Field Study and Service-Learning MediaBlog

16 April, 2007

La Tigra: Bosque de los Ninos (Children's Rain Forest)

BEN: Education Center
This is a picture outside of the 'Aula' (classroom). We went to this classroom when we first arrived at Bosque de los Niños. Here, we met with Tory who is the responsible for communication with various groups. Tory gave a power point presentation of Bosque de los Niños. Usually, this classroom is used for children to perform different educational activities. Also, volunteers and workers use this room as a kitchen and even a bathroom which are located inside. After Tory´s presentation, we went a hike in the forest. Later we returned here to eat our lunch. There are many other classrooms and biological field stations located at Bosque de los Niños.

Aula Classroom- Bosque de los Niños
This is a picture of the inside of the Aula classroom. Here, Tory gave a very ellaborate presentation of Bosque de los Niños. She began her lecture talking about the background of Bosque de los Niños (BEN) and it´s relationship with Monteverde Conservation League. After, she told us how the community is heavily involoved with BEN. Local farmers, children, and adults work with BEN in order to create a sustainable society. Also, Tory mentioned that BEN was also in collaboration with MINAE and other non-governmental organizations. BEN has benefits the environment involving reforestation and watershed projects.

Guides of Bosque de los Niños
The man on the left is our main trail guide. The women on the right is Tory who gave a us a presentation of Bosque de los Niños prior to our walk. Our trail guide was quite knowledgable in the forest. He knew of old traditions using the forest´s resources. For instance, he showed us leaves that were used as roofing on his house as a child. Also, he showed us leaves that were used for shining shoes and other plants that were taken as medicine. I thought that was cool because I realized how much things have changed in Costa Rica over 50 years. It´s nice that he can still tell stories of traditional Costa Rica.


As we were walking on the trail, we came across a beautiful waterfall. The water was very clear and uncontaminated. Tory told us that the water was clean enough to drink directly from the stream. Our professor, Dr. Miguel Karian, dipped his whole head in the water. Other students tested the water as well. I did not noticed any fish in the water. It was very slippery walking across the rocks, however, no one fell in the water. On our walk back, we saw another stream that was very similar to this one. To me, this was one of the most beautiful spots in Bosqe de los Niños.

Pilon and Miguelito
This is a picture of our professor Miguel hugging the Pilon tree. The Pilon tree is my favorite tree in Costa Rica. It is an enormous tree. The tree is a native species of Costa Rica. The Pilon´s scientific name is hieronyma alchorneoides. It is also a popular tree for deforesting because it has very strong and hard wood. Also, the wood is resistent to termites. I have seen this tree in many different locations of Costa Rica. However, it is mostly found in the Northern and Atlantic Zones. Pilones survive the best in humid tropical forests. Even though, I have seen this tree in many places, the number of trees has been reduced considerably. Save the Rain Forest to enjoy the beautiful and magnificent Pilon tree!!


Learning about Bosque de los Niños
During our hike in Bosque de los Niños, we discovered the different species in the forest. One tree produces flammable sap. This sap provides light when you get lost, and fire when you need to cook or get warm. The Palmeras tree is another species that is beautiful. Poachers chop the tree because everyone wants it in their house. Another favorite tree of mine is the monkey latter. It swirls up a tree and looks like a set of stairs for a monkey´s house. It is crazy to realize that this area was once exploited as a banana plantation and now it´s an enchanting forest.

 Author: Anne Christoff