Golden-mantled Howler Monkey side view as it sits in a tree in Costa Rica. Credit: Scott Guiver

Costa Rica

HECTARES FUNDED 0 (4,991 acres)


Costa Rica has one of the highest biodiversity densities on Earth and has a relatively high rate of endemism.

Its list of species includes approximately 948 birds, 250 mammals, 220 reptiles, 200 amphibians and an estimated 300,000 invertebrates.



Rainforest Action Costa Rica - Osa Peninsula

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Rainforest Action Costa Rica
Rainforest Action Costa Rica

In 1994, Rainforest Action Costa Rica (RACR) became the second project of World Land Trust (WLT) and focused on the Costa Rican rainforests of the Osa Peninsula – one of the top twenty areas of greatest biodiversity on earth.

The goal of RACR was to purchase areas of forest for conservation. WLT’s partner for this project, Fundación Tierras Unidas Vecinales por el Ambiente (TUVA) also aimed to work with local farmers to establish sustainable incomes which would not be detrimental to the surrounding forest.


WLT helped purchase 2,020 hectares (4,991 acres) in the Esquinas Sector, which is now incorporated into Corcovado National Park. But while land purchase for immediate protection was a key part of the conservation strategy, other methods were also used. For example, supporting local landowners to purchase conservation rights on the land (easements) where land purchase was not an option. This dual approach ensured that the needs of the local people were met. Additionally, RACR ensured that conservation benefited the local community by:

  • Providing employment and encouraging non-consumptive uses of the forests and its products.
  • Promoting understanding of the importance of, and an enthusiasm for, tropical forests.
  • Cooperating with Costa Rican National Parks System in the protection and management of identified zones.
  • Assisting in ecotourism assessments and ensuring that development did not result in loss of tropical forest.
  • Developing ecotourism for small groups, with a view to minimising impact on the forest and its wildlife.
A view of the Osa peninsula, Costa Rica

Key Species Protected by this Project