Costa Rica Becomes First Latin American Country to Ban Hunting

On Monday, Costa Rica's congress voted unanimously to ban hunting as a sport. It is the first Latin American country to pass hunting-ban legislation. Currently, 25 percent of Costa Rica's land is protected as national parks or reserves and it is one of the most biodiverse country's in the world.

The penalty for illegally hunting in Costa Rica will be up to four months in prison and fines of up to $3,000.

It's important to note that hunting culture and conservation in Costa Rica are much different than they are in the United States. According to Reuters, many foreign hunters come to the country for exotic cats or rare birds. The country has no estimate on how much money hunting generates for the economy or wildlife conservation.

In the U.S., hunting generated $34 billion dollars in 2011, according to a survey conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Wildlife recreation (hunting, fishing, bird watching, camping, ect.) generated $145 billion in the U.S. in 2011.