About 2 km north of Cañas, two more places worth to visit are located right next to the Interamerican Highway:
The wildlife refuge “Centro de Rescate Las Pumas” was founded 40 years ago by the Swiss Mrs. Lilly Bodmer von Hagnauer. At this period of time, wild life was affected by numerous problems: the motiveless hunting, the hunting with the purpose of domesticating animals, the loss of habitat because of the deforestation, the growth of population and agriculture. These were the reasons for the disappearance and danger of extinction for the wild animals.
Facing this situation, Mrs. Hagnauer decided to create a wildlife refuge for those animals which had been extracted from their natural habitat.
Mrs. Hagnauer passed away in 2001 and in order to keep her work of a lifetime, the non-profit Hagnauer Foundation was created in 2003. The goal of the organization is to counter the impacts of hunting, deforestation and captivity of wild animals in the region of Guanacaste.
The wildlife refuge specializes in providing a shelter for five of the six endangered native felines in Costa Rica. Furthermore, you will find other rescued animals at the refuge: like the Red Macaw or the yellow-napped Amazon, and monkeys as well. Due to various reasons, it is not always possible to release the received animals. In these cases the animals will be given a fenced area, which shall be similar to their natural habitat.
The received animals have been confiscated ore donated from private persons and are evaluated from qualified staff (veterinaries and biologists) in order to judge if they can be rehabilitated, released or if it would be better to let them stay at the refuge centre for education. Those animals which cannot return to their natural habitat will be given the necessary care and good living conditions as long as they are alive.
Entrance approx. $10, small donations are welcome.
Mrs. Hagnauer’s son, don Jorge, offers scenic raft trips on the Corobicí River. There is a great variety of wildlife to view such as Howler and Capuchin monkeys, Iguanas, caimans and many species of water birds. The river is quite gentle, and since the guide does all the paddling, all you have to do is to sit back, relax and enjoy looking at the tropical forest with all its wildlife.