Theme of the Month on our Social Media: Environmental Education!

Let me describe two scenes for you, and then I want you to choose the one that you think best represents environmental education: 1. A group of children are gathered around a tree, watching a rainbow of birds alight on its branches. The adult instructor is explaining the important relationship between trees and birds to the […]

Theme of the month: migration!

In March 2020, the start of the seasonal migration of hundreds of warblers, tanagers and other Neotropical migratory songbirds was poignant and bittersweet for me. With the pandemic dramatically transforming the landscape of our lives and locking everyone down into quarantine, the birds could fly between Costa Rica and Canada, but I—like thousands of others—could […]

Finca Cántaros and the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030)

We are 11 days in to this much-anticipated new year. A year that is NOT 2020. And a year that kicks off the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030).  How does it feel so far?  We could easily despair 24/7 about the direction the pandemic will take in 2021, the state of politics in the […]

2021 is upon us! And so is the United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration

Are you looking forward to 2021? Maybe you share the dominant collective feeling about this exceptionally strange year with thousands, captured by the catchy Avenue Beat song: “f**k 2020… I am kinda done… can we just get to 2021!?!” (2020). But what do we think or hope will happen when we get to 2021? One certainty is that […]

Interview with “Las Dueñas”

I sat down to an interview with Portuguese aunt and niece Isabel and Ana Gomes da Silva one sunny day when they came to Finca Cántaros to deliver an aromatic order of their Las Dueñas Coffee. I consider it the official brew of our new Finca Cántaros Environmental Association. Isabel and Ana are two of the […]

Plastics Pollution & Solutions

The last time I went surfing I broke my “paw,” also known as the fourth finger on my right hand. The nickname arose not from the absurd ball-shaped bandage it required—reminiscent of a “chuck-it” toy used to play fetch with a dog—but because the only X-ray machine near the site of my accident was at […]

Ever heard of a Helmet-headed Lizard?

Ever heard of a Helmet-headed Lizard? Me neither, until it was registered as a new species at Finca Cántaros! Our wildlife manager/“in-house biologist” David Rodríguez went out a’wandering one night, and stumbled upon a new species at Finca Cántaros: the Helmet-headed Lizard (Corytophanes cristatus). Pretty cool, right? The species is distributed from Veracruz, Mexico to northern Colombia. Its […]

Interview with Cholo, owner of Mercado Viriteca, Sabalito (Part II)

When and why did you open Mercado Viriteca? Four years ago, the existing business in this location was about to close because it wasn’t working with just the sale of fruits and vegetables. As the tenant, the owner of the building, Abinal Rojas, gave me the opportunity to take on the Mercado Viriteca project to […]

Condos at Cántaros

When Gail Hull made the tough decision to put Finca Cántaros on the market, she worried about a potential buyer tearing down her beloved forest to build condominiums. Our serendipitous meeting was a match made in heaven because I am equally committed to conservation. Gail has faith that I don’t intend to “pave [her] paradise […]

Cotinga and a Coffee (Part I)

Hope is coming up a lot in 2020. Or hopelessness. Or both, sometimes within the same hour. The engines of our emotional rollercoasters include but aren’t limited to: the global health pandemic, raging forest fires, and the even more ferocious and volatile political fires in the US, which for better or worse have far-reaching geopolitical […]