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Costa Rica Bird Guides

Rodolfo Zamora

Rodolfo “Rudy” Zamora, Costa Rica bird guide—was born in Santa Ana, Costa Rica in 1960. He grew up on a coffee plantation and dairy farm that has been operated by his family since 1863. His father, an avid naturalist himself, wanted his children to be exposed to nature. So Rudy, the first born, was already carrying binoculars and learning about the country’s flora and fauna at a very young age.

costa rica bird guide rudy
costa rica bird expert rudy

After studying for 4 years at the University of Costa Rica, majoring in chemistry and Natural History, Rudy continued his education at the University of Arizona, learning English, studying Music, and Ecology. He returned to Costa Rica and began his career as a Naturalist/Guide. His areas of interest and expertise include botany, zoology, geography, chemistry, biology, agriculture, natural history, and Costa Rican folklore. His passion, however; is Ornithology. As a teenager his acute interest and love of birds took hold. He has traveled throughout the world studying birds and has compiled a life list of over 3000 species.

30+ Years of Birding Experience

As a member of the American Birding Association, he has lectured and guided many Audubon groups in Costa Rica. Rudy was one of the key organizers for the Associations convention in Costa Rica, too. His 30+ years of experience with the unique biodiversity of Costa Rica has made him a highly sought-after Costa Rica bird guide. His commitment to the conservation and protection of Costa Rica’s natural wonders and his passion for sharing his country with visitors has made him one of Costa Rica’s top Naturalist/Guides. A trip with Rudy is an experience that most will never forget.

Erick Castro

Born and raised in Costa Rica, Erick Castro is a self-taught naturalist and birding and bird photography guide. He has more than 24 years experience in the field.  As a teen, Erick spent time in Nebraska, learning English and experiencing the culture of the United States. He began his career as an intern in a small birding lodge in his hometown of Sarapiqui. Here he had an opportunity to attend courses with NGO, Fundacion Neotropica, to become a local guide.

Erick Castro Costa Rica birding guide
Erick Castro Costa Rica naturalist guide

Tropical Studies at La Selva & 24+ Years of Experience as Costa Rica Bird Guide

After completing that course Erick went to work for the Organization for Tropical Studies at La Selva Biological Research Station. At La Selva, he learned from the experts in many different fields such as tropical biology, ecology, and conservation. During this period Erick’s passion for birding developed and flourished.

During the last twenty-four years, Erick has been a naturalist guide, a guest speaker in Panama, a Tour Leader and Cruise Director for a small cruise ship sailing in CR and Panama. Erick was Costa Rica bird guide for many different groups including the Audubon Society. He has led successfully groups of all ages and interests, from very small groups of bird watchers to groups of up to a hundred people interested in many different topics.

Passion for Bird Photography

Erick enjoys an array of outdoor activities, from bird watching and mountain biking to white-water rafting and scuba diving. He enjoys his semi-pro DSLR camera adding digital photography to his list of interests and skills. Erick is very passionate about birds, animal behavior, conservation, and environmental education. He conducts all of his tours with these things in mind,  and hopes that everyone in the groups he leads takes some of his passion back home to share with others.

Alex Castro

Alex Castro was born in the small town of Naranjo, Costa Rica, just north of San Jose and not far from the Arenal Volcano region. As a young boy, he enjoyed the freedom of growing up in a small rural, agricultural area; running through fields and exploring the surrounding rainforests.  It was these early experiences that fueled his passion for wildlife and plants.

Erick Castro Costa Rica birding guide
Erick Castro Costa Rica naturalist guide

25+ Years of Experience as Costa Rica Bird Guide

Alex left Costa Rica in his late teens to study English in the United States, then returned for University in Costa Rica. He studied Tourism, Environmental Interpretation, and The Natural History of Costa Rica.

His personal passion for birds and birdwatching lead him to begin a career as a private freelance guide. Alex has been guiding birders and bird photographers throughout Costa Rica, Panama, and Nicaragua for the past 25 years. He combines his extensive knowledge, warm personality, and joyful love of nature to provide exceptional experiences to guests visiting the tropics. Along with birdwatching, Alex enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time with his family and friends.

Fito Downs

Fito’s interest in nature started at a very young age. As a native of Costa Rica, he was exposed early to the wonders of animals, birds, and plants. Living immersed in the forest drove his passion to learn and share his knowledge and enthusiasm with visitors to Costa Rica and South America.

Erick Castro Costa Rica naturalist guide
Erick Castro Costa Rica birding guide

20+ Years of Experience as Costa Rica and South America Bird Guide

Fito started his career at La Selva Biological Station where he worked for 2 years conducting field research and guiding visitors. After, he continued his research with the Smithsonian Institute, at Barro Colorado Island in Panama.

Friends and family keep Costa Rica his home, but as well as guiding in Costa Rica, Fito has spent many years guiding in Ecuador, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, and Peru. While his true passion is birding, nature, and travel, Fito also enjoys swimming (especially in his local Sarapiqui River), photography, soccer and basketball. Fito speaks English and Portuguese, along with his native Spanish.

 

Minor Hidalgo

Minor is from the Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica, Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui. He grew up around the lush tropical rainforest, instilling in him a love for nature and especially birds. Along with studying tourism, Ecology, and Biology.

Erick Castro Costa Rica birding guide
Erick Castro Costa Rica naturalist guide

Minor has Spent 24 Years Working as a Researcher and as a Birding Guide at the La Selva Biological Station

With a keen interest in photography, Minor began taking pictures of the birds of Costa Rica. In 2016 he won first place in both the National Photography competition ” The Birds of Costa Rica” and in the International Festival of Migratory Birds photo contest held on the Osa Peninsula.

As a birding guide, he loves to show his guests all the species they’ve come to see, as a photography guide, he understands the importance of getting that “best shot” and will strive to be sure his guests achieve their goals.

Minor has a twelve year old son, and together they enjoy being active and going to the movies. Minor loves kayaking, white water rafting, mountain biking, martial arts and he’s an excellent dancer. He often teaches latin dancing when he’s not out in the field looking for and taking pictures of birds.

Johan Weintz

Johan was born in a farm community outside the Arenal Volcano. From a very young age he enjoyed exploring the rain forest and fields looking for frogs, snakes, and interesting insects. Working on his family’s farm, he was exposed to many different animals. These experiences fueled his interest in nature and wildlife and set him on the path of studying Ecotourism. Early in his studies, Johan was fortunate to attend a class with a well regarded local Ornithologist. This sparked his passion for birds and bird watching.

Erick Castro Costa Rica naturalist guide
Erick Castro Costa Rica birding guide

After studying at the University of Costa Rica, with a specialization in Natural History, Johan continued field work studying and learning about the birds of Costa Rica. For more than a decade he has led bird watchers and photographers from coast to coast in Costa Rica. Along with bird watching and nature, Johan enjoys staying active hiking in the forest, reading, and photography.

 

Carlos Jimenez

Carlos Jimenez studied Biology at the University of Costa Rica. He has continued his studies in the Management of Environmental Tourism. Having been raised in the Caribbean Lowlands of Costa Rica, Carlos was exposed to birds and wildlife from a very young age. He likes to recount seeing the Rufous Motmot for the very first time, “At that moment, I was hooked”. Since then, Carlos has been a passionate bird watcher and avid nature lover.

Erick Castro Costa Rica birding guide

Carlos has More Than 20 Years Experience in the Field

Carlos started his career as a Field Assistant at the La Selva Biological Station and then managed the Tourism and Academic Department at the Palo Verde Biological Station. His love of birds and nature led him to begin guiding specialist birding and nature groups throughout Costa Rica. He has more than 20 years experience in the field, sharing his love of Costa Rica and its flora and fauna.

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About Costa Rica Focus

Costa Rica Focus is a birding tour company that offers customized Costa Rica birdwatching tours for individuals or groups of people and guided by a knowledgeable birding expert who will help you spot and learn about the beauty of the birds of Costa Rica. Let’s talk about your Costa Rica birding vacation!

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