Friday, April 12, 2019

right there! right there! right there!

So you want to bird the tropics do you?  Visions of tanagers and toucans dancing in your head?  Well, it may not be quite so easy...

We'll come back to this...

The full morning at Guango was a fairly frustrating one.  We awoke to pretty steady rain and after hanging around the lodge in the dusky pre-dawn hoping for it to brighten for what felt like a really long time we headed out.

A few flycatchers teed up, first Rufous-breasted Chat-tyrant (can you see the sprinkles?)

Then Smoky Bush-tyrant (there's more... and they're more of light rain than sprinkles)

After about a mile's walk we did find a good sized flock ... across the road ... high in the canopy ... into the rain.  It was hard to see and identify birds, which was doubly frustrating knowing how fun of birds they were.

Here's a crop of a bird I missed when I got sick last year, Hooded Mountain-tanager.

Of course it's a lot easier to get on the bird when you spot it.  I found this Red-hooded Tanager way up the slope (of course it's uncommon enough that I didn't study it and couldn't remember its name.  I was reduced to calling out Yellow body Red head! Yellow body Red head!)

There were a lot of tanagers in the flock but lighting, rain, and distance meant I didn't manage many pics.  This Powerful Woodpecker flew 10 feet a couple snaps later and utterly disappeared in some misty vines and try as I might I couldn't get back on it despite others being able to see it.

The other way that it's frustrating is that the guide frequently gets on the bird when it flashes out into the open, calls it out, the bird flies farther away, but the flicker of its motion can just be seen, often being circled by the laser pointer.  This is one of the Tufted-cheeks, it's Right there! Right there! Right there!
I didn't count it.

I did eventually count Citrine Warbler, a bird that would appear and disappear in the identically colored greenery with ease.

And even though Lacrimose Mountain-tanager isn't green, it disappeared pretty easily too.  It took a while to get satisfactory looks.

After about an hour the flock dissipated ... and then the sun came out.

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