Planning on a trip to herp Costa Rica Help...

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Planning on a trip to herp Costa Rica Help...

Post by ikeman0702 »

I'm planning a trip to Costa Rica next year I'm wondering if anyone can recommend a good field guide to reptiles and amphibians one that has updated names I heard the older guides have outdated names of most of the herps. Thanks.

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Bryan Hamilton
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Re: Planning on a trip to herp Costa Rica Help...

Post by Bryan Hamilton »

I can't speak to the taxonomy but these books are pretty bomber:

Savage, J. M. 2002. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica: A Herpetofauna between Two Continents, between Two Seas. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. 934 p.

Ray, J. M., and J. L. Knight. The Venomous Snakes and their Mimics of Panama and Costa Rica. Team Snake Panama.

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Paul Freed
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Location: Pacific Northwest (Oregon) U.S.

Re: Planning on a trip to herp Costa Rica Help...

Post by Paul Freed »

Bryan's suggestions for books are good ones, and you might even add the small 2013, pocket guide: Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica by Federico Munoz Chacon and Richard Dennis Johnston. It is not very detailed but it does show photographs and range maps of most of the herp species of the country. It's also up to date on taxonomy. The problem with trying to keep current on herpetological taxonomy is that nomenclatural changes are occurring so frequently that even relatively new publications are outdated soon after they are published.

I would recommend that you consult the Reptile Database website ( for any reptile species taxonomy, and Darrel Frost's excellent website: Amphibian Species of the World ( ... /index.php) for updated amphibian taxonomy. Both sites do a great job of keeping herp species taxonomy up to date.

Hope this helps.


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Re: Planning on a trip to herp Costa Rica Help...

Post by chrish »

We try to keep the taxonomy at fairly up to date from the two sites Paul listed.....and there is always the added advantage of being able to document your herp records for posterity!

You can even get the mobile app and document your sightings while you are in the field. :beer:
There are only 563 records from CR on Herpmapper. You could certainly offer a significant boost to that number!

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