local-news-corcovado

Pandemic worsens plundering of biodiversity in Corcovado

Pandemic worsens plundering of biodiversity in Corcovado

Park rangers also report increased drug trafficking activity.

For Dionisio Paniagua, owner of Surcos Tours in Puerto Jiménez, it is urgent to reinforce environmental education in the communities.

According to him, conservation policies have always focused on persecution, without the proper component of community education.

“This creates a lot of conflict between park rangers and communities. Today, he sees it very clearly: as soon as tourism left, people looked at the park without understanding that it is the greatest income provider. This crisis will hopefully end soon, and we must protect the little hen that lays the golden eggs because this is what will provide us an income in the future,” he recommended.

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Paniagua recalled that after several decades without hunting, today the generations of animals in Corcovado are used to being close to humans because they have lost their fear.

However, he warned, if the “coligalleros” and hunters are not controlled, it could all be over in the blink of an eye.

“If you shoot the animals once, they run away, but, for now, they are so used to us that they will not run away from a hunter, and they will become an easy prey. Tell me, which tourist will come if there is no wildlife to observe,” he asked himself.

Another consequence, according to Paniagua, will be suffered by farm owners with cattle and barnyard animals.

Large felines like jaguars, pumas and ocelots will remain in the park as long as they find food, he explained. If illegal hunting continues, the populations of pigs, collared peccaries, and turkeys, which are a common prey of these felines, will be reduced. If these predators run out of food, “they will look for the domestic animals, and that will generate other conflicts between farmers and ranch woners who will see their own animals lost,” he said.

“There are many people left here who don’t realize that they live in one of the most beautiful natural areas on the planet, because most of them do not know the park,” he said.

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