As an eco-wonderland Costa Rica shelters a staggering amount of biodiversity and many unspoiled natural wonders. Known for its progressive conservation policies, the tiny Latin American country of Costa Rica provides a vital habitat to thousands of plant and animal species.
Over a quarter of the land in Costa Rica is protected from potential exploitation by national parks, wildlife refuges, marine sanctuaries, national reserves, conservation areas and biological reserves
. An estimated of approximately 25% of the area, both private and public, falls under the National Park System and the conversation sphere.Verdant rainforests
, mangrove swamps, cloud forests, spectacular beaches
, waterfalls and coral reefs are just some of the many habitats protected by the national parks and reserves of Costa Rica. These national parks and protected areas offer a wealth of diversity to the visitors and are helping boost the conservation in Costa Rica.
Costa Rica caters to around 58 wildlife refuges, 32 protected zones, 27 national parks, 15 wetlands, 11 forest reserves and 8 biological reserves dedicated to protecting the varied natural habitations in the country. Over 35,000 species of insects, an estimated 850 birds and 205 mammal species, 220 species of reptiles and 160 species of amphibians can be found in this tropical paradise.
Conservation of Biodiversity
The National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) and the Ministry of the Environment and Energy (MINAE) are responsible for sustaining the use of country’s biodiversity and have therefore undertaken its decentralized management. The active participation of the public and private sector in these efforts is helping the conservation in Costa Rica and in sustaining the use of biodiversity at the local as well as the national and global level.
Some of the areas included in the system of conservation in Costa Rica are: La Amistad International Park
- a world biosphere project, Las Baulas National Marine Park
– nesting site for leatherback turtles, Ostional Wildlife Refuge
- Olive Ridley turtles nesting site, Piedras Blancas National Park
– containing rainforest biodiversity and Tortuguero National Park
- famous for its projects of turtle conservation in Costa Rica.
Conservation in Costa Rica has increased the percentage of the protected territory mainly with the support of the private sector. There are now various private reserves dedicated mainly to ecotourism
and research. With a growing network of ecosystems and a government that strongly endorses preservation efforts, Costa Rica stands on the forefront of the conservation efforts.