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Daily Costa Rica Travel Photo and video: The howler monkey

Corcovado National Park Costa Rica

Many amazing sounds emanate from the jungle canopy

The howler monkey is an unforgettable sights and sound of Costa Rica. One of the delights in hiking in the jungle, rainforest, or even a regular walk in your local woods is the array of sounds. In the jungles of Costa Rica there are many sounds that bombard your ears.

Howler monkey Costa Rica

Howler monkey in Manuel Antonio National Park

In Corcovado National Park some of these sounds include the piercing whistle of the chestnut-mandibled toucan, the squawk of the scarlet macaw, the constant drone of the locust, and if you are lucky, the scream of a feline puma, ocelot, or jaguar.  The dominant sound that can be heard for miles around is the territorial battle between male howler monkeys.

When one thinks of jungles they think of monkeys and the comical sounds they can make from Tarzan movies and cartoons. Everyone at one time in their life has imitated this sound. When they do, usually they put one hand on top of their head and another underneath their armpit and make scratching motions while doing their best monkey imitation.

Howler monkey Costa Rica

Howler monkey in Manuel Antonio National Park

This is the sound the howler makes, but instead of comical it is awe inspiring and at first a little scary. Since it is a territorial warning, there is a belligerent tone in the call. If I did not know that is was a cute little monkey making this sound, and I was walking through the jungle and heard it for the first time I would be terrified.

The howler monkey cry is one of the many sounds of the jungle that haunt you and during your free time echo in your head. I will never forget sitting in front of the Sirena Ranger Station as night started to fall and heard the howler monkeys bellowing out from the jungle. I will also never forget my guide making an imitation of the sound on a Corcovado trail and having the monkeys reply (captured in the video). These memories assure I will return to the jungles of Costa Rica.

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10 Responses to Daily Costa Rica Travel Photo and video: The howler monkey

  1. Michael September 18, 2011 at 10:52 am #

    It really sounds like you’re having a helluva time there.
    Michael recently posted..How To Get The Best Of Munich During The Oktoberfest

  2. Nomadic Samuel September 19, 2011 at 3:58 am #

    Ted, when I watched the video I could quickly understand what you meant about the harsh sounds. This is a great post combining writing, photos and video. I’m looking forward to more of your stories, photos and videos from CR.
    Nomadic Samuel recently posted..India Pakistan Border Closing Ceremony | Wagah, India

  3. Mica September 19, 2011 at 12:52 pm #

    I love monkeys! Been to most of CA but never Costa Rica. One day, I’ll get there! Nice video. I am learning how to edit and put videos up recently myself.
    Mica recently posted..Pollo en Cazuela (Chicken stew) My comfort food abroad

  4. Jim September 19, 2011 at 7:15 pm #

    I read anything about Costa Rica…a country I need to get to. Loved the howler monkeys so I’m forewarned not to get scared when they howl.
    Yes, combining a vid in a post is a great idea. I have moved away from videoing my journeys as up until recently it was not as easy to share as pics.
    Jim recently posted..Golden Hour Photography: Chobe National Park.

  5. MarkG September 20, 2011 at 12:57 am #

    When I was jungle treking in CR a few years back I was told by our guide that howler monkeys, when threatened or disturbed, often throw their faeces at the offending intruder(s)or aim bowel movements very precisely.

    See here…

    and this short confirmation…

    I never saw this happen. How they produce faeces on demand I do not know! So I recommend some sort of headware or an umbrella!

  6. Grace September 20, 2011 at 6:00 pm #

    I honestly do not like monkeys! Although I like hearing their cries because it really makes a forest come alive!
    Grace recently posted..5 Life Lessons from Climbing Mount Fuji

  7. Leif Harum September 20, 2011 at 11:42 pm #

    This is great. You’re in The Jungle! It’s no zoo, its the real thing. I’m ready to hang with those howler monkeys.
    Leif Harum recently posted..The Visa Vice

  8. Gladys | September 22, 2011 at 6:45 am #

    Must be nice to stay in a jungle and experience. That would be a totally different experience from the city and beach travels that i do. LOL. Great video.
    Gladys | recently posted..My Week’s Pic: Taipei Waiting Shed


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