December 17, 2013 at 8:59 am #

      Thank you Heidi. I said to someone else how even tho I live in a place with some astounding wildlife I was nonetheless stunned by it all down in Costa Rica. I was blown away!

  28. Andrew Wyatt December 19, 2013 at 6:29 am #

    These pictures are amazing, I love these kind of pictures, only wish I could take some like yours! :)

  29. Jim O'Donnell December 20, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

    Andrew. Thank you for the kind words. The only advice I can offer is practice, practice, practice! And….I guess…get out in the forest. Thats where all the action is!

  30. Jim O'Donnell December 20, 2013 at 4:47 pm #

    Thank you Heidi. I said to someone else how even tho I live in a place with some astounding wildlife I was nonetheless stunned by it all down in Costa Rica. I was blown away!

  31. Ananta Spa & Resorts January 7, 2014 at 10:33 am #

    Great photos. They are really beautiful.

  32. Jim O'Donnell January 8, 2014 at 5:18 pm #

    Thanks guys!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Corcovado National Park: A Journey Into Remote #EcoCostaRica - Green Global Travel - December 8, 2013

    […] Around the World in 80 Years- A Taste of #EcoCostaRica Wildlife […]

  2. Something in the Water and Air: Costa Rica's Pura Vida - The Travel Word - December 16, 2013

    […] more #EcoCostaRica reading from the EcoAdventure Media crew, try the following: * A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife * The Journey To Corcovado National Park * Who’s Protecting the Jungles of Costa Rica? * […]

  3. Vote for (ME!!) Storyteller of the Year!Around the World in Eighty Years - December 17, 2013

    […] there are the photo essays like One Tuscan Hill, Pueblo Colorado, Seeking Some Sassy Ceviche, A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife and Magnificent Tuscan Food among […]

  4. Something in the Water and Air: Costa Rica's Pura Vida – A Portrait of Glenn Jampol - The Travel Word - December 18, 2013

    […] #EcoCostaRica reading from the EcoAdventure Media crew, try the following: * Sloth Is Not a Sin * A Taste of Costa Rican Wildlife * The Journey To Corcovado National Park * Wildlife Safari Through Tortuguero National […]

  5. Top Bloggers Talk Sustainable Travel | Wanderlusters - December 18, 2013

    […] Diversity can survive and thrive in the age of rapid cultural hegemony with the help of sustainable tourism but that requires that YOU chose wisely when seeking out a location, a company to work with or how you spend your money. […]

  6. Zip Lines in Costa Rica: A Sustainable Alternative to Deforestation - The Travel Word - February 3, 2014

    […] Tourism); and Magsasay Jungle Lodge, a remodeled hardwood home with 10 rooms bordering the La Selva Biological Station at the entrance to Braulio Carrillo National […]

  7. Ecotourism Costa Rica - The Impacts on Three GuidesAround the World in Eighty Years - February 12, 2014

    […] years my dad and brothers worked in areas related to nature (Organization for Tropical Studies and La Selva Bio Station) so I grew up in a situation conducive to having good taste for nature and the […]

  8. Top Bloggers Talk Sustainable Travel - March 7, 2014

    […] Diversity can survive and thrive in the age of rapid cultural hegemony with the help of sustainable tourism but that requires that YOU chose wisely when seeking out a location, a company to work with or how you spend your money. […]

Leave a Reply