CANO NEGRO WILDLIFE REFUGE COSTA RICA
Cano Negro near the border of Nicaragua, is one of the hardest places in
Costa Rica to get to independently, but worth joining a day tour for a visit.
Most visits start out on the Rio Frio, where you board a boat and glide up or
down the river through canyons of green towards the Florida everglade like lake Cano Negro. In this case, getting there is half the fun.
There are literally thousands of birds and plants, and many fish (if you are
lucky, a freshwater shark's fin will slice the surface), mammals, reptiles and
amphibians in and along the river.
At the height of the dry season, there are a few hiking and horse trails
exposed, but most of the time the only way to explore Cano Negro is by boat.
During the summer green season water from the
mountains is plentiful and the Rio Frio overflows its banks at Cano Negro. The
entire reserve turns into a shallow lake that serves as a wintering site for
migrant American birds. During the winter dry season from November until April,
the water level is continually falling, and by the beginning of the summer, all
that is left is the main channel of the Rio Frio. Among the many birds usually
present in the winter are: Glossy Ibis, Black-necked Stilt, Anhinga, American
Widgeon, Northern Shoveler, Wood Stork, White Ibis, Black-bellied
Whistling-Duck, Snail Kite, Green Backed Heron, and Blue-winged Teal. This is
one of the best places to see the Nicaraguan Grackle, whose only Costa Rican
habitat is Cano Negro and other marshy areas just south of Lake Nicaragua.
Wildlife: A boat ride down the Rio Frio is also an excellent
opportunity to spot any or all of three species of monkeys, and hundreds of
amphibians and reptiles that frequent the banks.
Tour to Cano Negro
The Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge and the Rio Frio are biological humid areas
considered to be one of the richest in biological diversity in Costa Rica. Here
you can find a great variety of resident and migratory birds plus three
different species of monkeys, also iguanas, sloth, turtles and caimans.
The tour starts at 7: 30 a.m. from the Arenal Volcano area when we pick
up all Nature Lovers from their hotels in a very comfortable bus for the 1-½
hour Transfer to Los Chiles, a culturally mixed village only 4-km from the
Nicaraguan border. Here your boat waits for your river adventure, at that time
we begin our 4-hour floating safari through Tropical Rain Forest and pastures
until we arrive at the marsh. An experienced English - Spanish speaking
guide leads the tour. We bring you back at your hotel at 4h30 pm.
Some birds are residents in the area and it is possible to see hundreds of
them especially during the dry season. Some of them are Anhinga or Snake -
bird (Anhinga anhinga), Roseate Spoonbill (Ajaia ajaja), it is possible to see
little groups of this bird eating in the surroundings of the river. Wood
Storks (Mycteria americana), the Jabirus (Jabiru mycteria), the largest bird in
Central America and very endangered. Also the Olivaceous Cormorant
(Palacrocorax olivaceus), that makes its nest in the area, it is also the most
popular bird in the refuge. Caño Negro has the largest colony of
cormorants in Costa Rica. show me more photos!
Along the river we can see howler monkeys (Alouata palliata), spider monkeys
(Ateles geoffrogi), white-faced monkeys (Cebus capuccinus), also the three-toed
sloth (Bradipus variegatus) and some reptiles like caimans (Caiman crocodilos),
Jesus Christ lizard (Basiliscus basiliscus) and turtles.
The Cano Negro Arenal Tour includes a home made box lunch, regional fruits,
canned drinks, natural juices, beers, bottled water and cookies. All this
is served in the surroundings of this green country side. Don’t forget to
bring light clothing, camera, binoculars, sun cream and insect repellent.
Price is $55 per person from La Fortuna, $55 if staying at Arenal Paraiso,
Los Lagos, Montana de Fuego, $45 Tabacon, $50 Arenal Lodge, $65 Observatory
Lodge (price vary according to the distance between the hotel and La Fortuna).
Half price for kids under 12, free if under 6.
If you would like to reserve this adventure, just tell us for what date, how many people, and what hotel you will be staying