Costa Rican critters! (and the presents they give us)

One afternoon in Costa Rica my friend Andre and I went out to lunch in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca on the Caribbean coast with our friends Helen and Dirk.

We were enjoying our meal until this friendly fellow dropped a huge turd onto Helen’s sandwich.

He was perched up on the rafters directly above our table, and I am still in total awe that a critter like him could produce such a significantly-sized “deposit.” At first we were in disbelief that a bug could produce such a copious present, but after some process of elimination (the bug was the only creature situated above our table), we deduced that he was in fact the culprit.

From that point on I learned to be wary of Costa Rican critters crossing my path. Taking a picture of this creature was almost too close for comfort, but he probably wouldn’t have done me any harm.

Then there’s the famous Costa Rican “Jesus Christ” lizard. I saw her at Cahuita National Park, and apparently she can walk on / run across water. I didn’t get to see the phenomenon though. She said she “didn’t feel like it.”

Some Costa Rican critters are not as friendly as others. The venomous eyelash pit viper is one of them. This golden one was lurking on the rafter between the two stalls in the bathroom of the restaurant where we were having lunch. Guess who had gone in the bathroom when we got to the restaurant– Helen. Just imagine Helen washing her hands, not knowing who was in there with her. At the end of our meal some little kids ran screaming out of the bathroom, reporting the presence of the snake.

I apologize for the amateur quality of the photographs, because, well, I wasn’t going any closer than that, thank you very much.

According to lore, it’s lucky to get pooped on your head by a bird. Does the same go for Helen and the bug who took a dump on her food? On top of that, she was also spied on in the loo by a pit viper. What a day.

P.S. If you’re worried about the fate of the pit viper, some lady arrived from an animal agency. She scooped up the snake, put him in her truck, and her organization drives far out into the jungles of Costa Rica to release the exotic animals– far away from places where Helen eats and children play.

Tags: , , ,

7 Comments on “Costa Rican critters! (and the presents they give us)”

  1. Karen July 31, 2011 at 16:40 #

    When Lisa and I were in Belize one of these jumped out of the jungle across our path-over the guides feet and back into the jungle on the other side of the path. I was literally frozen in my tracks. Then when we got back from our hike to see the howler monkeys, at the bathroom we encountered large rattlesnake. We go some pix, but I do see a pattern here, bathroom & poisonous snakes in Central America….hmmmmmmm 🙂

  2. Helen August 1, 2011 at 02:27 #

    I still have nightmares of this adventure!
    But we had a great lunch! Love the Hummus sandwiches 🙂

    • Marisa LaValette August 1, 2011 at 08:16 #

      Those critters were out to get you! I’m glad we all survived.

  3. Bill August 16, 2011 at 16:35 #

    Just becuase that snake is venomous, does that make it a “male” as you stated? The poor bug, it must have hurt when it passed the ‘copious’ amount of discharge. LOL. Really enjoying your post. Keep them coming

    • Marisa LaValette August 16, 2011 at 19:24 #

      Hi Bill!

      I chose to refer to the snake as a “he” as a 50/50 guess. I am not an expert in snake gender identification!

      Yes, I am worried about that bug’s rear end just as much as you are!

  4. cheri29 May 31, 2013 at 13:45 #

    You haven’t experience the rainforest until you have had the cleaner ants come through your house! It is a swarm of ants that come in and clean your house and leave. If you don’t bother them, they won’t bother you. They look for crumbs and any dead bugs that may be laying around that you don’t see. I was terrified of ants until I moved here. Now I accept them. But as it turns out, a couple of bites from the small ants and I am at the clinic getting shots and a lot of medication, I am very allergic to them. I think I am the only person that has this reaction, my doctor was even surprised by it.

    • Marisa LaValette May 31, 2013 at 13:51 #

      My friends in Costa Rica live in an “indoor / outdoor” house. They have no doors, and the windows are wide open. The weather in their area of Costa Rica (San Miguel de Sarapiqui) is very pleasant, so they have a good temperature all the time in their house.

      Insects come and go as they please. When I stayed with them, we kept most of the lights off at night so as not to attract more insects. The insects don’t do anything… as you said, they’re a fact of life. I liked the concept of their beautiful house, because I felt very in touch with Nature and the outdoors. There is lush beautiful grass, trees, and mountains all around them in their tiny town!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: