A Sneak Peek into the Biodiversity of Costa Rica

Sergio Cueto
October 21, 2014

It still feels surreal seeing a trail of leaf cutter ants crawling along the sidewalk or hearing a flock of green parrots flying in the sky. The skyscrapers and high-rise buildings I am use to recognizing have been replaced by green enormous mountains hiding among the clouds. Even seeing a green iguana basking underneath the sun in my backyard still surprises me. Costa Rica is filled with such rich biodiversity. I have seen many different plants and many animals. During one of our first field trips, we explored Carara National Park which is known for having one of the largest remaining populations of wild scarlet macaws in the country. As our hike was coming to an end, we got to see several white-headed capuchin monkeys jumping around, from tree to tree. After our hike we went to Tarcoles River for a boat tour where we saw several crocodiles! For our final IES Abroad field trip we went on a hike to see Rio Celeste (River Celeste). This river is unique for its two streams of crystalline water that come together and give the river a vibrant turquoise color. We also got to see the Rio Celeste Waterfall which was such a serene and breathtaking site. I have also gotten the opportunity to see Playa Blanca, one of the many beaches in Costa Rica. While visiting the beach, I got to see a humpback whale from afar! It was incredible seeing it breach in and out of the water. At one point it waved its flipper to those of us watching it from the shore! Other animals I have seen have been sloths, humming birds, and armadillos.

Rio Celeste Waterfall This image captures the two crystalline streams in Rio Celeste. The vibrant turquoise color of Rio Celeste. A view in Limón. A picture of some trees while on our way to Carara National Park Arbol de la Paz (Tree of Peace), one of the widest trees I have ever seen! It was so wide and tall I couldn't capture it all in one photo. A Crab Spider. A view of Playa Blanca. Plants Bird of Paradise Flower. A green iguana in the backyard of my host home. A green lizard in Carara National Park. Blue Jeans Poison Dart Frog. A bush of red flowers at the campus of UNA. Crocodile on the shore of Tarcoles River. Sighting of a crocodile in Tarcoles River. The crocodile was really close to our boat! A caterpillar we found in a banana farm. A butterfly in Carara National Park. The river shore while on our way to the Bribri Indigenous community. A trail of leaf cutter ants.

Sergio Cueto

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<div><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Hello! My name is Sergio Cueto and I was born in the city of Juarez, Chihuahua located in Mexico. I came to Chicago when I was two years old and currently reside in the Logan Square neighborhood of the city. I am an undergraduate student at the University of Illinois at Chicago, majoring in Latin American and Latino Studies with a minor in Sociology. I am also a volunteer for the Chicago Latino Film Festival. I love photography, films, reading, writing, video games, and spending time with friends and family.</span></div>

Term:
2014 Fall
Home university:
University of Illinois at Chicago
Major:
Latin American Studies
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