Friday, 6 November 2015

Antbirds, Euphonias, Great Green Macaws !

Invaded by Macaws.....
Not our nets, but Tortuguero town......Great Green Macaws !!
Until this year a journey across the canal to the forest near Cano Palma was the easiest way of trying to find these huge Macaws. Now every afternoon several come along above our Sea Turtle Conservancy site and make their way through town. In noisy squadrons of a few pairs or to up to thirty (30) these Macaws - just a few cms less than 1m in length come to feed in the Almond trees.

As the numbers of migrant birds fall, resident species seem to start to appear again. This male Spotted Antbird was a great find on the forest floor of our Parque Nacional Tortuguero standard banding site.
Even more pleasing was the younger bird we caught a while later.
We find all Antbirds very difficult to study at our standard sites as their behaviour closely follows that of Army Ants, whose appearance varies greatly.

In most species of Euphonia in Costa Rica, the males are predominantly blue. Again at our Parque site, very unusual for us to catch an Olive-backed Euphonia - and a species where the male is not blue.

A few kms north at our Cano Palma (COTERC) site a few local school children joined us for banding.
One of the youngsters had written a small project on Hummingbirds so nice to be able to show our smallest lowland Caribbean hummer...
All 2.7g ..of a Stripe-throated Hermit, surely often mistaken for Bees or Wasps in the forest !

This band is on a Long-billed Hermit.
 We don't currently band Hummingbirds - the only reason being  is the time required and training. But we do catch banded birds, as you can see the bands are very different, and a totally different process of preparing the band and in the fitting.

"Our Next Gen Birders and Banders - Costa Rica."
Here with Luis from Spain. Luis is one of the COTERC staff with a Kentucky Warbler, a fairly common winter visitor to the wet forest.

Before we leave the lowland forest, and from some of the smallest to one of the larger birds we handle regularly.
A Northern Barred-Woodcreeper.

At Cano Palma, studies are also undertaken into many other living creatures. A current project is showing about 33 Caiman live within their study area. The same individual ? usually drifts around our banding station, and we have photographed him regularly...
Not sure what Yuly did today.....

The rain season for the lowland Caribbean is nearing, our last day in Tortuguero was lost due to rain but we did manage some migration monitoring from a boat..
Great to pick up this young Bridled Tern resting on driftwood.

I am back in San Jose today, banding at our INBio site in the morning.
Black-billed Cuckoo last time at the site...what will tomorrow bring....

(photos by Yuly and Rich D)

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