Sunday, February 10, 2013

La Selva II: Seeing More Crazy Shit I Never Thought I'd See


One of the first birds we got upon arriving at La Selva was Great Curassow. Crap, talk about an awesome tropical bird. The female is in the front, the male is in the back. All photos from today's post are from La Selva Biological Station; the first La Selva intallment can be found right here.


Although they put off a guanish vibe, they were not so promiscuous (unfortunately) in their abundance or attitude towards people. They also had better crests.


Gartered Trogon, formerly known as Violacious Trogon. They have melted more than a face or two in their time...I reckon they are the easiest trogon to cross paths with in the country.


This is probably my best trogon shot of the trip, even though the bird is sitting on a powerline. The trogon is not holding back, just really bringing the facemelt I think.


I just like the pose in this shot.


For a bird, motmots have it all. They have color. They make funny sounds. They have a weird tail, which they swing sharply from side to side. They are large and sit fairly still, which any birder can appreciate. This is a Broad-billed Motmot, only one of the trip. We saw lots of Blue-crowned (Blue-diademed) and Turqoiuse-browed Motmots, but only single Broad-billed and Rufous...I will have to spend more time on the Carribean Slope next I go back. Anyone know what diademed means without googling it?


Groove-billed Ani is a strange bird, even approaching gross, but I find them...compelling.

The big and muddy Sarapiqui River, viewed from the suspension bridge.

A female Western Slaty-Antshrike, not quite a skulker, but definitely a sort of lurker. We saw one pair at La Selva, and that was it for the trip. This was also a brainbird.


I don't have a tropical field guide with me, but I'm pretty sure this is a Streak-headed Woodcreeper. Costa Rica has many woodcreeper species, most of which are unpleasantly difficult to identify and even harder to get good pictures of. And I thought they were bad in Mexico...


We were told this is a Monstera vine...its very common in forests and grows pressed against branches and tree trunks. One of my favorite plants we saw.


Books call this bird a Chestnut-mandibled Toucan, new Science calls it a Black-mandibled Toucan. Either way, they are very common and visible in much of Costa Rica. Big groups of them would congregate at fruiting trees; in fact, its all about finding fruiting trees, because that's where the birds are.

13 comments:

  1. Curassow. One of my favorites from Costa Rica. Please note that my last name is WuSSOW. Awfully similar to CuraSSOW, really.
    I approve of this post.

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    1. Well now you know what you should do for your next haircut.

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  2. OMG, that Gartered Trogon [swoons].

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    1. Thats what I did the first time I saw one.

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  3. Totes obvi a diadem is a crown.

    That Trogon is something else. You've managed to take my years of obsessing and chasing after the comparatively mild Elegant Trogon and made them seem petty. I salute you, sir.

    Are Motmots related to Beeaters? Rollers?

    I appreciate the comment on Anis. Sometimes they seem to be the newest stage of bird evolution, sometimes the oldest.

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    1. Elegant Trogons and their similarly-plumaged bretheren (of which there are several) still hold up in book. The black/yellow/blue/purple trogons are just a different but equally crippling flavor.

      Not sure what motmots are most closely related to off the top of my head....unfortunately my Number 7 status does not translate well in Central America.

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    2. You mean, you're not also numero siete?

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  4. Love the Ani, difficult bird to photograph because of its dark plumage.

    Lately anytime I need a dose of facemelt I know just where to come to get it, right here!

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    1. Some of my best pictures I had stolen in Mexico a couple years ago were anis...not rare by any means, but pretty sweet stuff like attacking an ant swarm on the side of a temple...it was good to see them again.

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  5. Yeah, that's a Streak-headed. I gotta get down to the Caribbean slope for some of them there facemelting birds.

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  6. Uhhh yeah, you could have made up all of these birds (besides the ani) and I would not know. Even that plant- you could have stood there sticking leaves to a tree and taken a photo and I would not know. You win.

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    1. He clearly IS making these outrageous birds up, which is why I've not been commenting. Don't want to positively reinforce self-aggrandizing bird-fraud fake out. No living things could possibly be THAT spectacular. Clearly, it's art.

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  7. Dude! Jealous. I miss La Selva. Great place.

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