A Few Birds From Costa Rica
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A Few Birds From Costa Rica

Brian Bailey

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I just returned from 8 days in Costa Rica.  It was a family vacation, not a birding trip, but of course you can't go there and not bird.

It took a couple of days before I realized that it was foolhardy to bird without a camera and a telephoto lens.  There's just too much to see and too little time to take it all in.  The clincher was watching a woodcreeper and getting what I thought were great views only to realize that those "great views" only narrowed it down to 8 species!  I finally narrowed it down to 2, but a photo would have nailed it.  After that I birded with a camera, no matter how bad the light was.

A lot of my bird shots look like what they are:  blurry photos in bad light, but some are a bit better:

This White-throated Magpie-jay liked to steal food from dining room tables.

The subtle difference between this Social Flycatcher

and this Gray-capped Flycatcher are enough to make you doubt yourself.

This Collared Aracari was as close as I got to any of the Toucans.

The colours on the Blue-gray Tanager are much more vibrant than the field guides would suggest.

I only managed to fin 2 species of hummer.  The Rufous-tailed was by far the most common.

I had lots of close-up Anhinga views:


This Yellow-crowned Nightheron posed nicely as well.

Most, like this Amazon Kingfisher were a lot harder to get a decent shot of.


BB
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Brian Bailey »
Brian Bailey
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Mark D

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Wonderful shots. The blue-gray tananger is very beautiful, and the aracari is a very neat-looking bird.  Costa Rica's magpie jay seems to be alot like our blue jay .

Mark
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Mark D »


Brian Bailey

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Thanks.  The Magpie Jay does look very reminiscent of our Blue Jay, but it is much larger, with a very long tail.  That tuft on top makes me think of a Blue Jay that's in touch with his feminine side.

Here's a few more of the colourful ones:

Montezuma Oropendolas are large and loud.  This doesn't give a very good sense of the bird, but it's the least blurry shot I got.

The Red-legged Honeycreeper is a real stunner.  I wish I'd been able to get a sharper image of him.

The Golden-hooded Tanager is one of the most unusual colour combinations I've ever seen.  The one beside him is an Olive-backed Euphonia.


BB
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Brian Bailey »
Brian Bailey
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JTF

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Great shots, lovely colours. Awesome pics, what a variety of birds. Based on your comment about the camera I may just take my Nikon D50 & the 80-400vr lense for our trip to mexico, first week of march to the mayan rivera. Never travelled with the big lense before, I would only carry it on board for sure, might be a good idea to get a proper camera bag. The honeycreeper is just amazing, striking is an understatement.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by JTF »
Paul O\'Toole


Carl-Adam

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Very nice! where in costa rica were you?

Carl
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Carl-Adam »


Joe

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Have to agree with everyone.  Amazing shots, amazing birds.

Joe
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Joe »


mike

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Great shots. I've been to CR several times myself and those Magpie Jays have quite the personality about them. We even had them hopping right inside our hotel room for goodies. Hope to go back again.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by mike »


Brian Bailey

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Thanks to all.

I was touring around the northern part of the country from coast to coast for 8 days.  We spent a couple of days in Guanacaste (the north west), 3 nights near La Fortuna at the base of Arenal.  We visited Caño Negro, Selva Verde, Tortuguero, and San José.  It would have been better as a 2 week trip.  I would have liked at least one more day everywhere.

As for taking a long lens traveling, I find them great for a variety of travel shots, but in Costa Rica, it was particularly helpful for bird IDs.  However, I use a Canon 70-300, which is considerably more portable than a Nikon 80-400.  You'd really have to consider how much you want to carry, how & where you're traveling, and how much (unwanted) attention it might attract.

BB
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 pm by Brian Bailey »
Brian Bailey
Etobicoke