Saturday, April 30, 2011

Costa Rica: Tragic Camera Settings Day

We made it to Costa Rica today - yay!!!!  :-)  Yes, overnight in Miami sucked, but I was able to rearrange everything and we got picked up at the airport by Lost Iguana and Steve & Beth.  Then came the long ride to the resort, with poor Jack getting sicker with each passing mile.  On the way we stopped for lunch and I found a kiskadee nest with a parent attending to chicks!  :-)

great kiskadee flying with berries to nest
Our room overlooks a really nice landscaped garden area, so I spent some time sitting out there.  A turkey vulture circled nice and low over our garden area, I thought the pictures would be stunning.  But my camera was on crazy settings all day and I didn't notice!  So most of the pictures are unusable crap.  :-(  Oh well, live and learn.  A stripe-throated hermit kept me company.

stripe-throated hermit
 I also saw a clay-colored robin (yes, not a difficult feat), a red-legged honeycreeper (gorgeous!) and a mystery woodcreeper (cool).  Then I headed down to the front desk to figure out kleenex and bug spray, after making sure Jack would be okay for an hour or so on his own.  I saw so much on the way, it was a wonderful introduction!  First, a pair of blue-grey tanagers came through, happy as can be and flirting with me.

blue-grey tanager
 Then a barred antshrike pair, working their way through about ground level, and this Passerini's tanager going after a spider web with considerable gusto.  I don't know if she was after the spider, its victims, or the web for nesting material, but she was definitely after something!  I did see a bunch of nests, some nestled into branches and large leaves, and some hanging.  It was a great time to be there.

female Passerini's tanager attacking spider web with gusto

common tody-flycatcher

female rose-breasted grosbeak

The was an old dead tree that had two nests in it - one for black-cheeked woodpeckers, on for long-tailed flycatchers.  At first I didn't realize they were long-tailed, I thought they were carrying something.  Nope, those ridiculous things are attached!  Hahahaha - awesome!  As I was watching them and assessing the situation I heard what could have been some sort of lawn mower behind me, and turned around to see..... a hummingbird just a couple of feet away, ignoring me and going to town on this flower.  Well hello to you too! I was just in heaven.

long-billed starthroat
On the way back up I saw the barred antshrikes again, including a crest-raising incident!  I don't think they know how lucky they are to have crests.  I would love to be able to raise a crest!
barred antshrike apparently hearing something interesting

barred antshrike with crest raised

I also saw a bananaquit and a black-cowled oriole.  I'm so sad about the camera settings, but I did see most of these birds again.  Except for taking care of poor Jack, it was a great first day here.  

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