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Costa Rican Ecosystems$
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Maarten Kappelle

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226121505

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226121642.001.0001

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The Pacific Coastal and Marine Ecosystems

The Pacific Coastal and Marine Ecosystems

(p.97) Chapter 5 The Pacific Coastal and Marine Ecosystems
Costa Rican Ecosystems

Jorge Cortés

University of Chicago Press

Costa Rica’s situation on the Central American Isthmus between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans produces a great deal of species diversity within and between the various ecosystems. This chapter presents a description the main coastal and marine ecosystems of the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, and a discussion of the relationship between these ecosystems and human activity. The first section is a brief history of marine research, followed by an overview of the state of scientific knowledge regarding the coast and descriptions of its physical conditions. The coastal and marine ecosystems are described and the main natural and anthropogenic impacts on those ecosystems are discussed. This information is leveraged to present several conservation initiatives, and propositions for the future in terms of research, management, and conservation, ultimately arguing that protection and conservation of the marine and coastal ecosystems is not only an obligation of the government, but a need and responsibility of everyone.

Keywords:   Costa Rica, pacific coast, conservation, ecosystem, marine, species diversity

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