Snakes in Costa Rica??

Old Jan 30th, 2004, 12:50 AM
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Snakes in Costa Rica??

Okay, so I'm planning a trip to CR for August, but I'm a bit snake-a-phobic. I realize it's the rain forest and there are snakes; however, I saw this reptile special on the Discovery channel that freaked me out the other day. This guy was tracking down some of the most poisenous snakes in the world all over CR and even super poisenous sea snakes somewhere off the coast of Coco beach. So, my question is... has anyone had any real run-ins or problems with snakes on land or in the water? If so, what areas are the worst? I'd rather avoid any areas that are known to be "infested", if there are such places! Thanks!
~yes, I'm chicken
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Old Jan 30th, 2004, 03:04 AM
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You most likely won't see any unless a guide points one out. I have only seen 3 on my own and one wasn't poisonous. My husband and I have been hiking back areas for many years down there.
I think you will be very surprised at how "civilized" Costa Rica is. It is not all rainforest but the rainforest is very special and there is a lot.
Suzie2 is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2004, 05:22 AM
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I too am a snake phobic. I however live here, and have learned how to live as best as we can with them. When we first moved into our house, we had 5 baby fer de lances in here with us. But the builder of the house had no screen doors, screens, and lots of gaps in the construction. We also have a thatch roof, which just seems to invite critters in.
Snakes do not want to be near you. We keep the yard close to the house cut close to the ground so htere is no cover for them, we have dogs, so that has always been a concern. Also before I let them out, I try to look over the areas they frequent ot be sure I dont' see any snakes.
I do have to agree with the other post however, you proably won't see a snake unless its pointed out to you. We live adjacent to Manuel Antonio Nat'l park, and all the locals are told to not kill snakes, but to release them into the park. I have a theory that is somewhat educated from years of tv. Snakes can find thier way back home, and I think we get so many snakes as they pass through to get back to wheere they were captured.
At any rate. Costa Rica does have poisonoous snakes, theres no getting around that. Your best bet is common sense, stay on well beaten paths, if you see a snake, back away and allow it to move off (hopefully in the opposite direction), keep a flashlight with you at night, as snakes come out mostly at night, and seek the warmth of roads, etc to get charged up. And if you are as phobic as I am, always check under your bed, the shower (snakes seem to love showers), and your room b-4 settling in, then place a towel snugly under the door of your room to be sure nothing is coming in during the night. I do. Hope that helps, another consolation I cna offer is we have lived here for 2 years now, and never once heard of a touist being bitten by a snake while on vacation. Usually its the guys working cutting grass, or working in the palm plantatios that get struck. Ciao.
Lovincostarica is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2004, 04:09 PM
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I too have only seen three in all my trips to CR. One time a guide pointed one out, another time there was a dead one on the road and the third time there was one slithering across the street as we were driving in the rainforest. Like the others have mentioned, you probably won't see one unless you are deep in the jungle or a guide points one out. While hiking around just be careful of where you put your hands, just in case, and you will be fine.

Lizards are another story in CR, I hope you are not afraid of them. They seem to be all over the place, especially on the beach in Manuel Antonio. There are also geckos that occasionally get into hotel rooms but usually not rooms with AC.

Cakes is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2004, 05:46 PM
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Don't worry -- this isn't a snake story. In about 1988, we stayed at La Mariposa near Manuel Antonio. (It was smaller and had different ownership then.) We came back to our room, and I found a very large frog in the closet. ("Honey, there's a frog in the closet!) When my husband picked it up to put it outside, the frog exuded a bunch of slime on his hand. Anyway, I mentioned it to the owner, who said we were lucky Big Froggie wasn't hiding in the toilet . Some people had gotten up in the middle of the night to visit the bathroom, only to get a rude surprise when taking a seat as froggie tried to escape.
It was an adventure. In our two visits there, we didn't see a snake.
marigold is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2004, 07:08 AM
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When we were in CR, we didn't see any snakes and we went looking for them. We even tried getting up early, putting on rubber boots and searching when we were in the rain forest. I did see that show on the CR snakes after we got home and realized that we may have been being fool hearty to go looking for them.
tbelgian is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2004, 03:22 PM
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Well, this is encouraging. I can deal with snakes to a certain extent, I just don't like being surprised by them. I'm fine with lizards and frogs, they don't bother me at all. Spiders creep me out a bit too.
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