Monday, May 1, 2017


On our last full day in Panama we started in San Francisco Reserve as we worked our way back to Panama City.  We were somewhat dawdling along the entrance road seeing what birds would pop into the open along the edges.  Unseen monkeys abruptly started going bonkers and Domi immediately started yelling to Look Up, Look Up, suspecting a Harpy Eagle was likely the cause of the alarm.  He wasn't wrong because next he started yelling HARPY EAGLE, HARPY EAGLE as the massive bird flashed out of the trees.  It perched in perfect view well up the slope.

We drank in every detail, from the loose crest to the narrow barring on the thighs, from the heavy gray bill to the couple black specks on the belly as he bobbed his head back and forth eyeing the still out-of-sight monkeys.

This is what he looked like through the scope, one of Rhoda's digiscoped images

He changed perches once, offering up the header photo. (These next 3 are gif's, click the pic for the series of images to play)...

After sitting for about 10 minutes he turned around, swooped down and broke off a protruding dead branch, either for nesting or just to clear his airspace of obstructions

Finally he soared off into the blue over canopy's horizon

I'd perhaps built up our visit to the nest too high in my mind and been left (admittedly unreasonably) somewhat unsatisfied.  This serendipitous bird more than made up for it.

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