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Sea Shepherd: The Heroes of the Sea

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According to the United Nations, 7% of global fish stocks are depleted, 52% are fully exploited and 17% are over exploited. This leaves only an estimated 20% of worldwide fish stocks that aren’t already at capacity. In addition, 90% of large predatory fish are already gone. Fins from up to 73 million sharks are used in shark fin soup each year. Recent estimates also say that the global by-catch (untargeted marine species caught during commercial fishing and returned to the sea dead) rate may amount to 40% of the world’s catch.

The Brigitte Bardo sails past a Chinese squid boat

The Brigitte Bardo sails past a Chinese squid boat

These dire statistics may seem discouraging, but not to everyone. Founded in 1977, Sea Shepherd is an international non-profit marine wildlife conservation organization. They’re active on the ground, on the high seas, and inside the world’s highest courtrooms, dedicated to “ending the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species.”

The Interceptor Vessel

Over December and January, the Marina Pez Vela played host to the M/V Brigitte Bardot, the Sea Shepherd’s interceptor vessel. This crew belongs to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society chapter, which means they patrol the oceans and take direct action to investigate, document, expose and confront illegal activities on the high seas.
They are currently working on Operation Mamacocha. This campaign covers roughly two million square kilometers (770 000 square miles) of ocean, and addresses Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Biodiversity Corridor. These waters are rich in nutrients and play host to 88 species of sharks, giant oceanic manta rays, sea turtles, dolphins, and blue whales among others. We had a chance to chat with their campaign leader Rebecca Benjamin-Carey about what life is like on board.

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Turmeric Curcumin Health Benefits and Uses

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Are you looking for a way to boost every facet of your health with a single spice? It sounds crazy, but turmeric curcumin with BioPerine may be the magic supplement we’ve been seeking. Turmeric benefits the body and mind in more ways than you can imagine. Similar to bone broth, turmeric impacts almost every facet of life. Over 10,000 peer-reviewed and clinical studies support using turmeric for better health.

What is turmeric good for? Almost everything. Regardless of your health goals, turmeric can help you reach them. Some benefits include helping with weight loss, inflammation, arthritis, skin, and pain relief. Turmeric can even help prevent acne, cancer, allergies, diabetes, joint pain, and depression. We will cover all the health benefits and turmeric uses in detail below.

Read more HERE.

10 Ways Not to Get Your Stuff Stolen on a Surf Trip

Surf CR logoIt happens to a lot of tourists. You stop to get a bite to eat. You lock your car with all your stuff in it, except maybe your phone or purse, and you’ve parked it close by in a well-lit area. Then you get back and someone has keyed into the car and taken everything right under your nose. Don’t let it happen to you. Here are some tips. Overall, when traveling, unless you know you are completely surrounded by nature for miles, is ‘EVER VIGILANT’.

1. Leave the TV or radio on when you leave your room. 

Yes, it uses up some electricity, but either that, or the crooks will be sure that no one is home or awake. With the noise, they can’t be 100% certain, so they will often go to the next quieter room.

2. Don’t leave stuff near windows.

Many thieves will use sticks or hooks to grab on to your bags and pull them towards the window. They don’t have to get inside to steal your stuff.

3. Don’t invite strangers into your room.

That new friend, who seemed cool, may just be scoping out your stuff. They are happy showing you a fun bar or scenic location, and meanwhile their friends are cleaning out your closet.

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Kids Saving the Rainforest – February 2019




By Kerri Conrad

Hello Quepolandia readers. Every month you hear from Karma Casey, the spokeskid at KSTR, an extraordinary young girl I am extremely proud to call my daughter. This month, Karma is out of the country visiting friends and family in the United States. She asked that I write to you this month in her place until she can get back to Costa Rica and continue doing her part to save the rainforest.

Karma and I moved to this beautiful country over a year ago to pursue her dreams of helping wildlife. Through volunteering with Kids Saving the Rainforest, Karma has had the extraordinary pleasure of being able to make her dreams come true. If you’d like to volunteer with KSTR, families with kids 12 and up are welcome to join the Day Volunteer program!

When we came to this country, Karma’s biggest dream of all was to one day grow up and become the Nursery Mom, the surrogate mother who cares for all the orphaned and injured baby wildlife at KSTR. While she has now also developed the aspiration to become a wildlife veterinarian, gaining the skills she needs to be the one who can really save an animal’s life in those critical rescue moments, the care of baby wildlife is still something that is near and dear to Karma’s heart.

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Are Insect Populations Really Decreasing?

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By Jack Ewing



We didn’t have cockroaches in Colorado where I grew up. At least I never saw any. The first time I heard of them was on television. For those of you who are old enough to remember it was on the Jackie Gleason Show. Every week there was a skit called “The Honeymooners” in which a couple named Ralph and Alice lived in a rundown apartment somewhere in New York City, One day Alice was complaining that she had seen a cockroach in the apartment. I asked my mom what a cockroach is and was told that they are horrible bugs that are only found in slums. Later in life I found out that in the tropics they live everywhere.

In the 1970s Diane and I and our kids, Natalie and Chris, all moved to Hacienda Barú to live. Our lighting was from kerosene lanterns and was pretty dim. Cockroaches love dim light and would come out at night and climb all over the walls. We played a lot of different card and board games for evening entertainment, but our favorite game was cockroach hunting. We had a fly swatter that consisted of a plastic pistol with a spring that shot a plastic disk at the flies. Once a month we would roll the dice to see who got to go first. If you killed a cockroach you got to shoot again. If you missed, the pistol passed on the next person. We kept going until there were no more cockroaches to be found. Each game wiped out the entire population, and we would have to wait a month for them to replenish their numbers before we could have another hunt. We didn’t worry about controlling the roaches with insecticide or anything else, because it was so much fun hunting them.

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Fiddlin’ Around – February 2019

Fiddlin'Around headerEnvision festivalEnvision Fest time is rolling around again, and most of us here in Dominical are happy for the diversion and happy to witness the folks attending the fest’s commitment to global and spiritual ideals and progress. Over the years I have met many young people with lofty goals who came here hoping to meet others with the same interests, and clearly this festival is not just about the music. Actually, it’s not even mainly about the music—it’s about yoga and meditation and healing arts and dance and permaculture and visual art and global awareness and eco-consciousness and alternative lifestyles. But browsing through the bios of some of the live musicians, I must confess that I do not understand a lot of the labels that are used now to describe different types of music. I have nothing but vague ideas of what global bass is, or glitch hop, or psydub, or what makes it sacred drumming as opposed to plain old drumming.

2 guys playing drums and fluteIt’s hard for me to relate to relentless rhythms and electronically produced sounds. I’m not going to apologize for that—I’ve enjoyed a lifetime of melodies and meaningful lyrics and harmonies and exploration of sounds produced by actual people, not machines. To me much of the techno stuff is just taking a cheesy 60s style drum machine from the mediocre band at the local Hotel Notell and elaborating on it. But I will defend anyone’s right to listen to what they want, and truth be told I can sometimes be found dancing along…

There are several stages at Envision, and the beautiful yet functional designs used to showcase what is happening on them is inspiring. Outstanding artistry and imagination goes into their making. You’re gonna have to go to the Envision 2019 website and read up on the different acts and which stages are used for techno or dance or acoustic or reggae so you can find the musical medium you like. The Sol stage is described as having big band music, but I am pretty sure they aren’t talking about Tommy Dorsey or Benny Goodman. But I’m clueless about what it is. It’s hard for me to tell by the names whether it is a DJ or a band or a combination of both. I am happy that reggae music still has a place at this festival—I like reggae and over the years it has been an important genre both musically and politically. There will be plenty of jamming going on—especially with drums and flutes and homemade instruments. To me, sitting on the beach with a bunch of others banging on stuff and being mesmerized by a bonfire is time well spent!

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What’s Shaking at Marina Pez Vela – February 2019

What's Shaking headerAfter and AMAZING New Year’s CELEBRATION and a January PACKED FULL of activities, Rock Star Fishing Tournament and all the energy it feels more like the 63rd day of December vs the start of February, but who are we to complain for a celebration that lasts a few months instead of a few days! The good news, for those of you who enjoy a great time, is that February keeps the action going all month long here at MPV with a full slate of activities and big events! Let’s get to it and mark your calendars to join us here at MPV!

LA PESCADORA: February 21-23

The first annual Pescadora Fishing Tournament is the first women’s only fishing tournament here at MPV and is lining up to be one of the most successful and well attended tournaments to date. Anglers from all over Costa Rica and the world are coming to the area to enjoy some healthy competition and a WHOLE LOT OF FUN. MPV is home to some of the top female anglers in the world, and as is evidenced by the amazing performance in the open tournaments, female anglers are quickly taking their positions as some of the finest “fisherwomen” in the world. The Pescadora is welcoming anglers of all levels, but is certainly not your typical gimmicky female angler event. Organized by our local legend Samantha Mumford, La Pescadora promises to be a huge success, more fun than we can imagine and a great opportunity to expose and encourage more women and girls to get involved in this amazing sport. Come and join in the fun and support this first annual event.


Ahh, the day where lovers love to be in love. We want to invite everyone to join us for a Iive concert with Roger Morales, our local talent who always amazes us with his stunning voice and traditional Musica de Plancha. Whether you are coming with your significant other, spouse or just with friends and family to celebrate a day for friendship and love, there is no better spot to celebrate than MPV. While we can sometimes lose the importance of this holiday, love and friendship is at the core of everything we do at MPV, where a community and our visitors celebrate and share in a magical space. Join us and make reservations at one of our restaurants for a special dinner and a beautiful concert.Marina Pez Vela logo
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SLOTH SPEEDWAYS ARE SAVING LIVES and you can help to create more!

The Sloth Institute
Sloth crossing the roadDeforestation in the rainforest is causing sloths to lose vital connections to their homes, food, and safety. When trees are cut down, sloths try to find other ways to travel—they climb on to electrical wires or they try to cross the road. They end up being killed or badly maimed. The Sloth Institute has treated sloths who survived, but some have lost eyes and limbs after being electrocuted or hit by cars.

SLOTH SPEEDWAYS are rope bridges that sloths and other wildlife utilize to travel throughout the rainforest. Today, they have become more important than ever. SLOTH SPEEDWAYS reconnect the
rainforest so that sloths and all wildlife can continue to access their known resources to food and safety. The animals need many more SLOTH SPEEDWAYS, and we need your help.


The Sloth Institute (TSI)’s mission is to enhance the welfare and conservation of sloths through research and education. TSI is located in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica. For more information please visit TheSlothInstitute.org or email us: info@theslothinstitute.org.

Dolly was rescued after being electrocuted. Luckily, TSI was able to save her injured eye.

Dolly was rescued after being electrocuted. Luckily, TSI was able to save her injured eye.

If you see a sloth who needs help: CALL or WHATSAPP +506 87SLOTHS (756847)

Pescadora Billfish Championship

Pescadora logoBy Nicky Branciforte

Fishing is no longer a man’s sport. Over 17 million women went fishing in the USA in 2017. The days of hunters and gatherers being men are long gone and women have set up shop (no pun intended) right alongside them. Our skill in the sport has been proven and shines through every day, be it on ponds, lakes or the deep blue sea. The Pescadora Billfish Championship was put together by Samantha Mumford, loving wife and mother, first-class business owner and easily one of the best anglers to ever hold a rod. Samantha wanted to give women who love to fish the opportunity to compete for a title with the same prestige and class as their male counterparts. The uniqueness of the “hook and hand” rules of the tournament allows for anglers of all skill levels to compete for the two top lady angler awards along with overall boat team awards. The women participating in this tournament don’t care which bikini might just land them on the next hot social media post but instead are focused on landing the next fish of the desired species. February 21-23 will bring together women from around the world to have a chance to share in this amazing experience and compete at a chance to be THE PESCADORA!!! Come join them…

Pierre E. Tremblay

¿Qué Pasa en Quepos? – February 2019

February 2019 coverBienvevidos/Welcome to our little part of paradise. Shed those jackets and forget about those snow shovels and let your adventure begin. High season is here and February is the month of Love and Costa Rica will provide the Peace And Happiness.

Kicking off the Happiness is the 2nd Annual Eco Beer Fest (same concept just better) at Fuego Brew Co. in Dominical on February 2nd. Followed by more Happiness with the Super Bowl LIII on the 3rd. Jolly Roger (MA) will be throwing a Tailgate party in the parking lot of Byblos Casino. Marina Pez Vela will be rocking the docks with the game on the BIG screen. Also on the big screen is Movie night under the stars a fantastic Friday night for the entire family and it’s free.

For all you lovers here, Valentines Day is upon us so don’t forget to make your special dinner reservations at our many exceptional restaurants Arbol, Victoria’s, Mira Olas just to mention a few. How about a family portrait? Sarah Yunker Photography. Maybe a massage, get it booked.

Bring the Peace is Jordan Todd with this months cover photo of the Garden Of Eden. No it’s just our Mangroves. Give Tucanes Tours a call and kayak the mangroves and experience the tranquility of the totally unique environment. For a little more adrenaline “The Chorro” is now rolling for all you river rafters.

Marina Pez Vela is continuing the festivities with the Pescadora Fishing Tournament, the first women’s only fishing tournament February 21-23. So come join us and enjoy this tournament and show the women our support.

Closing out the month and bringing more Peace, Love, and Happiness is the 9th Annual Envision Festival February 28 – March 3rd. Held on the beach in Uvita Envision provides four days of art, education, yoga, music, and incredible people from all over the world. Get tickets now (Envisionfestival.com) you won’t want to miss it.

We hope you enjoy our magazine and it helps guide you through this enchanting paradise we call home. You can always follow and share us with at here or Facebook/Quepolandia. We appreciate and welcome your comments.

Peace and Enjoy…D

New Year, New Look

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10 Ways To Update Your Interior Without Breaking The Bank

by Shelagh Duncan

You might be quite happy with your current interior decor, but like any solid, long-term relationship, it can get a bit stale. With the New Year upon us why not try a few simple ideas to reinvigorate your space and make it look fresh and new – so you can fall in love with your home all over again!

Monstera leaves in a vaseYou don’t need to buy a bunch of new stuff to give your home a fresh look. Just take what you’ve already got, and mix it up! That’s what interior designers do. First we look through what clients already own, because treasures may be hidden in a cupboard or closet or sitting on a shelf that no one ever notices. Have a look around your own home, open the drawers, clear some shelves and counter tops and start fresh. Swap out mirrors, table lamps, throw blankets and pillows. Rotate artwork into different positions, rearrange the books and try out new objects on the coffee and dining table. Here are some ideas to get you going.



Change the wall art to a mirror – or vice-versa, change up the lamp or the table. Painting a wall in the entrance will give completely new first impression of your home. Just making a small change can make a big difference.

Royal Palm Interiors

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6 Benefits to Walking Barefoot

A Healthier You headerDid you know only 20 percent of the world’s population wears shoes? There are actually many benefits to walking barefoot that you may not realize. When our bare skin comes in direct contact with the earth, the ions in the earth help balance the ions in our bodies and can provide many benefits to our health.

1 Releases toxins

There are reflex points in our feet that directly affect our organs and bones. Walking on the bumps and rocks on the ground help to stimulate these reflex points in your feet. It may hurt at first, but this means your feet need the stimulation they are receiving. The pressure on your foot acts as acupuncture which can improve your energy.

Walking barefoot2 Strengthens and stretches muscles

Walking barefoot strengthens and stretches the muscles and tendons in your feet, ankles and calves which helps prevent injury and strain. It also works different muscles than when you’re wearing shoes and can help improve your posture and balance.

3 Boosts your mood

Spending time with Mother Nature is proven to improve your mood and mental state. These benefits are boosted when your body comes in direct contact with the earth beneath you.
Immersing yourself in nature and receiving the higher frequencies it emits increases your own energy levels.

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The First Gringo in Dominical

by Jack Ewing

Thomas beside old tractor

My swamper, cat & I on the road to Dominical

When Thomas J. Brower first came to Costa Rica World War II was raging, and the US was worried about the Panama Canal. If it were to fall into enemy hands allied naval capacity would be severely crippled, and in the late 1930’s a land route, imperative for the defense of the canal, did not exist. Building one became top priority, and the Pan-American highway was the result. The US government contracted with the Charles E. Mills Construction Company to build the 300 km stretch of road from Cartago to the Panamanian border.

Tommy Brower landed in Dominicalito with the construction company in 1940. A crude dock was built and heavy machinery unloaded. Part of the crew, with the help of local labor, built a camp for the company workers, and the rest started building a road to San Isidro. Once the trocha, as the rough cut road was called, reached San Isidro the workers split into two groups with one working toward Palmar Norte and the other toward Cartago where they would eventually meet up with other crews working from those locations toward San Isidro. It was a major operation, the magnitude of which had never been seen in Costa Rica.

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Let’s talk about the Rufous-Tailed Hummingbird

Rufous-tailed hummingbirdBy Paul Gerace

The Rufous-Tailed Hummingbird is one of the most common hummingbirds seen here in Costa Rica.

It is named after its very distinct rufous colored tail. It has a very pink bill and a bright green body that appears to glitter when the sunlight hits it just right.

The Rufous-Tailed Hummingbird is very territorial. When other hummingbirds try to feed on its area of flowers it will make an aggressive dive towards them which results in their retreat.

Their wings flap at an impressive 60 beats per second and they like to feed on nectar and small insects. They are typically found in gardens and particularly like the colorful flowers on the rabo leon bushes.

Even though they are very common I still look forward to photographing them to capture their beautiful colors in the right light.

You can see more of my images at www.photosofcostarica.com

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