Saturday, February 23, 2013

Hello Mr. Motmot!

Back to Costa Rica!  This time with a group, complete with guides and everything.  On the plane ride on the way there I saw something I had never seen before - sunset between two layers of clouds. Wow!  The photo doesn't do it justice, but it's better than nothing!  We arrived after dark and headed to Hotel Bougainvillea.  Sadly the bar closed just before we walked in, but they agreed to send sandwiches to our room.  And what sandwiches they were!  Off to a good start.

In the morning, I tried to convince myself that it was better to sleep for a while, that I would see all of the birds anyway, because there are guides coming and we would go around in expert fashion.  They would know the calls and not spend an hour tracking down a clay colored thrush (yes I have done this very thing).  But, once I hear them I ~really~ want to see them, so up I got and off I went!

I saw several of my favorites and really enjoyed the garden, and I even found a motmot!  Actually there were three motmots!  And I only helped find them, I actually ran into and sort of temporarily glommed onto a guide with 2 or 3 tourists.  They came over to the gazebo while I was there and I pointed out a couple of birds, and called other stuff while the guide set up the scope, so he included me and we chased the motmots together.  :-)  It was so fun!
Grayish Saltator
 It's very easy to tell which hummingbird this is.  Look at that tail!
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird
 Hello my old friend, it was much easier to see you this time than last time.
rufous-capped warbler
 I thought this was a fairly fancy wren, but it turned out to be a plain wren.
plain wren
 Motmot!  My first sighting, before joining forces with the guide.  After that I had a better look but worse pictures.
Blue-crowned Motmot
 Back in for breakfast, where Jack and I met up with Cynthia from the group, and the three of us ventured forth.  Guess what we saw?  Yes, that's right, we found a motmot!
Blue-crowned Motmot
 Oh, and some other stuff too. Look at this pretty fellow.  There are not many birds that are truly, truly blue.
blue-gray tanager
 And this handsome one, who I see in the park all the time.  We are ready for you to return!
Baltimore oriole
 I love seeing the summer tanagers in Costa Rica, where they are normal and expected.  In the park they cause quite a stir.
summer tanager
 We saw this Inca dove, I'm pretty sure that's what it is even though the picture is blown out.
Inca dove
I think this guy is probably a young orchard oriole.  The other possibilities are in different ranges, plus this guy seems to have some rufous coming in on his chest, so my guess is a juvenile orchard oriole just starting to molt.
orchard oriole (probably)
 Hahahahahaahha!!!!!!  ......yes, I know it's juvenile ...... the picture not the bird!
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird
 I still hear the song whenever I see these.
White-winged Dove
 About this point we met up with Glenn, and then headed in for a late lunch and a shower before meeting up with the group.
Philadelphia vireo
 It did not take long to find a motmot!
Blue-crowned Motmot
 Hello again!  No, I am not tired of you yet.  Please continue cavorting.
rufous-capped warbler
 I had seen this crazy fellow earlier and looked it up, and we went back to that spot and the whole group got to see him.  He was quite something!
white-eared ground-sparrow
 Someone had put a pretty flower in the birdbath, and the thrush was splashing so prettily........
clay-colored thrush
 Look at that collar!  Guess what this guy's name is?
rufous-collared sparrow
 Through the glass I spied a pair of pretty wrens.  This group really loves wrens, so we were off to a good start.
rufous-naped wren
 Oropendola!  Not the best view, but any view is better than none.  :-)
Montezuma Oropendola

There was also a hunt for a pygmy owl, which did eventually fly over, but I didn't really see.  Now off to dinner and sleep, for an early day tomorrow.  :-)

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