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(506) 2223-1327                         Published Thursday, April 17, 2014, in Vol. 14, No. 76                        Email us
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                        students
A.M. Costa Rica/Audrey Anne
The author, fifth from the left, and fellow students at the Festival de las Artes
Country has an edge in attracting language students
By Abigail Reese*
Special to A.M. Costa Rica

Students across the United States are flocking to Costa Rica to study Spanish. International students enrolled in Costa Rica’s universities and schools said they chose to study here not only because of the impressive biodiversity and countless volunteer opportunities but because they were also interested in shoring up their language skills and possibly their resumes.

Bethany Fredrick from Marian University in Wisconsin chose to study Spanish because of Costa Rica’s clean form of the language and excellent programs. When Ms. Fredrick was searching for a language program, she found that Costa Rica has more than 60 different universities and schools that offer them, and, three are in the top 10 of all Latin American institutions. As a Spanish major, she said she felt that the experience of studying abroad would be useful in obtaining a job after graduation.

The likelihood of this happening is well within her reach. According to a recent report by University of California at Merced, 97 percent of study abroad students found employment within 12 months of graduation, when only 49 percent of college graduates found employment in the same period. Moreover, 25 percent of students obtained higher starting salaries, which on average equated to $7,000 more annually than other students who had not studied abroad, the report said.

Halle Mar from Bethel University in Minnesota also said that the ability to speak Spanish will prove useful for her job search in the future. “Spanish is a very valuable language because it’s growing in the United States,” she said. “It’s possible that within the next five to 10 years, Spanish will be the second official language of America.”

With well over 35 million Spanish speakers in the United States and 40 percent of the population growth being among Hispanics, more Americans seem interested in improving their language skills. Besides her interest in learning Spanish, Ms. Mar also chose to study abroad in Costa Rica because she heard it was a country where she could easily get plugged into Christian ministry work. Outside of academic course work, Ms. Halle volunteers at Youth With a Mission to help distribute Bibles
and organize Bible school programs in San José communities.

A huge concern for parents of students studying abroad is finding a country where safety is assured. This past year, Mexico experienced a 42 percent drop of study abroad students due to drug violence. On the other hand, Costa Rica ranks as the lowest Latin American country for homicides, said the Central Data Report, citing the U. N. Office on Drugs and Crime.

Costa Rica also sell its environmental awareness to international students, as it ranks as the number one Latin American nation in terms of ecotourism. Stephanie Woo said she came to Costa Rica to experience the country’s natural beauty.

The environmental studies major from the University of Denver was enthusiastic about exploring the outdoor biodiversity and learning more about ecotourism. Ms. Woo said she chose Veritas University because she was “interested in environmental issues and the program had some relevant and interesting classes offered.” Through her ecology courses, she has had the opportunity to visit the mountains, rain forest, and volcanoes of Costa Rica.

Even those who are not concerned with environmental issues can appreciate Costa Rica’s scenery. Senior Mohammad Hadi, studying international relations in Colorado, also expressed his enjoyment of Costa Rica’s scenery. “The natural beauty is amazing here,” he said. “I love nature and you can have it in its purest form out here.” In addition to Costa Rica’s pure nature, Hadi also commented on the Pura Vida lifestyle innate to Costa Rica’s identity. He said he appreciates how people in Costa Rica are laid back and easy going.

Another reason students cited for studying in Costa Rica was for easy and accessible travel through Central America.

The capital city of San José is wonderful, but there are so many other beautiful sights to see outside of the metro area, said student Diamond Davis, who traveled to Panamá last weekend. Ms. Diamond said her favorite part was experiencing the amazing food of patacones and churros.

* Miss Reese, a senior at Wheaton College in Illinois, also is a Spanish language student at Veritas University in Zapote.


Effigies of Judas will feed the flames this weekend
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Judas Iscariot is remembered as the apostle who betrayed Jesus Christ with a kiss. He also is a controversial and enigmatic figure who is varingly considered possessed by the Devil, doing God's will or even, as one Medieval manuscript has it, a person who replaced Christ on the cross.

Judas is the person who has injected 30 pieces of silver into nearly every language in the world as the price of betrayal.

All these theological complexities will be lost on the Costa Rican youngsters who take to the streets Friday to hang effigies of the damned apostle and then burn him Saturday night.

Fuerza Pública officers try to stop these excesses.
They reported Wednesday that last year officers
detained 54 persons participating in the traditional  quema de judas and that they confiscated 38 effigies.

The tradition is widespread. Police said there were
446 known incidents last year with 300 taking place in the central canton of Heredia alone.

There were 20 arrests in Heredia, 15 in Alajuela and eight in San José.

Part of the problem is that gangs in the street are likely to burn other things beside the effigy, including vehicles.


No paper tomorrow

A.M. Costa Rica will not be published tomororw, Good Friday, a legal holiday. This is one of the three weekdays that the newspaper is  not published in the year.

Desyfin
Altosde
                        Antigua
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011 (506) 2653-0073.
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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, April 17, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 76

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Professional Directory
A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.

Legal services
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Serving the English-speaking community for over a

decade with offices in San Jose, Alajuela and Jaco
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You deserve to communicate fluently with your lawyer.
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Psychotherapy

Lucinda Gray, Ph.D.
California Licensed Psychologist
International Practice via the Web
Dr. KLycinda
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U.S. Phone: 310-827-4241
Costa Rica: (506) 2228-2041
8221-7/17/14

Architects

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Architecture-Real Estate-Development

At Architect Orange we are inspired by the visions of each of our clients, and have worked diligently to embody those visions in our work.

We have locations in Atenas (servicing Central Valley/Beach areas)
Arenal (servicing Guanacaste/Nicoya Peninsula)

Contact Information:
 (506) 2694-4712
Website http://www.architectorange.com
Inquires  info@architectorange.com
Arenal office located at Agua Inn Spa

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8043-7/31/14

Quickbooks consulting

Kathy
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Kathy Rothschild
QuickBooks Consultant
Santo Domingo de Heredia
*Cloud hosting *Set-up  *Training  *Trouble-shooting *Customization bookkeeping services *Financial reports *Intuit product discounts
Contact:  kathy@goodbooksgal.com
Phones: 8572-2984  or 2244-2247
8192-4/2/15

Fine art restoration and conservation

Gilbert Carmichael
Master Art Restorer, A.I.C. Certified
European and U.S. standards. USPAP.
Carmichael
For more information please contact Claudia Villegas at 8996-5581 or email HERE!
 
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Real estate agents and services

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Colinas
Jim Day, representing Colinas del Sol
del Pacifico, S.A.

Colinas del Sol is a fenced and gated project  in a quiet area. There are 88 clear titled lots, some in mountain areas with great views and the rest on gently sloping level areas ideal for hobby farms, gardening, fruit tree orchards, or just a quiet place to get away from the busy city and beach crowds.  All lots have gravel roads to them, water and electricity at each lot, and all lots are 5,000 sq. meters or larger, starting at only $35,000, and many can be combined for those wanting a larger area for their chosen passion be it a hobby horse farm or retirement haven.
You can see more on our Web site: www.colinasdelsolcr.com
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and 20 minutes to Liberia airport.
Please contact Jim Day at JimDay50@aol.com   or    Phone:  001 517 484-3675.
8251-8/27/14

CR Beach
Jaco Beach Central Pacific Real Estate
CR Beach Investment Real Estate reminds you that Costa Rica’s #1 beachtown,“the new Jacó,” invites you to see the recent changes:  Clean paved roads, more bilingual police, more trendy & tipico restaurants, new a/c movie 4plex & new theatrical-conference center, new central park with activities; and more PROPERTIES OFFERED AT SUPER DISCOUNTS, 
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Toll Free: 1-888-782-1119 OR  2643-4334, 2643-3672
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Translators

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Accountants

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8298-9/10/14

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E-mail jrtb_1999@yahoo.com
8719-4/3/15

Missing women
Kris Kremers and Lisanne Froon
Photos from the women's Facebook pages.

Case of missing Dutch women 
now becomes a police matter

By Eric Jackson
of the Panamá News

The Sistema Nacional de Protección Civil disaster relief organization has announced that its intensive search for missing Dutch tourists Lisanne Froon and Kris Kremers has ended, but that it will continue to monitor the situation. Men and women from the agency, along with search dogs, scoured all possible mountain trails that the two women may have taken since their April 2 disappearance from Boquete in western Panamá.

The women were first reported missing by a guide who was supposed to meet them on one of those trails for an excursion on Volcan Barú. Had the women died from a fall off of a cliff or from thirst or some other cloud forest mishap, vultures would probably have led searchers to the bodies and dogs probably would have picked up the scent.

The case thus becomes a police matter with a somewhat cold trail. National Police Subcommissioner José Flores said that the police are not ruling anything out but have not opened a kidnapping investigation for lack of evidence to indicate that this is what they are confronting. The police are still investigating various leads and asking for those who might have any information about the women’s movements or whereabouts to contact them.

The Netherlands is very concerned about the fate of their two citizens, and if the Panamanian government’s treatment is low-key, figure how damaging it could be to the national tourism industry, and the possible impact on an upcoming election, if this turns out to be a crime story.


Cruz Roja reinforces staff
at major tourism locations


By Michael Krumholtz
of the A.M. Costa Rica staff

More aid workers are being sent to the country’s beaches and rivers to answer escalating deaths and injuries over Semana Santa. Wednesday Cruz Roja representatives announced that hundreds of staffers would be added to the 1,200 already on patrol at 162 stations.

After reporting that the death count since Friday has risen to 15, the Cruz Roja officials are hoping a heightened presence at popular travel spots can prevent additional tragedies.

“In assuring the welfare of the population, volunteers from 125 assistance committees of the Cruz Roja are willing to provide humanitarian assistance and extra hospitable attention to people rescued during Semana Santa,” said Miguel Carmona Jiménez, president of Costa Rica’s Cruz Roja.

Representatives said that the main causes of death had been motor and water accidents. As of Wednesday morning, there had been 36 patients requiring transport to emergency rooms.

Early Wednesday Cruz Roja workers found four missing persons, which included three minors, in San Antonio de Alajuelita. However, during the search, a staff member fell into a 20-foot waterfall while looking for those missing and sustained serious injuries.

A Cruz Roja representative said the worker is still hospitalized in the emergency room at San Juan de Díos but is stable and alert. He appears to have suffered a strained right forearm and some spinal cord trauma.

Each worker is trained in first aid, water rescue, and mountain search operations, among others. As reported Tuesday, Cruz Roja workers were participating in water rescue simulations along the Pacific with the help of Servicio de Vigilancia Aérea.

Unsolved murder of journalist
recalled on 16th anniversary


Special to A.M. Costa Rica

The Inter American Press Association Wednesday recalled the murder of Colombian journalist Nelson Carvajal on the 16th anniversary of his assassination and urged the South American country’s authorities to identify the perpetrators – a call the organization has been making since it began investigating the case in 2001.

On April 16, 1998, a hit man fatally shot Carvajal, 37, seven times. He was a teacher and journalist with RCN Radio’s Radio Sur in the town of Pitalito, Huila province.

The chairman of the press association's committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Claudio Paolillo, expressed regret that Carvajal’s murder has still not been solved and he said he feared that “this crime would join a list of another six that fall under the statute of limitations in Colombia.”

The association submitted the Carvajal case to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in 2002, after carrying out an exhaustive investigation through its Rapid Response Unit in Colombia, through which it uncovered a large number of procedural irregularities.

Paolillo, editor of the Montevideo, Uruguay, weekly Búsqueda, said that the concern about impunity is discussed in the report that the organization presented at its recent meeting in Barbados which declared that in Colombia 142 crimes against journalists continue to go unpunished.

With regard to violence unleashed against the press, the association also criticized the fact that in Mexico its Mechanism for the Protection of Journalists is ineffective and non-operational, and at the same time it urged the governments of Honduras and Guatemala to comply with their commitment to set up governmental systems to ensure the safety of reporters.


Our reader's opinion
Special deals for tourism
will wreck the economy

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

In today's edition you covered pleas for a moratorium to the president -elect from the tourist industry.

This is a slippery slope to disaster. If the tourist industry has spare capacity, the long-term solutions are a lower value for the colon and a more competitive economy overall. Neither is a quick fix, and both require extensive changes throughout the economy.

The alternative is to allow downsizing in the sector. That is painful for those who go bankrupt or close, but necessary for the survivors to thrive.

Starting to subsidize special cases is a route to long-term economic disaster. Agricultural subsidies already exist here.  Tax moratoriums and special low tax rates are just another form of subsidy.

Unless we want Costa Rica to be like Cuba or Venezuela, this is a very bad idea.
Chris Clarke
Grecia


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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, April 17, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 76
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Sharp decline in Caribbean green turtle catches attributed to over-fishing
By the Wildlife Conservation Society news staff

A 20-year assessment of Nicaragua’s legal, artisanal green sea turtle fishery has uncovered a stark reality: greatly reduced overall catch rates of turtles in what may have become an unsustainable take, according to conservation scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society and University of Florida.

During the research period, conservation scientists estimated that more than 170,000 green turtles were killed between 1991 and 2011, with catch rates peaking in 1997 and 2002 and declining steeply after 2008, likely resulting from over-fishing. The trend in catch rates, the authors of the assessment results maintain, indicates the need for take limits on this legal fishery.

The study now appears in the online journal PLOS ONE. The authors are: Cynthia J. Lagueux and Cathi L. Campbell of the University of Florida and formerly of the Wildlife Conservation Society and Samantha Strindberg of the Wildlife Conservation Society.

“The significant decrease in the catch rates of green turtles represents a concern for both conservationists and local, coastal communities who depend on this resource,” said Ms. Lagueux, lead author of the study. “We hope this study serves as a foundation for implementing scientifically based limits on future green turtle take.”

Caribbean coastal waters of Nicaragua contain extensive areas of sea grass, principal food source for green turtles, the only herbivorous sea turtle species. Green turtles in turn support a number of indigenous Miskitu and Afro-descendent communities that rely on the marine reptiles for income by selling the meat and as a source of protein.

The catch data used by the researchers to estimate trends was gathered by community members at 14 different sites located in two geographically political regions of the Nicaraguan coast. The research team analyzed the long-term data set to examine catch rates for the entire fishery, each region, and for individual turtle fishing communities.

Over the duration of the assessment, the scientists recorded that at least 155,762 green turtles were caught. The overall estimated catch, factoring in estimated take during periods when data were not recorded, was 171,556 turtles. The average catch rate per fishing trip revealed an overall decline from 6.5 turtles to 2.8 turtles caught, representing a 56 percent decline over two decades.

In individual communities, catch rate declines ranged between 21 percent and 90 percent in green turtles caught over the 20-year period.

“These declining catch rates align with our survival rate estimates of green turtles exposed to the Nicaragua turtle fishery and population modeling, which suggested the fishery was not sustainable at high take levels reported in the 1990s,” said Ms. Campbell.
turtle catches
University of Florida/Cathi L. Campbell
A file photo of a green turtle being unloaded in Río Grande Bar.


The steep declines in green turtle catch rates, the researchers maintain, indicate a potential decline of green turtle populations that use Nicaragua’s foraging grounds, particularly smaller rookeries in the Caribbean. The scientists note that the study results highlight the need for not only close monitoring of rookeries in the region, but also in-water aggregations of green turtles. Further, future research efforts should include the use of molecular technology to better refine Caribbean green turtle genetic stocks, specifically to identify populations most at risk from turtle fisheries.

“Given the importance of green turtles to Nicaragua's past, present and future, we encourage the communities, governmental agencies, and conservation groups to take measures that conserve and sustain these globally threatened populations, and to work together to ensure that the communities have alternative sources of protein and income into the future,” said Caleb McClennen, director of Wildlife Conservation Society’s Marine Program.

Growing up to 400 pounds in weight, the green turtle is the second largest sea turtle species next to the leatherback turtle. The reptile inhabits the tropical and subtropical waters of the world. The species is listed as endangered, a designation which prohibits all international commercial trade by member countries. In addition to the threat from overfishing, the green turtle is at risk from being caught by accident by fishermen seeking other speciess, poaching of eggs at nesting beaches, habitat deterioration and loss due to coastal development and climate change effects and pollution.


Here is a vote in favor of lengthy diplomacy and not bloody war
I have been trying for some time to understand international relations and politics.  Some people don’t want to be bothered, but I find the machinations of heads of states, when it comes to relations with each other, both fascinating and disturbing.  I think I once said that two activities you can count on to be peppered with hypocrisy are sex and war.

Right now, although some civil wars are raging, there are no wars between countries.  I hope it stays that way.  However, the situation in Ukraine is threatening.  I know it is serious, but I can’t help feeling that it is a 21st century remake of the “The Mouse that Roared.”

As you will recall, in that movie the tiny European duchy of Grand Fenwick is facing bankruptcy and decides that one way to recover its finances is to declare war on the United States, be quickly defeated (with Peter Sellers leading their military, how can they fail to fail?) and get lots of money in reparation and reconstruction as was the habit of the U.S. after World War II.  Like the best laid plans, however, things don’t work out that way.

There was no 24 hour cable TV news back then hoping for something more exciting than the minute-by-minute coverage of the missing Malaysian plane.  The anchors keep asking ambassadors, members of the U.N., leaders of various countries and your usual pundits, do they think diplomacy is failing to the point where something else must be done? This is ridiculous in the face of it when you think that diplomacy has been going on for less than a month, while the next step they are obviously expecting – war – can take as much as 10 years to solve the problem and it will cost blood and treasure not just airfare and dinners.

Once again I find Costa Rica a better example of inter-country conflict.  It has been having a border dispute with Nicaragua for over two years – all of it on a diplomatic level.

I am no fan of President Putin. I don’t even know him.  Actually, I don’t know any of the people involved in the Ukraine situation.  I just know what I read in the news and watch on TV.

We all are taught to believe that our country’s leaders (our guys) tell the truth and the other guys are full of propaganda.

As I said, I am no fan of Putin’s but I felt sorry for him during the Winter Olympics in Sochi.  He knocked himself and his country out
Butterfly in the City
 
. . .  Musings from San José

By Jo Stuart
jostuart@amcostarica.com

Jo Stuart

trying to make it a great event, and all the Western media talked about was the threat of terrorist attacks and the lack of snow.  Some Western leaders decided not to attend, just in case.  As it turned out, the Olympiads had a great time and the event was a success. This was quietly reported by the press.

I am a bit confused about International law and what it allows.  Putin evidently broke it by even thinking about going into Ukraine and for allowing a vote in the Crimea.  I guess it was all right for the U.S. to go into Vietnam to prevent the spread of communism, and to invade Iraq on the basis that they had chemical weapons, and for Israel to bomb Syria’s nuclear bomb building site that the Israelis knew they had and for the West to actively encourage the rebels in Libya to overthrow Gadaffi.

Now words like terrorists (i.e. Russian sympathizers) and thugs and fascists (i.e. members of the new Ukraine government) are being carelessly bandied about.  Well, names are better than sticks and stones, and they can do damage.   Thugs and fascists are words that have been around since World War II and have been used to describe more than one head of state.  I do worry that the label terrorist, a more recent term, is being bandied about too freely, and any country that is faced with dissidents or protesters can call them terrorists and react accordingly.

Meanwhile, I applaud Costa Rica for its insistence on diplomacy and International mediation.  And I am happy the Festival de las Artes is over.  The bass thumping, day and night coming from La Sabana, was all I could hear of the music for a week. I can assure you it was almost enough to drive me into the street, yelling, Terrorists!. Terrorists! and try to round up a Tico army.

Meanwhile, the 21st century mouse that is roaring has already received a billion dollars from the United States and help and monies from some European countries.  Once the Mouse that Roared was a satire, now it is a Cinderella story.  If they really give diplomacy a chance and nobody goes to war over this, it will be worth it.

DelRey nightlife

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, April 17, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 76
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Percentage of shade-grown coffee dips despite its benefit to conservation
By The University of Texas at Austin news service

The proportion of land used to cultivate shade grown coffee, relative to the total land area of coffee cultivation, has fallen by nearly 20 percent globally since 1996, according to a new study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and five other institutions.

The study's authors say the global shift toward a more intensive style of coffee farming is probably having a negative effect on the environment, communities and individual farmers.

"The paradox is that there is greater public interest than ever in environmentally friendly coffee, but where coffee production is expanding across the globe, it tends to be very intensive," says Shalene Jha, assistant professor in The University of Texas at Austin's College of Natural Sciences and lead author of the study published Wednesday in the journal BioScience.

Traditional shade grown coffee is cultivated under a diverse canopy of native forest trees in dense to moderate shade. Though some of the forest understory is cleared for farming, a rich web of plant and animal life remains. As a result, shade grown coffee plantations provide corridors for migrating birds to move between forest fragments, attract and support economically valuable pollinators such as bees and bats, and provide ecosystem services such as filtering water and air, stabilizing soil during heavy rains, storing carbon and replenishing soil nutrients.

In this latest study, the researchers found that total global production of shade grown coffee has increased since 1996, but the area of land used for non shade coffee has increased at a much faster rate, resulting in shade grown coffee falling from 43 percent of total cultivated area to 24 percent.

"We were surprised that despite two decades of growth in public awareness of where coffee comes from and the different ways to manage it for biodiversity, shade grown coffee only seems to be grown in a few regions," says Jha. "The shifts aren't what we would expect based on what we see on the shelves in the U.S."

In the United States, the market for specialty coffee, which includes organic and shade grown varieties, has grown rapidly during the past decade. Across most U.S. distributors, sales of specialty coffee rose more than 75 percent by economic value from 2000 to 2008. In 2012, specialty coffees accounted for 37 percent of U.S. coffee sales by volume and nearly half by economic value, an estimated $30 billion to $32 billion.

The study also found that since 1990, the land area under coffee cultivation has contracted in Africa and expanded in Asia. Within Asia, Vietnam and Indonesia have had the largest increases in coffee production during that time. Most of the new production is done in an intensive style.

This more intensive style is characterized by clearing forests or pasture for cultivation, increasing the density of plantings and switching to a variety of coffee called Robusta that tolerates full sun. Robusta is a lower-quality coffee than the other major variety sold around the world, Arabica. The two strains are often blended to produce instant coffee.

Jha and colleagues say the shifting trends toward Asia and a more
coffee production
Click HERE for larger image
Percentage of the cultivated coffee area managed under different technology or shade levels. Diverse shade has a closed or nearly closed canopy (more than 40 percent cover), with 10 or more species of shade trees. Scant shade has a minimal but existing canopy (1 to 40 percent cover) and usually one or two species of shade trees (all with fewer than 10 species). Sun coffee has no shade or shade trees in the production area. Data are from the 2010 data set from the U.N. Food and Agricultural organization.


intensive style of farming are driven by a dramatic drop in global coffee prices in recent years. To remain profitable, some growers have moved, seeking lower land and labor costs and higher short-term yields.

But there are hidden costs to this more intensive style. Full sun coffee plantations often result in deforestation, loss of biodiversity and soil depletion while leaving communities more vulnerable to flooding and landslides.

"Intensive coffee production is not sustainable," says Jha. "You exhaust the soil and after a couple of decades, it can no longer grow coffee. On the other hand, the oldest coffee farms in the world have thrived for centuries because the forest replenishes the soil for them."

Because the up-front costs of getting certified to sell specialty coffees can be expensive, Jha and colleagues encourage government agencies, conservation groups and aid organizations to partner with farmers to develop strategies to get more farmers into shade grown coffee production.

Some of the data used in this study came from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and from interviews with coffee authorities, government agencies and private corporations.

Jha's co-authors are Christopher Bacon of the Department of Environmental Studies and Sciences, Santa Clara University, Stacy Philpott of the University of California, Santa Cruz, V. Ernesto Méndez  of the University of Vermont, Peter Läderach of the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, Nicaragua and Robert Rice of the Migratory Bird Center at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute.

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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, April 17, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 76
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Cafetales



Underwater probe completes
first full jet search mission

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The robotic submarine searching for the wreckage from the missing Malaysian airliner has completed its first full 16-hour mission after two previous missions were cut short.

The Australian agency coordinating the search said today that the "Bluefin-21" autonomous underwater vehicle has searched 90 square kilometers of the ocean bed in its three missions.

It said an initial analysis of data retrieved has revealed "no significant detections."

The "Bluefin-21" is using sonar to create a three-dimensional image of the floor of the southern Indian Ocean, where the Boeing 777 is believed to have crashed.

U.S. Navy officials have warned it could take up to two months for the submarine to search the 600-square kilometer area, which has never been mapped.

On the surface, a team of 14 aircraft and 11 ships continued looking for debris and listening for black box signals, although authorities have warned that this effort will soon be ended.

It has now been a week since authorities last detected a signal they believe came from a locator beacon on the plane's flight data recorder, which is presumed to have run out of batteries.

The Malaysia Airlines jet, carrying 239 people, vanished five weeks ago while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

Malaysian officials think the plane was intentionally diverted.  But they have refused to rule out other possibilities, including a massive mechanical malfunction.


Muslims welcome end
of spying by N. Y. police


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The New York City Police Department has disbanded a unit that spied on Muslims in their mosques and community gathering places. Set up in 2003, under then-mayor Michael Bloomberg, the officers' job was ostensibly to gather intelligence on potential terrorist plans and conspiracies.  The city’s diverse Muslim community has long complained about the unit, saying their constitutional rights were being violated by indiscriminate religious and ethnic profiling.

Like most New Yorkers, Maimuna Abdul-Hakim felt the attacks of 9/11 were a wake up call for Americans, and increased vigilance was a necessary response; but, this devout member of Harlem’s Mosque of Islamic Brotherhood and mother of three was shocked to learn that her place of worship was being targeted for surveillance by the Demographics Unit of the New York police.  She says she is glad to learn that it has been disbanded.    

“Especially since I’ve been here my whole life and I have children who come here, and not knowing who these people are, we are kind of a close community; it put my guard up.  So I am happy.  It’s about time," she said.

Abdul Sabir, the mosque’s janitor and a devout Muslim, also welcomes the news.

"I was very relieved," he said.  "They are starting to see that we are very peaceful people.  There is no need really to spy on us.  Islam stands for peace. So I was relieved."

Resentment toward former police commissioner Raymond Kelly over the surveillance runs deep within the city’s Muslim leadership, says Imam Al Hajj Talib Abdur al Rashid, president of the Islamic Leadership Council of Metropolitan New York. 

“Many of us throughout the city have tried consistently over the years to have good relations with the NYPD.  Many of the imams conveyed a great sense of betrayal to know that they have been working the NYPD, working with police commissioner Kelly, and all the time they were being spied on.  So there was this dread that the NYPD used them and used the mosque to gain entrance for surveillance.  And as you know, the NYPD surveillance program did not turn up one single lead in all of that looking and all that spying on people," he said.

The imam, however, is cautiously optimistic.  He says that by disbanding the Demographics Unit, Mayor Bill de Blasio has demonstrated his commitment to ending religious, ethnic and racial profiling….      

“… but how that’s going to translate into policy remains to be seen.  There is a real challenge to come up with a 21st century policy of policing for New York -- one that ensures public safety without violating people's civil and human rights.  It’s a challenge, but they get paid to meet challenges," he said.

While Muslim community leaders, the police and the mayor’s office have voiced their commitment to build trust, community advocates say that true healing will come only when they are satisfied that there is no official profiling by any city unit or department.  For their part, officials continue to assert their commitment to doing whatever is necessary and legal to protect all of New York’s citizens from terrorism.


Software developers hoping
to make millions, survey says


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Results of a survey of 1,000 U.S. software developers, released this week, show that a majority of them think they will become millionaires and that their jobs are invulnerable to economic downturns.

A study commissioned by Internet technology company Chef also shows that developers see their profession as having increasing power and influence, both in business and society. About 71 percent of the surveyed said they have been involved in political and civic activities for 50 hours per year on the average.

At one point it was thought to be a profession vulnerable to an influx of temporary foreign workers, and many developers were threatened by the possible export of their jobs to other countries. Now 66 percent of developers expect near-term salary rises, while as many as 56 percent of them expect to become millionaires.

According to the study, 94 percent think they'll have revolutionary influence in important parts of the economy, and 95 percent think they are among most valued employees in their company.

Once viewed as introverts with poor social skills, developers now see themselves as empowered to influence changes to both products and services.


Ebola virus may not be new
in area where epidemic exists


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The strain of ebola virus that has killed 121 people in West Africa may have been circulating there undetected for some time, according to a new study.
 
This is the first reported outbreak of ebola in West Africa. But the new study in the New England Journal of Medicine said this strain of the virus may not be new to the area.
 
Researchers from Africa and Europe compared viral DNA from this outbreak to previous episodes.
 
They confirmed that it is a member of the Zaire species, which kills most of its victims. Strains of that virus have caused outbreaks previously in Gabon and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
 
But this virus is a new strain, a previously unknown sister in the Zaire family.
 
Virologist Jens Kuhn at the National Institutes of Health said there may be more.
 
“There might be a lot of variety in these viruses. They might be in many different countries in West Africa and East Africa where we have not heard anything of outbreaks so far,” said Kuhn.
 
Kuhn was not part of this research. He leads the top NIH lab studying the world’s most dangerous viruses, and he is working on ways to treat and prevent infection with them. Kuhn said there is a lesson in this outbreak.
 
“This is a warning that the variability of these viruses is greater than we knew. And so it’s very important that we develop something that is broadly based and not protects only against a particular virus that we knew of before,” said Kuhn.
 
Right now, the best protection is to avoid contact with blood or bodily fluids from an infected person.


Linguistic researchers find
links to rare Amazon tongue


By the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft news staff

The only linguistic data available for Carabayo, a language spoken by an indigenous group that lives in voluntary isolation, is a set of about 50 words. This list was compiled in 1969 during a brief encounter with one Carabayo family.

Frank Seifart of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, and Juan Álvaro Echeverri of the Universidad Nacional de Colombia in Leticia, Colombia, have now analyzed this historical data set and compared it with various languages once spoken in the region. The analysis showed that Carabayo shares a number of similarities with the extinct language Yurí and with Tikuna, a language still spoken in the region nowadays.

From the results of their study the researchers conclude that the Carabayo – directly or indirectly – descend from the Yurí people whose languages and customs were described by explorers in the 19th century, before they took up voluntary isolation.

According to Survival International there are around 100 uncontacted indigenous groups worldwide, a few dozen of them living in the Amazonian rainforest. One of them, the Carabayo, lives in voluntary isolation in the remote upper Puré River region in the Colombian Amazon rainforest. The most recent evidence of the Carabayo’s persistence are aerial photographs of their roundhouses taken in 2010 which were published in the book "Cariba Malo" by the Colombian researcher Roberto Franco.

In early 1969, a military commission on a rescue mission, made violent contact with the Carabayo and took one family hostage. “While this family was held captive, speakers of all living languages of the region tried to communicate with them but failed,” says Seifart. “Researchers thus concluded that Carabayo was not related to any living language in the region.”

Seifart and Álvaro have now compared the Carabayo words with historical wordlists of extinct languages of the region that were documented by explorers in the 19th century. “Our comparison of the Carabayo data revealed that a number of Carabayo forms match corresponding Yurí elements, but none match forms of the other languages,” says Seifart. The researchers identified four Carabayo forms,  a first person singular prefix, and the words for warm, boy and father  – to match corresponding Yurí forms well. “The strongest evidence for a link between Carabayo and Yurí comes from the first person singular prefix,” says Seifart. “Personal pronouns are known to be especially resistant to borrowing which is why their similarity indicates a genealogical link rather than language contact.”

The researchers then compared Carabayo to languages spoken in the Colombian Amazon area nowadays and found a number of very good matches between Carabayo and Tikuna but not with any other living language of the region. “What adds credibility to these matches is that they exhibit regular sound correspondences: For instance Carabayo g corresponds to Tikuna ng in a number of words. That can hardly be a coincidence,” says Seifart. The researchers conclude that Yurí, Carabayo and Tikuna are genealogically related, with Carabayo somewhere in the middle between Yurí and Tikuna, but probably closer to Yurí. “The ease with which Carabayo data could be interpreted by a native Tikuna speaker additionally suggests that these languages are relatively closely related and may even form – or have formed in the past – a dialect continuum,” says Seifart.


Paper warns EU of impact
from invasive organisms


By the Queen's University Belfast news staff

The European Union must take urgent action to halt the spread of invasive species that are threatening native plants and animals across Europe, according to a scientist from Queen’s University Belfast.

The threats posed by these species cost an estimated 12 billion euros each year across Europe.   Jaimie Dick, from the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s School of Biological Sciences, is calling on the EU to commit long-term investment in a European-wide strategy to manage the problem.

Invasive species are considered to be among the major threats to native biodiversity in Europe. The call to action follows the publication of a paper "Tackling Invasive Alien Species in Europe: the Top 20 Issues," in the peer-reviewed journal ‘Management of Biological Invasions’. The report’s authors say it should inform future EU policy for managing invasive species.

The paper resulted from an international meeting of invasive species experts who gathered in Galway, Ireland, last year to identify the critical issues for tackling invasive species in Europe. The Freshwater Invasives: Networking for Strategy conference was led by Inland Fisheries Ireland, Queen’s, and the Institute of Technology, Sligo. It brought together more than 150 scientists, academics, policy makers and politicians with the aim of informing impending EU legislation on alien species.

Dick said: “Alien plant and animal species cause environmental, economic and social damage across Europe, and their rate of invasion is set to increase in the coming years. The EU has formulated a comprehensive plan to address the threats posed by these species, but adequate resourcing by the EU and member states, in terms of funding, staff and equipment, will be crucial in ensuring this plan is put into action. 

“Invasive species cost an estimated 12 billion euros each year across Europe, including around 261 million euros on the island of Ireland and 1.7 billion pounds in Great Britain. Their impact ranges from upsetting native ecosystems, to damaging the physical environment and even threatening human and animal health; hence the cost to agriculture, fisheries and forestry, as well as the expense of control and eradication programs.


Jet stream that froze East
follows 4,000-year pattern


By the University of Utah news service

Last winter’s curvy jet stream pattern brought mild temperatures to western North America and harsh cold to the East. A University of Utah-led study shows that pattern became more pronounced 4,000 years ago, and suggests it may worsen as Earth’s climate warms.

“If this trend continues, it could contribute to more extreme winter weather events in North America, as experienced this year with warm conditions in California and Alaska and intrusion of cold Arctic air across the eastern USA,” says geochemist Gabe Bowen, senior author of the study.

The study was published online by the journal Nature Communications.

“A sinuous or curvy winter jet stream means unusual warmth in the West, drought conditions in part of the West, and abnormally cold winters in the East and Southeast,” adds Bowen, an associate professor of geology and geophysics at the University of Utah. “We saw a good example of extreme wintertime climate that largely fit that pattern this past winter,” although in the typical pattern California often is wetter.

It is not new for scientists to forecast that the current warming of Earth’s climate due to carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases already has led to increased weather extremes and will continue to do so.

The new study shows the jet stream pattern that brings North American wintertime weather extremes is millennia old – “a longstanding and persistent pattern of climate variability,” Bowen says. Yet it also suggests global warming may enhance the pattern so there will be more frequent or more severe winter weather extremes or both.

“This is one more reason why we may have more winter extremes in North America, as well as something of a model for what those extremes may look like,” Bowen says. Human-caused climate change is reducing equator-to-pole temperature differences; the atmosphere is warming more at the poles than at the equator. Based on what happened in past millennia, that could make a curvy jet stream even more frequent and-or intense than it is now, he says.

Bowen and his co-authors analyzed previously published data on oxygen isotope ratios in lake sediment cores and cave deposits from sites in the eastern and western United States and Canada. Those isotopes were deposited in ancient rainfall and incorporated into calcium carbonate. They reveal jet stream directions during the past 8,000 years, a geological time known as middle and late stages of the Holocene Epoch.

Next, the researchers did computer modeling or simulations of jet stream patterns – both curvy and more direct west to east – to show how changes in those patterns can explain changes in the isotope ratios left by rainfall in the old lake and cave deposits.

They found that the jet stream pattern – known technically as the Pacific North American teleconnection – shifted to a generally more “positive phase” – meaning a curvy jet stream – over a 500-year period starting about 4,000 years ago. In addition to this millennial-scale change in jet stream patterns, they also noted a cycle in which increases in the sun’s intensity every 200 years make the jet stream flatter.


Specter of a new cold war
darkens U.S.-Russian ties


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Relations between the United States and Russia have hit a low point since Moscow annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea.  Many analysts are wondering whether the two sides are returning to a new cold war.

The first Cold War lasted roughly from the end of World War II in 1945 to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Charles Kupchan with Georgetown University, said the Cold War was a rivalry between a Western bloc led by the United States and an Eastern bloc led by the Soviet Union.

“It was defined by ideological competition, a Communist system versus a capitalist system, an autocratic system versus a democratic system,” he said.  “And it was defined by traditional geopolitical rivalry, for dominance both over the military industrial heartland as well as over proxies in the developing world.”

Since the demise of the Soviet Union, memories of the Cold War have faded.  But there is talk now of a new cold war following Russian President Vladimir Putin’s annexation of Ukraine’s peninsula, Crimea.

During a recent speech in Brussels, President Barack Obama dismissed the notion of a new cold war.

“This is not another cold war that we’re entering into.  After all, unlike the Soviet Union, Russia leads no bloc of nations, no global ideology.”

President Obama also described Russia as “a regional power that is threatening some of its immediate neighbors - not out of strength, but of weakness.”

Kupchan agreed, saying Russia isn’t what it used to be.

“During the Cold War, Russia had millions of soldiers under arms.  It had a world class navy.  It had proxy client states around the world.  That is not the Russia that we have today.  Russia today has 750 to 800,000 men under arms.  Its navy is a sad shadow of what it used to be,” said Kupchan.  “It has very few allies in the world and it’s for that reason, I think that a return to the Cold War is not on. Russia doesn’t have what it takes.”

But Robert Legvold, professor emeritus at Columbia University, has a different view.

“I believe we are already in a new cold war.  That is not a majority view.  I think most people are reluctant to think that we could fall again into something as large, complicated, dangerous, with particularly the shadow of a nuclear Armageddon as we had in that 50 year period earlier.”

Legvold said some of the essential characteristics of the Soviet Union’s relationship with the West during that period are true of the relationship between Russia and the West today.

“First of all, rather than the ambiguous sense of the other side that both the U.S. and Europe had of Russia for much of the last 20 years, that is neither friend nor foe, something in between but not quite clear what - reciprocated by the Russians who saw the West in much the same term - that has disappeared” he said.  “And you see each side now literally not only defining the other side as adversary, but calling it such in speeches that we’ve had from major leaders and pundits in the press.”

Legvold said another sign of a new cold war is that, in his view, officials in Washington and Moscow have apparently given up on the idea of working towards a fundamentally different cooperative relationship.

“The assumptions that underlay the Obama administration’s reset, for example.  They now have disappeared and have been replaced by the notion that the most we can hope for are momentary, quite specific, quite limited transactions that may be cooperative, but not something that adds up to a level of cooperation that begins to lead us toward genuine and durable partnership.”

Many experts believe a genuine and durable partnership could only be achieved with new leaders in Washington and Moscow.


Planets with wobble seen
as possibly hosting life

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A planet’s wobble may greatly enhance its ability to host life, even if the planet is far away from its star, new research says.
 
Wobbling, or axial shifting, means that a planet changes its tilt much in the same way as a top that’s about to stop spinning.
 
Extreme wobbling may be explained by competing gravitational pulls between the planets’ star and another nearby planet.
 
These wobblers could change their orientation within tens to hundreds of thousands of years – a blink of an eye in geologic terms, scientists said in a new paper.
 
A wobbling planet that might otherwise be a frozen world could have liquid water -- thought to be necessary to support life -- because the poles would face the planet’s star, allowing the ice to melt, researchers said.
 
"Planets like these are far enough from their stars that it would be easy to write them off as frozen, and poor targets for exploration, but in fact, they might be well-suited to supporting life," said Shawn Domagal-Goldman, an astrobiologist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, in a statement. "This could expand our idea of what a habitable planet looks like and where habitable planets might be found."
 
Researchers say they may have already spotted planets with crazy tilt-a-world wobbling.
 
Around the star Upsilon Andromedae, two enormous planets were found to be inclined at an angle 30 degrees to each other. In Earth's solar system, the orbits of the eight planets only vary by 7 degrees, scientists said.
 
In addition to the observations of Upsilon Andromedae, scientists ran “thousands of simulations for planets in 17 varieties of simplified planetary systems.” The modeling considered planets with the same mass as Earth that orbited a sun-like star and have gas giants nearby.
 
In the models, researchers adjusted the tilts of the orbits, the leans in the axes of rotations and the ability of light to penetrate the planet’s atmosphere.
 
Some planets are constantly on the move, while others are relatively stable. Earth is not much of a wobbler.
 
“Earth has a fairly stable tilt, but it is close enough to the Sun to avoid prolonged snowball events,” said John Armstrong of Weber State University and the lead author of the research paper. “However, if it was a bit further away it would need a thicker atmosphere (more greenhouse) or a wobbly axis - the later is the new bit we are proposing.”
 
The paper appeared in the April issue of Astrobiology.


Real estate-related services (paid category)

Interior Design & Custom Furniture Manufacturing
logo
“We regularly exceed client expectations.
We guarantee it.”
Customizing for your vision, lifestyle and budget.
 
A turnkey home and project completion agency devoted to creative vision and flawless execution. We provide a single, solid and dedicated point of contact for the duration of your real estate project, specializing in:

• Interior Design
• Custom Furniture Manufacturing
• Building Completion Services
Our primary goal is to assist our clients with a smooth transition to occupancy while providing highly personalized and distinctive services. We have refined the process to be a hassle free experience, especially valuable for clients who live abroad.
Our custom furniture designs & manufacturing can be contracted independently.
“Serving the Region for 11 years”

Email: info@casadelpacifico.com
Cell phone: (506) - 8707-8008
Office phone: (506) - 2288-5644
Web: www.casadelpacifico.com

Rosa Monge
Rosa Monge


Real estate foreclosure specialist

Great deals available every week
Properties like this:

20.5 acres of pasture for as little as $2,400

Rosa Monge Alvarez
Please email for details
rosa_monge@racsa.co.cr
8339-5/23/14

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)


Swimming pool at night
A Buyer’s Broker offering the best
of Costa Rica Real Estate.

For those looking for quality properties and service at quality prices. Central Valley Rentals. Offering honesty, experience and knowledge. Your Villa Real Expert. Call us now  Toll Free (877) 845-4533. In Costa Rica 2228-5961 or 8339-2112. www.costaricarealtyone.com
8294-6/12/14

Re/Max, the Pacific coast expert
Re/Max offers comprehensive Costa Rica Real Estate, vacation rental and relocation services. Our award-winning team is the largest in the country, and can show you the best lifestyle and financial investment properties in the most desirable locations including prime real estate in Tamarindo, Langosta, Conchal, Flamingo, Pinilla, Coco, Hermosa and Playa Panama.  Give us a call in Costa Rica at 506-2653-0073, or toll free from the U.S. and Canada 1-800-385-5930. Re/Max, the name you trust for the finest real estate services in Costa Rica.
8206-5/18/14

Moran Arenal
Lake Arenal, Costa Rica
The undiscovered jewel of Central America, 35 square miles of blue, pristine, clear water ideal for fishing, swimming, boating, Real estate values still low.
Great lake front, river front land, farms, homes, condos and commercial property. Some with owner financing
 
This is far and away the most beautiful place in all Central America — cool climate. Try our two-day, all-inclusive discovery tour for $299.

Check with our Web site at www.moranlakearenal.com
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
Email: moranrealestate@gmail.com
Moran logo
8321-10/17/14



Costa Rica,

Central America
Houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
western Central Valley.
Great climate
and safe communities.





Visit our Web Site:
 www.greciarealestate.com




English: (Cristian Arce)
(506) 8309-0173  
English:  (Luis Arce)
(506) 7100-8489  
 Español: (Luis G. Jiménez)
  (506) 8707-4016  
Grecia 794
This is the BIGGEST DEAL of the month now at $850.000: HERE!
30,000 square meters of land and 750 square-meters of construction.
Grecia home
1,000 square meters of land, 350 square meters of construction.  CLICK HERE
Grecia 807
  18,000 square meters of land and 300 square meters of construction. HERE!
  Send us your request to our email: info@greciarealestate.com
8245-5/12/14

Real estate for sale (paid category)


Heredia lot
 
Residencial Del Monte
(San Rafael de Heredia)

1,804 m2 lot  (19,418 sq. ft.)
Price: $135,000
Tel.  8853-0000 or  jpmata2000@yahoo.com
8340-5/21/14

Beautiful Survival Farm with panoramic Pacific views
In the heartland of one of the world's five blue zones, Nicoya. 12 acres with ample space for planting, natural forest, own perennial waters, public road yet hidden access, electricity. Fire sale 59,000 USD   axelspecial@gmail.com
8333-5/9/14

covered patio
Another 'live in the view' home in Puriscal
$173,900 includes:
Lot on river, concrete road, custom kitchen & bath with granite counter tops, PEX plumbing, 2” Styrofoam, sandwiched in steel roof, 4” concrete/recycled Styrofoam & steel walls, laminated, bronzed windows, custom wood doors, appliances and all transfer taxes, and fees.

2, 900 sq feet under roof, 1,250 sq feet inside walls, 2 bedroom, 2 ½ baths, laundry room, three separate patio areas, covered carport, shade trees, in upscale, secure project.  This project has river with protected areas & walkways. It is only 10 minutes on all paved roads to Santiago de Puriscal, 45 minutes to La Plaza Mall/Hospital CIMA and SJO airport, and 1 ½ hours to Pacific Beaches. It has recently upgraded public water supply and dependable ICE electric and high-speed internet.
Please come visit our projects and meet four new homeowners who have recently moved into their new “live in the view” homes to verify how happy they are and that they all came in under budget. CONTACT: George Lundquist www.costaricaretireonss.com  Home phone: 2417-1041 Cell phone: 8888 4543 Skype glundquist.
8310-7/1/14

Beautiful fully renovated house in Bello Horizonte, Escazu, 446 sq. meters. Four bedrooms; four baths. Price includes all furniture and fixtures - ready to move in! Light, bright and airy....$499,500 USD. Telephone 2288.6451. More details HERE!
8309-6/29/14

Atenas mansion
ATENAS!!
In 2006, the developer of a popular subdivision in Atenas chose a large 7,000 m2 corner view lot for his first spec home. Now, eight years later that home is once again for sale with first class tropical landscaping that much more mature. With 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 2-car carport, laundry room, and more than 300 m2 under roof next to a pristine pool, this home is located in a gated community with its own water sources. And the location, just 1 1/4 km from town, is convenient to shopping and services, too. The views are of  Candelaria and the central valley. No wonder this community is so popular! $495,000. More photos HERE. And then contact  larry@atenasrealty.com
8306-4/26/14

Med house
Mediterranean inspired home overlooking the Bay of Nicoya and Pacific Ocean.  This design allows for barrier-free living, yet maximizes views from every room in the house . Vaulted ceiling over the living area and kitchen give the great room its spacious, open feeling with a natural stone fireplace and imported Spanish tile floors.  $365,000.00 or rent for $900 per month including WIFI and PLUS utilities.  Long term rentals only please.  Property: 22,000 m2 or 5.5 acres. Construction: 4,500 sq. ft. including porches and garage.  3 bedrooms/ 2 baths.  Fully furnished   Automatic entry gate.   Custom exotic wood cabinets   High end stainless steel appliances   Granite counter tops  Slide show at   
 www.picturetrail.com/sfx/album/view/24055899   
For more information contact:  deeday214@gmail.com
8305-6/26/14

Belen home
Comfortable in Costa Rica
Asuncion de Belen. Home in exclusive Residencial La Jolla.  Gated community with controlled access,  security 24/7. Resort swimming pool and gym. Spacious and elegant finishes, private jacuzzi and social areas. 3 bedrooms. 2.5 baths.  Private gardens. Conveniently located close to airport, shopping, bilingual schools, Intel and Duty Free Zones. 322m2 on 249m2 corner lot. Lease with purchase option  $3,400/ $428,000 USD. Contact owner at 8309-2000 for details or email rafa@rafacr.com.
9304-4/3/14

Esterillos

Beach Front Home - Central Pacific Coast
Pristine condition, recently renovated. The best surfing and boogie boarding in the country. The most magnificent ocean and sunset view. New 20-year, fully registered concession on one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. Easy access from San José (1 hour 25 minutes) located between Jacó and Manuel Antonio, in Esterillos Oeste.  2 or 3 bedrooms. Center room can be living room. House with 2 1/2 baths. Separated rancho with kitchen and large entertainment patio. Landscaped garden with no water shortage. Has both municipal and well water with automatic watering system. Direct access to the beach as no road is in front of property. Protected land on one side of the property for additional privacy.  Alarm system and complete shutters for security while away.  Lot approximately 1,725 square meters, Asking price: $385.000.  Contact to Paul at local phone 506- 2637-8858  Cell phone 506- 8823-8550 .  US Mobile 908-400-9772  Emails: edumace64@yahoo.es and pdvartanian@aol.com.
8269-5/27/14

Five bedrooms
Puntarenas City, Puntarenas
Beach home central Pacific Ocean
Five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths plus guest house
Features include out door BBQ, swimming pool, plus on the beach.  The home is completely furnished including all linens, kitchen cook ware, pots, pans, all dishes and much much more. Each room is individually air conditioned.  Office with all connections for WiFi,  Hot water in bathrooms, kitchen and laundry room.  Fully furnished. Includes all linens, TV’s, refrigerator/freezer, dish washer, microwave, electric stove/oven, washer & dryer and many “as seen on TV” appliances   Will consider trade for U.S. Property.  Asking  $250,000. 
Call Gary 8784-2945  English only, or email  combrokers@aol.com
8259-8/25/14

Tiliran property
Turnkey commercial/apartment building for sale in San Luis, Tilaran, Guanacaste. In a corporation. 100 percent occupancy and all permits in place. Great opportunity to gain investor status residency. New construction - 2012. Consists of three studio apartments upstairs with lake view and 4 storefronts on ground level, including laundry service, soda, consigment store. Comes with purchase or start your own business while you live in one of the apartments. $308,000. Please email tierrasmorenaslou@yahoo.com
8257-8/17/

Balcony view
This is a great opportunity
Get your home in one of the best locations. Four-bedroom condo near Universidad de Costa Rica, ULatina & UFidelitas   $170,000. USD.  24/7 gate security with in-home alarm, three levels, parking for two cars and play area for children. First Level: Living room/dining room, kitchen with breakfast bar, laundry room, patio/garden with roof, storage area, & guest bathroom. Second Level: Large master bedroom with full bathroom and walk-in closet, two additional bedrooms, linen closet, full bathroom. Third Level: Large fourth bedroom or TV room, full bath, large storage attic, spacious roofed balcony and breathtaking views of mountains to the east, south, west. Call Bill   (English) C.R. Phone: (506) 6011-6987 / U.S. Phone:  (630) 886-4458 . C.R. Spanish  phone number: (506) 8799-4041  or  (506) 8363-9898.  Email: sjogringo@yahoo.com
8253-5/12/14

Los Reyes home
House for sale in La Guacima, Alajuela
Located on 9th tee of Los Reyes Country Club. Club offers golf, tennis (6 courts), swimming pool, gym and restaurant. Easy access to schools, shopping, hospitals & Caldera highway. One hour to Pacific beaches. House price: US $450,000.00. Contact Bill, Phone 506 -8878-9221  Email: losreyes191@gmail.com Click on the link below for photos and additional details:
https://plus.google.com/photos/105244969603261154850/
8240-8/6/14

NOW REDUCED TO $595,000
ALAJUELA – PRIVATE COMPOUND OF 4 HOMES - $850,000 TURNKEY
Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:
8230-3/13/14

Land near Monte de La Cruz, 27 hectors+, Must sell for best offer due to cancer, dogfood@carolina.rr.com 8841-1606
8223-2/21/14

St. Michael
Ocean View estates inside a gated community from $5.94 M2.  Properties start at 39K. NO HOA FEES.  Community salt water modern waterfall swimming pools, organic vegetable gardens, exotic flower gardens, food forest, mature orchards, fresh fish from aquaponics, stables, community center, and much more.  Each lot comes with an edible landscaping including pineapples, plantains, papayas, guanabanas, bananas, and more.  Most lots already have mature mango, lemon, orange, or caimito trees.  This is the most secure community in CR with multiple sources of water, electric, and high speed internet.      www.saintmichaelscostarica.com
8215-7/14/14

complex
Located in Jacó at Barrio Ricos y Famosos
in Calle Europa, Casa Shangri La.
Main house: 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, 270 square meters, 2 condominiums 2 bedrooms, one bath, 110 square meters, plus one small apartment: One bedroom, one bath. Huge pool, carport for five cars. plus double garage, rancho with pool bathroom, gymnasium, laundry room, pool plumbing room, huge dog house in separate 500-square-meter garden with aviary for guacamayas (we have three birds) 60 meters of river front of Río Copey with a 4-meter-high protective and retention stone wall. Eight surveillance camera CCTV system with Internet access from anywhere. Over 2-meter-high brick wall all around the property with two layers of razor wires on top, the safest place to be! Electronic entrance gate, door phone, five telephone lines, high-speed Internet wireless access everywhere. Beautiful gardens with many fruit trees. Built to highest standard by German owner in 2005,  room for two more apartments, plans approved. Less then a 10 minutes walk to the beach and or center of Jaco. Price $ 1,350.000 negotiable. All fittings and furniture. German-built, excellent quality and well maintained. 70% owner financing available. More photos on request HERE!  Email: wolfganghilbich@yahoo.com  cell 8838-2081 or home 2643-2979.
8200-4/3/14

Rich Coast montage
Real Estate, Central Pacific Region
RichCoastRealty.com

Central Pacific between Jacó and Quepos-Manuel Antonio
Lots in gated community near the beach  from $17,999! Only 3 left
2-bedroom house in gated community was $120k now $99,900
3-bedroom house with 2 additional residential lots, walk to the beach $160k
Turnkey coffee shop/ bakery, corner location, great ROI! $65k
2-bedroom panoramic oceanview house, guesthouse on 2.5 acres $269k
Panoramic oceanview  property, 3 houses, on-ground pool $375k
And much more!!!

     www.RichCoastRealty.com
   USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
   CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891
   Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
8191-4/30/13


Gulf road

Beachfront pristine five-hectare (13-acre) property

includes a common open air lodge with kitchen, three cabins, a caretaker's house, a garage and a secure storeroom. The property is maritime and has a current and valid maritime user's permit, all up to date and clear. In addition to the immaculately landscaped portion of the property that is already developed with bungalows, there are an additional three hectares that are ready for expansion and are cleared and planted in grass. The sales offer includes furnishings, appliances, catamaran, kayaks, and a whole series of extras. This property has about 300 meters of beach front in a docile portion of the gulf about 15 minutes north of Puerto Jimeenez, ideal for mooring boats just off the property shoreline. Has municipal water and power. Offered at $970,000. All reasonable offers will be considered. See photos and maps and more at www.suenos.org. Contact us at: osaproperty@gmail.com or +1-866-514-7435.
8172-1/6/13

For Sale By Owner
1 lot (1.5 acres)  at SIBU (8 lots total) amongst 50 acres of protected jungle gardens with sunset ocean views of Playa Nosara. Underground electric and water.13 minutes from Playa Guiones. Gated. In house financing available. Home of SIBU Sanctuary. jungalow@gmail.com.
8166-5/29/13

Becker montage
Beach property on the Pacific Ocean in Guanacaste.

House and guest house on adjacent half acre lots. Each with separate electric,  private septic and well. Each can be sold stand alone or packaged. Modern kitchen, granite counters, Viking stove, large separate frig and freezer. Private commercial grade septic and well. No water shortages even in dry season. High speed internet and U.S. standard electric. Center of the beach -- NEVER floods. Estuary at each end of the beach with excellent kayaking and bird watching through the mangroves. Excellent fishing right off the shore. Great surfing, horseback riding, bicycling or Turtle watching. Groceries three miles away. Mentioned in "The Lonely Planet" Page 301. "Two of the most beautiful and least visited beaches in Costa Rica. Wilderness beaches of fine silver-grey sand." Despite opportunities for great surfing, kayaking and just about anything else you want to do on a sandy strip of paradise, the beaches are nearly always abandoned. $500K Will finance.  More pictures available at: http://www.rebecker.com/journal102006a.htm.  Contact information: ginbecker@gmail.com,  US: 001-612-599-0205 or Costa Rica 011-506-2655-1202.

beach scenes
Established Hotel/Resort -Great Business Opportunity:
The owner/manager of a successful hotel on the Gold Coast of Costa Rica has listed their property with us. It is a successful and ongoing concern. The property and buildings are well built and maintained. The property has a history of repeat clients. To protect the business for the current and future owners, detailed information of the listing will only be shared after an expression of interest and a non-disclosure confidentiality agreement is executed. It is located about one hour of Liberia airport and less than 500 meters to beach. The land is over 1 hectare allowing room for expansion. There are 18 bedrooms in a variety of apartments, cabinas and houses, A/C, bar restaurant and shop. Near golf, horses, tennis, world class surf and more. Listing Price of $US2.4 million. Mary or Jerre West, maryandjerre@aol.com, 8879-0235 or (303) 317-6603
8123-4/22/2104

montage
For sale is a beautiful 50-acre property located in Los Alpes, just 15 minutes outside of San Ramon. At about 4,000 feet above sea level, this finca provides gorgeous views of the Central Valley as well as the Pacific Ocean in the distance while also offering a wonderful climate year around. The main house is two stories with three bedrooms and two full baths. High quality construction using exotic hardwoods such as almond, which covers the ceilings throughout the entire house. There are also two corrals and a small casita on the property. This location is perfect for a farm-style home or for beginning an agricultural business. This truly is a rare piece of property and is available for $399,999. Price is somewhat negotiable and we will be happy to work with the buyer to make it work! Please call 8816-2478 or e-mail bmcart3@gmail.com for more information ¡y se habla español!
8097-xxx


Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)
Gingerbread Boutique Hotel and Fine Restaurant For Sale
botique hotel
A very  famous, highly regarded unique lake view themed boutique hotel consisting of three air conditioned suites with satellite TV and high speed Internet, two themed cottages with garden showers, one large super suite with kitchen and garden shower, managers apartment, restaurant rated one of the best restaurants in Costa Rica {see reviews} and the premier real estate office at Lake Arenal,which puts all its clients in to the hotel, plus room for additional lake view rooms and a pool, all less than a mile from Nuevo Arenal and the public park on the lake.  Go to the Web site for photos and complete information  at  www.gingerbreadarenal.com  This is the finest boutique hotel in Costa Rica in one of the fastest growing areas of all of Central America.  Sale opportunity $750,000.   Contact to :
Terry Moran, Owner Email: moranrealestate@gmail.com 
Office phone: 506 2694-0088  Cell phone: 506 8880-8888 
USA # rings in Costa Rica:  305 307-0088
8263-8/20/14

Tanning montage
This is your chance to acquire a totally equipped tanning salon with five machines.  Fantasia Tropical has been open 14 years but the founder needs to retire and return to the U.S. for medical reasons.  You can assume the lease in Sabana West buying the S.A. or buy the assets and move them to a location you prefer. Taxes, permits, bank accounts all in order. Excellent opportunity for an energetic, creative hands-on owner or couple. Long-time manager available to stay on if desired. With an asking price of $30,000 this won't
last long.  Some owner financing may be available.  Contact galanses@hotmail.com for an appointment. For a preview www.facebook.com/FantasiaTropicalCR
8232-2/24/14

A successful, local, long-running business for sale.
In the nine years of operation, this company has grown to cover the entire Southern Pacific Zone, and opened the door to further penetration in San José, Manuel Antonio and Osa Peninsula areas. And it is the only one of its kind with no comparable competition. With the extensive groundwork that has already been achieved, the business is now poised to expand into a new level of success. Operating since 2005, the owner is retiring to another Latin American country. It is now time to turn the business over to a new owner who could expand it to even greater success. Details on the business, its history, a strategic analysis of its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, as well as a pro-forma income statement from 2008 through to 2013 are available upon request to aha_jm@yahoo.com.
8213-2/13/14

beach scenes
Established Hotel/Resort -Great Business Opportunity:
The owner/manager of a successful hotel on the Gold Coast of Costa Rica has listed their property with us. It is a successful and ongoing concern. The property and buildings are well built and maintained. The property has a history of repeat clients. To protect the business for the current and future owners, detailed information of the listing will only be shared after an expression of interest and a non-disclosure confidentiality agreement is executed. It is located about one hour of Liberia airport and less than 500 meters to beach. The land is over 1 hectare allowing room for expansion. There are 18 bedrooms in a variety of apartments, cabinas and houses, A/C, bar restaurant and shop. Near golf, horses, tennis, world class surf and more. Listing Price of $US2.4 million. Mary or Jerre West, maryandjerre@aol.com, 8879-0235 or (303) 317-6603
8123-4/22/2

Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact: manager@crbusiness.biz.

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page


San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, April 17, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 76
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News from the BBC up to the minute








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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Escazú and San José reject
dry law for Semana Santa


By the A.M.  Costa Rica staff

Drink up, San José. And Escazú, too.

Both municipalities have chosen not to enforce the alcohol dry law for today and tomorrow.

A new law allows local governments to make that decision.

The Municipalidad de San José said on its Facebook page that some news outlets had stated in error that the dry law will be enforced.  Some municipalities are doing so but not San José.

The Municipalidad de Escazú also used its Facebook page to state that the dry law will not be enforced there either.

Both municipalities are closed for Samana Santa except for critical services.

In the past, the decision was in the hands of the central government, which ordered the Fuerza Pública to enforce the law by sealing bars and covering alcohol sections in supermarkets.

That led to the creation of illegal bars in many neighborhoods, and tourism operators complained that the ban hurt their business.


Another man is murdered
outside his own home

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A second man was gunned down outside his home Tuesday.

The second shooting was in Los Diques in Cartago when the victim arrived at his home in a taxi about 5 p.m. That is when gunmen opened up.

Dead was a 58-year-old man with the last name of Navarro. He suffered three bullet wounds to the head. Injured was the driver, identified by the last name of  Fuentes, who suffered a bullet wound of the leg, He was hospitalized.

Tuesday morning three men with heavy weapons spotted a man outside his home in Limoncito Tuesday morning and fired at him 25 times, judicial agents said. Although initially reported to be in stable condition, the victim,  identified by the last name of Salas, died, the Judicial Investigating Organization said Wednesday.


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From Page 7:


Fed chief predicts higher inflation in U.S.

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen says inflation is expected to rise slowly from current levels to the U.S. central bank's 2 percent target rate.
 
In her first major policy speech, Ms. Yellen told the Economic Club of New York the low rate of inflation appears due to temporary influences, such as the deceleration in consumer energy prices. She said longer-run inflation expectations, though, have remained steady.
 
She said the Fed is not likely to raise interest rates until its inflation and unemployment goals are reached.

Ms. Yellen also cautioned Wednesday that officials still predict only a gradual return to full employment during the next two to three years, even as she praised the country's recovery thus far.

"Nearly five years into the expansion that began after the financial crisis and the Great Recession, the recovery has come a long way," she said. "More than 8 million jobs have been added to non-farm payrolls since 2009, almost the same number lost as a result of the recession."

Ms. Yellen said an effective federal policy must respond to the unexpected twists and turns of an uncertain economy as the Fed judges when to finally tighten monetary policy after years of unprecedented stimulus.