Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

May 12, 2018

Mexico to El Salvador

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — admin @ 3:59 pm

Tourist Shots from Mexico to El Salvador

It has been so long since I uploaded the tourist photos. All the way from Chiapas, Mexico to El tunco in El Salvador. It’s nuking, man.

san cristobal
Street in San Cristobal

This was a tourist street in San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas, south Mexico. I have no idea why they had all these umbrellas over the street but it worked because there were heaps of tourrists promenading up and down. I think there were lots of tourists there because it was Easter week.

tourist crap
Selling tourist junk

The tourist knick-knacks. It is the same old same old every tourist town you go to.

chicken bus
Chicken Bus

A genuine Guatemalan chicken bus at Xela, just about to take me to Lake Atitlan. It only took me three buses to get there.

Outskirts of Xela
Outskirts of Xela

After a week of spanish lessons, I was on my way to Panajachel, out of the city.

Atitlan Reserva
Atitlan Reserva

A waterfall at Atitlan Reserve, just out of Panajachel. I saw quite a lot of nice birds out in the bush and up into the mountains. Coban was superb, as was Lanquin, except for the horrendous bus rides to get there.

Old Gnarly Tree
Old Gnarly Tree

It is actually some kind of strangler fig climbing up a big tree. At Tikal.

tikal
Tikal

This is what all the tourists go to see. I did it and I got the pictures. the end.

Hotel Kangaroo
Hotel Kangaroo

An oasis of Aussieness in the jungles of Rio Dulce, Guatemala. You get around in boats, no roads there.

Finca Paraiso
Finca Paraiso

I went on a mammoth bus ride to get to this waterfall that was hot water coming out of a volcano or something. It was super hot.

El Tunco Point
El Tunco Point

And into El Salvador. Lots of waves here. They ain’t hollow barrels but a good fun wave nevertheless.

May 9, 2018

El Sunzal Birds – La Libertad

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 9:31 pm

El Sunzal Birds

This morning I was up eaarly just after 6am and went down towards the beach. I took a few photos of the surfers but the waves were just not that good. So off I went back in search of some birds. Luckily I found a few.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher - juvenile
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher (Tyrannus forficatus) juvenile

At first I thought it was a Tropical Mockingbird but the bill was all wrong. After I processed this photo I looked online and found that it was a juvenile Scissor-tailed Flycatcher. My book did not have a photo of the juvie in it so I could not work it out.

Orange-chinned Parakeet
Orange-chinned Parakeet (Brotogeris jugularis)

This one caught me by surprise. I thought they were Orange-fronted Parakeets until I had a good look and something was not quite right.

Orange-fronted parakeet and Orange-chinned Parakeet
Orange-fronted parakeet and Orange-chinned Parakeet

This was a bit problematic putting this photo up. But it is a good comparison shot. A lady at a restaurant by the beach had these parakeets with clipped wings out the front of her shop. On the left is the Orange-fronted Paraakeet and on the right is the Orange-chinned Parakeet. You can clearly see the difference in plumage between them.

Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Gray-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea) juvenile

I am pretty sure this is a Northern Rough-winged Swallow but I am waiting on the experts to give me confirmation. There is not much else it could be. Edit> It is a Gray-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea), thanks to James Coe for the id.

Amazon Kingfisher - female
Amazon Kingfisher (Chloroceryle amazona) female

And I think this might be the same Amazon Kingfisher as yesterday. I was hoping to see the male. And the vultures are circling overhead.

Little Blue Heron  - immature
Little Blue Heron (Egretta caerulea) – immature

This motley crew is an immature Little Blue Heron. Being photobombed by a grackle.

El Sunzal Birds list

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher (Tyrannus forficatus) juvenile
Orange-chinned Parakeet (Brotogeris jugularis)
Orange-fronted parakeet (Eupsittula canicularis)
Amazon Kingfisher (Chloroceryle amazona)
Tropical Kingbird
Green Heron
Inca Dove
Rufous-naped Wren (Campylorhynchus rufinucha)
Gray-breasted Martin (Progne chalybea)
Mangrove Swallow (Tachycineta albilinea)
Great Kiskadee
Brown Pelican
Golden-fronted Woodpecker
White-winged Dove
Little Blue Heron (Egretta caerulea) immature

May 8, 2018

El Salvador Birds Three

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 10:49 pm

Birds of El Tunco

Yesterday afternoon I arrived at El Sunzal, found my hostel, then late in the afternoon wandered along the track to the beach. There was a dried up creek just before the beach with some Green Herons poking around in the stagnant water.

Streak-backed Oriole
Streak-backed Oriole (Icterus pustulatus)

I was very surprised to find this Streak-backed Oriole. It was just hanging in the trees near the El Sunzal bridge.

Spot-breasted Oriole
Spot-breasted Oriole (Icterus pectoralis)

And these Spot-breasted Orioles were on the other side of the bridge feeding on the flowering trees.

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

This White-throated Magpie Jay was high up on a tree right near the bridge too. The locals were all walking past and had no idea what was around them.

Amazon Kingfisher - female
Amazon Kingfisher (Chloroceryle amazona) female

This morning I went and checked out the yukky surf, then came back after taking a few desultory shots of the surfistas. I then went to the creek and found this femaale Amazon Kingfisher on the wire over the river/creek.

Orange-fronted Parakeet
Orange-fronted Parakeet (Eupsittula canicularis)

I did not know what I had when I shot this. I looked in the book and found these are common along the pacific coast. Wow the mosquitoes are bad here. I am being attacked as we speak. And it is only 3.30 in the afternoon. I had to buy some Off it is so bad. ouch!

Spotted Sandpiper
Spotted Sandpiper (Actitis macularius)

A lot of these Spotted Sandpipers were in breeding plumage.

Rufous-naped Wren
Rufous-naped Wren (Campylorhynchus rufinucha)

I cannot stop taking photos of these beautiful birds.

El Tunco bird list

White-throated Magpie Jay (Calocitta formosa)
Streak-backed Oriole (Icterus pustulatus)
Spot-breasted Oriole (Icterus pectoralis)
Orange-fronted Parakeet (Eupsittula canicularis)
Amazon Kingfisher (Chloroceryle amazona) female
Spotted Sandpiper (Actitis macularius)
Green Heron
Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)
Inca Dove (Columbina inca)
Melodious Blackbird (Dives dives)
Mangrove Swallow (Tachycineta albilinea)
Green Heron (Butorides virescens)
White-collared Seedeater (Sporophila torqueola)
Clay-coloured Thrush (Turdus grayi)
Rufous-naped Wren (Campylorhynchus rufinucha)
Tropical Kingbird
Greater-tailed Grackle

Surfing El Tunco

Filed under: Surfing — Tags: — admin @ 9:04 pm

Surfing in El Salvador

I arrived here in El Tunco yesterday and late in the afternoon I went for a walk to see what the waves were like.

cut back 0133
cut back

The waves were not fantastic but they were ok. There were a few guys getting some good rides but not that many.

In the critical section 9879
In the critical section

I met a one-legged El Salvadorean surf photographer at the beach and hung around talking to him and taking some photos. He sold his photos to the visiting tourist surfistas.

cut back 9898
cut back

I went back this morning but the surf had dropped off a lot and it was not very big.

off the top
off the top

longboarder cranking it
longboarder cranking it

Los Cobanos Afternoon

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 2:26 am

Los Cobanos afternoon.

In the afternoon I went back to the patch of scrub. Nothing new but I got some interesting photos nevertheless.

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

I took some photos of the lizards sun bathing on the roof of the hostel and when I showed them to the owner, she said that was what the hostel was called – Casa Garrobo, after the lizards, garrobo. Ha ha.

Garrobo
Garrobo

This squirrel was into the mangos. I found a huge patch of mango trees with heaps of ripe fruit and the birds were feasting. Mainly the Melodious Blackbirds.

Squirrel - ardea
Squirrel – ardea

This Golden-fronted Woodpecker is race santacruzi, the El Salvador sub-species.

Golden-Fronted Woodpecker  - female
Golden-Fronted Woodpecker (Melanerpes aurifrons santacruzi) – female

Just a touch of rufous on the wings told me what this was.

Inca Dove
Inca Dove (Columbina inca)

A bit of a golden crown for this noisy critter

Great Kiskadee
Great Kiskadee (Pitangus sulphuratus)

And a good shot showing most of the features of the White-winged Dove.

White-winged Dove
White-winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica)

Los Cobanos bird list

Black Vulture
Yellow-winged Cacique
Brown Pelican
Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)

Garrobo
Squirrel – ardea

First El Salvador Post

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 2:14 am

Los Cobbanos – El Salvdador

I spent nearly a week in Guatemala City waiting to get my keyboard fixed on my laptop. They did not fix it. I am typing this on an external USB keyboard that I am not yet used to. I am struggling here. I finally escaped Guate City and got about two buses to the El Salvador border then caught two more buses to Los Cobanos, on the coast just down from Sonsonate.

Rufous-naped Wren
Rufous-naped Wren (Campylorhynchus rufinucha)

First morning in and I went for a walk in the bush near my hostel. It was much better than I expected. Some nice shots of some Rufous-naped Wrens was the first thing I bumped into.

Crane Hawk
Crane Hawk (Geranospiza caerulescens)

I spotted this Crane Hawk in the middle of the trees, and got some pretty tragic shots. I thought that was going to be it for this one.

Crane Hawk in flight
Crane Hawk (Geranospiza caerulescens)

But luckily I spotted him again up in the sky and got some wonderful photos of him in flight.

Ruddy-Breasted Seedeater
Ruddy-Breasted Seedeater (Sporophila minuta)

This is the second seedeater that I have photographed. He was just sitting on a wire outside a house. Lucky me.

Laughing or Franklin's Gull
Franklin’s Gull (Leucophaeus pipixcan)

I am not sure what this is. One or the other for black-headed gulls. edit.. FRanklins Gull, thanks for the help.

Laughing or Franklin's Gull
Black Tern (Chlidonias niger)

This is a younger bird, maybe the same species, maybe not. I do not know. edit:\ Black Tern, first winter , thanks for id help.

Altamira Oriole
Altamira Oriole ( Icterus gularis)

More orioles. There sure are a lot of orioles in America.

Los Cobbanos bird list

Rufous-naped Wren (Campylorhynchus rufinucha)
Crane Hawk (Geranospiza caerulescens)
Ruddy-Breasted Seedeater (Sporophila minuta)
Franklin’s Gull (Leucophaeus pipixcan)
Black Tern (Chlidonias niger)
Roadside Hawk (Rupornis magnirostris)
White-winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica)
Golden-Fronted Woodpecker (Melanerpes aurifrons santacruzi)
Tropical Kingbird
Melodious Blackbird (Dives dives)
Altamira Oriole ( Icterus gularis)
Inca Dove (Columbina inca)
Ruddy Ground-dove
White-collared Seedeater
Great Kiskadee (Pitangus sulphuratus)
Groove-billed Ani
Clay-coloured Thrush

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