To sea turtles and someone special

If you are a regular reader of this blog (thank you!), you are well aware that I’m *kind of* into birds. So you might understandably assume that the high diversity of bird species in Costa Rica is what first attracted me to this country.  Surprise! It was not birds, but sea turtles. During my first […]

How the magic of this place connected us

In 1994, Gail Hull first sat by “Zoncho Lagoon” on a property she later named Finca Cántaros, here in San Vito, Costa Rica. She was moved by the magic of the place. She was drawn to the contours of the land, even though it was just cattle pasture at the time. And, she was fired […]

Our Motus Receiver has not only detected birds, it has connected people

(Graphic above depicting Red-eyed Vireo detection by Motus Receivers by Ernesto Carman and Paz Irola) The Motus Wildlife Tracking System network continues to connect more dots, as Paz and Ernesto (Central America Motus Coordinators) say. The dots on the Motus map are the sites of Motus Receivers, which serve as “eyes” that allow us to […]

If these walls could talk, what would they say about environmental education?

Environmental education is about transformation. The transformation of trepidation into empowerment by helping people tap into new skills they never thought they had. The transformation of isolation into connection by bringing people together through a collective effort. The transformation of blank walls into a work of art that conveys love for the local environment and […]

World Environmental Education Day is around the corner!

World Environmental Education Day is right around the corner (January 26th), and with it, the first Finca Cántaros event of 2022—our second Annual Environmental Education Festival (January 29th)! Environmental education is at the core of everything we do at Finca Cántaros Environmental Association (FCEA). This is highlighted in our mission: “Creating community and inspiring action […]

Your “green” resolutions for 2022, and why some should be a pain in the butt

“Doing ‘X’ for the earth is easy!” “Doing ‘Y’ for the planet won’t take extra effort!” Having worked in environmental education most of my life, I have often witnessed—and participated in—the act of “selling” people on environmental action with these promises. But as we kick off 2022, I suggest we need to say more often: […]

This #GivingTuesday, support GROWING not just planting

At this time of year, and especially on #GivingTuesday, thousands of nonprofit organizations are trying to attract your attention. Why should Finca Cántaros Environmental Association inspire your holiday donation amidst all those many options? Because we are committed to GROWING and not just PLANTING. Environmental education is not effective when it simply plants information one time […]

Commit to commitment, not just hope, when it comes to the climate crisis

“We have demands, not hopes.” COP26, the United Nations climate summit, just wrapped up, and those blunt words of one youth climate activist are what stick out the most in my mind. I certainly believe that hope is important in a world that can seem scary and full of suffering. But like that young activist, […]

Birding from bed with a baby on my breast

For a few weeks, the doctor’s orders are to stay still. I’m incredibly lucky, since I have not been forced inside and into bed because of Covid-19–like a tragic number of people during this never-ending global pandemic—but as a result of the happiest event of my life. A Cesarean was necessary to bring our beautiful […]

The Bumbling Landowner—and what it has to do with environmental education

“I’m trying to embrace my landowner identity,” I declare earnestly to my partner as I pull on work gloves and start to measure out chunks of a “biofermento” (organic compost) that was prepared by women during a session of “Women Committed to the Earth,” our female-focused environmental education and gender empowerment program at Finca Cántaros. […]