Blog Archives

Global bal big day 2017

On May 13th was celebrated the 3rd global big day as you all may know. I like to think of it as the Champion’s league or Super bowl of the birding community, a day we some expect eagerly and hope to go out do what we love, have fun and provide data for scientific use.

My friends Karen Castillo, Andres Martin Chaves, Oscar Herrera and I made a team which we called South CR endemics, our plan was get as many south east endemics as we could, as well as those none-endemic south east specialists.

Karen Castillo, Andres Chaves, Oscar Herrera, Johan Chaves, South CR endemics. Global big day,

From Left to Right: Karen Castillo, Andres Chaves, Oscar Herrera, Johan Chaves. Photo By Andres Chaves.

Our plan was to bird Esquinas Rainforest lodge for the morning, as well as the town of La Gamba, then move to Coto 47. To bird Las Pangas sector, the road to La Campiña, coto itself and then La Papayera road AKA Villa Neily Hospital road.

We left Quepos at 2:00am and soon after we picked up Oscar we got our first bird; Striped owl.  Then on route we stopped under the Baru/Dominical bridge as Andrés knew of some Barn owls which we saw, the downpour was so bad it slowed us on the road and we made it to La Gamba by Sunrise so we missed some of the owls we hoped for such as Black and white and spectacled.

We did some stops at La Gamba before reaching Esquinas and from the various birds we got the highlight was boat billed heron as we only saw it here.

Once at Esquinas, we took the river bed trail which is the flatter, easiest doing trail and often the most productive. Here we got black faced antthrush, striped woodhaunter, black striped woodcreeper and 2 of our main targets; black cheeked ant-tanager and baird’s trogon. 
On the gardens we got great curassow which are common and quite tame at the gardens, spot-crowned euphonia, charming hummingbird, bronzy hermit, slaty tailed trogon and rufous tailed jacamar and more.
Back on the trail, this time we did the Ocelot trail and went counterclockwise, black bellied wren, sulphur rumped flycatcher, riverside wren, black hooded antshrike were the good birds of the trail.  This trail was quite slow, and it is quite steep which doesn make birding too easy. Still, by 11:00am our team had registered 112 species! not bad considering the weather was not on our side. A proof of the EXCELLENT birding quality here at Esquinas/La Gamba!

Band-tailed barbthroat was quite common at Esquinas.

 

Lunch time!

After a quick lunch stop we moved to La Gamba, we got some of the needed birds such as Rusty margined Flycatcher which is regular close to Esquinas just 500 meters before on the corral area, scrub greenlet, pale-breasted spinetail, red-breasted blackbird(meadowlark), brown-throated parakeet and more. Then it was time to move to our next site; Coto 47.

Rufous-winged woodpeckerThe first site we covered here at Coto 47 was Las Pangas sector (thanks to Daniel Hernandez for teaching me about this site), where we got sapphire-throated hummingbird, veraguan mango, Savannah hawk (thanks to Oscar’s good eye and persistence!) red-rumped woodpecker, slate colored seedeater, blue headed parrot and some more! boom! time to Move to the road that leads to La Campiña to look for fork tailed flycatcher and wattled jacana, the last one unfortunately was not seen as it seems to appear sporadically any where here at Coto 47 (there are vast wetlands here where it can turn up!).

This is got to be the worst photo of a Savannah hawk

Not 1 or 2 but 4 red rumped woodpeckers!

Now our last targets, our last minutes and our lart energy! lesser yellow headed vulture and grey-lined hawk, we drove to the La Papayera sector AKA the Villa Neily hospital road, we quickly succeeded with the hawk but were not lucky with the vulture. This also produced striped cuckoo and great antshrike which were new for the list.

 

Grey (gray) lined hawk, although this poor picture does not show good detail, the gray lines/barring on its wing,back and head/nape are quite visible and its call is different to what we are use to hear from its recent split Gray hawk.

Considering that the weather was not in our favor, and despite that some of the “easy” endemics such as fiery billed aracary and even some of the easy and common birds such as lesson’s motmot, thick-billed euphonia, slaty spinetail etc were not registered we felt we had an excellent day birding, our team recorded about 179 species which you can see on the list I extracted from eBird (such handy tool!) to that list I need to add barn and striped owls.

Cheers to Patrick O’Donnell and team who got approximately 230 species, the largest number scored for CR during the 2017 GBD!

 

Species Name May 13 May 14 May 15 May 16 May 17 May 18 May 19
Great Tinamou (Tinamus major) 4
(1)
Black-bellied Whistling-Duck (Dendrocygna autumnalis)
Blue-winged Teal (Anas discors) 2
(1)
Crested Guan (Penelope purpurascens) 2
(1)
Great Curassow (Crax rubra) 4
(1)
Marbled Wood-Quail (Odontophorus gujanensis) 2
(1)
Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) 5
(2)
Neotropic Cormorant (Phalacrocorax brasilianus) 1
(1)
Bare-throated Tiger-Heron (Tigrisoma mexicanum) 4
(2)
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)
Great Egret (Ardea alba) 25
(2)
Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) 1
(1)
Little Blue Heron (Egretta caerulea) 5
(3)
Tricolored Heron (Egretta tricolor) 1
(1)
Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis) 22
(3)
Green Heron (Butorides virescens) 8
(3)
Boat-billed Heron (Cochlearius cochlearius) 4
(2)
White Ibis (Eudocimus albus) 8
(2)
Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus) 33
(4)
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura) 14
(4)
Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) 3
(1)
Savanna Hawk (Buteogallus meridionalis) 1
(1)
Roadside Hawk (Rupornis magnirostris) 5
(3)
Gray-lined Hawk (Buteo nitidus) 2
(1)
White-throated Crake (Laterallus albigularis) 2
(2)
Gray-cowled Wood-Rail (Aramides cajaneus) 3
(1)
Uniform Crake (Amaurolimnas concolor) 1
(1)
Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinicus) 2
(2)
Southern Lapwing (Vanellus chilensis) 2
(1)
Northern Jacana (Jacana spinosa) 16
(2)
Wilson’s Phalarope (Phalaropus tricolor) 5
(1)
Spotted Sandpiper (Actitis macularius) 1
(1)
Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes) 1
(1)
Pale-vented Pigeon (Patagioenas cayennensis) 27
(2)
Short-billed Pigeon (Patagioenas nigrirostris) 8
(1)
Plain-breasted Ground-Dove (Columbina minuta) 3
(1)
Ruddy Ground-Dove (Columbina talpacoti) 26
(3)
Blue Ground-Dove (Claravis pretiosa) 13
(2)
Ruddy Quail-Dove (Geotrygon montana) 1
(1)
White-tipped Dove (Leptotila verreauxi) 17
(4)
Gray-chested Dove (Leptotila cassinii) 4
(1)
Smooth-billed Ani (Crotophaga ani) 34
(3)
Striped Cuckoo (Tapera naevia) 1
(1)
Squirrel Cuckoo (Piaya cayana) 2
(1)
Barn Owl (Tyto alba) 1
(1)
Common Pauraque (Nyctidromus albicollis) 2
(1)
White-collared Swift (Streptoprocne zonaris) 9
(1)
Costa Rican Swift (Chaetura fumosa) 7
(2)
Bronzy Hermit (Glaucis aeneus) 1
(1)
Band-tailed Barbthroat (Threnetes ruckeri) 4
(2)
Long-billed Hermit (Phaethornis longirostris) 4
(1)
Stripe-throated Hermit (Phaethornis striigularis) 2
(1)
Veraguan Mango (Anthracothorax veraguensis) 5
(1)
Violet-headed Hummingbird (Klais guimeti) 1
(1)
Scaly-breasted Hummingbird (Phaeochroa cuvierii) 11
(3)
Crowned Woodnymph (Thalurania colombica) 5
(1)
Charming Hummingbird (Amazilia decora) 8
(1)
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird (Amazilia tzacatl) 6
(3)
Sapphire-throated Hummingbird (Lepidopyga coeruleogularis) 3
(1)
Blue-throated Goldentail (Hylocharis eliciae) 4
(1)
Slaty-tailed Trogon (Trogon massena) 1
(1)
Baird’s Trogon (Trogon bairdii) 2
(1)
Gartered Trogon (Trogon caligatus) 1
(1)
Black-throated Trogon (Trogon rufus) 2
(1)
Ringed Kingfisher (Megaceryle torquata) 2
(1)
Amazon Kingfisher (Chloroceryle amazona) 1
(1)
Rufous-tailed Jacamar (Galbula ruficauda) 2
(1)
Yellow-throated Toucan (Ramphastos ambiguus) 6
(2)
Golden-naped Woodpecker (Melanerpes chrysauchen) 12
(3)
Red-crowned Woodpecker (Melanerpes rubricapillus) 22
(4)
Red-rumped Woodpecker (Veniliornis kirkii) 4
(1)
Rufous-winged Woodpecker (Piculus simplex) 2
(1)
Lineated Woodpecker (Dryocopus lineatus) 2
(1)
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway) 6
(3)
Yellow-headed Caracara (Milvago chimachima) 10
(4)
Laughing Falcon (Herpetotheres cachinnans) 1
(1)
Orange-chinned Parakeet (Brotogeris jugularis) 24
(2)
Brown-hooded Parrot (Pyrilia haematotis) 1
(1)
Blue-headed Parrot (Pionus menstruus) 6
(3)
Red-lored Parrot (Amazona autumnalis) 6
(3)
Brown-throated Parakeet (Eupsittula pertinax) 13
(3)
Crimson-fronted Parakeet (Psittacara finschi) 9
(2)
Great Antshrike (Taraba major) 2
(1)
Black-hooded Antshrike (Thamnophilus bridgesi) 4
(1)
Dot-winged Antwren (Microrhopias quixensis) 6
(1)
Dusky Antbird (Cercomacroides tyrannina) 2
(1)
Chestnut-backed Antbird (Poliocrania exsul) 8
(1)
Bicolored Antbird (Gymnopithys bicolor) 2
(1)
Black-faced Antthrush (Formicarius analis) 3
(1)
Wedge-billed Woodcreeper (Glyphorynchus spirurus) 3
(1)
Cocoa Woodcreeper (Xiphorhynchus susurrans) 9
(3)
Black-striped Woodcreeper (Xiphorhynchus lachrymosus) 7
(1)
Streak-headed Woodcreeper (Lepidocolaptes souleyetii) 6
(2)
Plain Xenops (Xenops minutus) 2
(1)
Buff-throated Foliage-gleaner (Automolus ochrolaemus) 2
(1)
Striped Woodhaunter (Automolus subulatus) 1
(1)
Pale-breasted Spinetail (Synallaxis albescens) 4
(2)
Southern Beardless-Tyrannulet (Camptostoma obsoletum) 2
(1)
Yellow Tyrannulet (Capsiempis flaveola) 6
(2)
Yellow-bellied Elaenia (Elaenia flavogaster) 4
(2)
Ochre-bellied Flycatcher (Mionectes oleagineus) 4
(2)
Paltry Tyrannulet (Zimmerius vilissimus) 5
(2)
Scale-crested Pygmy-Tyrant (Lophotriccus pileatus) 3
(1)
Northern Bentbill (Oncostoma cinereigulare) 2
(1)
Common Tody-Flycatcher (Todirostrum cinereum) 16
(4)
Eye-ringed Flatbill (Rhynchocyclus brevirostris) 2
(1)
Yellow-olive Flycatcher (Tolmomyias sulphurescens) 4
(2)
Sulphur-rumped Flycatcher (Myiobius sulphureipygius) 1
(1)
Eastern Wood-Pewee (Contopus virens) 1
(1)
Alder/Willow Flycatcher (Traill’s Flycatcher) (Empidonax alnorum/traillii) 2
(2)
Bright-rumped Attila (Attila spadiceus) 3
(1)
Rufous Mourner (Rhytipterna holerythra) 1
(1)
Dusky-capped Flycatcher (Myiarchus tuberculifer) 1
(1)
Myiarchus sp. (Myiarchus sp.) 4
(1)
Great Kiskadee (Pitangus sulphuratus) 29
(4)
Boat-billed Flycatcher (Megarynchus pitangua) 11
(4)
Rusty-margined Flycatcher (Myiozetetes cayanensis) 6
(2)
Social Flycatcher (Myiozetetes similis) 11
(4)
Gray-capped Flycatcher (Myiozetetes granadensis) 14
(4)
Streaked Flycatcher (Myiodynastes maculatus) 2
(2)
Piratic Flycatcher (Legatus leucophaius) 15
(4)
Tropical Kingbird (Tyrannus melancholicus) 22
(3)
Fork-tailed Flycatcher (Tyrannus savana) 1
(1)
Rufous Piha (Lipaugus unirufus) 1
(1)
Blue-crowned Manakin (Lepidothrix coronata) 1
(1)
Orange-collared Manakin (Manacus aurantiacus) 4
(1)
Red-capped Manakin (Ceratopipra mentalis) 3
(1)
Black-crowned Tityra (Tityra inquisitor) 1
(1)
Masked Tityra (Tityra semifasciata) 3
(1)
Scrub Greenlet (Hylophilus flavipes) 8
(3)
Green Shrike-Vireo (Vireolanius pulchellus) 1
(1)
Tawny-crowned Greenlet (Tunchiornis ochraceiceps) 4
(1)
Lesser Greenlet (Pachysylvia decurtata) 10
(1)
Southern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx ruficollis) 7
(2)
Gray-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea) 12
(2)
Mangrove Swallow (Tachycineta albilinea) 3
(1)
Scaly-breasted Wren (Microcerculus marginatus) 2
(1)
House Wren (Troglodytes aedon) 14
(4)
Black-bellied Wren (Pheugopedius fasciatoventris) 3
(2)
Isthmian Wren (Cantorchilus elutus) 6
(3)
Riverside Wren (Cantorchilus semibadius) 6
(1)
Long-billed Gnatwren (Ramphocaenus melanurus) 2
(1)
Tropical Gnatcatcher (Polioptila plumbea) 1
(1)
Swainson’s Thrush (Catharus ustulatus) 1
(1)
Clay-colored Thrush (Turdus grayi) 30
(4)
Tropical Mockingbird (Mimus gilvus) 2
(1)
Buff-rumped Warbler (Myiothlypis fulvicauda) 1
(1)
Gray-headed Tanager (Eucometis penicillata) 3
(1)
White-shouldered Tanager (Tachyphonus luctuosus) 2
(1)
White-throated Shrike-Tanager (Lanio leucothorax) 10
(2)
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis) 34
(4)
Blue-gray Tanager (Thraupis episcopus) 14
(4)
Palm Tanager (Thraupis palmarum) 19
(4)
Golden-hooded Tanager (Tangara larvata) 6
(2)
Red-legged Honeycreeper (Cyanerpes cyaneus) 1
(1)
tanager sp. (Thraupidae sp.) (Thraupidae sp. (tanager sp.)) 1
(1)
Blue-black Grassquit (Volatinia jacarina) 15
(4)
Ruddy-breasted Seedeater (Sporophila minuta) 1
(1)
Thick-billed Seed-Finch (Sporophila funerea) 2
(2)
Variable Seedeater (Sporophila corvina) 12
(3)
White-collared Seedeater (Sporophila torqueola) 21
(4)
Yellow-bellied Seedeater (Sporophila nigricollis) 7
(2)
Bananaquit (Coereba flaveola) 6
(4)
Buff-throated Saltator (Saltator maximus) 10
(3)
Streaked Saltator (Saltator striatipectus) 1
(1)
Black-striped Sparrow (Arremonops conirostris) 14
(4)
Orange-billed Sparrow (Arremon aurantiirostris) 6
(1)
Black-cheeked Ant-Tanager (Habia atrimaxillaris) 8
(1)
Blue-black Grosbeak (Cyanocompsa cyanoides) 6
(2)
Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna) 1
(1)
Red-breasted Meadowlark (Sturnella militaris) 17
(2)
Melodious Blackbird (Dives dives) 3
(2)
Great-tailed Grackle (Quiscalus mexicanus) 24
(3)
Bronzed Cowbird (Molothrus aeneus) 11
(2)
Scarlet-rumped Cacique (Cacicus uropygialis) 10
(1)
Crested Oropendola (Psarocolius decumanus)
Spot-crowned Euphonia (Euphonia imitans)

 

Advertisements

Birding Carara national park and Manuel Antonio area.

Birding Carara national park is ALWAYS productive, its geographic position and combination of habitats and its surrounding areas makes this place a must see to any birder visiting Costa Rica. Target species/specialties here range from antbirds-ant thrushes, wrens, ant pittas, many ground dwellers etc but as well as king vulture, macaws, trogons an more. In the Other hand, bird-watching Manuel Antonio national park is less productive and can yield very little birds, nonetheless there are GREAT birding hot spots near this famous park that are only frequented by 2 guides and are kept hidden from the average nature lover. This sites are Esquipulas and El rey marshes, as well as La Gallega river. All with very easy access and located within 30-40 minutes drive from Manuel Antonio.

Carara: as known by many, the most see of the central pacific. One of the best experience while birding Carara is indeed to encounter the army ants, this fierce ants will clean a spot out of insects, therefore all those known as “antbirds” will join the chaos of caused by the ants so they can catch what tries to escape from the ants.

Black faced antthrush

Black faced antthrush

Above is a black faced ant-thrush, a ground dweller and very-hard to find bird specie due to its camouflage. I photographed this individual while leading a tour to Carara on the lagoon trail (AKA river trail) on February 2nd with Douglas Boyd; a client I had the pleasure to bird with on February 9th 2014.  it is seen relatively often if known where to look for him.

Streak chested antpitta

This antpitta is the oh! ah! of many birders coming here, yes very hard to find as is normal of antpittas due to small size and often shy behavior. This bird was photographed on Feb 2nd while birding with MR and Ms Winter on the lagoon trail, but it is best looked for at the araceas trail or Quebrada bonita trail near main ranger station, as seen with Aaron Kortenhoven last Feb 10th. an antpitta covered by leafs!

rufous tailed jacamar, a common bird, seen at any trail, but more often at the lagoon trail.

 

Black hooded antshrike

Other birds commonly seen at Carara include trogons, toucans, few hummingbirds, wrens manakins and much more. One of the nice features of Carara is the fact that very few people visit this park, so it is never crowded (except for the main headquarters trails during the morning hours) and the few people who visit Carara are for the most part birders so it is very quiet here.

Other birding sites near Carara that should be birded by any vising Carara are the Bijagual road, the tarcoles river, Cerro lodge road and tarcoles River mouth mangroves. For this I plan to post separately later.

Red capped manakin, best seen at the baths at the araceas trail

A hard find! Marbled wood-quail.

Great tinamou, a common yet hard-to find bird, luckily this bird was taking a bath at Carara last Feb 18th while birding with David and Christine Northrup, a couple of birders who I had the pleasure to bird with on January 2013. Amazing birds we had!

Esquipulas: This mountains are only about 45 minutes to the east of Manuel Antonio national park, a great option with a good level of endemism such as fiery billed aracary, river side wren, black hooded antshrike, white crested coquette and more. Other specialties here are king vulture, barred hawk, black mandibled toucan, baird’s trogon, and the various species of honeycreepers. Esquipulas has a good location at the foothills of the central pacific, where some species of middle-higher elevation descend to during the early dry season, e.g elegant euphonia, three wattled bellbird and others.

Chestnut-mandibled toucan, formerly known as black mandibled T. Common at Esquipulas, however best chances for this specie is the afternoon.

Bird-watching Manuel Antonio national park could be disappointing to many serious birders due to the crowd that comes to this park, how ever, Esquipulas is indeed the best option for the birder visiting Manuel Antonio with family as the park is one of the best destinations for the family and nature lovers. Also, those birders seeking for an off the beaten path location can find Esquipulas very convenient, easy to feet on a schedule when birding locations such as Carara national park and Dota/Savegre region and do not want to do the long drive and would prefer to spend a night at Quepos/Manuel Antonio.

Barred hawk, mostly seen on flight. Among with king vulture, white hawk and black hawk are the highlights of the sky at Esquipulas.

Elegant euphonia

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butorides striata-Striated heron in Coto 47.

Last September 5th Johan Fernandez and some friends went to the southern pacific of CR, to Coto 47 by Villa Neily looking for the already established Savanna hawk, which there were not able to find, but they did better! they found an striated heron, this extremely rare heron (once considered conspecific with green heron Butorides virescens) had been seen in CR apparently 3 to 4 times only, so of course we had to try our luck and try to locate it following Johan’s suggestions.

We went on the 8th and were very lucky to find it. The heron was in a big pond with floating vegetation, feeding and moving from place to place withing an area of approximately 50 square meters.

 

In addition to this already successful morning (considering that we found it at 7:05am) we got some other interesting birds including 3 lifers total for me; Northen harrier, striated heron and Savanna hawk which it was time to see after 2 previous trips I did just to look for it with no luck.

 

far in the distance Roy found his Savanna hawk (Buteogallus meridionalis) a relatively new bird to the CR list, and very recent change its status to breeding resident as one individual nested there in Coto 47.

Purple Gallinule

White-throated crake

Here what we saw at Coto 47:

Location
Coto 47 Marshes, Puntarenas, CR ( Map )
Mon Sep 08, 2014 6:15 AM
Protocol:
Stationary
Party Size:
4
Comments:
Karina S. Roy O. Mario B.
Species
66 species (+1 other taxa) total
X
Black-bellied Whistling-Duck
1
Muscovy Duck
X
Wood Stork
X
Neotropic Cormorant
X
Anhinga
1
Bare-throated Tiger-Heron
X
Great Egret
X
Snowy Egret
X
Little Blue Heron
3
Tricolored Heron
X
Cattle Egret
X
Green Heron
1
Striated Heron

one individual seen on floating vegetation, feeding, flying from vegetation to vegetation. Great views. Picture:
https://scontent-b-atl.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xfp1/v/t1.0-9/p180x540/1610784_10204771351752239_4494610353260457902_n.jpg?oh=05ea698a71fcb85f40439e8beab85faa&oe=54A06DDC

1
Black-crowned Night-Heron
X
White Ibis
1
Glossy/White-faced Ibis

an all dark ibis flew above us, was not able to confirm ID but definitively not green nor young white ibis.

2
Roseate Spoonbill
X
Black Vulture
X
Turkey Vulture
1
Northern Harrier

1 individual flying low with wings held above horizontal, head marks well noticed.

1
Savanna Hawk

an all rusty/reddish hawk. https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xfp1/v/t1.0-9/p526x296/10672208_10204775865825088_9167196283829655319_n.jpg?oh=79922b19e7a07a9ad01ca4135dadc993&oe=5491715C&__gda__=1419349925_d7581e657e56fc0ac8a825b33c946ffa

X
Roadside Hawk
3
Gray-breasted Crake
X
Purple Gallinule
X
Black-necked Stilt
X
Southern Lapwing
X
Northern Jacana
X
Lesser Yellowlegs
X
Pale-vented Pigeon
X
Inca Dove
X
Ruddy Ground-Dove
X
Blue Ground-Dove
X
White-tipped Dove
1
Striped Cuckoo
X
Smooth-billed Ani
X
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird
X
Red-crowned Woodpecker
X
Crested Caracara
X
Yellow-headed Caracara
X
Orange-chinned Parakeet
X
Brown-throated Parakeet
1
Streak-headed Woodcreeper
X
Yellow-bellied Elaenia
X
Paltry Tyrannulet
X
Common Tody-Flycatcher
X
Great Kiskadee
X
Social Flycatcher
X
Tropical Kingbird
2
Scrub Greenlet
X
Lesser Greenlet
X
Gray-breasted Martin
X
Barn Swallow
X
House Wren
1
Black-bellied Wren
X
Plain Wren
X
Riverside Wren
1
Yellow Warbler
X
Cherrie’s Tanager
X
Blue-gray Tanager
X
Palm Tanager
X
Blue-black Grassquit
X
Variable Seedeater
X
Black-striped Sparrow
X
Great-tailed Grackle
X
Bronzed Cowbird
3
Orchard Oriole
2
Yellow-throated Euphonia

After birding in coto 47 for a few more hours and seeking for the wattled jacana with no luck we then went to La Gamba to look for some species for our friend Mario; rusty margined flycatcher and others, we were lucky to meet a farmer who told us a horse died in his land 2 days ago so did not hesitate to ask permission and were able to see 5 king vultures extremely close, the smell was totally worth it.

Unfortunately I wasnt lucky to get a good shot. 2 king vultures flying away.

Young king vulture

Who said birding has to be easy! We got sun, crossed rivers, walked on the mud and had suffered the pestilence of a dead horse, what a great day.

 

Right after the town of Coto we found this, here we saw a black crowned night-heron, a little out of its distribution range as it is usually found from Carara and north as well as in the caribbean slope.

Black crowned night-heron

Coto 47 is an excellent birding spot for those seeking for some of a unusual Panamanian invasive species, therefore I would encourage any birder either local or traveler to pay a visit to this place.

To get to the swamps what you have to do is drive towards the city of Neily known locally as Villa Neily when you get to the intersection of the town (on route 2) where there is a red light/stop light here make a right and follow the secondary paved road that leads to Laurele, on your way you will pass a big police station on your left, a few hundred meters you will pass what seemed to be the liquoir company on your left, and later the town of Coto 47, continue until the end of the paved road, as it turns into a gravel road continue until you find a 1 old formerly train bridge, then continue the next 2Km and you will get to the second old train bridge, the soonest you cross it you will see the swaps on your right.

And yes, we got Rusty margined flycatcher for Mario.

The team! from left to right, me, my wife Karina, Mario Brenes and Roy Orozco

 

 

 

 

 

Wandering tattler in Quepos

Its funny how things work, on Monday, Sept 1st I wrote a note about shorebirds an I stated the birds I have not seen and wanted to see this migration, well, guess what! I got 2 wandering tattlers in Quepos.

About 4 months ago 1 individual was reported during the northern migration by my friend Johan Fernandez, Jim Zook Diego Vargas and Kevin Easley, since then I kept going every 2 days to the site with no success, lost my faith during the July since migration was long ended, on the 1st I went again to the site and there it was! 2 of them!

a bad pic taken with a cellphone and binoculars.

 

On Sept 3rd, after a pelagic birding trip I was on, and since we were close the spot I took my wife and my friend Mario Brenes to see the birds and there they were.

 

 

If you are in the area

A quick bird-walk in town

Today my wife and I went for a short walk in our town (Villa Nueva, 12 KM East of Quepos) and tried to get some pictures, our short walk produced:

Date and Effort
Edit Date and Effort
Sat Aug 23, 2014 2:30 PM

Protocol:Incidental
Party Size:2
Observers:Johan Chaves
Comments:N/A
Species
Edit Species List
33 species total

2 Little Tinamou
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
1 Roadside Hawk
Pale-vented Pigeon
2 White-tipped Dove
2 Squirrel Cuckoo
Groove-billed Ani
1 Long-billed Hermit
2 Golden-naped Woodpecker
1 Laughing Falcon
White-crowned Parrot
Black-hooded Antshrike
1 Plain Xenops
2 Royal Flycatcher
1 Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher
Great Kiskadee
Boat-billed Flycatcher
Social Flycatcher
Tropical Kingbird
House Wren
2 Black-bellied Wren
4 Riverside Wren
2 Clay-colored Thrush
Cherrie’s Tanager
Blue-gray Tanager
Palm Tanager
1 Golden-hooded Tanager
2 Variable Seedeater
2 Buff-throated Saltator
1 Orange-billed Sparrow
1 Blue-black Grosbeak
7 Melodious Blackbird

Not bad for an easy 1hr15min walk in town, here some pics:

Male blue black grosbeak, a resident of the south pacific slope and the caribbean side of the country.

Black bellied wren, a common wren found in the central and south pacific slope, endemic from CR to western Colombia.

black bellied wren

house wren
Nothing like northamerican or european sparrows, the orange billed sparrow.

plain xenops

Manuel Antonio birdwatching tour, with a lifer!

Yesterday (Feb 10th) while I was in a birding tour in the country side of Manuel Antonio I had the opportunity to bird with Mr John Pratt, an avid birder and a former guide in New Foundland Canada with vast experience with both NA bird species and CR species.

We went to Esquipulas, La gallega river and El rey in the afternoon, and what a day! it even yielded me a new specie to my life list a yellow rumped warbler.

Here is what we saw during the day:

Esquipulas, CR-SJ
Feb 10, 2014 6:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Protocol: Traveling
2.0 kilometer(s)
Comments: Birding tour with Mr John Pratt. CA.
78 species

Cattle Egret X
Black Vulture X
Turkey Vulture X
Barred Hawk X
White Hawk X
Broad-winged Hawk X
Short-tailed Hawk X
Pale-vented Pigeon X
Ruddy Ground-Dove X
Blue Ground-Dove X
White-tipped Dove X
Groove-billed Ani X
White-collared Swift X
White-crested Coquette X
Long-billed Starthroat X
Violet-headed Hummingbird X
Scaly-breasted Hummingbird X
Violet Sabrewing X
Charming Hummingbird X
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird X
Blue-throated Goldentail X
Gartered Trogon X
Green Kingfisher X
Fiery-billed Aracari X
Black-mandibled Toucan X
Golden-naped Woodpecker X
Red-crowned Woodpecker X
Crested Caracara X
Yellow-headed Caracara X
Laughing Falcon X
Scarlet Macaw X
Orange-chinned Parakeet X
White-crowned Parrot X
Red-lored Parrot X
Cocoa Woodcreeper X
Streak-headed Woodcreeper X
Southern Beardless-Tyrannulet X
Yellow-crowned Tyrannulet X
Paltry Tyrannulet X
Western Wood-Pewee X
Great Kiskadee X
Boat-billed Flycatcher X
Social Flycatcher X
Gray-capped Flycatcher X
Streaked Flycatcher X
Piratic Flycatcher X
Tropical Kingbird X
Orange-collared Manakin X
Masked Tityra X
Brown Jay X
Northern Rough-winged Swallow X
Southern Rough-winged Swallow X
Mangrove Swallow X
Rufous-naped Wren X
Riverside Wren X
Clay-colored Thrush X
Northern Waterthrush X
Tennessee Warbler X
Yellow Warbler X
Chestnut-sided Warbler X
Cherrie’s Tanager X
Blue-gray Tanager X
Golden-hooded Tanager X
Blue Dacnis X
Red-legged Honeycreeper X
Green Honeycreeper X
Blue-black Grassquit X
Variable Seedeater X
Bananaquit X
Yellow-faced Grassquit X
Buff-throated Saltator X
Black-striped Sparrow X
Summer Tanager X
Melodious Blackbird X
Great-tailed Grackle X
Baltimore Oriole X
Montezuma Oropendola X
Spot-crowned Euphonia X

Aracaries are fairly common at Esquipulas

Male charming hummingbird, a commonly requested specie and often seen at Esquipulas area.

Let its crown speak for himself!

White hawk

Montezuma oropendula

Male spot crowned euphonia

Paltry tyrannulet, notice absence of wing bars, thus avoiding confusion with similar sized tyrannulets

Just another shot of the spot crowned euphonia

Find the long billed start throat (hummingbird)

So you did find it in the first photo huh? try this one

much easier here. Long billed start throat

Here is the most wide spread bird specie of the world, and its nesting at Esquipulas!

 

La gallega, CR-P

Feb 10, 2014 11:00 AM – 11:25 AM
Protocol: Stationary
13 species

Great Egret X
Cattle Egret X
Green Heron X
Collared Plover X
Spotted Sandpiper X
Greater Yellowlegs X
Least Sandpiper X
Groove-billed Ani X
Ringed Kingfisher X
Mangrove Swallow X
Tropical Mockingbird X
Red-breasted Blackbird X
Great-tailed Grackle X

Finca Maritima (Playa El Rey) rice fields, CR-P

Feb 10, 2014 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Protocol: Traveling
1.0 kilometer(s)
61 species

Wood Stork X
Bare-throated Tiger-Heron X
Great Blue Heron X
Great Egret X
Snowy Egret X
Little Blue Heron X
Cattle Egret X
Green Heron X

Double striped thicknee
Black Vulture X
Turkey Vulture X
Common Black-Hawk X
Purple Gallinule X
Northern Jacana X
Pale-vented Pigeon X
Inca Dove X
Ruddy Ground-Dove X
Blue Ground-Dove X
White-tipped Dove X
Mangrove Cuckoo X
Groove-billed Ani X
White-collared Swift X
Green-breasted Mango X
Scaly-breasted Hummingbird X
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird X
Blue-throated Goldentail X
Ringed Kingfisher X
Amazon Kingfisher X
Green Kingfisher X
American Pygmy Kingfisher X
Crested Caracara X
Yellow-headed Caracara X
Common Tody-Flycatcher X
Great Crested Flycatcher X
Great Kiskadee X
Streaked Flycatcher X
Tropical Kingbird X
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher X
Yellow-throated Vireo X
Philadelphia Vireo X
Southern Rough-winged Swallow X
Mangrove Swallow X
Northern Waterthrush X
Prothonotary Warbler X
Tennessee Warbler X
Gray-crowned Yellowthroat X
American Redstart X
Yellow Warbler X
Chestnut-sided Warbler X
Yellow-rumped Warbler X
Cherrie’s Tanager X
Blue-black Grassquit X
Variable Seedeater X
White-collared Seedeater X
Bananaquit X
Black-striped Sparrow X
Indigo Bunting X
Great-tailed Grackle X
Bronzed Cowbird X
Black-cowled Oriole X
Baltimore Oriole X

Tricolored Munia X

Dickcissels are found by hundreds at el rey.

This is so far (that I know) the southern most a thick knee its been reported except for a ebird report in 2010 in osa area.

a juvenile bare throated tiger heron eating a fish

green breasted mango

A back view of the yellow rumped warbler (Myrtle) a new to my life list. Thanks to Mr John for the quick ID, a species common for his place, very uncommon for CR.

A great birding week part 2

ON MONDAY 13th, John, Marcia and I went to Carara for a full day of bird-watching. On our way we stopped on a lagoon at Playa Hermosa as this spot often yields some good birds during a quick time. We saw here a little more than 20 species in about 30 minutes, a must do stop to anyone heading to Carara from Quepos/MA area.

A gray hawk caught breakfast just in front of us

Common black hawk

Once in Carara we took the lagoon trail AKA Meandrica trail or river trail. That its well known as the best birding place in the entire park, we birded from 8:00am until 11:45am when we walked out for lunch, these more than 3 hrs were very productive and saw about 47 species:

Wood Stork X
Black Vulture X
Turkey Vulture X
White-winged Dove X
Inca Dove X
Squirrel Cuckoo X
White-collared Swift X
Long-billed Hermit X
Stripe-throated Hermit X
Blue-throated Goldentail X
Slaty-tailed Trogon X
Black-throated Trogon X
Turquoise-browed Motmot X
Black-mandibled Toucan X
Hoffmann’s Woodpecker X
Crested Caracara X
Yellow-headed Caracara X
Scarlet Macaw X
Barred Antshrike X
Black-hooded Antshrike X
Dot-winged Antwren X
Dusky Antbird X
Bicolored Antbird X
Wedge-billed Woodcreeper X
Northern Barred-Woodcreeper X
Cocoa Woodcreeper X
Streak-headed Woodcreeper X
Plain Xenops X
Northern Bentbill X
Common Tody-Flycatcher X
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher X
Great Crested Flycatcher X
Great Kiskadee X
Boat-billed Flycatcher X
Streaked Flycatcher X
Tropical Kingbird X
Orange-collared Manakin X
Red-eyed Vireo X
Rufous-naped Wren X
Rufous-breasted Wren X
Tennessee Warbler X
Yellow Warbler X
Chestnut-sided Warbler X
White-shouldered Tanager X
Blue-gray Tanager X
Baltimore Oriole X
Yellow-crowned Euphonia X

Not the best picture as it dosnt show good colors, but here is a female Black throated trogon

The lagoon trail was excellent as usual we saw a few of the common species such as black hooded antstrike dot- winged antwren, some lesser Greenlets, Rufus breasted wrens, plain xenops and many others. We even got to a spot where there were some army ants, the swarm has past and very few were left but still we got some ants specialists such as bicolored antbird.

After lunch we came back to the cement trail for some quick birding and saw 19 more species.

The cement trail is completely renewed as a result of several months of work to make carara  the lieder park on handicap-accessibility, a job well done!

The 600 challenge part 2

20: White throated flycatcher, 21: Lesser elaenia, 22: Lesser goldfinch, 23: Scaled pigeon,  seen on Nov 3rd in the small savannas in route to Durika.

24: Orange billed nightingale-thrush,  25: Barred parakeet, Seen on NOv 3rd at Durika.

Everything for a crake.

Everything for a crake.

We heard ocellated crake several times but never saw it, and the rosy thrush-tanager kept calling but never allowed us to see him. Gotta go back for those again this year!

26: Red billed pigeon.

Red billed pigeon

27: Black tailed flycatcher, 28: black cheeked ant-tanager,  seen on Nov 11th in Esquinas rain forest lodge.

Black tailed flycatcher

Black cheeked ant-tanager

29: Rusty margined flyacatcher, Nov 11th in the road to La gamba.

Rusty margined flycatcher, this FC looks very similar to a great kistakee and a social flycatcher.

30: Common nighthawk, Nov 11th, driving back to Quepos on route 34 north, several individuals flying over the palm oil plantations by Roncador.

31: Fasciated tiger-heron, Nov 19th in the Portalon River, by the entrance of Portosol.

fasciated tiger-heron

32: Yellow crowned tyrannulet, Nov 24th in Esquipulas.

Yellow crowned flycather

33: Sapphire throated hummingbird, 34:brown throated parakeet, on Dec 1st in Coto 47 marshes.

Brown throated parakeet

35: Black striped woodcreeper: Esquinas rainforest lodge Dec 2nd.

36: Balck bellied hummingbird, 37: rough legged tyrannulet, Dec 10th, Tapanti NP.

38: common gallinule, 39: sedge wren, Cartago, Dec 10th. (Lagunas de Doña Ana)

Common gallinule AKA Common moorhen

40: Crested owl, Dec 12, Rainmaker

41: Barred forest-falcon, 42: yellow margined flycatcher, 21 Dec Nectandra.

New species Total: 41. CR list Total 583

%d bloggers like this: