Costa Rica Nature
Protected Areas, Ecosystems, Geology, Climate and Biodiversity of Costa Rica
With only 0.3 percent of the world's land mass and 4 percent of the world's species, Costa Rica is often cited as having the highest species per area unit in the world. The government of Costa Rica, seeking to maintain this idyllic tropical setting has designated approximately one-fourth of the land to protected areas (national parks, wildlife refuges) for the conservation of the biodiversity. Costa Rica also boasts many volcanoes, both active and inactive, that have been declared national parks.
Environmental factors are responsible for this wealth of diversity. The geographic positioning of the country, situated between two large continental masses and two vast oceans, in addition to the combination of unique geology and climate, is highly conducive to the diverse biological and plant life. Costa Rica has twelve climate zones that differ due to factors such as elevation and precipitation. Accordingly, one can find mangrove forests, cloud forests and rain forests, riparian forests and deciduous forests. In terms of ecosystem diversity, Costa Rica also has coral reefs and wetlands. For more information on this abundance of ecological and biological diversity, please click on one of the following categories to learn more.