Tortuguero National Park Facts

Tortuguero National Park Facts
Tortuguero National Park is a 46,815 acre park in Costa Rica's Limon Province. The park is named after its most important inhabitants - sea turtles. Tortuguero is Spanish for 'region of turtles' in English. 20 miles of coastline in the park are used by the four sea turtle species that lay eggs there. Tortuguero National Park is considered to be one of the best places in Costa Rica for wildlife viewing in nature. Despite only being able to reach the park by boat or plane, it is Costa Rica's third most visited park. The park is important for protecting many threatened species of flora and fauna. It was declared a national park in 1970, after having been protected in 1963 as a nesting sanctuary. Dr. Archie Carr was a turtle biologist that recognized the importance of the area for turtles and sought to protect it. It was his work that was instrumental in protecting the region.
Interesting Tortuguero National Park Facts:
Tortuguero National Park is often referred to as Costa Rica's 'Amazon Jungle' because its waterways are the only method of travel.
The annual rainfall in Tortuguero National Park is between 165 and 200 inches, making it one of Costa Rica's wettest areas.
The humidity in Tortuguero National Park is very high because of the rainfall, but this supports the plant life.
Visitors to Tortuguero National Park can take a boat in and then hike along trails in the rugged terrain.
There are four several species of sea turtles that lay eggs along the 20 miles of shoreline in Tortuguero National Park. These include the green sea turtle, leatherback, loggerhead, and hawksbill.
There are seven species of land turtles found in Tortuguero National Park, as well as 30 freshwater fish species.
Within Tortuguero National Park's land and water it is possible to find bull sharks, ells, gars, crocodiles, manatees, spider monkeys, three-toed sloths, jaguars, caimans, mantled howlers, white-headed capuchins, and sea cows.
The bird population in Tortuguero National Park is diverse. There are over 375 different species that live in the park, including peacocks, blue herons, toucans, kingfishers, and parrots.
There are over 400 different species of trees in Tortuguero National Park. There are an additional 2200 plant species known to exist in its boundaries.
Threatened species that live in Tortuguero National Park include the American crocodile, Baird's tapir, manatee, tropical gar, and marine turtles.
Within Tortuguero National Park there are several habitats including lowland rainforests, beaches, marine and freshwater riverine, and estuary.
To the north border of Tortuguero National Park is the Barra del Colorado Wildlife Refuge. To the south of the park are Cariari National Wetlands, the town of Tortuguero, as well as the Dr. Archie Carr Wildlife Refuge.
The Dr. Archie Carr Wildlife Refuge was established to tag turtles in an effort to study and preserve their populations.
The Ramsar Convention, which is an international treaty that is meant to help protect wetlands, recognized Tortuguero National Park for its diversity and importance in protecting its ecosystem's flora and fauna in 1991.

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