Conservation Volunteering in Costa Rica

Costa Rica counts with 52 wildlife refuges, 32 protected zones, 27 national parks, 15 wetlands, 11 forest reserves and 8 biological reserves that represents a quarter of the territory and are home of the 4% of the biodiversity of the earth at a very reduced territory that is only a 0.03% of the world. Its conservation politics are known worldwide and are example to other countries.

The success of the conservation programs in the country has been thanks to the help of private and public institutions but their efforts have not been enough to preserve the natural heritage. Conservation Volunteer programs were created to provide a support to the people who manage those areas than have been destined for research, studies and ecotourism; being the last one the second biggest income of the country.

Visitors at protected areas does not only enjoy the majesty of the land with its wildlife, there is a group of people disrespecting the law by polluting the area with their visits, cutting trees, hunting endangered and non-endangered animals, mining, and other illegal activities that make harder the work of the rangers. As a result, rangers often have to inspect the area through longer patrol shifts, they organized more trash pickups in addition to their daily work. Likewise, rangers provide a support in the education area, teaching citizens and visitor about the importance of conservation and how to continue with the protecting work.

International volunteers will contribute with the ranger work and government policy of protection by helping with the maintenance of the ranger stations and visitors trails, guiding and helping with the trash pickups, helping at wildlife rehabilitation centers, educating citizens and visitors about the protection and depending on the volunteers┬┤ background by supporting research studies for the annual species counts or information about new species found.

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