Thursday, June 21, 2012


This morning I got up and headed out, hoping to get up to the trail.  It looked like it might rain so I packed up my rain jacket and a plastic bag for the camera.  And a good thing too, it was raining as soon as I got out of the lobby!  Nice and light, I suited up and headed up the road.  Along the way I saw this ani, I had seen one before but didn't get pictures.  In this one at least you can tell it's not a grackle!

Smooth-billed Ani
 I saw what really looked like a hummingbird chasing away a bigger bird, and then it headed back to wear it came from.  I tried and tried to locate the hummingbird, but couldn't see it.  So I decided to take a quick look at whatever it chased away.  It was a kestrel!  Hahahahaahahhahaha, that is hilarious and awesome!
American Kestrel
 A bit further up the road, a hummingbird came over and proudly surveyed its territory.  Same one?  I can only guess.
 This sign pointed uphill, which surprised noone.
Tsunami sign
 I found the trail!  It was a bit further away than they had described, but I made it.  Yay!
Trail from road entrance
 Almost as soon as I got in there I saw this little lovely, I felt so lucky to be seeing a warbler!
Adelaide's Warbler
 It flitted about in a quite frantic fashion.  It was very close to me, but I couldn't zoom the camera more, it was too crazy to keep it in the viewfinder!  It then flew off to another bush without inviting me along.  I sighed, turned, and saw..........
Adelaide's Warbler
 A tody!!!!!  This was the ~one~ bird I really wanted to see in Puerto Rico.  So gorgeous!  Look at that green!  Look at that neck!  And the beak!  It was sort of waiting for me to leave, so I just snapped a few shots slow and easy, and backed off.  I was really just about on top of it before I spotted it, because I was looking the other way at the warbler.  It certainly put a spring in my step!
Puerto Rican Tody
 Reminder: this is ~not~ a rain forest.
Mystery Cactus
 A frigatebird soared overhead, I don't know why it was so far inland, but I know basically nothing about them, so, your guess is probably a good deal better than mine.
Magnificent Frigatebird
 Bananabird!  It did not want to talk with me like the Cayman ones did though.
 I made it far enough up the trail to see the little side trail to the big tree and the misty valley.  But the trail was steep (which you totally can't see from this picture) and covered in wet leaves.  This is not a good idea for me travelling alone.
Small trail to a Large tree
 But the part of the side trail I went on was worth it - another tody!  This one seemed pretty unphased by my presence, and when it took off to go to a new perch it totally buzzed me.
Puerto Rican Tody
 Coming back down the trail, almost back to the road.
Trail looking towards road entrance
 On the way back, another look at the kestrel.  I wonder how many there are.  Is this the same on as at the resort?  Is it at least a pair?  Maybe a family?  Why do I see a kestrel every time I turn around?
American Kestrel
 I saw the troupials (there is at least one pair) both coming and going, in the same general area.  When I was nearly back at the hotel this one posed, making sure I had a nice shot to remember them by.  Thanks buddy!
I sat down to a large hearty breakfast which I felt I had definitely earned.  Then it was the beach until snorkel time!  :-)

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