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Brazil 2014: Pantanal Wonderland


TonyQ

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Snowy Egret



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Yacare Caiman


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Rufescent Tiger Heron – soaking up the sun



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Rufous-Tailed Jacamar (kindly showing off its front and back)


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Cocoi Heron



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Another Ringed Kingfisher (female)


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Turquoise Fronted Amazon We also saw a brocket deer with a baby which was a bit skittish when we stopped.   Then as we came through a gap in the woodland and MrsQ (a.k.a @@Thursday's Child) excited

Continued... We were thrilled again to have such a good sighting of a Giant Anteater - and enjoyed our cold beer as a sundowner -watched by   Turquoise-Fronted Amazon (?) We continued with a

We then came across a group of Capybara sitting across the track. Although we have seen them on TV, they still surprise us at how big they are. They are fairly common, but we will enjoy watching them

Posted Images

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Neotropic Cormorant

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Black Skimmer

We also caught a glimpse of two Giant Otters, but they swam off much more quickly than our boat could manage. (No photo!)

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Golden-Collared Macaw (?). (Composition rules suggest that birds should fly into the picture, but for some reason I like this as it is!)

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Blue-Crowned Trogon

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Yellow-Headed Caracara (?)

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Capybara (as I mentioned before, these are big animals - apparantly upto 65Kg)

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A final Ringed Kingfisher

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And back to the landing point - with the lodge visible in the background

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michael-ibk

Very much enjoy these bird shots, Tony. The Jacamar especially posed nicely for you.

 

I hope you don´t mind, but I´m pretty sure you have only one Ringed Kingfisher there (the first one). In #25 and # 26 that´s a female Amazon Kingfisher, and probably a male Green Kingfisher (possibly a male Amazon one) in #27. And that´s a Striated Heron, not a Cocoi Heron in #26.

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@@TonyQ

To me, the bird can fly any direction as long as it stays in the frame :) ! Specially if they are macaws!

Trogon and kingfisher appears to be so close. Based on exif data You have used a 300 mm lens; was it long enough or there was a need to do some massive cropping?

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Treepol

Wow - the birds really turned it on for you.

 

I particularly the macaws in flight and the basking tiger heron.

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@@michael-ibk

Thank you - you know I no birder so am always happy to be corrected! I am also happy that my post now contains more variety!

@@Treepol

The river in particular was great for birds - we really enjoyed it

 

@@xelas

Thank you. My lens does only go to 300mm (on a crop sensor camera). The amount of cropping varies with different pictures.

The last Kingfisher has no cropping - that is as it was shot - so with many of the birds you get very close with a boat

With the trogon picture, if you add about 3cm to the left of the picture as posted, and about 1cm to the top and 1cm to the right, you would have the original (as shot version) - so it is cropped but we were still pretty close.

The Jacamar would also have about 3cm to one side added and about 1cm to the top - so again cropped but not massive cropping.

Large-billed tern - add 3cm to the left and you would have the original. Cormorant - add 2cm to left and 1cm to right.

I was surprised how close we got to birds on the river - at other points in the report we are further away- but generally the Pantanal has got me closer to birds than anywhere else I have been.

 

@@Atravelynn - we had a great time with Claudia - she was very enthusiastic and keen to fit in with our enthusiasms. We always felt we could spend as long as we wanted with any sighting.

Edited by TonyQ
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Uh_oh busted

WOW! Now there is more impetus for me to plan a trip to Brazil. Kind of in the back of my mind for a few years, but all it seems to take is for some excellent photos and boom, a plan is born.

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Bush dog

Nice shots of birds

Michael-ibk is right about the birds.

I think that the last kingfisher is a green one because of the white dots on the upper wings.

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@@TonyQ

Howdy, those birds are so comfortable with humans?!

Which was the lens used then? Or better, would a 300mm f4 lens on a crop body do the job? Both in reach and in max.aperture dept.?!

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@@Bush dog

Thank you!

@@xelas

Canon 70-300IS (non L version) max Aperture 5.6 at 300mm on a Canon 550D

I am sure that 400mm would have been welcome on a number of occasions (especially looking at monkeys in the north).

 

There were certainly a lot of very serious lenses and cameras when we were in the north looking for jaguars and I am sure they will get better pictures. I think it is always a balance - I like to watch wildlife and hope to take some nice pictures to remind me of that - but I don't want to spend a fortune on equipment and I also don't want to carry the weight that comes with some of it. I am happy to carry mine when walking (e.g on a walking safari last year in Zambia) and I am happy to accept its limitations. However, I also love to see the work of many excellent photographers on Safaritalk!

 

 

I have not used a prime 300mm - I am sure f4 would have been welcome as light was fading! Quite a few of my anteater pictures were taken at much less than 300mm.

 

@@Uh_oh busted - I think it is a great place!

Edited by TonyQ
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Continued....

 

We spent the middle of the day wandering around the grounds. Near the boat landing area was a large tree which was home to a group of Hyacinth Macaws (Probably about 10 - 12 though I didn't count).

 

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These are spectacular birds, up to 1m in length. They are fascinating to watch as they interact with each other. These are very rare in most areas, but in the Pantanal they are recovering because of the work of landowners to protect them.

 

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Around the back of the lodge

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Yellow Trumpet Tree

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Around the back of the lodge is a small lake, home to a number of birds including spoonbill and more hyacinth macaws. When we were walking here, we saw a deer in the distance – but it eventually let us get fairly close to it. I think it is a Pampas Deer (but could be wrong!).

 

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michael-ibk

I rather think it´s a brocket deer. Probably red brocket (the more common one than the brown one) but I have never learned to tell those two apart.

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Atravelynn

Those round ears look "brockety" to me and also red brockets are more commonly seen solitaire. Nice closeups of this shy creature. The trumpet tree and hyacinths are pixel saturaters. Such brilliant colors!

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@@xelas

I was thinking more about lenses!

1. I realise that talking about 2cm bigger on the screen is meaningless because it depends on the resolution of your monitor and my laptop screen!. On my screen, the Trogon picture, for example, is about 20cm wide - so the uncropped version would be about 3cm bigger on the left and 1cm bigger at the top and on the right.

 

2. Is 300mm big enough? Of course in a trip report I put in the photos that I think are reasonable and miss out those that do not work - and of course there are those I could not take!. Serious bird photographers will want longer lenses - it depends what you want from your pictures :)

 

@@michael-ibk, @Atravelynn - thank you for the identification. We were on our own when we saw the deer, and I don't have a mammal book - but MrsQ agrees with you!

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Continued.....

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Bare-faced Curassow (female) arounf the lodge

 

We set out for an afternoon drive with Claudia.

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Our vehicle for each of the afternoon drives

One of the pleasures of the drive is going through patches of woodland which open up onto lakes.

 

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Southern Lapwing

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Wattled Jacana

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Nesting Hyacinth Macaw sneaks a look at us

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Capybara with Cowbird passenger.

The capybara at this lake are much paler than we had seen elsewhere. Claudia said this is from living in water that is saltier than the others (@@Bush dog talks interestingly about the changes in the salinity and the impact on Capybara colour over time).

 

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We stopped to watch a pair of Black Vultures. One (the male?) danced around the other with its wings extended, occasionally pushing its head forwards. Presumably this a courtship ritual – it was fascinating to watch.

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MrsQ saw a small distant shape

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and said “ is that an Armadillo?” (Actually a bit more excitedly than that suggests!)

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Claudia stopped some distance away and we followed her as we went towards it. Eventually it scurried into the undergrowth. Claudia said we should just stand still as sometimes they come out again..

 

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..which it did …

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Had a look at us..

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.....and then moved on.

 

This is the six-banded armadillo (though they can have from six to eight bands). Their body length can be upto 40cm

 

I mentioned in the trip report of @@Sangeeta that sometimes surprising animals grab your affections – and I just loved seeing the Armadillo - it was one of my favourite sightings of the whole trip!

Edited by TonyQ
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We drove on, through some woodland, and as it opened up in front of us was

 

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A Giant Anteater

We got down and approached it from down wind. It did not seemed bothered by us

 

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It surprised us by heading into the water. It was much hotter today so it may be linked to the heat. (You can see the size of the front claws on its right leg - they walk on the side of the "hand")

 

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It walked through the water, being careful that its tail didn't get too wet. It stopped for a drink along the way.

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Made its way past a Jabiru...

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It came out of the water and started poking about for some food.

We spent about 30 minutes with this Giant Anteater - just Claudia, MrsQ and me. It was a wonderful experience - apparently it is very rare to see them in the water. Eventually we left it as it wondered off into the woods.

Edited by TonyQ
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madaboutcheetah

Thanks for this lovely report @@TonyQ .... I'm starting to think - the anteater alone deserves a visit and the (looooong flight) ...... Awesome!

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michael-ibk

Just wow to the armadillo and anteater sightings. Beautiful! I´m so going to Barranco Alto when I return to the Pantanal! :)

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Capturing the wildlife of the Pantanal excellently. The endearing little Armadillo and and scenic Anteater in the water with the Jabiru are great highlights.

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Atravelynn

The Giant Anteater seems to be walking gingerly into the water. What at treat to see it in this habitat. Hopefully a treat for the Giant Anteater too, an escape from the heat. Love the armadillo.

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@@madaboutcheetah

Thank you - I have no idea how you would get there from South India

@@michael-ibk

Thank you - I am sure it is worth a visit!

@@Big_Dog

Thank you!

@@Atravelynn

It seemed untroubled as it went in and came out - but I am no expert on Anteater psychology!

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Continued...

We were thrilled again to have such a good sighting of a Giant Anteater - and enjoyed our cold beer as a sundowner -watched by

 

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Turquoise-Fronted Amazon (?)

We continued with a night drive, seeing a Pootoo, groups of Pecccary, and we heard calling from two different Crab-eating foxes who eventually met up and went off together. We also saw a brocket deer, followed by

 

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Crab-eating fox

It was then about time to head back to the lodge after a great afternoon and evening drive. Claudia stopped and pointed

 

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It was a Puma

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(Photos well beyond the limits of my camera - but it is still a puma!)

 

As we watched, Claudia radioed the vehicle behind us that was also returning to base. It came up behind us to see the Puma. Both vehicles were heading back to the lodge so this was probably only a couple of hundred metres from base. Claudia was very popular!

Edited by TonyQ
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Bush dog

So close to the lodge and very relax, probably the same one as the one I saw??

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