A Very Sunny January

My Costa Rican parents!

I’ve spent two months in wonderful San Luis de Monteverde. In the last month, I’ve seen my autonomy as a naturalist increase; continued learning Spanish and about the history, culture, and ecology of San Luis; and experienced many wonderful things as a visitor to this region. I’ve also been glad to welcome some more volunteer interns in the last month (put your hands together for Alison and Kestin!); we’ve become fast fast friends!

Throughout mid-January, I got to witness UGACR at near capacity, hosting a variety of study-abroad groups and tourists, who came from all over the world (US, Canada, Costa Rica, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, and more). I’ve continued to lead Camino Real natural history hikes, waterfall tours, birding walks, and milking tours. Additionally, I’ve completed some of my first translations, including a tour of the medicinal plant garden and a tour of a coffee farm in Finca La Bella. It has been incredible to experience the mutualistic relationship between the San Luis community and UGACR.

Ready for a swim
I have also started to plug away at some extra-curricular research. I matched up with Ryan Malloy, a PhD student from UGA who is using GIS for his thesis. I am assisting him with some field work, data collection, and land cover classification. This is giving me valuable
A sign for Victor's Coffee Tour
practice time with GPS and GIS equipment, and hopefully I’m helping him since he cannot feasibly collect all his data in Costa Rica while stationed in Athens.
In the coming month, I’ve got tons to look forward to. Groups of tourists, increasing research, and friends from the States visiting me for my visa trip that I’ve got to take at the end of February (we’re headed to Nicaragua!). More updates soon!
-Paul Tupper, Resident Naturalist
Ripe for the pickin

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