Not many people learn of the Ministry of the Atmosphere and Energy or the MINAE unless they are bringing a bird or want to know something about the National Parks and Wildlife of Costa Rica. The only reason I know anything about this entity is because I have a bird that is on the endangered species list so I have tried to familiarize myself with their organization.
Now I help other people with birds get them into Costa Rica. It is not an easy process and requires approval from the MINAE to bring the birds in. If you are leaving you need their permission to take your bird out of the country as well. All of this is in the form of a CITES permit. You also need a CITES permit from the US government but they are a little more regimented in the way they do things so that part is easy compared to Costa Rica procedures.
At the present time Costa Rica is not allowing any birds to enter the country because of the bird flu. The way that they handle this is to turn off their fax machine and not return emails when you are making a request. If you know who to contact (fortunately I do) you can get current information on the status of this latest problem. I’ve been told it will be a couple of months before they allow birds in again. We will see.