Ginny's Adventures 2014 travel blog

sheeting that attracts bugs overnight for birds' breakfast

sample of bugs on sheet

interesting wings

here comes a bird

resident jay loves this too

I like the white fan tail

just landed - should be called white-collared jacobin!

there's a different hummer

giant cape lizard with a dewlap for mating call

female is close by

not bad, eh?

sun bittern we watched all day. none got a pic of it...

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sun bittern moves a twig

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sun bittern plays with leaves

We got up before the crack of dawn to go see birds eat bugs off a sheet for breakfast! Barb, Judy, and I snuck a peek earlier than others so we could see the bugs on the screen. The screen was close to our rooms and others met down at the lodge to walk up together. then we all stood around waiting for a myriad of birds. Only a few came, compared to what we were told. They light up that screen all night for special occasions, like all us tourists - not every night.

After breakfast we went for a walk in the woods to look for birds. It is slow going, as they walk a couple hundred feet then stop to look and listen. Erik finds lots of birds and sometimes he can set up a scope on a tripod and let us see the bird in the distance. I never find them with my naked eye! I get amazed that a little bump on a high tree in the distance turns out to be a large iguana!

Not too far down that one lane path is a couple of hummingbird feeders. I saw a bunch of red bananas in the background and was told they were ornamental only! While I couldn't get a decent picture of some different kinds of hummers there, I got a couple. We found a hummingbird nest nearby also. After spending almost an hour there, we continued on and found two colorful lizards, with the male showing off its dewlap (the thing that swells our from its neck). Soon, we found the female. Erik had us stop at one point while he went ahead. He came back and said there was a big column of army ants ahead of us and they will attack if bothered. With 16 of us going forward, he decided not to risk all of us getting by them and then again on our return, so we turned back. oh well.

After lunch and rest time, we went out to a small stream where Erik said we might find a sun bittern. Sure enough, we did. It flew a bit so we could see how pretty and big its wings were. So, we stayed there for the longest waiting for it to fly again. Just when we were giving up and packing up gear, it flew away! It is a picture in our heads - you need to go to see it for yourself!

Late in the afternoon, we walked down past that bug sheet to hummingbird pools. There is a mountain stream that forms 5 pools of water. Hummers like to bathe there in the late afternoon. It was too dark to take pictures, but now I know how they do it. They hover over the pool, dive in quickly, sometimes more than once, and then fly a little way to dry off. While there, we saw a male snowcap hummingbird, a prize for all the birders!

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