An Evening with Tarantulas

By Holly Enowski

MONTEVERDE, Costa Rica —With echoes of celebratory fireworks in the distance, the University of Missouri journalism crew coupled with muddy boots, bright flashlights and half-intrigued, half-terrified faces, searched for creepy crawlies as they made their way into the Children’s Eternal Rainforest, locally known as El Bosque Eterno de los Niños, for a guided ‘Twilight Walk’ hike New Year’s Eve.

Adan Fuentes, a stout Tico man with dirty cargo pants and a handful of yellow flashlights greeted the team with a bright “Hola, Hola”. Over the course of the two-hour tour, he shared recollections of the forest and educated the group about birds, insects, and various nocturnal animals. The group awed at scorpions, frogs and an exciting tarantula sighting.

“Arachnophobia is for Hollywood,” Fuentes said. “Walking in the forest can be a little dangerous, but people should not be afraid.”

Instead, he believes that visitors should appreciate the biodiversity that the forest has to offer.

 Edited by Liza Anderson

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A tarantula strikes at a piece of grass held by guide Adan Fuentes in the Bosque Eternal de los Niños, Saturday, December 31, 2016. The tarantula hid in a hole in the side of an embankment waiting for tremors or vibrations in the air or ground alerting it to potential prey. Photo by Nadav Soroker

 

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A Lesson’s motmot wakes up on a branch in the Bosque Eternal de los Niños, Saturday, December 31, 2016. The motmot was sleeping when lights from passing night hikers woke it up. Photo by Nadav Soroker

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A small frog rests on a backlit leaf in the Bosque Eternal de los Niños, Saturday, December 31, 2016. Small frogs in the rainforest come out at night to hunt for insects. Photo by Nadav Soroker

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A spider hangs from its web on the side of a trail in the Bosque Eternal de los Niños, Saturday, December 31, 2016. The spider was building its large web, a process that can take up to two hours. Photo by Nadav Soroker

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A scorpion lights up blue under a UV light on the side of a tree in the Bosque Eternal de los Niños, Saturday, December 31, 2016. Scorpions show up blue whether they are dead or alive.

2 thoughts on “An Evening with Tarantulas

  1. Debbie Allen says:

    Fascinating and gorgeous!

  2. hollyjean says:

    Reblogged this on Holly Enowski and commented:
    Go on a night hike through a forest at least one time in your life. Happy New Year’s Eve from my creepy animal friends and I!

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