Friends of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest Newsletter – March 2012

Dear Friends of the Forest,

It is hard to believe that we are almost at the spring equinox! In mid-February, our board members visited the Children’s Eternal Rainforest (CER) to learn more about its unique ecosystems, abundant life and the Monteverde Conservation League’s (MCL’s) work to protect and expand the forest. We were impressed!

From improving trails to designing a community environmental education program, from resolving legal disputes to patrolling miles of the CER’s borders, we saw the countless tasks that comprise MCL’s daily work. The board members and staff in Costa Rica are persistent and passionate in their care of this forest.

In this newsletter, you will read about a “big cat” conservation success story – discovered on the evening of our board’s night hike in the CER. It proves that long-term protection pays off! We are honored to partner with MCL to protect the CER’s biodiversity – a forest full of animals and plants nearly unmatched worldwide.

For the forest,
Signed, Laurie Waller

Laurie Waller
Friends of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest

JaguarA Conservation Success Story – First Ever Jaguar Sighting!
by Rowan Eisner in Monteverde, Costa Rica

In February, during the visit to Costa Rica by FCER’s board, they spent the night at the Pocosol field station and went on a night hike. Earlier that day, Jim Wolfe, biologist, film maker and MCL board member, set up his camera overnight near the trail from the lake down to the waterfall at Pocosol. This camera has a motion detector so it can act as a camera trap. Jim was expecting to capture small noctural animals like birds or rodents, so he set it down low near the ground. The morning after the board’s hike Jim went back to get his camera and checked to see what images he had captured. Imagine his amazement (and those who were on the night hike) when the image he captured was of an adult Jaguar on the path! Mark Wainwright, president of MCL, said, “This discovery of a Jaguar in the CER is a wonderful story showing the impact of conservation efforts in the CER.” You can see the captured footage by clicking on the link below. You will need to have the ability to watch video on your computer.

Click here to download and view video (18MB, .mov format)

Click here to view video (18MB .mov file format)

Joe MiddletonUK Reserves Manager contributes to CER
by Rowan Eisner in Monteverde, Costa Rica

Meet Joe Middleton, Reserves Manager for Avon Wildlife Trust who has just spent 2 months volunteering in the CER. Joe manages 35 nature reserves in South-west England, and thanks to Joe, we now have accurate trail maps to all the field stations in the CER.

Click here to read more…

FCER logoMCLUS has a new name and a new look!

We are getting great feedback about our name change to Friends of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest (FCER). Thanks to the international design firm of Rivet Global, we have a new look that keeps elements of the water drop logo of the CER, including two of the creatures that find safe haven in the forest – the playful Capuchin monkey and the Resplendent quetzal – thought to be the most beautiful bird in the world. We are grateful for the extensive design work generously donated by Rivet Global.

Together with MCL, our Costa Rican partner, we will continue the important conservation work that safeguards these creatures and push forward new initiatives to expand and protect the forest. With your help, we look forward to making the FCER known worldwide as a symbol of hope and compassion that will continue to inspire individuals around the globe to take action to protect life on our planet.

FCER Board takes a trip to Costa Rica
by Cindy Waller, FCER staff

FCER board visits the CERFebruary 2012 saw eight FCER board members, plus twelve family members and staff choose to travel to Costa Rica in order to learn more about the Children’s Eternal Rainforest.

Jeremy Crandell
Jeremy Crandell - FCER board member and son of founders Rachel and Dwight plants a tree in the CER
This week long trip included many highlights – staying in the Pocosol field station, learning about tropical ecology while hiking in the CER, a visit to MCL’s Finca Steller to plant trees, views of Arenal Volcano, wildlife viewing on a boat ride across Arenal Lake, being received by MCL staff and members at their annual meeting, a stay at Luna Nueva – Tom Newmark’s eco-friendly farm, a visit to the Soltis Center – a research facility for Texas A&M University and run by board member Kim Soltis Hammer, free time to zip line and walk in the cloud canopy, hiking to see the location of MCL’s green-eyed frog research, and last but not least, meeting time for board members.

Everyone enjoyed wonderful accomodations, meals, weather and company. We were also fortunate to have two great guides, Eduardo and Chico, from Natural Solutions, our tour company in Costa Rica. All who went on the trip can attest to the magificance of the forest and MCL’s dedicated care of it.

Save the Date! April 26, 2012 event at the Saint Louis ZooCelebrate 10 Years of Conservation Success with FCER!
by Cindy Waller, FCER staff

FCER is hosting a conservation awareness and fundraising forum on Thursday, April 26, 2012 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at the Saint Louis Zoo. FCER board member, Dr. Peter Raven, one of the world’s leading botanists and advocates of conservation and biodiversity, will be speaking on how tropical rainforest habitats and global conservation issues impact your life in a talk entitled Saving the Forest, Saving Ourselves. Dr. Raven is described by TIME magazine as a “Hero for the Planet”. He is President Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden after serving 40 years as Director. In addition, he is chairman of the National Geographic Society’s Committee for Research and Exploration, and chair of the Division of Earth and Life Studies of the National Research Council. If you are interested in joining us, please register at: We are grateful to our supporters: Academy of Science – St. Louis, Whitney R. Harris World Ecology Center at University of Missouri St. Louis, Saint Louis Zoo, and Missouri Botanical Garden.

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