Children’s Author at ART SHOW!

CLICK the cover image above to see book on

Denise Gilien will be at this weekend’s ART SHOW with her children’s book (above) Where the Wild Sloths Roam and other work. Don’t miss this opportunity to see 21 local artists together in one room and possibly find a creative Christmas gift! At Hotel Colinas del Sol in Atenas on Avenida 8.

  • Friday 9 December – 3-8 pm — Jack, Piet & Syl, Fire Music at 5 pm!
  • Saturday, 10 December – 10 am to 8 pm — Poison Dart Frogs Band at 5 pm!
  • Sunday, 11 December – 10 am to 4 pm

¡Pura Vida!

And be sure to stop by my Nature as Art table!

Wall Art, Greeting Cards, Books & more!


Liking the Lichens

Photographed under the same Higueron Tree as yesterday’s mushrooms, only a few days later and the mushrooms were gone! 🙂

Lichen, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
Lichen, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
Lichen, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica

¡Pura Vida!

See also my Just Fungi GALLERY!


Parasola plicatilis: The Pleated Inkcap Mushroom 

and one website called it an “Urban Mushroom” while a third site more logically called it the “Japanese Parasol Mushroom.” 🙂 These were seen on a morning walk growing under the Higueron Tree (Strangler Fig) by the cow pasture in front of my house. This identity was found on the internet which sometimes works if I use the right words! 🙂 I started to just call them “Fluted Mushrooms” (my first impression) but learned on the internet search that that is the name of a culinary recipe! 🙂 There is also a “Fluted Bird’s Nest Mushroom” that is different and concave like a nest. Nature continues to entertain me! 🙂

Pleated Inkcap Mushroom contrasted with a blue washcloth someone threw down or lost.
Continue reading “Parasola plicatilis: The Pleated Inkcap Mushroom “

New Perspective Each Morning

Yep! I seem to see my garden a little differently each morning and never tire of walking through it. Here’s my snaps of flowers as seen 2 or 3 mornings ago – I know that they are often the same flowers but I am seeing them differently each time. 🙂 Pura vida!

My Desert Rose in a pot continues to surprise me with blooms year around for 6 years now!

A sample for the email announcement and then a slide show . . .

Continue reading “New Perspective Each Morning”

Jumping Spider Eats Butterfly!

I never before thought of my garden as a place of carnage, but insects eating other insects is quite normal and helps with the balance and ecology – then I witnessed it first hand this past Tuesday morning as I focused my camera on what I hoped was a new butterfly species (it was!). This, my first Mallow Scrub-Hairstreak (Strymon istapa) was flying and landed on one of my Heliconia flowers (1st photo below) and when I snapped this photo that tiny Jumping Spider (Salticidae) down below him in the photo jumped up on the little butterfly (with attached silk thread) and grabbed the butterfly by its head, biting it with a venomous bite that instantly paralyzed and will soon kill the butterfly which the Jumping Spider will eat. I did not stay around for the full meal, but photos of three stages follow this one. 🙂

Mallow Scrub-Hairstreak above and Jumping Spider below. Yes! He jumped that far!

3 more photos below of the capture, paralyzing and preparing to eat.

Continue reading “Jumping Spider Eats Butterfly!”

Hillside Vistas

It is looking like someone may soon buy this property and live in the big house on top of our hill as my new landlord, so I walked up to the now vacant big house the other day for some “Hillside Vistas” of what they can see from there that I can’t from lower down on our hill. Nothing spectacular and the mountains opposite us that I usually photograph were covered in clouds, so here’s some closer views that I can’t see from my house and I like what looks like hillside farm land near us that I hope will not be covered with houses anytime soon! 🙂 Que sera, sera . . .

Continue reading “Hillside Vistas”

Neighborhood Boa Constrictor

Walking back from town yesterday I saw a guy trying to catch a big snake with a broomstick out by the small apartment complex’s garbage basket (Canasta de Basura). He was obviously experienced and quickly caught the large snake and conveniently stopped for me when I pulled out my cell phone for a photo. I’m guessing that it is his pet Boa that had escaped and could have soon found a home in one of our gardens nearby. 🙂 But no worry! They are non-poisonous and live on small mammals, birds and even other reptiles which they squeeze to death and swallow whole. Hmmm.

There are several varieties of Boas and after researching online I think it is this one described by Wikipedia as: Boa imperator or Boa constrictor imperator (in common usage) is a large, heavy-bodied, non venomous species of snake, of the boa genus, that is commonly kept in captivity.”

I have photos of several types of Boas from 6 different locations in Costa Rica, both wild and captive in my Boa Constrictor GALLERY. One shot here for the emailed blog announcement followed by 3 others from yesterday’s serendipity snake experience . . .

Boa Constrictor, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica
Continue reading “Neighborhood Boa Constrictor”

6 Damsel-Dragonflies

That last Friday morning butterfly hike also yielded 6 different species of Damselflies & Dragonflies and I spent hours trying to positively identify them without success! So I just decided to present them without identifications which I really hate doing, but I got only two “probable” IDs! Frustrating! And more difficult than identifying butterflies and moths for me! 🙂

Here’s one for the emailed version and all 6 in a gallery to follow . . .

And all were seen and photographed on Calle Nueva, Atenas, Alajuela, Costa Rica last Friday, 28 October.

Continue reading “6 Damsel-Dragonflies”

South Caribe Trip Gallery & Hurricane Julia

There are so many more photos from my trip back to Banana Azul in the South Caribbean of Costa Rica that I intended to share on the blog, but other things are happening now, thus I refer you to the just-finished Trip Gallery for my 2022 Banana Azul Week, click that link or this image of the first page of the gallery for many more photos from nature . . .

Entrance Page to my 2022 Banana Azul South Caribe Trip Gallery

¡Pura Vida!

And About Hurricane Julia . . .

Yesterday (Saturday) Tropical Storm Julia strengthened into a Category 2 Hurricane over the Caribbean Sea and headed toward Nicaragua where it is expected they will receive extensive damage through today (Sunday) from coast to coast as Julia goes across Nicaragua and El Salvador and parts of southern Honduras to finally dissipate in the Pacific Ocean tomorrow. Nicaragua is on the northern border of Costa Rica but we are not expected to receive much of the wind damage, just a lot of extra rain which could mean some flooding and here that also means mud slides and rock slides in the mountain areas. Otherwise we will not be affected drastically by Hurricane Julia. It was just a mild rain last night (Saturday) as I wrote this. But hurricanes have been known to change course.