Sunday, December 5, 2010

Celeste Mountain Lodge and Maquenque Ecolodge

Hi All,

I don't have much to report here so quickly: At Celeste Mountain Lodge near Bijagua de Upala I saw my first Costa Rica Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle). Also, on a dark, windy, nearly birdless late afternoon I still managed to see a Tody Motmot on the trail there – either dumb luck or there are a few of them there. It's a great lodge and the trail construction is terrific. I hope to return there and spend a good long morning. Also, they are beginning to improve the now very muddy road past the lodge to the Tenorio National Park HQ. The habitat along it is good forest edge, and I saw Spotted Antbird and Streak-crowned Antvireo along here.

Maquenque Ecolodge just north of Boca Tapada was also excellent, and in a very interesting location. I didn't get much time to bird here in the morning yesterday, and it was a dark, showery morning at that. But the afternoon before a Central American Pygmy-Owl came in close to my whistled attempt at creating a mob of tanagers, warblers, and honeycreepers, only my second in Costa Rica. Yesterday morning I saw both Scarlet and Great Green Macaws, Cinnamon Woodpecker (seems to be common there), and a female Golden-winged Warbler. Again, I look forward to returning here. It's a very comfortable lodge, and the staff includes the family members who own the lodge, and they are really nice people. I spent some time with Julio who is a sponge for information and already knows a huge amount about birds, plants, and insects.

Good Birding,

Rich Hoyer

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Tortuguero Red-footed Booby and Brown Noddies

I know that no one else is contributing to this blog any more, but I can hope some people are still reading it. Is there another forum for sharing Costa Rica sightings I'm not aware of?

In any event, I'm here at Turtle Beach Lodge just scouting out lodges, and in between the squalls (continuous almost all night long, heavy downpour) today (Dec 1) I saw a brown morph Red-footed Booby sailing southward with a group of about 20 Magnificent Frigatebirds over the line of coconut trees on the inland side of the beach. There were hundreds of Laughing Gulls of all age classes also moving southward, and two Brown Noddies also going south but low over the breakers. Royal Terns were barely identifiable quite distant and mostly flying north.

There are still a few birds I would consider migrants headed to South America: Scarlet Tanager, Gray-cheeked and Swainsons's Thrush, and a group of at least 10 Chimney Swifts (the latter only yesterday afternoon).

Rich Hoyer