Wild Animals Have Social Bubbles
By Jack y Natalie Ewing
When 2019 came to an end, the world had not put the words “Social” and “Distancing” or “Social” and “Bubble” together. In less than six months, most of the world has adapted in one way or another to prudent social distancing and to stay within our social or family bubble. The practice of staying near home within one´s territory, and socialize only with close family members, is something that wildlife does all of the time.
The collared peccary marks their territories and live in small herds that rarely exceed 15 individuals. Troops of monkeys are about the same size, and also territorial. Puma males, females, and grown cubs are seen alone and always within their territory. For all three of these species, the boundary defines the limits of the “Social Bubbles.” All wild animals have some form of “Social Bubble,” and seldom do you see a sick one.
About 15 years ago, before the coastal highway was built, there was a roadside fruit stand north of the Barú River bridge. Coatis started hanging around there, at first eating discarded fruit, and later an occasional banana that the owner or a customer would feed it. People learned that they could see them there and bought bananas to feed them. Large numbers of coatis got into the habit of going to the location to get fed. The lure of free food was too much, and all social distancing was forgotten. It wasn’t unusual to see as many as 50 coatis at a time feeding or begging for food.
After a couple of months, some of the coatis started looking sickly, and a month after that, they were all dead, as a consequence of leaving their “Social Bubbles”
Especially the South of Costa Rica is known for its great natural beauty. Many family groups are getting together, enjoying flora and fauna of our beautiful country, yet remaining safely within their social bubbles.
Ecological tourism allows us to experience the jungle, wildlife, and ample space to enjoy worry free recreation. There are big parks and the beach for hiking, small hotels, and plenty of space.
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Dear Reader of Ballena Tales Magazine: with only six weeks left to welcome 2021, we are proud to deliver you another magazine with 22 good stories for big and small.
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Another week went by, and another puppy showed up at the property beside the hotel, so then there were five puppies!!!