Monday, 21 October 2013

Frogs, snake and a Kingfisher...

Another day of banding at Tortuga Lodge in primary tropical rainforest brought us more than birds.
Our nets are set around a nature trail - the following net was put up as usual tied to a tree, a tranquil scene?

It was only later that one of the hotel guides told us that there was a deadly Eyelash Viper right next to the tree. If you look back at the picture above the snake can be seen lurking to the right of the tree low down.
It sat there for the rest of the morning so we were very careful when near that net ! It gets its name from the modified scales above its eyelids.
There had been some rain overnight that seemed to have caused an increase in the number of  Strawberry Poison-dart Frogs seen on our net rounds.
There were more ants around too so we weren't surprised to catch two more Chestnut-backed Antbirds but the day was quieter for migrants.
Continuing the frog theme, the night Security Guard at our base was delighted to show us a Tree Frog that he had  found.

And finally back to birds - this morning we caught a Green-and-rufous Kingfisher. Only a few have been banded here in the last 20 years. It is an uncommon resident of the Caribbean lowlands. According to Skutch (Birds of Costa Rica) its nest is undescribed.
Quite a bill...
Who knows what tomorrow will bring. Our days in Costa Rica are always full of surprises.

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