The Bug Lady Tour in Drake Bay, Costa Rica
I came across the Bug Lady Tour in a tour book and I immediately add it to my list of things to do. Run by Tracey Stice, this tour takes its attendees out on a night walk to explore the creatures that are only visible at night. Tracey’s husband, John, also helps run the tour. Together they’re the most enthusiastic night creature people you are likely to meet.
This tour started around 8pm within La Paloma Lodge’s gardens. John tracked down a Gaudy Leaf Frog (aka the red-eyed green frog), Masked Smilisca Frog, and a Cane Toad (these guys are huge). I added to the list by spotting a Common Dink Frog (I came to realize just how common these are as my trip progressed). Near the same area of the frogs John pointed out a sleeping hummingbird and Tracey showed us a tree snake.
The tour progressed a long a dirt road with Tracey sharing interesting facts about the critters around us while John moved ahead of us and scoped out what lay ahead. One of his more unusual findings was a bady bat within a young leaf that had yet unfurled. He said he spotted the adult bats around the plant and decided to check out what was in the leaf – good thinking!
As you might expect, a critter walk, whether day or night, is going to include some spiders. Sure enough Tracey treated us to the wonderous Trapdoor Spider and it’s impressive door-making abilities. And the Tailless Whip Scorpion (which was used in one of the Harry Potter films) was as creepy a bug as you’re likely to see yet harmless enough that Tracy would put it on people’s faces and heads.
Other creatures included Saddle Horse Caterpillars which can irritate if brushed against, land crabs, a Common Opossum, and a Coati.