Asis Wild Animal Rescue Center
Located in the small town of Javillos in Costa Rica, Instituto Asis is dedicated to wild animal rehabilitation and public education. Due to human development, destruction of natural habitat and illegal hunting, there has been a steep decline in wildlife populations, causing many species to be in danger of extinction. Volunteers have the opportunity to work with injured wild animals such as monkeys, peccarys, kinkajous and macaws. Instituto Asis believes that by educating the public, they will help restore the balance between man and nature. Instituto Asis is officially recognized by the Ministry of the Environment and Energy and the Monteverde Conservation League.
Jardin Pierella Butterfly Farm
This remarkable piece of property is a Costa Rican success story. Once a heart of palm field, it’s been transformed into a sustainable business, with a butterfly farm and animal rehabilitation facility. Costa Rica has around 1,250 species of butterflies – a tenth of the world’s total. However, these beautiful insects are suffering as a result of habitat destruction and overexploitation. Jardin Pierella offers a special chance to see a remarkable assortment of butterflies, frogs, caterpillars and also a thriving animal rehabilitation facility. The staff also cares for injured and abandoned animals. Jardin Pierella’s goal is to educate visitors about natural biology and conservation.
Deforestation claims more than 200 square miles of pristine rain forest in Costa Rica each year, and illegal logging takes place in many of its protected areas. The northern Caribbean plain of Costa Rica was once the biggest tract of lowland rainforest in the country; now less than 10% remains standing. The area was also once home to a healthy population of great green macaws; now there are only 25 to 35 breeding pairs left. At Pital, you’ll work with locals who are committed to protecting the remaining forests and participate in reforestation efforts. You’ll also spend the night with a local farm family and experience a typical day in their lives like getting up before the sun to milk cows, participating in daily chores and preparing meals.