The Happiest Marine Life: Protecting Costa Rica’s Biodiversity for the World
The incredible biodiversity of marine and wildlife life, especially the abundant diverse fish populations attracts millions of visitors to Costa Rica each year. Anglers from all over the world travel to Cost Rica for year round sport fishing. Ocean activities include world class offshore and inshore fishing, surfing, diving, snorkeling and just dipping your toes in the sand. The Osa Peninsula is probably one of the best fishing spots in the world, with marlin and Red Snapper. Even less abundant marine animals such as whales and dolphins are safe in these waters. Costa Rica possesses 3.5% of the world’s marine life and is home to over a 1,000 species of fish, 17% of the all the fish species in the world.
World leaders are meeting today at the eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties for the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in India to discuss protecting biodiversity. Costa Rica is one of the few nations that have actually acted to protect both marine and wildlife in accordance with the Nagoya Agreement signed by 193 countries. Today all eyes should be on Costa Rica as a model country. The Nagoya Protocol expanded protection of marine areas to 10% of its oceans currently covered. Costa Rica stands out as an international leader being one of the few countries that is actually following the protocol. This country has also led the way in legislation to prohibit shark hunting and while illegal poaching is still a problem, there is legislation in place to prohibit the practice. Costa Rica is an example when it comes to conservation and environmental protection as well as respecting human rights and due process law. Perhaps, it is no surprise that it is also home to the Inter-American Human Rights Court.
In 1998, Costa Rica passed a biodiversity law that has helped to ensure healthy marine populations and the country has continued to move forward in legislative measures that protect biodiversity. It is this country’s incredible biodiversity and climate that attract millions of visitors to this small country every year generating billions of dollars in income.
Ecotourism and outdoor sports is a mainstay of this small country’s economy. Resorts such as Crocodile Bay, support biodiversity by making ecotourism and outdoor activities their focus for guests staying with them. The anglers who visit are able to enjoy incredible fishing because of the conservation regulations in place. With a strong catch and release policy in effect, fishing remains a sport that can be enjoyed without actually depleting fish populations.
Costa Rica is ahead of most countries when it comes to protecting the environment and human rights, which is amazing for such a small country. In the meantime, anglers, adventurers and ecotourists continue to flock this tropical paradise for adventures on land and by sea.