If there’s one thing to do while in Puerto Viejo, we recommend visiting the Jaguar Rescue Center. 

Jaguar Rescue Center is a wildlife rescue service providing a temporary home for ill, injured and orphaned animals. In other words, the center acts as an emergency room and offers free health care for animals. If that right there ain’t admirable, then I don’t know what is.

Caiman Jaguar Rescue Center

All money spent at the center goes towards the upkeep and treatment of animals housed (temporarily or permanently) in the center so it was by far the most well worth tour we paid for during our 3 week stay in Costa Rica.

Tour tickets were purchased at the center’s reception and cost $22 each. Tickets can also be purchased online.

Two-toed sloth Jaguar Rescue Center
A sleeping two-toed sloth

The tour itself is amazing and very educational. Some interesting facts we learnt during the tour:

  • 7 paid staff (Center heavily relies on volunteers. Check out their website for more info regarding how to volunteer. What they require as a minimum is that duration is at least 1 month).
  • Center’s main aim is to place animals back into the wild but when it’s too dangerous for them to be let back (weak, too accustomed to humans, require treatment), they become permanent residents of the center.
  • Most handled animals in the center are birds and sloths in that order. 
  • 89 animals were taken in for some form of care during the month of January of 2022.
  • Some of the reasons animals are taken in:
    • Were previously kept illegally as pets.
    • Were going to be sold illegally. 
    • Injured by electrocution while trying to climb power lines.
    • Orphaned (mostly sloths).
    • Suffering from some kind of physical or mental illness. 
Keel-billed Toucan Jaguar Rescue Center
Keel-billed Toucan

You get to see animals housed in the center during the tour and learn the backstory of each and every one (how they got there, why they’re still there, and more). The below are some of the animals under the care of the center that we got to see and learn more about:

  • White tail deers
  • Margay
  • Slider turtles 
  • Peccaries 
  • Caiman
  • Brown boobies
  • Scarlet macaws
  • Great green macaw
  • Two-toed sloths 
  • Red-lored parrots 
  • White-crowned parrots 
  • Blue-headed parrots 
  • Keel-billed toucan 
  • Yellow-naped parrots
  • Ocelot 
  • Spider monkeys 
Brown Boobies Jaguar Rescue Center
Brown boobies

Other wildlife we spotted in and around the center but were not cared for by the center (tour guide still goes into the details of explaining facts about what we were seeing):

  • Golden orb-weaver
  • Agoutis 
  • Common green iguanas
  • Two-toed sloth
  • Keel-billed toucans

Our experience at the Jaguar Rescue Center was truly unforgettable. The owners and volunteers are literally dedicating and giving their all towards the caring of animals in need. You too can contribute towards this cause by donating, adopting an animal, and so much more. All details can be found here.

2 thoughts on “Jaguar Rescue Center – “A heart warming experience “”

  1. Pingback: Puerto Viejo de Talamanca (from Manuel Antonio)

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