The main goal of this study was to evaluate whether the trends in the recovery of forest cover in Guanacaste continued during the past decade and to evaluate if the socioeconomic drivers of recovery have been altered. Our analysis found that forest cover in Guanacaste province increased marginally from 48.14% in 2005 to 50.74% in 2012. This implies that the forest recovery process during this period has continued but with a much smaller pace, showing signs of stagnation. The province landscape has changed since the 1970s, when it was dominated by livestock ranching and was the most deforested province with only 23.6% of forest cover. Today Guanacaste is a good example of an economic development forest transition region, with a matrix of land use that is dominated by new forests in different successional stages, which has resulted in great benefits to society given the ecosystem services that this landscape provides.
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Vol. 21 • No. 4