Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Cano Negro, Costa Rica: Trip Report

Yesterday, I talked about our stay in the Arenal region of Costa Rica.

While we were in Arenal, the BF and I took a day trip with Sunset Tours to the Cano Negro Wildlife Reserve on the Rio Frio river. It took about 2 hours (the last half hour was on a horrible bumpy road), and once we arrived, we had the BEST food we had in Costa Rica. I highly recommend Casada Con Pollo - which was chicken, rice, black beans and tortilla strips.

After we ate, we hopped on a flat-bottomed boat to begin our wildlife spotting journey. And boy, did we spot some wildlife. (The water on the river was calm, so there was no getting sick while we were looking.)

Before we even got on the boat, we saw a white caiman (same family as a gator.) Two minutes into the trip, we saw a sloth in the trees - one that was actually moving, which is rare - because they don't do a lot of moving. (Thus, it's a SLOTH.)

There are three types of monkeys we could've seen here, and we saw ALL THREE! The howler monkeys, the squirrel monkeys, and some white-faced monkeys that we watched play and romp through the bushes. The BF thinks monkeys are cool, so he was very happy to see the monkeys. Though they were the hardest to get a picture of.

We saw some more caimans - and one of the boat drivers reached in and pulled a baby one out! It made some little chirpy noises while we all snapped photos and were amazed that he pulled one of these things out of the water.

We saw more birds than you could shake a stick at. Blue herons, snake birds, and so many other birds that I can't remember all their names. We refer to them in pictures as "yellow bird," "blue bird," etc.

I couldn't get over the crew of Sunset Tours. They could spot these animals a mile away. We even stopped to get a photo of some small bats lined up on a tree. (They did this to look like a vine while they slept.) How did they see these camoflauged things?!

Our guide said we were super lucky - we had great weather (though we did have a rain shower at the very end of the trip) and we saw pretty much everything we could see. Except a toucan. I really wanted to see a toucan. The guide stopped on the road on the way out to point out a flock of toucans, but it was dark, and all I could see was the outline of its beak in the dusk. :(

If you have the opportunity to visit Cano Negro, it was one of the highlights of our trip.

Tomorrow, I'll tell you about Monteverde and the Cloud Forest.

Now, for photos of the wildlife we saw.


Renee said...

You've taken so many "trips of a life time" but I think this one of all the animals is my favorite.

Cheysuli and gemini said...

That is gorgeous. Did you get to do any rafting while you were in Costa Rica? My human asks because she said the area looked like the area she went rafting in.

Also, about your question of remembering differently than I did, are you sure you weren't on Hillary's trip to Bosnia? For obvious fact that I do not want to get arrested for drug smuggling I cannot point myself out in the video I have seen...

Janet said...

what were those insects on the wood?

Carmen said...

Hey Janet. Those weren't insects, they were the neatest bats! They line up on the tree like that to look like a vine and deterr predators.

And Chey, tell your mom no rafting - that requires work on my part. I like someone else to drive, and give me no chance of falling in. :) I'll plead the fifth for fear of being spotted on that plane as well.

Renee, it was certainly the most wildlife I've seen on a trip. Kinda surreal

~Virginia~ said...

how completely awesome! now that i've got a passport, i need to start putting it to use! costa rica here i come! :)

Goofy Girl said...

So cool that you saw all those monkeys!!