Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

June 20, 2018

Quepos Costa Rica Part 2

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 1:47 am

Manuel Antonio Part 2

I split up the folder again because I took more than 600 photos. It works good I reckon. And it spreads the photos out so they are not jammed into one post. This morning I walked down the beach and then headed up the road towards the national park.

Common Black-hawk
Common Black-hawk (Buteogallus anthracinus)

I saw this Common Black-hawk screaming in a tree. I think it is a young one.

Black-cheeked Woodpecker
Black-cheeked Woodpecker (Melanerpes pucherani)

At first I thought it was a Golden-fronted Woodpecker but the white stripe down the back got me looking closer.

Crimson-fronted Parakeet
Crimson-fronted Parakeet (Aratinga finschi)

Another nice looking parakeet.

Palm Tanager
Palm Tanager (Thraupis palmarum)

Finally I got a photo of a Palm Tanager.

Palm Tanager
Palm Tanager (Thraupis palmarum)

This Palm Tanager kept looking at himself in the car mirror.

Cherrie's Tanager
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)

I think this is an eclipse male Cherrie’s Tanager.

Cherrie's Tanager - male
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)

And the male Cherrie’s Tanager.

Capuchin Monkey
Capuchin Monkey

June 19, 2018

Quepos Costa Rica

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:55 pm

Manuel Antonio National Park

I caught a bus just outside the hostel in Jaco at mid-day to Quepos. After a leisurely couple of hours in the bus, I made it to Quepos, where I had dinner, watched England beat Tunisia, then jumped on the bus to Manuel Antonio. Very easy.

Rufous-and-white  Wren
Rufous-and-white Wren (Thryophilus rufalbus)

There were a couple of photos left in the camera from the back yard in Jaco. I think this is a Rufous-and-white Wren.

Cherrie's Tanager
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)

I took a guess that this was female and immature Cherrie’s Tanager. It is not in my book.

Cherrie's Tanager - male
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)

And this is the spectacular male Cherrie’s Tanager. Passerini’s Tanager looks exactly the same but is found on the Caribbean coast.

ferruginous pygmy owl
ferruginous pygmy owl (Glaucidium brasilianum)

I think so. But must get some help. Thanks Eitan.

Pale-vented Pigeon
Pale-vented Pigeon (Patagioenas cayennensis)

I thought this was a Red-billed Pigeon. doh!

hummingbird
hummingbird

Again, I need some help to id this.

Manuel Antonio bird list

Rufous-and-white Wren (Thryophilus rufalbus)
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)
ferruginous pygmy owl (Glaucidium brasilianum)
Pale-vented Pigeon (Patagioenas cayennensis)
5505 Hummingbird
Common Black-hawk (Buteogallus anthracinus)
Black-cheeked Woodpecker (Melanerpes pucherani)
Crimson-fronted Parakeet (Aratinga finschi)
Palm Tanager (Thraupis palmarum)
Black-bellied Whistling-duck (Dendrocygna autumnalis)
Orange-chinned Parakeet ( Brotogeriss jugularis)
House Wren (Troglodytes aedon)
Hoffman’s Woodpecker
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway)
Inca Dove
Groove-billed Ani
Boat-billed Flycatcher
Great Kiskadee

June 17, 2018

Jaco Birding

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 10:05 pm

Jaco Birding Costa Rica

After the cool mountain air of Monteverde, it was a shock coming back to the heat and humidity of the coast. I caught the 5:30am bus from the end of our street in Monteverde and arrived in Puntarenas in time for a lovely tipico breakfast of rice and beans, omlet and spicy sausage, slugged down with black coffee. The bus left at 9am and I arrived in Jaco pretty early. I found my party hostel and checked in after a few hours wandering around.

Passerini"s Tanager  - male
Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis) – male

It took me a while to suss out what this was – a Passerini”s Tanager (Ramphocelus passerinii), male and a not Red-winged Blackbird or Scarlet-rumped Cacique. This bird was just out the back of my hostel. Edit: totally wrong. The Passerini’s are on the Caribbean coastt and Cherrie’s Tanager are on the Pacific coast. doh! Thanks to Sandra for setting me on the right track.

Blue-black Grassquit - male
Blue-black Grassquit (Volatinia jacarina) male

Not sure about this. Maybe a Blue Seedeater or a grosbeak. Waiting for some id help. Edit: thanks to Patrick for the identification.

Blue-black Grassquit -  immature
Blue-black Grassquit (Volatinia jacarina) immature

This might be the female. But the stripes on the chest have got me going. No, it is an immature Blue-black Grassquit (Volatinia jacarina). Thanks Patrick.

House Wren
House Wren (Troglodytes aedon)

Unknown bird
immature Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)

I really have no idea what this is. I had the wrong coast.

Bare-throated Tiger-heron and kill
Bare-throated Tiger-heron and kill

I spotted this Bare-throated Tiger-heron stalking something and then it had this black bird. I am not sure what it is. Maybe a grackle or a Groove-billed Ani. The heron was bashing it and trying to eat it. I have never seen that before.

Stolen by Caracaras
Stolen by Caracaras

Then a pair of Crested Caracaras turn up and stole the dead bird from the heron which flew away screeching. Amazing. The caracaras then proceeding to eat the black bird.

Hoffman's Woodpecker
Hoffman’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes hoffmannii)

At last a relatively decent photo of a Hoffmann’s Woodpecker.

Purple Gallinule
Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinicus)

There were quite a few birds around the creek near the football ground.

Green Iguana
Green Iguana

In the back yard of the hostel in the tree.

Lizard
Lizard

Jaco bird list

Cherrie’s Tanager (Ramphocelus costaricensis)
Blue-black Grassquit (Volatinia jacarina)
House Wren (Troglodytes aedon)
Bare-throated Tiger-heron (Tigrisoma mexicanum)
Hoffman’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes hoffmannii)
Blue-gray Tanager
Great Kiskadee
Red-legged Honeycreeper female
Torquoise-browed Motmot
Hoffman’s Woodpecker
Brown Jay (Psilorhinus morio)
Turkey Vulture
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway)
Inca Dove (Columbina inca)
Groove-billed Ani
Red-billed Doves
Purple Gallinule (Porphyrio martinicus)
White-collared Seedeater (Sporophila torqueola)
Ringed Kingfisher

Green Iguana
squirrel

June 13, 2018

Costa Rica Birds Three

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 8:46 pm

Monteverde Birding Day Two

This morning I started at 6:30am with my guide Freddy. We just went up the ridge about a kilometer and walked along a side track for a kilometer or so. We met a young bird photographer from Melbourne. He had a 600 lens and I was so glad I did not have to lug that thing. And the tripod, even though it was carbon fibre. Maybe it is about time they made lenses that do not weigh much. ha ha.

Gray-crowned Yellowthroat
Gray-crowned Yellowthroat (Geothlypis poliocephala)

A new bird, not so many today but that always happens on the second day. Very yellow.

Yellow-bellied Elaenia
Yellow-bellied Elaenia (Elaenia flavogaster)

Another new one.

Long-tailed Manakin
Long-tailed Manakin (Chiroxiphia linearis)

All the other shots were out of focus, so here is an arse shot, doh!

 Emerald Toucanet
Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus)

At last a decent shot.

Keel-billed Toucan
Keel-billed Toucan

White-eared Ground-sparrow
White-eared Ground-sparrow (Melozone leucotis)

This is a better photo than yesterday but still not good.

 Rufous-and-white Wren
Rufous-and-white Wren (Thryophiluss rufalbus)

I am liking the wrens of Central America. They are very cute.

Streak-headed Woodcreeper
Streak-headed Woodcreeper (Lepidocolaptes souleyetii)

I was thinking this might be a Cocoa Woodcreeper but the bill is all wrong I reckon.

Yellow-faced Grassquit
Yellow-faced Grassquit (Tiarus olivaceus)

I saw these in the grass with the seedeaters.

Yellowthroat maybe
White-vented Euphonia (Euphonia minuta)

Hoffman's Woodpecker
Hoffman’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes hoffmannii)

The best I have got of the Hoffman’s Woodpecker. Still not great but it is a good action shot.

unknown swallow
unknown swallow

green lizard
lizard

Monteverde bird list

Long-tailed Manakin (Chiroxiphia linearis)
Yellow-bellied Elaenia (Elaenia flavogaster)
Gray-crowned Yellowthroat (Geothlypis poliocephala)
White-vented Euphonia (Euphonia minuta)
Blue-and-White Swallow ???

White-collared Seedeater (Sporophila torqueola)
Keel-billed Toucan (Ramphastos sulfuratus)
Yellow-faced Grassquit (Tiarus olivaceus)
Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus)
Gray-headed Chachalaca (Ortalis cinereiceps)
Rufous-and-white Wren (Thryophiluss rufalbus)
White-eared Ground-sparrow (Melozone leucotis)
Hoffman’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes hoffmannii)
Streak-headed Woodcreeper (Lepidocolaptes souleyetii)
Tropical Kingbird

Monteverde Birding Part Two

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 1:00 am

Monteverde Birding Part Two

I split the folder up in two so I could manage it better. Just as well. There were too many birds for one post.

Three-wattled Bellbird
Three-wattled Bellbird (Procnias tricarunculatus)

This bird is pretty famous around here.

Emerald Toucanet
Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus)

Very nice looking bird.

Orange-billed Nightingale-thrush
Orange-billed Nightingale-thrush (Catharus aurantiirostris)

Orange-bellied Trogon
Orange-bellied Trogon (Trogon aurantiiventris)

“The orange-bellied trogon (Trogon aurantiiventris) is a species of bird in the family Trogonidae. It has been considered a morph of the collared trogon, but most maintain its status as a separate species. It is found in Costa Rica and Panama.” (wiki)

Lesser Violetear
Lesser Violetear ( Colibri cyanotus)

It was really difficult to take a photo of this hummingbird.

White-eared Ground-sparrow
White-eared Ground-sparrow (Melozone leucotis)

White-naped Brushfinch
White-naped Brushfinch (Atlapetes albinucha)

More shocking photos.

Yellow-throated Euphonia
Yellow-throated Euphonia (Euphonia hirundinacea)

Yellow-faced Grassquit
Yellow-faced Grassquit (Tiarus olivaceus)

agouti
Agouti

The Agouti is a rodent.

Monteverde bird list

Three-wattled Bellbird (Procnias tricarunculatus)
Blue-tailed Hummingbird (Amazilla cyanura)
Lesser Violetear ( Colibri cyanotus)
Orange-billed Nightingale-thrush (Catharus aurantiirostris)
White-naped Brushfinch (Atlapetes albinucha)
Yellow-throated Euphonia (Euphonia hirundinacea)
Yellow-faced Grassquit (Tiarus olivaceus)
Orange-bellied Trogon (Trogon aurantiiventris)
Emerald Toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus)
Gray-headed Chachalaca (Ortalis cinereiceps)
Rufous-and-white Wren (Thryophiluss rufalbus)
Band-tailed Pigeon (Patagioenas fasciata)
Red-billed Pigeon (Patagioenas flavirostris)
White-eared Ground-sparrow (Melozone leucotis)
Hoffman’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes hoffmannii)
White-fronted Parrot (Amazona albifrons)
Clay-colored Thrush
Slate-throated Redstart (Myioborus miniatus)
Red-legged Treecreeper (Cyanerpes cyaneus)
Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)
Bronzed Cowbird
Boat-billed Flycatcher (Megarhynchus pitangua)
Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher (Myiodynastes luteiventris)
Masked Tityra (Tityra semifasciata)
Black Vulture
Slate-throated Redstart

Agouti
Coati

June 12, 2018

Costa Rica Birding

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 11:11 pm

Monteverde Costa Rica

Yesterday I arrived up in the mountains at Monteverde after a two hour bus ride going up hill and down dale. It is a very touristy town but it is well worth it for the birds. I organized a birding trip with a guide called Freddy. (See his details below) He picked me up at 6am and we headed up the hill in his 4×4. First stop was near some bird sanctuary and we just walked around the scrub around the area.

Gray-headed Chachalaca
Gray-headed Chachalaca (Ortalis cinereiceps)

This is one of the other Chachalacas. I have previously seen the Plain variety.

Rufous-and-white Wren
Rufous-and-white Wren (Thryophiluss rufalbus)

A very nice looking wren.

Band-tailed Pigeon
Band-tailed Pigeon (Patagioenas fasciata)

The Band-tailed Pigeon and the Red-billed Pigeon are pretty closely related.

Red-billed Pigeon
Red-billed Pigeon (Patagioenas flavirostris)

White-eared Ground-sparrow
White-eared Ground-sparrow (Melozone leucotis)

I did not even know this one existed before I saw it.

Hoffman's Woodpecker
Hoffman’s Woodpecker (Melanerpes hoffmannii)

It looks very similar to the Golden-fronted Woodpecker.

Turquoise-browed Motmot
Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)

He has got a bee or something. It is a very moody shot.

White-fronted Parrot
White-fronted Parrot (Amazona albifrons)

This guy looks a bit loco.

Here are the details for the guide that I used. I highly recommend him.

Guide: Freddy Mejias, Monteverde, Costa Rica.
Phone: (506) 2645-5130 / 8390-8474
Email: info@lapuestadelsolcr.com

June 9, 2018

Southern Nicaragua

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 10:46 pm

Ometepe Island and San Juan del Sur

It has been a hectic time in Nicaragua with all the political problems. A lot of the roads have been blockaded by protesterss. I barely managed to get out of Granada. I had to get a taxi to the road block and then walk through and get a bus on the other side. After a few buses I made it to the port of San Jorgee where I caught this really crappy boat.

Worst boat ever
Worst boat ever

I had to sit right next to the motor exhaust. It was so hot it nearly burnt my face off. Here is that boat getting unloaded. Check out the list to port.

Boat getting unloaded
Boat getting unloaded

Here is a shot of one of the two volcanoes on the island.

Nicaraguan volcano
Nicaraguan volcano

I stayed about five days and had a very relaxing time swinging in a hammock and patting the dogs. Finally it was time to leave and luckily it was another boat this time. They shoved a car and a few bikes on as well as the passengers. At the port we had to get a taxi in the road to San Juan del Sur. In the rain and along this dirt road. Fun fun fun.

Ferry  to San Jorge
Ferry to San Jorge

Tuna catch
Tuna

I went to the fishing co-op and saw this boat with a great catch of tuna and dolphin fish.

San Juan del Sur bay
San Juan del Sur bay

This is the view across the bay.

Laughing Gull
Laughing Gull (Leucophacus atricilla)

A solitary Laughing Gull was situated at the rainwater drain.

Line up  for petrol
Line up for petrol

Around midday I went to the beach and there was this massive lineup for petrol. The petrol tankers have not been able to get through because of the roads being blockaded. They reckon the supermarket is empty. They are running out of food.

Petrol tankers by barge
Petrol tankers by barge

It looks like they might be bringing in petrol by sea. These tankers were on a barge in the harbour. Things look like they are getting desperate.

June 5, 2018

Finca Don Mincho

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 12:49 am

La Flor Ometepe Island

I moved around to the other side of the island. I caught the bus at 10.30am and went and had lunch at a restaurant. I asked a dude how to get to Finca Don Mincho and he said it was difficult and he would take me in his tuk-tuk for 200 cordobas, about $7. After a bumpy ride along some rough tracks, I arrived and it is a nice little farm with lots of animals. In fact it is like a zoo. I love it.

Red-throated Parakeet
Red-throated Parakeet (Psittacara rubritorquis)

I think this is a juvenile because there is only a bit of red on the sides of the throat.

Groove-billed Ani
Groove-billed Ani (Crotophaga sulcirostris)

I sorted out my gear and then had a rest in the hammock. I wandered down to the beach about 4pm. Everywhere I go I see a few Groove-billed Ani.

Crested Caracara
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway)

Turkey Vulture
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)

It is not everyday that you see the top of a Turkey Vulture so I thought I would share this unique view with you.

Great Egret
Great Egret (Ardea alba)

I usually do not take photos of Great Egrets because I have seen so many. But I did.

Ebony and Ivory
Ebony and Ivory

Come together on my keyboard. Why Can’t we? Black Vulture and Snowy Egret sharing a dead fish on the black sand beach. Black and white sharing a dead fish. Why can’t we be like the animals?

Ometepe bird list

Red-throated Parakeet (Psittacara rubritorquis)
Groove-billed Ani (Crotophaga sulcirostris)
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway)
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)
Great Kiskadee
White-throated Magpie-jay
Great Egret (Ardea alba)
Snowy Egret (Egretta thula)
Little Blue Heron
Tricolored Heron
Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus)

June 4, 2018

Charco Verde Reserve

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:44 pm

Ometepe Island

While I am rendering my previews, I suppose I could start on this blog post. I was lucky I got out of Granada. They had the road out blockaded and I had to get a taxi to the blockage and walk through it, then get 3 buses to the ferry at San Jorge. Oh man , what a horrible boat. The worst boat ride ever. What a piece of crap! And I was sitting right next to the exhaust which was burning my face.

Yellow-naped Parrot
Yellow-naped Parrot (Amazona auropalliata)

I have no idea what this parakeet is. I cannot find it in my book. They are screeching their heads off around my hotel. Edit: I think it is a Yellow-naped Parrot.

White-throated Magpie-jay
White-throated Magpie-jay (Calocitta formosa)

Bare-throated Tiger-heron
Bare-throated Tiger-heron (Tigrisoma mexicanum)

Lucky this one came and sat on the tree right next to where I was having a rest.

Howler Monkey
Howler Monkey

I have no idea what exact species this is.

Crested Caracara
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway)

This Crested Caracara was scavenging on the beach. I saw a few around the lake.

squirrel
Squirrel

Ometepe bird list

Yellow-naped Parrot (Amazona auropalliata)
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)
White-throated Magpie-jay (Calocitta formosa)
Bare-throated Tiger-heron (Tigrisoma mexicanum)
Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway)
Red-billed Pigeon (Patagioenas flavirostris)
White-winged Dove
Golden-fronted Woodpecker
Ringed Kingfisher (Megaceryle torquata)
Groove-billed Ani
Golden-fronted Woodpecker (Melanerpes aurifrons )
Snowy Egret (Egretta thula)
Little Blue Heron

Granada Nicaragua Birding

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:15 pm

Granada bike ride

Last day in Granada, I rented a bike again and set off for the water front towards the marina. I got stopped twice by people warning me that there were robbers around this area. The police have been busy watching their facebook feeds.

Stripe-headed Sparrow
Stripe-headed Sparrow (Peucaea ruficauda)

I had no idea what I had with this Stripe-headed Sparrow until I looked at in in the computer. doh! Tick.

Turquoise-browed Motmot
Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)

There were heaps on the fences along the road.

White-throated Magpie-jay
White-throated Magpie-jay (Calocitta formosa)

The boatman called these blue jays and they are getting more and more common in Nicaragua. I saw them first in El Salvador at the bridge at El Sunzal.

unknown. maybe flycatcher.
Nutting’s Flycatcher (Myiarchus nuttingi)

I think it is some kind of flycatcher but other than that I have no idea. Edit: Thanks to Manoli and james for the id. 🙂

Black-headed Trogon
Black-headed Trogon (Trogon melanocephalus)

A stick for the nest perhaps.

Green Heron
Green Heron (Butorides virescens)

This is very sad. This Green Heron has got a hook or a can ring stuck in his bill. I have seen this a few times. I do not like it. 🙁

Grey-breasted Martin
Grey-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea)

These Grey-breasted Martin were on the wharf at Granada. A decent shot of one in flight.

Grey-breasted Martin
Grey-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea)

This Grey-breasted Martin looks like a cocky bloke to me. Must be short guy syndrome.

Mangrove Swallow
Mangrove Swallow (Tachycineta albilinea)

And a Mangrove Swallow to show the difference. Mangrove Swallows have a white rump. That usually identifies them pretty well. As well as the all white breast and tummy and two white eye-brows.

Granada bird list

Nutting’s Flycatcher (Myiarchus nuttingi)
Stripe-headed Sparrow (Peucaea ruficauda)
Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)
Black-headed Trogon (Trogon melanocephalus)
Tricolored Heron
Green Heron (Butorides virescens)
Mangrove Swallow (Tachycineta albilinea)
Grey-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea)
White-throated Magpie-jay (Calocitta formosa)

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