Sunday, December 20, 2009

Nightfall in Monteverde Cloud Forest

Night deepens in this Costa Rican reserve, where our tour group has special permission to stay until after dark. Black are the shapes of roosting guans, the silhouette of a forest falcon. A sleepy quetzal stirs. Jupiter and its moons shine overhead. A tarantula hulks inside her burrow.

Resplendent Quetzal in Monteverde 
(Watercolor by Narca)

Fireflies flicker on, first one, then two, and soon constellations of bioluminescent creatures are drifting through the forest. We see hundreds. Their lights gleam blue, green, pale lemon, ivory, pale orange, reddish, white. One pair of tan beetles mates, pulsing light. The stars have slipped to earth.

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