Friday, June 24, 2016

Spring Break in Costa Rica

After 3 trips to Costa Rica with bird groups, I convinced my family that this was the place to go for spring break.  Results were ... well, probably about what one would expect for trying to hybridize a family trip into a foreign country with birds.  I would do again; I don't know that we will however.

We flew into San Jose and made the drive NW to the Arenal area.  You don't notice when you have a driver how bendy most of the roads are that gain or lose elevation with numerous one lane bridges on narrow curves.  Long story short Hannah got car sick pretty quickly and we were making a lot of stops to give her a chance to rest.  One of the stops had a little mixed flock highlighted by a Slate-throated Redstart.

We made it to Arenal after nightfall, taking a couple longcuts to get to straighter roads.  The Arenal feeders were as I remembered them, active with Oropendolas as well as the kids' first toucans, a Chestnut-mandibled in this case.

We walked about the grounds and the kids were impressed by the Passerini's Tanagers

 And more so by a tiny Common Tody-flycatcher that was actively building a nest about a foot from the path

Black and yellow is a common color scheme in the neotropics as evidenced by the common Bananaquits
 and abundant Kiskadees.

Finally a Crested Guan that Ginger spotted teed up above the gardened grounds.
Hazel was quite impressed by this pre-historic looking creature.

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