- Creation of a conservation reserve protecting 35 000+ acres of primary rainforest in the heart of the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica
- A unique ecosystem hosting 3% of worldwide biodiversity
- Construction of a biological station welcoming scientists, students, volunteers, visitors, and rangers involved in various conservation programs
A RACE Against time
Over the past century, nearly 60% of the primary rainforests in the Osa Peninsula have been cleared or heavily altered to make way for agriculture and grazing lands, despite their ecological significant importance. Today, the remaining areas of primary rainforests that have survived deforestation hold immeasurable value. Most of these lands still belong to farmers, many of whom are willing to sell to the highest bidder, typically agribusiness giants (palm oil plantations, pineapple farms, banana plantations, cattle ranching). Their protection is an urgent matter, which is why we are engaged in negotiations with landowners to acquire these lands and protect them while there is still time.
A large-scale conservation program
The area to be protected covers over 35 000+ acres (approximately the size of the City of Miami) and is divided into hundreds of properties of varying sizes. By acquiring them one by one, Las Oncas will protect a vast forested territory, turning this area into a conservation reserve comparable in size and biodiversity to the greatest national parks of Costa Rica.
Located between Corcovado National Park and Piedras Blancas National Park, these lands represent the only remaining biological corridor to date. This crucial path allows wildlife to move freely from one area to another, ensuring the long-term survival of endangered species such as the jaguar.
KINGDOM OF THE JAGUARS
By funding Las Oncas conservation reserve, each donator allows the study and protection of the last jaguars of the Osa Peninsula, enabling the collection of crucial data and the monitoring of each of the individuals still inhabiting this wild and isolated area.
Osa peninsula, costa Rica
The area to be protected encompasses a wide range of ecosystems, some of which are particularly rare and have survived deforestation. Mostly intact yet still under threat, these rainforests represent a unique sample of the various environments that make up the Osa Peninsula. Located on the southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica, the Osa Peninsula is one of the most pristine and wild regions on the planet.
As a unique concentration of biodiversity, its primary rainforests alone hold 3% of the world's biodiversity. This abundance makes the Osa Peninsula a place with one of the highest conservation potentials in Central America.
In order to welcome the scientific community under the best conditions, a biological station equipped with all the necessary facilities will be built in the heart of the reserve. This station will consist of workspaces, a conference room, and infrastructure to accommodate residents for short or long-term stays. A team of rangers will be based on-site, responsible for patrolling within the reserve. Las Oncas will also be open to visitors and volunteers.
The biological station will regularly host interventions by conservation actors during conferences open to the public. These exchanges will be followed by expeditions leaded by the speaker in order to share a unique and immersive experience in the heart of the jungle.
Las Oncas will carry out different conservation programs within the reserve. These will be open to volunteering, allowing everyone to take part in their development. In addition, awareness actions will involve students, surrounding businesses and members of local communities. Through these initiatives we will dive into the very heart of issues such as poaching, intensive agriculture, urbanization and deforestation.
The lands protected by the reserve are the crossroads of the jaguar's travel routes on the Osa Peninsula. Through Tico's Wild Studio's jaguar project, individuals are detected and identified. By monitoring them on the long-term, we are able to collect key informations and share them with the scientific community. The data gathered is used to analyse the jaguar's behavior and improve the effectiveness of conservation actions.
This rare snake is the longest viper in the world. Endemic to the South Pacific area of Costa Rica, Las Oncas conservation reserve is at the heart of its range. Using the knowledge of the herpetological team of our biological station, and using GPS chips, a monitoring program will be set up to collect essential informations for understanding this legendary snake such as biometric data, density of the species or the evolution of individuals in space and time.
On a regular basis, birds will be captured and banded in the different ecosystems of the reserve. This program will enable us to compare the diversity of species in each one of them, and to follow the frequentation of marked individuals from year to year. The data collected will enrich knowledge on the migration of species, their fidelity to an identified site as well as the decline or changes within bird populations over time.
WILDLIFE MONITORING PROGRAM
The monitoring program aims to list all the species living within the reserve, document their abundance, their behavior, monitor the evolution of their populations or yet to discover new species. We will use our network of camera traps and the expertise of specialists partners to gather and interpret all the key informations.
Las Oncas conservation reserve includes areas of primary millennial forest as well as areas that have been deforested to make way for agriculture and livestock. In order to restore the natural balance and in partnership will local communities, we will implement a program of reforestation and rewilding. In the continuity of this effort, each fence erected in the past will be removed to allow the free movement of wildlife.
The social dimension is at the core of Las Oncas' approach. The objective is to involve as many people as possible on the field, and therefore the missions naturally take place in collaboration with local actors.
Whether they are farmers, former poachers, gold miners, as well as forest rangers, guides, or even students, they all have valuable knowledge of the area and are thus part of the solution.
By protecting the last primary forests and their biodiversity, Las Oncas will preserve the main route used by jaguars between the already protected areas of the region. Through Las Oncas, the funds collected will be used to buy strategic lands, set up conservation programs and cover the costs of all the infrastructure and logistics needed to create a private, everlasting and independent reserve.