Costa Rica has 26 percent of its land area under various protection management categories. As in many other developing countries, however, challenges and threats are great. This is mainly due to the fact that development continues to pressure the ecological systems around terrestrial and marine protected areas. Overfishing, legal and illegal fishing, unregulated tourism development, urbanization, logging, and water pollution, sedimentation, the degradation of coral reefs and the depletion of fisheries, are threats that affect protected areas as well as other neighboring lands and waters. In addition, despite the enormous efforts made to date, Costa Rica’s protected area system still has conservation gaps that must be addressed if the desired ecological representation is to be achieved.