Costa Rica is home to some of the world’s most amazing and interesting animals. Did you know there are over 500,000 different species of animals in just Costa Rica alone? From countless creatures of the sea to the plentiful enchanting mammals and birds of the rainforest, visitors are sure to meet these critters in abundance! We’ve compiled a list of just a few of our favorites — we hope you come on down so we can introduce you to them in person.
Humpback Whales (Megaptera Novaeangliae)
One of the largest creatures of the sea, the humpback whale weighs as much as 66,000 pounds and can grow to be 42 feet in length. Don’t let their bulk fool you, humpback whales perform mind boggling aerial maneuvers, erupting out of the water and slapping the surface with their enormous fins. If you come during whale season (July – December) you’ll have a good chance to catch these dazzling displays while on the beach or on one of our Whale Watching tours.
Scarlet Macaw (Ara Macao)
Scarlet macaws are stunningly beautiful, intelligent, and can be quite the chatterboxes! They have a long history of companionship with humans, dating all the way back to the Incas. Scarlet macaws have a personable attitude, making them a fun bird to interact with. Here at Casa Marea Alta we are lucky to have the privilege of neighboring the release site of the Scarlet Macaw Project which was brought to Punta Banco, Costa Rica to re-establish the Macaw population in the area.
Chestnut-Mandibled Toucan (Ramphastos Swainsonii)
The chestnut-mandibled toucan use their large distinct yellow hollow bills to talk to one another across the canopy. If you hear the sound “yo-YIP, a-yip, a-yip,” you are listening to the call of the chestnut-mandibled toucan! Look for these beautiful birds on our look-out deck at sunset when they are the most active.
Howler Monkey (Alouatta Caraya)
The howler monkey is widely known for their loud howls that shake the tree limbs of the rainforest. These vocal primates can cry so loudly due to a special shell-like vocal chamber within their large throats. When a group of monkeys decide it’s time to let loose and sing, their calls can travel as far away as three miles. You’ll be sure to hear this call while relaxing in your hammock in the mornings or evenings while the monkeys get ready to start or end their day.
(Photo From: Lubos Mraz)
White-Nosed Coati (Nasua Narica)
Part of the racoon family, coatis have long tails and snouts with bear-like paws. Male coatis are bachelors at heart and live by themselves, whereas the females live in groups. You can see coatis busy on the property all day, munching on the delicious fruits, nuts, and seeds our jungle provides.
Three-Toed Sloths (Bradypus)
Mark your calendars because October 20th is international sloth day! Sloths are the world’s slowest mammals and are usually spotted taking a nap high up in the treetops. Here’s a fun fact for you: sloths have an extra neck vertebrae that allow them to turn their heads 270 degrees! Make sure to join one of our guided nature tours with Clyde the Guide to get a chance to see these incredible creatures.
(Photo by: Hayden Animal Facts)
Blue Morpho Butterfly (Morpho Peleidies)
Butterflies represent profound life transformations and the blue morpho butterfly is particularly stunning. These eye-catching insects are one of the largest butterflies in the world, some with wings that span up to eight inches. The blue morpho butterfly is a master of disguise due to their unique coloring that protects them from their predators. Keep an eye out for these beauties as they fly across the property or at their favorite hang-out, the yoga deck.
(Photo by: Sandee Harraden)
Blue Jeans Poison Dart Frog (Oophaga Pumilio)
A common colorful amphibian in Costa Rica, the blue jeans poison dart frog truly looks like it’s wearing designer jeans! Its chirp can be easily heard in the dense rainforest and is a favorite among travelers and locals alike. Want to get a better look at one? Join one our guided nocturnal tours and you’ll have a chance to see a large variety of rainforest frogs like this one!
You can see all these animals amongst colorful flora sprinkled around the property while you’re visiting us in Costa Rica. Which one is your favorite? Let us know in the comment section below!
About the author:
Danielle Watkins is a California native who followed her heart to Colorado. She is a devoted yogi, cyclist and aspiring writer. She is currently a guest writer for Punta Banco Retreats and loves practicing yoga. You can find out more about her on her website DaniWatkins.com