Animal News

The animals visiting the Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary do not belong to us – they belong to the Costa Rican rainforest. However, while they are here, you can discover a lot about these amazing creatures. Learn about which new animals are arriving, how they got here, how their recovery process is going, and eventually feel the joy of knowing about their release back home to their natural environment. If you have visited the Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary and want to know about a special animal that has touched your heart, check this website for updates.

Upgrading our Sanctuary! September News

The season of change!

Many of you might not know that our sanctuary opened up four and a half years ago after a sanctuary further south in Costa Rica closed down. What is now Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary was constructed very quickly, in order to provide a house for those animals which were to be transferred from the closing sanctuary. Time was of the essence, and funds were limited, but now that we have been in operation for quite some time, we are working on trying to improve all our enclosures.

One of these projects was connecting two smaller enclosures into one, large enclosure for our aracaris and toucan (pictured below). Three of our sanctuary aracaris were hit by vehicles and have suffered traumatic injuries in their wings, preventing them from flying. The fourth aracari was confiscated from the pet trade, and cannot be released because it has been very habituated to humans. Raul, our toucan, had also arrived at the sanctuary after he was found on the ground, unable to fly. Raul was previously kept in another enclosure in our sanctuary. We moved him to the new, larger enclosure with the aracaris with the hope that he will benefit from more social interaction.

Read more: Upgrading our Sanctuary! September News

X-Ray Machine, Crocodile & August News

We finally did it! After months of fundraising and outreach, we were finally able to purchase our own x-ray machine! Thanks to all of our supporters who donated money for this cause. We will now be able to diagnose our patients more rapidly and reduce the stress and suffering involved in driving them to get x-rayed.

Below are a few photos of our new x-ray machine set up!

Read more: X-Ray Machine, Crocodile & August News

Roo Our Little Howler Monkey & July 2019 News

Read on to get a glimpse into a month at a wildlife rescue and sanctuary and find out what it takes to keep one of the busiest rescue centres running!


A black-bellied whistling duck has been confiscated and brought to the sanctuary. It was kept as a pet and had its wings clipped, preventing it from flying.

A fiery-billed aracari was rescued after being hit by a car. It suffered a break in its shoulder. It is being kept under intensive care with its shoulder bandaged to restrain movement.

Read more: Roo Our Little Howler Monkey & July 2019 News

Owls Being Released

Finally, the owls which we have been raising over these past few months are being released, one-by-one! A few months ago, we were overwhelmed with the number of young owls that were being brought to us. Once owls being to develop and start to learn how to fly, they are often unsuccessful and will stumble to the ground. Their parents will be close by, and just because they are on the ground doesn’t mean that they are hurt. Picking these juveniles up and bringing them to a sanctuary means that you are taking them away from their parents. If you see that there is nothing physically wrong with the owl and there are no domestic cats or dogs in sight, please call the nearest sanctuary before picking them up and taking them away. Through the phone, we will be able to asses, and can, therefore, direct you on what to do next. Although we can raise them and have been successful in releasing owls from such cases, remaining with their parents is always the best situation.

Read more: Owls Being Released

A Shocking Problem - June 2019 News


About a month ago we received a stressed call in the middle of the night and were told that a white-faced monkey had just gotten electrocuted on an electricity line. We rushed to the site and found a mother and young baby on the ground, unable to move very well. We rescued the two and tended to them in the clinic immediately. Unfortunately, the burns on the mother were bad and already began causing considerable damage to her. After the first day, she stopped producing milk and started to reject her baby. We separated the baby in order to feed him. The severe burn on her left arm and breast was not getting any better, and after five days under intensive care, the mother took her last breath. Isaac, as we named the baby, is doing well now despite being an orphan. He suffered from burns on both of his hands and one of his feet, but after administering burn cream and keeping his wounds bandaged, he has overcome his injuries. At approximately two months old, Isaac is still drinking milk but has also begun eating a solid diet.

Read more: A Shocking Problem - June 2019 News