This field guide at last provides an authoritative and handy source for identifying amphibians and reptiles of Costa Rica's renowned Atlantic lowland tropical forests. Colorful frogs, lizards that can run across water, snapping turtles, spotted geckos, boa constrictors, crocodiles, and many other fascinating yet secretive species of amphibians and reptiles flourish in the region's myriad microhabitats. The La Selva Biological Station, a protected reserve, boasts a rich biota, making it and the surrounding area one of the most visited tropical forest sites in the world.
For travelers, ecotourists, and biologists, this comprehensive guide, written by two distinguished experts on the area's amphibians and reptiles, will be an essential resource while visiting La Selva and the surrounding tropical forests of Costa Rica. In addition to providing reliable field identification, it will help visitors to this area better understand the overall role of Central American amphibians and reptiles in the natural world as well as conservation efforts now being undertaken to ensure the survival of these intriguing creatures.
* 138 frogs, lizards, snakes, and crocodiles are included in keys based primarily on color patterns for easy identification
* Each species is illustrated with a color photograph; the guide also features range maps and black-and-white drawings
* Includes an overview of the natural history of each amphibian and reptile and gives helpful tips on where to observe them
Geography, Climate, and Vegetation
A History of Herpetological Research at La Selva
Field Data Sheet for Amphibians and Reptiles
Craig Guyer is Professor of Biological Sciences at Auburn University. Maureen A. Donnelly is Associate Professor of Biological Sciences at Florida International University and coeditor of Standard Methods of Measuring Biodiversity (1994).
"To those who have carried out research at La Selva, as well as for the serious layperson or even a first-time ecotourist, this book will be a delight. Many of these species will be seen along forest trails or in clearings nearly every day. The beauty of this splendid guide is its concise but authoritative coverage. Guyer and Donnelly have been carrying out research at La Selva for more than 25 years and have contributed much new information on the lives of these animals. A great strength is the series of keys based primarily on live coloration for rapid and accurate identification in the field. The added value is that the book covers 90% of the amphibians and reptiles found in the Caribbean lowlands from northeastern Honduras to and including Bocas del Toro Province, Panama. In sum, my words for this book are: 'Mighty Fine'! "—Jay M. Savage, author of The Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica
"A 40-year intensive look, precisely what we all wished we had had when we first stepped into the Neotropical rainforest. Cleanly written, in a language easily accessible to the citizen naturalist . . . . and coupled with the essential many good color photos, this book is THE herpetological starting point for any naturalist, biodiversity manager, and scientist exploring lowland Central American rainforest. It superbly complements Savage's country-wide coverage."—Daniel H. Janzen, editor of Costa Rican Natural History
"This book is an important contribution to our understanding of the herpetofauna of one of the world's foremost tropical field stations. It represents an essential step toward easy field identification of an important group of tropical vertebrates. It will serve as a stimulus and set the standard, not only for herpetologists, but for students of other groups interested in producing easily used, attractive guides to local faunas and floras."—Don E. Wilson, Senior Scientist, Smithsonian Institution, and Chairman of the Board, Organization for Tropical Studies