Costa Rica's warm, tropical climate makes it an ecosystem more diverse than almost anywhere else in the world. This Central American nation is an entomologist's dream with over 35,000 species of insects identified. Some of these creepy-crawlies are the kind you like to see: the butterflies. Costa Rica is home to some of the most dazzlingly beautiful butterflies on the planet. In fact, five percent of the entire world's known species of butterflies can be found in this small country.
Over eight hundred species of birds can be found in the canopy of the country's rainforest. The list of exotic tropical birds includes two species of macaw, making Costa Rica also a birdwatcher's paradise.
continues to prowl through the jungle looking for prey, although he is on the endangered species list along with the squirrel monkey. Four species of monkeys swing in Costa Rica's trees, and two types of sloth can be found in the trees, too. In some areas, the local wildlife is accustomed to the human population and interactions are not unusual. One native rascal is the Capuchin monkey, who is known as a mischievous snatcher of unattended food.
Amphibians and reptiles can be found in abundant numbers in the rainforests of the Central Cordillera Mountains. The slopes of the mountains facing the Caribbean Sea receive the most rainfall. Diverse species of tree frogs and lizards make this forest their home. Some reptiles live in Costa Rica only when they're not at sea, like the Leatherback sea turtle. Male Leatherbacks spend the rest of their lives in the water once they reach it, but the female must return to the beach to build her nest.
Another native animal is the Tico. 'Ticos' are how the Costa Rican people affectionately refer to themselves, and they take a great deal of pride in their nation's wildlife. No matter which creature you prefer, Costa Rica has everything to offer for animal lovers around the globe.