Costa Rica is an exceptional country in terms of history and beauty. A steady democracy that has avoided the stereotypical problems of its Central American neighbors (military coups and civil unrest, for example), the nation has embraced its vibrant biodiversity as a valuable asset and has carved out a niche for itself as one of the premier destinations for ecotourism. Images of Costa Rica
, a photography exhibition by Gregory Basco, celebrates the natural wealth of a country that strives to protect the flora and fauna with which it has been abundantly blessed. Twenty-five percent of Costa Rica is protected as national parkland; these reserves house beautiful rainforests, big cats, a variety of birds, four species of monkey and turtles, among many other animals — it's a photographer's paradise. Basco is a former educator at the Missouri Botanical Garden turned full-time photographer, and now his work hangs in the garden's Ridgway Visitor Center (4344 Shaw Boulevard; 314-577-9400 or www.mobot.org
) through Sunday, March 14. The garden is open every day, and admission is $3 to $8.
Jan. 11-March 14, 2010