“Elizabeth's Secret Garden” Discoveries in Costa RicaBy: Elizabeth Mann
I recently returned from a trip to Costa Rica. I stayed in the jungle area of Central Valley. My goal was to photograph wildlife in their native habitats and find the home of the rare Blue Morpho butterfly (Morpho amathonte). As I road through the bumpy and narrow roads up into the mountains, I noticed that many hillsides had been cleared of their lush trees. In replace of the once rich forest were grazing cattle feeding on grass. I was disheartened by this sight because I know the critical role rainforests play in our environment. Rainforests purify our water and air. They also prevent flooding and erosion.
Rainforests are a place of beauty and wonder that need our attention as they are being destroyed. We can make a difference by eating less fast food beef and buying local meat. We can also support reforestation projects who are replanting a diversity of native plants needed by wildlife. One example is Kids Saving the Rainforest, located in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica. It was founded by two school children who realized the importance and beauty of rainforests. With the help of other children and volunteers, they are working on reforestation projects and the rehabilitation of animals who are injured or abandoned. They have saved and released 30 animals so far and have planted over 5,000 trees to reforest and expand monkey corridors. http://www.kidssavingtherainforest.org/main.html
Below is a video of what the jungle is suppose to look like and what it looks like after being cleared. You can follow my Costa Rica tour at http://elizabethssecretgarden.blogspot.com/ and join me as I search for native wildlife and the Blue Morpho butterfly.