Jump to content

The beautiful birds and nature of Costa Rica


xyz99

Recommended Posts

@@xyz99, great start! Savegre is a future CR destination for us so I am reading your report with much eagerness. Love all the great bird pictures already.

 

Alan

 

Sounds great, and I'm glad to pay back - because Pantanal is a future destination for us, most likely in 2019 :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 72
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • xyz99

    45

  • xelas

    7

  • Dave Williams

    4

  • Chakra

    4

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

More birds at the garden:   Clay-colored thrush   Scintillant hummingbird - this is the male, and I'll have much better pics later. Stay tuned.   Rufous-collared sparrow   A juvenile Fla

Any walk through the Savegre property is a joy: lots of flowers and birds, and these are just some of them:   Green Violetear   Purple-throated mountaingem (female)   Blue-gray tanager  

I was so happy to had seen the quetzal, even though it was from a poor view point, through lots of branches...but isn't he handsome?   After that, Marino took me to Batsu garden - a small garden wit

Posted Images

Dave Williams

Loved CR when we went a few years ago, want to return myself too but only on holiday! Hummers are my favourite photo subject I think and you have a good selection already.

Looking forward to seeing more in your report, the more you show the more I'll want to go!

Edited by Dave Williams
Link to post
Share on other sites

Loved CR when we went a few years ago, want to return myself too but only on holiday! Hummers are my favourite photo subject I think and you have a good selection already.

Looking forward to seeing more in your report, the more you show the more I'll want to go!

 

Dave,

Maybe we'll both retire in Costa Rica??? More hummers are on the way...

Edited by xyz99
Link to post
Share on other sites
Dave Williams

 

Loved CR when we went a few years ago, want to return myself too but only on holiday! Hummers are my favourite photo subject I think and you have a good selection already.

Looking forward to seeing more in your report, the more you show the more I'll want to go!

 

Dave,

Maybe we'll both retire in Costa Rica??? More hummers are on the way...

 

 

Too late, I retired 11 years ago and I'm stuck in my Wa(y)les ! Dollar exchange would do me a lot of harm over a year !!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Another small, beautiful hummingbird at the garden, also endemic to Costa Rica and western Panama is the Volcano hummingbird:

post-47540-0-23945400-1485297848_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-64978700-1485297845_thumb.png

 

I don't like pictures of hummingbirds at the feeder, but this one never perched anywhere...or he perched far away from the feeders, so I had to take a picture the only way I could...White-throated mountaingem

post-47540-0-61045300-1485297840_thumb.png

 

Another unknown hummingbird

post-47540-0-61552600-1485297832_thumb.png

 

After spending a good time at the garden, and I admit, it's really hard to move away when you're surrounded by so many birds, in close proximity...we decided to see what lives in the forest. We walked up the path (no puma) and the forest was beautiful:

post-47540-0-58831700-1485297824_thumb.png

 

There were some birds, that we would've never seen without Marino:

Tufted flycatcher

post-47540-0-24037600-1485297819_thumb.png

 

Dark pewee

post-47540-0-95943600-1485297813_thumb.png

 

Lots of bromelias...this one was very big, with a tall pink/purple flower:

post-47540-0-15541500-1485297811_thumb.png

 

Just to get an idea of scale, the flower above in on top of this picture:

post-47540-0-77721300-1485297806_thumb.png

 

And more bomelias...I loved the colors, the textures, the plants on top of plants...the cloud forest is different than every other forest I've seen before.

post-47540-0-69170500-1485297803_thumb.png

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Loved CR when we went a few years ago, want to return myself too but only on holiday! Hummers are my favourite photo subject I think and you have a good selection already.

Looking forward to seeing more in your report, the more you show the more I'll want to go!

 

Dave,

Maybe we'll both retire in Costa Rica??? More hummers are on the way...

 

 

Too late, I retired 11 years ago and I'm stuck in my Wa(y)les ! Dollar exchange would do me a lot of harm over a year !!!

 

 

Not a bad place to be stucked in...but a place we still have to visit!

 

I just saw your pictures link, and saw you Morocco birds gallery - need to study it, as that's our next trip in May (although not a birding trip)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Also in the forrest, a Yellowish flycatcher

post-47540-0-25815100-1485299209_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-87108200-1485299203_thumb.png

 

And I feel that I really, really need to show you how beautiful the cloud forest is (too bad you can't hear the sounds too)

post-47540-0-11298000-1485299201_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-93994600-1485299197_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-64416300-1485299193_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-20451000-1485299191_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-15108700-1485299189_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-70253900-1485299186_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-44563500-1485299183_thumb.png

 

Have you ever seen a tanager tree?

post-47540-0-73816300-1485299180_thumb.png

Edited by xyz99
Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice to see a bird-centric Costa Rica report! Happy to see that Marino is still guiding at Savegre...we were there in 2003 and he was our guide! The Batsu garden was not in existence at that time, I'm fairly sure.

 

Marino did a great job 10 years later, and I am looking forward to meet him again in 2018!

 

I look forward to the continuation..

@@xyz99, great start! Savegre is a future CR destination for us so I am reading your report with much eagerness. Love all the great bird pictures already.

 

Alan, you will truly enjoy Cerro de la Muerte area.

 

Alan

 

Loved CR when we went a few years ago, want to return myself too but only on holiday! Hummers are my favourite photo subject I think and you have a good selection already.

Looking forward to seeing more in your report, the more you show the more I'll want to go!

 

Dave,

Maybe we'll both retire in Costa Rica??? More hummers are on the way...

The more of you will retire or stay part time in Costa Rica, the more I will visit it :-))

 

@@xyz99

 

Those are some excellent shots of those little, and lightning fast, gems! You are making my next 18 months very long.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Very pleased to see that you enjoyed your time despite some rain. We have very fond memories of San Gerardo de Dota. I agree it was "raining tanagers". Your hummer collection is impressive.

Link to post
Share on other sites

@@xelas

That sounds good to me, you can visit us in CR if we can visit you in Slovenia :)

 

@@Chakra

 

Very pleased to see that you enjoyed your time despite some rain. We have very fond memories of San Gerardo de Dota. I agree it was "raining tanagers". Your hummer collection is impressive.

 

It's hard not to enjoy Costa Rica, but it could've been so much better.

They told us that ever since global warming (or "climate change") the old rules don't apply anymore. There might be new weather/rain patterns, but they don't know them yet. We had the same problem in Honduras last year, where we had rain at Pico Bonito for 5 days in a row. The sun came out the day we left.

 

This time, the sun came out the day we left Savegre...we woke up that day to a beautiful, blue sky. Maybe it's us and not the climate change???

Maybe we are the ones bringing in the rain?

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

They told us that ever since global warming (or "climate change") the old rules don't apply anymore. There might be new weather/rain patterns, but they don't know them yet. We had the same problem in Honduras last year, where we had rain at Pico Bonito for 5 days in a row.

 

Couldn't agree more !! My native town in India nowadays regularly hits 45 degrees celsius in summer which was unthinkable when I was growing up. :( :(

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

@@Chakra

I can't even begin to imagine how it feels...45 degrees celsius must be an oven!

 

At Rancho Naturalista they told us that last summer, when it was supposed to be the rainy season, they had more than a month of no rain at all. It was so dry, the rainforest was suffering...

Link to post
Share on other sites

This post will be dedicated to flowers. We saw lots of them, some wild in the forest, some in Savegre's garden, which is beautiful and very well maintained. Because of this, it is constantly visited by birds and hummingbirds.

You don't need to go far to enjoy them...just stay on the property, and you can be properly entertained.

 

post-47540-0-46815800-1485472656_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-57218400-1485472652_thumb.png

 

There was an entire wall of these little flowers at the entrance...actually, 2 walls, one with orange flowers, one with yellow

post-47540-0-76044600-1485472649_thumb.png

 

Tons of bromelias in every tree

post-47540-0-82332600-1485472645_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-62132700-1485472641_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-79971900-1485472637_thumb.png

 

I loved this tree, and I'll have a picture of the entire tree later - in Savegre's garden

post-47540-0-19115600-1485472633_thumb.png

 

Now...don't judge...every time I saw this tree, it reminded me of a Sideshow Bob, a Simpsons character

post-47540-0-26846600-1485473465_thumb.jpg

 

Ignoring the color, do you see the resemblance? And don't tell me I'm crazy :)

 

Loved by hummingbirds

post-47540-0-77871500-1485472628_thumb.png

 

A trumpet flower of some kind - I assume loved by bats, but we never saw one

post-47540-0-11249100-1485472625_thumb.png

 

And this is how the Savegre garden looked like...in one of its corners. Each corner was different, but no less beautiful

post-47540-0-43855500-1485472622_thumb.png

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

More birds from (still) our first day at Savegre. They have a bird feeder that is usually visited by a few birds. Not a big feeder, not a lot of birds at any time, but constant traffic. So every time you pass by, there is a chance to see something...

 

Flame-colored tanager

post-47540-0-66816200-1485482212_thumb.png

 

I could not resits another Magnificent hummingbird

post-47540-0-33438400-1485482210_thumb.png

 

Yellow-thighed finch

post-47540-0-14391800-1485482208_thumb.png

 

Ruddy-capped nightingale thrush

post-47540-0-48300700-1485482205_thumb.png

 

Rufous-collared sparrow (juvenile)

post-47540-0-87951400-1485482201_thumb.png

 

Not a real hummingbird...but that's how it looked liked in the forest, while we were hiking. It was pretty dark, so can't blame us

post-47540-0-37232100-1485482197_thumb.png

 

One of the very few mammals that we saw this time in Costa Rica, a Red-tailed Squirrel

post-47540-0-98255800-1485482193_thumb.png

 

Yellow-faced grassquit, Mr. and Mrs.

post-47540-0-49239100-1485482189_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-57840300-1485482187_thumb.png

 

Mountain Elaenia

post-47540-0-80150100-1485482184_thumb.png

 

 

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

More great photos @@xyz99! I loved your Sideshow Bob reference and do see the resemblance. You are so right about the sounds of the rain forest. It's hard to describe it unless you have been there. We actually own a CD of Costa Rica rainforest sounds and it's great.

 

Finally, I think your unknown Hummingbirds are female Magnificents. The long straight black bill and white spot right behind the eye are pretty good indicators. However, I can't call myself a bird ID expert by any means. So, take that for what it is worth.

 

Alan

Link to post
Share on other sites

More great photos @@xyz99! I loved your Sideshow Bob reference and do see the resemblance. You are so right about the sounds of the rain forest. It's hard to describe it unless you have been there. We actually own a CD of Costa Rica rainforest sounds and it's great.

 

Finally, I think your unknown Hummingbirds are female Magnificents. The long straight black bill and white spot right behind the eye are pretty good indicators. However, I can't call myself a bird ID expert by any means. So, take that for what it is worth.

 

Alan

 

A CD with rainforest sounds...that sounds amazing. And you can download it for free from Amazon with Prime :)

Isn't that great???

 

I looked again at the unidentified hummingbirds, (and used the helpful forum at birdforum.net) and I now I have more IDs:

 

The one in post 13 is a male Magnificent

The one in post 21 is a Stripe-tailed Hummingbird

Also in 21, the hummingbird on the nest is a Scintillant

In post 30 - Stripe-tailed Hummingbird

Link to post
Share on other sites

The trees in the area are all covered in moss and lichen - the branches look like this

post-47540-0-49109200-1485562156_thumb.png

 

I've never been to Olympic SP in Washington, but I imagine it's similar...

 

A Wilson's warbler in a clearing...boy, these guys are fast :)

post-47540-0-14595500-1485562154_thumb.png

 

Slaty flowerpiercer, endemic to Costa Rica and western Panama, proving his name was well chosen:

post-47540-0-84173100-1485562151_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-88641200-1485562149_thumb.png

 

Female Flame-colored Tanager

post-47540-0-57207100-1485562147_thumb.png

 

Savegre's garden, and the neighboring lodge have lots of succulents. I think they are just ornamental, and not necessarily food or hunting territory for anybody, but they are really pretty huddled together

post-47540-0-87028000-1485562145_thumb.png

 

And all this was just day 1...amazing how much we saw, experienced and lived in just one day! Traveling is a wonderful way to open your eyes, heart and mind. And of course, to see birds that you cannot see anywhere else :)

 

Next day, it was supposed to be a repeat, but mother nature thought otherwise. There was another 5am wake-up for another 5:30am trip to see quetzals...but it was freezing cold and raining. I don't know how cold, but Marino thought it must've been just a couple degrees above freezing. Brrr...

 

Thankfully, his car was warm, so I decided to stay inside while he was trying to spot the Quetzal. Some other crazy birders were present at the fruiting wild avocado tree, all thinking that the quetzal needs to eat, so he must show up. Well...he either fasted that morning or found a better located tree, because he never showed up. Marino found an Emerald Toucanet, and that was a great consolation prize, as it was my 1st one ever.

 

post-47540-0-42298500-1485562143_thumb.png

 

Poor thing was cold too, trying to protect himself from the rain. I could barely get a few decent pictures, where you can actually recognize the bird.

 

And also, a couple decent pictures of a Black Guan, feasting on some berries.

post-47540-0-15044400-1485562139_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-62259300-1485562136_thumb.png

 

 

 

 

Edited by xyz99
Link to post
Share on other sites

Cold and without seeing the quetzal, we decided to return to the lodge, have a nice warm breakfast and go out again later. It turned out to be a good decision, because it warmed up a little bit, and the rain was only on and off at that point.

Life seemed much better with some Costa Rican coffee in our bellies :)

 

Long-tailed silky-flycatcher

post-47540-0-13812100-1485564648_thumb.png

 

Mountain Elaenia

post-47540-0-63781400-1485564643_thumb.png

 

There is a small trail between Savegre and Sueños del Bosque Lodge, and this was Marino's next destination. He knew of a wren in the area, and he wanted to find it. Of course he did, and his enthusiasm was contagious: "come, come here...this is a good angle...you need a picture of this". The problem is the wren did not know it, he moved from branch to branch with the speed of light. Not to mention that it was dark under all that foliage...but still managed a couple of decent shots:

 

Grey-breasted wood wren

post-47540-0-40125300-1485564639_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-90447900-1485564632_thumb.png

 

On Sueños del Bosque Lodge property, there is a nice clearing, visited in the morning by tons of birds. Birds aside, I think that would be a wonderful place to stay in the area (unless you can get a cabin with a fireplace at Savegre). They have a restaurant, but I have no idea how food compares. The lodge is owned by the brother of Savegre's lodge, so the two share birding grounds, trails, etc.

 

Spangle-cheeked tanager

post-47540-0-34398700-1485564628_thumb.png

 

Sooty-capped bush tanager

post-47540-0-45729000-1485564620_thumb.png

 

Flame-throated warbler

post-47540-0-99302600-1485564617_thumb.png

 

We hiked up on the trails on Sueños del Bosque Lodge property, because on the trail there were some fruiting wild avocado trees, and a few days ago someone saw quetzals there. On the way, other beautiful little birds:

 

Ruddy-capped nightingale-thrush

post-47540-0-95022100-1485564614_thumb.png

 

And then we found the avocado trees...huge, tall...and somewhere close to the top....next to that big bromelia....which one? You see that branch that splits into 2? No....where? keep going up this trunk...then left...there'e the branch...ahhhh! Finally, after lots of guidance, we saw it. But soooo high...the pictures are poor, but who cares?

 

post-47540-0-23851500-1485564611_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-93017700-1485564607_thumb.png

 

There were 3 quetzals in that tree (Marino and the other guide we met there said): 2 males and 1 female. We managed to see 1 male, the female and the other male were in very bad spots, no pictures were possible. But in the end, we saw quetzals on both days!

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Alexander33

@@xyz99

 

We just returned from a 2-week trip to Costa Rica yesterday, and what a treat to find your beautiful report in progress! I miss the place already, but this report is making my transition back to reality a bit easier.

 

It looks like Savegre was a tanager paradise, and of course, the quetzal is spectacular.

 

We were at Rancho Naturalista January 21-27, so it appears we just missed one another. We did take their day trip to Quetzal Paraiso Lodge (which is pretty close to Savegre Lodge), and I am so glad we did. The San Gerardo de Dota region was just spectacular, and that day trip has led to my planning a return for a longer stay. The hummingbirds alone, so different from those at Rancho, would make the trek worth it. Your report is only encouraging my intention to go back there.

 

I'm sorry you had so much rain. That was unusual for this time of year. Lisa at Rancho Naturalista told us that it was the result of that strong winter storm that came through the U.S. in early January. Its effects made it all the way down to Central America. Nevertheless, it appears you had some great sightings and experiences.

 

Can't wait for more!

Link to post
Share on other sites

A walk through the cloud forest is a beautiful thing - the nature is absolutely beautiful, the smells and sounds overwhelming.

 

Collared Redstart

post-47540-0-54434700-1485710523_thumb.png

 

Yellow-thighed finch

post-47540-0-12823400-1485710519_thumb.png

 

Wilson's Warbler

post-47540-0-10872000-1485710516_thumb.png

 

Beautiful flowers, hanging from tree vines

post-47540-0-10430300-1485710512_thumb.png

 

Interesting roots(?)

post-47540-0-06011300-1485710508_thumb.png

 

These are the views from the path we took - all that rain apparently has a good effect on the forest

post-47540-0-20710000-1485710504_thumb.png

 

Bromelias in a few minutes of sunlight

post-47540-0-06841000-1485710500_thumb.png

 

And the "bromelia tree"

post-47540-0-31383400-1485710496_thumb.png

 

A small creek

post-47540-0-70709700-1485710492_thumb.png

 

The Savegre river that runs in front of the property

post-47540-0-74011300-1485710486_thumb.png

 

We loved this trail so much, we took it leisurely the next day, when it just happened to be a gorgeous day, sunny and warm. Probably the best of our entire trip.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Any walk through the Savegre property is a joy: lots of flowers and birds, and these are just some of them:

 

Green Violetear

post-47540-0-05913400-1485711392_thumb.png

 

Purple-throated mountaingem (female)

post-47540-0-54239800-1485711389_thumb.png

 

Blue-gray tanager

post-47540-0-19689500-1485711387_thumb.png

 

Red-headed barbet

post-47540-0-30249300-1485711384_thumb.png

 

I am not sure if these are the fruits of the wild avocado tree, probably not, even though they look like it. But there were no quetzals there :(

post-47540-0-63431600-1485711379_thumb.png

 

Flame-colored tanager

post-47540-0-38628200-1485711377_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-89233900-1485711365_thumb.png

 

Collared Redstart

post-47540-0-83014500-1485711373_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-38857700-1485711371_thumb.png

 

Spotted wood quail

post-47540-0-80206100-1485711368_thumb.png

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

That is one stunning display of cloud forest birds, @@xyz99 ! And welcome home, @@Alexander33 , looking forward with anticipation to read also your stories and to see your photos from the land of Pura Vida.

Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing missing on this trip were the animals...only a few squirrels...and this was one of them:

post-47540-0-50893000-1485719034_thumb.png

 

Yellow-thighed finch

post-47540-0-14602000-1485719031_thumb.png

 

Small little mushrooms on the forest path

post-47540-0-88605100-1485719028_thumb.png

 

The little stream in the forest - the path followed it, and we were careful not to take any left of right trail. It would be very easy to get lost as paths are not marked, but staying with the stream was easy

post-47540-0-79827000-1485719026_thumb.png

 

post-47540-0-38305700-1485719024_thumb.png

 

This is the full Sideshow Bob tree:

post-47540-0-88478700-1485719021_thumb.png

 

Spangle-cheeked tanager

post-47540-0-93165500-1485719018_thumb.png

 

Spot-crowned woodcreeper

post-47540-0-32769600-1485719015_thumb.png

 

Ochraceous wren

post-47540-0-90906500-1485719011_thumb.png

 

Edited by xyz99
Link to post
Share on other sites
Alexander33

@@xyz99

 

True, we didn't see a lot of mammals either, but you really saw some great birds, and your photos of the landscape wonderfully depict the quiet and intense beauty of this region. Red-headed barbet was a fantastic find! Also, the yellow-thighed finch is endemic to the highlands of Costa Rica and western Panama, as I recall.

Edited by Alexander33
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Safaritalk uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By using Safaritalk you agree to our use of cookies. If you wish to refuse the setting of cookies you can change settings on your browser to clear and block cookies. However, by doing so, Safaritalk may not work properly and you may not be able to access all areas. If you are happy to accept cookies and haven't adjusted browser settings to refuse cookies, Safaritalk will issue cookies when you log on to our site. Please also take a moment to read the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy: Terms of Use l Privacy Policy