About Romelia

Baby Raccoon

The Romelia RMVS, located in Montezuma on the Nicoya Peninsula, was created on November 24th, 1998 with the objective of contributing to the conservation of the Tempisque Conservation Area (ACT, from its acronym in Spanish).

The refuge stemmed from an initiative of Albert Ingalls and Gitza Gatti, who followed a dream of conservation for land that was their home and the birthright of their children. The land, now the Romelia Mixed Wildlife Refuge (RMVS-Romelia), contributes to the ACT as part of the peninsular biological corridor (Cabo Blanco Absolute Reserve, Curu Mixed Wildlife Reserve, Karen Morgensen Reserve, Nicholas Wessberg Reserve and the Romelia Mixed Wildlife Refuge). It is adjacent to the Nicholas Wessberg Absolute Reserve, one of the first and most valuable protected wild areas in the country.


The land of the RMSV exudes beauty. It is beachfront, bathed by rolling Pacific Ocean waves, guarded by iconic sea stacks and inland nurturedIMG_7339 by peaceful rivers and tranquil waterfalls. It is one of the peninsula’s last bastions of pristine wilderness. The RMVS is visited by tens of thousands of eco-tourists annually.

This Refuge is approximately 224 Ha 8349 m2 (SINAC, 2011). Within this territory, there are some distinct ecosystems, primary forest, secondary forest, riparian forest and gallery forest. The avifauna includes more than 57 sIMG_3550pecies of birds, 26 species of herpetofauna including, 13 reptiles and seven amphibians. There are also 26 species of mammals, including 11 types of bats.

The weather is characterized as humid, hot and scorching. Annual precipitation is about 3,000 mm, distributed from May to December. Precipitation presents deficit between July and August during the period known as “Veranillo de San Juan,” which lasts up to 70 days. Average annual temperature is between 24 and 27 C (75,2 to 80,6 F) with an annual potential evapotranspiration of over 1710 mm. The aridity index is over 20%, and the hydric is between 40 and 60% (Herrera 1985 quoted in RMVS-Romelia—SINAC-MIAET, 2011).


Vegetation Area with influence from both Guanacaste dry forest and the Southern humid forest. MahoganiCedar TempisqueLaurel
Bird Fauna 365 individuals belonging to 57 species. Bare- throated BellbirdTrogonLong-haired ManakinHorned Guan
Herpetofauna 20 species, 13 reptiles, and seven amphibia. Turtles
Mammals 26 species of mammals, including 11 species of bats DeerGreater GrisonGray-headed TayraSword-nose bat

Conservation, volunteering, internship, nature, Internship, Research, sea-turtle, ornitology

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