Costa Rica’s ‘Toño the Pizote’ wants a summer without forest fires
With the approach of Costa Rica’s driest time of the year, propaganda to prevent forest fires has begun flying. Spearheaded by Costa Rica’s own version of Smokey Bear, Toño the Pizote, the “Summer Without Forest Fires” campaign launched on Wednesday.
In the absence of American Black Bears like Smokey, Costa Rica selected the raccoon-like pizote, or coati, as the official forest fire spokescreature in 1988 due to the animal’s habit of shrieking to warn other animals during a fire. Toño has his own Twitter, Facebook and this song written by members of the National System of Conservation Area’s band:
The Environment Ministry and the National Commission of Forest Fires (CONIFOR) hope to educate the public about fire prevention with the campaign, using the tagline “Heaven is Burning.” According to data from the Environment Ministry, 99 percent of all forest fires in Costa Rica are caused by human carelessness.
CONIFOR has 937 firefighters distributed throughout the country for March and April, traditionally the two worst months for forest fires. So far this year 14.9 hectares of land have burned in forest fires, according to CONIFOR.
You may be interested
Costa Rica investing $42 million for health facilities in GuanacasteAlejandro Zúñiga - July 22, 2019
Costa Rica's Social Security System (Caja), which manages the country's socialized health care system, announced Monday a $42 million plan…
Eighty-four Ticos participating in the 2019 Pan American GamesAlejandro Zúñiga - July 22, 2019
The 2019 Pan American Games begin Friday, July 26 in Lima. Eighty-four Costa Rican athletes -- 44 women and 40…
Slothy Sunday: Counting down to the 4th annual Sloth Ironman GamesZara Palmer / Toucan Rescue Ranch - July 21, 2019
Did you know that there is an internationally recognized holiday all about sloths? That’s right – there is, in fact,…