La MICA Biological Station is a research and ecotourism facility in El Copé, Coclé Province in the Republic of Panama. La MICA focuses on conservation of the local environment, culture, and history through research, education, and global outreach. This is a unique project because it has incorporated the local people in every stage and position possible. The idea for La MICA was born because of a desire to provide better facilities for researchers, students, and tourists visiting the area, protection for the environment, and sustainable work for the local people.
Since 2009 La MICA has constructed a cabin, a dormitory, bathrooms, and a small classroom / dining area. They have local people who cook delicious, traditional meals, guides with vast knowledge of nature, and provide local transportation, including to Omar Torrijos National Park. La MICA has been built solely by private donations, which have averaged only $60.54! The local people have done all of the construction with natural, renewable resources.
La MICA is located along a beautiful river and provides a cool, tranquil escape in the mountains. The area around La MICA is a great place to view wildlife. There are over 375 species of birds, five species of large cats (although all are rarely seen), monkeys, frogs, butterflies, and beautiful orchids.
La MICA is also very active in scientific research, having already published over twenty articles and notes. This information is vital for the development of management and conservation plans for the local region and even other areas in Panama and Latin America. Students and local people are involved in the research and this is evident by their names on the publications. Currently a lot of the research focuses on reptiles and amphibians, in particular studying the ecology of snakes in an effort to conserve them and reduce human snakebite. However, other researchers who have visited La MICA have focused on birds, primates, medicinal plants, and local history.
La MICA survives and thrives only because passionate people like you have given your support, in the form of helpful comments, donations, or visits. Visit http://www.lamica.org/Casa_
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