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Happy New Year to All from Kids Saving the Rainforest!

Even if you don’t usually make New Year’s Resolutions, please do so this year by becoming more conscientious of saving energy so that we can all contribute to create a healthier planet! The average American ecological footprint is 5 times more than other parts of the world. Living in Costa Rica, we use less, but it is always good for everyone to cut back.

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The Battle for a Wild Life

Operating on a PacaBy Elle McGraw (Wildlife Rehabilitation Intern at KSTR)

No one enjoys losing. Especially when losing means life or death of beautiful animals. Everyday at our wildlife sanctuary, Kids Saving the Rainforest (KSTR), we embark on the battle of life or death in the case of each animal we receive. For some animals the battle is the immediate intervention between life or death; and for other, less severe cases, it consists of preparing goals in order for them to return to the wild. For all of us here at KSTR, we put our heart and soul into every animal that comes through our clinic.

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Welcome to the Kids Saving The Rainforest Thanksgiving Update

KSTR poolKSTR has a lot to be thankful this year! We have been able to continue our mission of saving the rainforest and the wildlife in it a day at a time! We want to thank those of you who have supported us through the years, and to give people visiting a chance to help too by taking a tour of our Sanctuary, where 100% of the proceeds go to the wildlife in our sanctuary. See below for more information.

KSTR’s wildlife educational tour is growing by leaps and bounds. The tour is from 9 to 12 noon every day except Tuesdays. You will get to see lots of wildlife that cannot be released back into the wild and you will have a view of a baby sloth eating breakfast behind the clinic windows.

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Making a Difference

Jennifer & Ella Mooney

Ella & Jennifer Mooney

By Volunteer Anne Hill

Jennifer Mooney came to Costa Rica with a desire to see “a real jungle.” She left with a desire to change the world.

After traveling to Manuel Antonio and learning about the efforts of Kids Saving the Rainforest, Jen realized two things. The first was that the rainforest is a vital and vanishing resource that must be protected.

“My heart will forever remain with the amazing creatures of Costa Rica and their fight to survive in a world filled with change and development,” she noted.

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Amy the Anteater, The Queen of the Night

Tamandua anteater

Tamandua anteater

By: Duncan Coleman

The darkness was setting in on the “secret” garden. The night’s grasping fingers had finally prevailed over the shining rays of the sun. My mind swam in a sea of uncertainty. Panic was overcoming me. Questions surfaced from the depths of my consciousness like so many crashing waves in a tempestuous ocean. Would she ever come down? Would she sleep in the tree all night? What would happen if I lost her? Will she die?! A bloodthirsty swarm of mosquitoes now descended upon me in the twilight dusk, buzzing in triumph at having secured a new host. Now I questioned whether I would make it through the night.

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KSTR Kid’s Camp

By Tammy Bushby, Volunteer

In March 2015 Kids Saving the Rainforest launched their monthly kid’s camp. Kids from throughout Quepos/Manuel Antonio and surrounding areas participated in an educational day about conservation and animal welfare. Throughout the day the kids took part in activities developed to teach them the importance of the local biodiversity in the forest and how they can help with the conservation of their local area.

KSTR summer camp

The day was also about getting an introduction to some of the animals native to their country as well as some foreign ones. They were given a tour of the KSTR sanctuary and animal clinic which is the temporary home of some soon to be released rehabilitated wildlife, as well as some permanent members which unfortunately cannot be released into the wild for reasons such as injury or inability to cope in the wild.

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The Sloth Mystery That Is The Night!

By KSTR Research Internist Tom Lawrence

As a research assistant studying the behaviour of two-toed sloths at KSTR I have had to make the transition to a nocturnal lifestyle working between 6pm and 6am. Two-toed sloths are nocturnal so the only way to study them was to become nocturnal myself.  Approaching this job with the idea of spending the night out in the jungle amongst the crickets and the stars seemed a very pleasant change from the bright lights and constant bustle of the London night. Now three months into this role I am happy and comfortable but the first few weeks were a steep learning curve. I found out that night time in the jungle is very mysterious and can even be deadly.

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Kids Saving the Rainforest REVAMPED Wildlife Sanctuary Tour!

Baby sloth in a coffee cupWhat’s so different now?  The Wildlife Sanctuary Tour is from 9 AM until 12 Noon, everyday (except Tuesdays). We have extended the tour so you can now relax by the pool @ Blue Banyan Inn where the sanctuary is located.

Two of the biggest draws and it’s what people have requested: INLCUDES TRANSPORTATION and… drum roll please… YOU SEE A SLOTH!!! (Sloth will be seen from behind glass only.)

The tour will still include snacks/refreshments at the end and of course you get to see the following animals in the sanctuary: Spider Monkeys, White Faced Monkeys, Squirrel Monkeys, Tamarins, & Marmosets, Nocturnal Kinkajous (if they are awake), Parrots, Parakeets, Sloth & White Hawk (coming soon).

Minimum Suggested Donation per person: $60 for adults and $45 for children under 12, (3 and under), free.  All proceeds go toward the animals! Want to take a little memory of your visit with us? CHECK OUT the KSTR Store when the tour is over!  We have great sloth towels, monkey pillowcases and much more!

To book a tour contact us info@kstr.org for more information.
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2014, It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times

Locket at 5 weeks

Locket at 5 weeks

By Sam Trull ~ Kids Saving the Rainforest & The Sloth Institute

Sometimes I wonder if truly great things can only be born out of tragedy. Is pure excitement always coupled with fear? For me, 2014 was a combination of huge personal losses and experiences that resulted in substantial personal growth. As I sit here and type this message, I am waiting for goat milk to warm so I can feed one of the most inspiring animals I have had the pleasure to care for. “Locket” a 5-week-old three-toed sloth, literally arrived at the KSTR wildlife clinic the day he was born. His face covered in amniotic sac and his umbilical cord freshly attached to the placenta…there was no doubt that his first moments in life were spent face down on a forest floor…covered in dirt and without his mother to clean him or feed him. We have no idea why he fell from the trees or why his mother did not retrieve him…but he is alive today. Already in his short life he survived a fall from the top of the forest canopy, three weeks of bacterial diarrhea, lack of immunity received from his real mom and just the general inadequateness of having me – a human – for a surrogate mother. Some would say “Locket” is a miracle…but really his success so far is attributed to the hard work from an amazing team of people at KSTR and TSI.

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The Life of a Wildlife Lover

By Sam Trull, Wildlife Manager of Kids Saving the Rainforest

Newbie

Newbie

I want to apologize now for the sad nature of this but everyone has been asking me to write about what happens when animals don’t survive. Finally, tonight, I feel inspired to type.

I’m no stranger to death. Coming up on the 7-year anniversary of my father’s death I can’t help but be a little extra emotional. Things make me cry that wouldn’t normally…and snippets of moments from the past flash through my mind on a more regular basis. I was there the day my father took his last breaths surrounded by family and friends. I saw the look in his eyes, the way his breathing changed…it all happened right in front of me. As difficult as it was to see my lifelong hero lying in a bed slowly losing his light, I am so glad I was there for his final moments…for two reasons.
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Kids Saving the Rainforest, December 2014

By Volunteer Kerstin Johnson, Assistant Principal at Nimitz Elementary School, Cupertino, Ca

This summer I spent two hours a day observing a young tamandua (anteater) search for food in a cecropia tree. When she climbed to 20 meters, I felt like a proud mom watching her baby walk for the first time. This anteater arrived at the Kids Saving the Rainforest clinic after she was orphaned and found in palm trees. In a few weeks, she will be re-released to the wild to live a full, natural life. If not for a sanctuary and rescue clinic like Kids Saving the Rainforest, she might not have survived.
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Duncan and Lucy: An Unlikely Love Story That Will Melt Your Heart

Lucy the tamandua

Lucy

By Volunteer Duncan Coleman

KSTR would like to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving! The holiday season is a time of giving thanks so we chose this heart warming story to welcome in the season! Enjoy!

Lucy… An anteater to many, a remarkable novelty to others, and to a select few- a beautiful creature that will never be forgotten. When I wake up and feel the sunlight from my bedroom window brush my face I think of the beauty of it all and my mind always wanders to the memories I’ve shared with Lucy. I feel her sway on me in every action I make and in every step I take. Lucy has burrowed herself right to the center of my heart and who could blame me? The memories I made caring for her at the KSTR wildlife sanctuary are hard to forget.

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Getting a second chance at life in the Rainforest . . . as it should be

Baby 2-toed slothsBy KSTR 

So much has happened since we published the news about our sloth needs in the June issue! And we are thrilled to announce this news with our community. As we all know, thanks to Sele and Sloth Kong leading the way, these adorable creatures, with their bed-head hairstyles, smiley faces, and just plain cuteness have taken the world by storm. Sloth videos, paraphernalia, and sanctuaries abound, yet what is not as known, is that right here, deep in our rainforest, a team of individuals have been working 24/7 to do something that has rarely been done in Costa Rica . . . giving orphaned sloths a second chance to go home…to live the life that they were meant to live…to be free to climb and eat and explore the rainforest…that is the dream of Kids Saving the Rainforest. By starting the new offshoot organization, The Sloth Institute Costa Rica, www.theslothinstitutecostarica.org, they are helping make this come true.

The new organization, has a four part mission:

  1. Rescue and Release of Sloths including meeting all husbandry needs and funding all equipment/enclosure needs
  2.  Research of Re-introduced Sloths (GPS collar program), captive rescued sloths and of wild sloths in the Manuel Antonio area
  3.  Collaboration with other organizations around the world that work with sloths
  4.  Education—promoting responsible and balanced information about sloths to the public.

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Kids Saving The Rainforest Quarterly Report

By KSTR Wildlife Vet, Pia Martin DVM

KSTR would like to share part our quarterly report submitted to MINAE (the Ministry of the Environment):

In the last 3 months KSTR has rescued 44 animals, so in addition to the 31 we already had at the rescue center, it was total of 75 animals rescued with 27 different species!!

From these: 24 were RELEASED!! YES!!! That is a great release rate for rescue centers.

35 were moved to the Sanctuary because they are non-releasable (beautiful confiscated birds that don’t even know how to fly), and of these, 20 are still at the rescue center, and only 10 died, which is also a great number.

Our most miraculous recovery was a Howler monkey who had been electrocuted and had first, second and third degree burns over 80% of her body. We were able to save her and she was released back into her troop!
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Sloth Re-Entry Project

By Seda Taysi SejudOwner of Villa Perezoso and KSTR Volunteer

Young sloths climbingPelota. Ellen. Kermie. Three of the cutest, sweetest, and most special two-toed sloths you will ever meet. Their story is one that we hope will make scientific history and provide vast amounts of knowledge about sloth behavior that hasn’t existed until now. What makes these three so incredibly special and unique is that they were brought to KSTR as orphans and have been successfully hand raised by an amazing group of volunteers led by “sloth mama” Sam Trull who serves as the organization’s Wildlife Manager and “mom” to the orphans.
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