View Full Version : Birdingcraft's 2012 Costa Rican list

Friday 17th February 2012, 18:00
I planned on starting this in January but with the guiding high season have been to busy to update the year list. Anyways, I got off to a good start with species I had nearly missed last year such as Snowy Cotinga and Crested Owl, and birds totally missed in 2011 such as Keel-billed Motmot (a lifer!), a few duck species, and Spot-fronted Swift.

With 404 species so far, I have a fair chance at hitting 600 by the end of the year. I expect to pick up some nice birds this weekend while guiding in the high elevations of Irazu Volcano and the rich foothill forests of Quebrada Gonzalez.

Friday 24th February 2012, 04:14
Last weekend upped the list to 420. I should reach 500 during March if I can catch some migration along the Caribbean coast and get into the field at least once a week.
Additions from weekend guiding at Irazu Volcano and foothill rainforests on the Caribbean slope included:

405. Mourning Dove- local in CR, Irazu is good area for it.
406. Snowcap- A few at El Tapir as usual.
407. Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer.
408. Yellow-eared Toucanet- missed it last year so I was pleased to catch a glimpse of a pair at El Tapir.
409. Streak-crowned Antvireo.
410. Checker-throated Antwren.
411. White-flanked Antwren.
412. Bicolored Antbird.
413. Ocellated Antbird!
414. Ruddy-tailed Fycatcher.
415. Orange-billed Nightingale Thrush
416. Pale-vented Thrush.
417. Tawny-faced Gnatwren.
418. Brown-capped Vireo.
419. White-throated Shrike-Tanager
420. Volcano Junco

Tuesday 28th February 2012, 19:41
Guiding in the moist forests and wetlands in and Carara National Park on Monday moved the year list up to 430.

Four of the memorable species included:

Southern Lapwing- Usually get this smart looking bird on boat tours along the Tarcoles River.

Amazon Kingfisher: This one was already overdue!

Yellow-green Vireo: Common in Costa Rica but migrate to South America until January or February.

Collared Plover: Two seen from the boat tour. Not the easiest of shorebirds to see in Costa Rica.

Monday 5th March 2012, 04:12
I reached 435 after a bit of birding near Carara and in high elevation habitats at Irazu Volcano.
431. Scrub Greenlet: This is an uncommon species around Carara so I was pleased to get one near the entrance to the Bijagual road.
432. Bare-shanked Screech-Owl: Perfect looks at this regional highland endemic at Poas Lodge.
433. Timberline Wren: A pair seen well near the crater of Irazu Volcano.
434. Buffy-crowned Wood Partridge: One heard on the slopes of Irazu- good area for this tough species.
435. American Redstart: A male turned up near Carara.

Tuesday 13th March 2012, 13:26
Birding in the high elevation forests of Varablanca and Poas turned up a bunch of excellent additions for the year.

These include:

436. Bicolored Hawk: Nice to get this rarity for the year!
437. Barred Forest-Falcon: A couple heard calling from the cloud forest.
438. Gray-headed Kite: Perfect looks as it displayed over the cloud forest.
439. Golden-bellied Flycatcher: Good looks at a pair of this uncommon near endemic.
440. Torrent Tyrannulet: Streams near Varablanca are reliable for this small flycatcher.
441. Ruddy Pigeon: One calling bird.
442. Green-fronted Lancebill: Excellent looks at one on the way up to Poas Volcano.
443. Three-striped Warbler: Common cloud forest species.
444. Collared Trogon: One calling from the cloud forest.
445. Streak-breasted Treehunter: Several of this near endemic were calling and showing off in the cloud forest.
446. Lineated Foliage-gleaner: 1 or 2 of this cloud forest bird.
447. Peg-billed Finch: Seeding bamboo on Poas turned up many of this uncommon species.
448. Slaty Finch: Possibly the best bird of the year! A very rare species throughout its range, one was heard singing from seeding bamboo.

Tuesday 13th March 2012, 15:54
I forgot to add one other bird from the Varablanca cloud forests- Dark Pewee for 449 birds so far. I kind of doubt that I will break 500 by the end of March but just might do it if I do more foothill birding and look for shorebirds.

Thursday 15th March 2012, 05:15
I picked up 5 new species today during a morning of guiding that went from the edge and brushy habitats of the Central Valley to the rainforests of the Caribbean lowlands. Of the more than 100 species that were identified (including highlights of Snowy Cotinga and Green Thorntail) I picked up:
450. White-naped Brush Finch: A pair that showed well after spishing.
451. White-collared Seedeater: A few turned up in grassy areas near the lowlands.
452. Crimson-collared Tanager: One at the Sarapiqui Eco Observatory, a new birding site with lots of potential.
453. Scarlet-thighed Dacnis: Nice looks at this beautiful turquoise and black bird at Cinchona, a reliable site for the species.
454. Rufous Motmot- One heard at the Sarapiqui Eco Observatory.

Tuesday 20th March 2012, 04:16
Picked up two more birds on a Sunday morning trip to Poas Volcano. It was a great morning with 4 Resplendent Quetzals sighted, glimpses of Barred Parakeets that rocketed overhead, lots of Peg-billed Finches in the seeding bamboo, Black Guans, and other goodies. I have already has those for the year but the 2 new species were:
455. Buff-fronted Quail Dove- a couple calling from the forest.
456. Highland Tinamou- at least 3 heard calling from the forest.

Too bad there weren't any trails to access the areas where they were calling as it would have been great see them. I wonder what the next year bird will be?

Sunday 25th March 2012, 14:29
A fantastic day of guiding yesterday in the middle elevation forests of Virgen del Socorro and the highland forests of Poas Volcano yielded several new species for the year. Out of 151 species identified for the day, the following were new for the year:

457. Least Grebe- Long overdue for the year!
458. Brown-billed Scythebill- One vocalizing bird in Virgen del Socorro that refused to show itself.
459. Spotted Barbtail- A couple of these fun little Furnarids.
460. Swainson's Hawk- Fairly big flocks migrating north.
461. Slaty-capped Flycatcher.
462. Azure-hooded Jay- Was happy to hear one vocalizing bird and get that toughy for the year.
463. Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrush- Great cloud forest song.

Tuesday 3rd April 2012, 07:10
Over the course of a Big Day this past Sunday, I added 16 species to my year list. Of the 260 species of birds that were recorded, the following were new:

464. Mottled Owl- One bird gave one short call but that's all that was needed to identify it.
465. Black Hawk-Eagle- A calling bird flying high above Tirimbina was a good one for the day.
466. Ornate Hawk-Eagle- Another great bird to get for the day and year was this one calling as it soared above Tirimbina.
467. Short-tailed Nighthawk- Calling just after we arrived at El Gavilan lodge in the Caribbean lowlands.
468. Lesser Swallow-tailed Swift: This one was simply long overdue. We saw at least four over the course of the day.
469. Chimney Swift: One of the only migrants we found.
470. White-necked Puffbird: We heard a few birds at different spots. Seem to be vocalizing quite a bit at this time of the year.
471. Cinnamon Woodpecker: Another one that was overdue.
472. Olivaceous Woodcreeper: One vocalized at Virgen del Socorro.
473. Great Antshrike: One of the first birds heard at dawn.
474. Western Slaty Antshrike: Excellent looks at a pair at Tirimbina.
475. Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher: They are back from wintering in South America and are pretty common.
476. Cliff Swallow: A few seen in the Caribbean lowlands.
477. Blue and gold Tanager: Great looks at this beautiful species at Virgen del Socorro.
478. Nicaraguan Seed Finch: Good bird to get any day of the year. We saw one at the El Tigre fields.
479. Shiny Cowbird: Had a brief flyby of 2, maybe 3 at El Tigre.

Monday 16th April 2012, 21:46
I have done pretty good on year birds since my last post. Trips to the Caribbean lowlands and dry forests in Guanacaste have boosted the year list to 501 species. Maybe I will hit 600 again by the end of the year after all?

A bit of guiding on Poas yielded number 480 in the form of Stripe-tailed Hummingbird.\ and I forgot to mark down Plain-capped Sarthroat seen during the Big Day for number 481.

During a morning of birding in Sarapiqui, I got:

482. Bronzy Hermit
483. Cerulean Warbler- happy to get this for the year!
484. Eastern Kingbird
485. Scarlet Tanager
486. Pied Puffbird- Great looks at this one!

On a family trip to Playa Hermosa, dry forests and flooded rice fields yielded:

487. Jabiru: Excellent to get for the year and a new country bird!
487. Pectoral Sandpiper: Another new country bird!
488. Greater Yellowlegs
489. Lesser Yellowlegs
490. Thicket Tinamou: Several vocalizing birds were ticked.
491. Elegant Trogon: Saw a few of these.
492. Plain Chachalaca: Good bird to get in Costa Rica.
493. Limpkin
494. Plain-breasted Ground-Dove: Another good bird to pick up.
495. Lesser Ground Cuckoo
496. Canivet's Emerald: Uncommon but usually get it in dry forest.
497. Northern Beardless Tyrannulet
498. Scissor-tailed Flycatcher- hard to believe I still needed this for the year!
499. Bank Swallow
500. Olive Sparrow
501. Streak-backed Oriole.

Monday 23rd April 2012, 01:21
A great morning of birding around the highland forests of Varablanca and VIrgen del Socorro added new birds for the year. These were:
502. Canada Warbler- several seen, migrating through at this time.
503. Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush- Hadn't picked this one up on account of not birding in forests at their preferred elevation.
504. Red-eyed Vireo- Just one of this migrant.
505. Acadian Flycatcher- Excellent looks at this migrant.
506. Olive-sided Flycatcher- A few of these migrants were around.
507. Eastern Wood-Pewee- Most pewees migrating through are silent but this one called to give it a definitive name.
508. White-throated Spadebill- I was hoping to get this one.
509. Plain Antvireo- Nice to pick up this middle elevation bird.
510. Scaly-throated Foliage-gleaner- Got this rare species for Costa Rica in the same spot as last year.

Monday 30th April 2012, 20:03
A weekend of guiding in the Caribbean lowlands around Sarapiqui, Costa Rica turned up 9 new species for the year. These were:

511. Great Green Macaw: A pair nested near La Selva this year and we got good looks at them.
512. Blue-chested Hummingbird: Brief looks at a female.
513. Spectacled Owl: I was surprised to see that I still needed this one. Great looks at a pair at El Gavilan and then another one at Quebrada Gonzalez.
514. Mississippi Kite: An impressive flock of 150 as they migrated overhead was a bonus!
515. Chestnut-colored Woodpecker: One showed nicely after whistling an imitation of its call.
516. Plain-brown Woodcreeper: Turned out to be fairly common at El Gavilan.
517. Olive-sided Flycatcher
518. Dusky-faced Tanager: A given at El Gavilan when they come to the feeders!
519. Tawny-crested Tanager: An expected one at Quebrada Gonzalez.

Tuesday 8th May 2012, 16:49
A day of birding the excellent high elevation, underbirded habitats along the Providencia road turned up the following additions to my Costa Rican 2012 list:

520. Sulfur-winged Parakeet: I was hoping to get that one.
521. White-throated Mountain-Gem: Another expected species but only one seen.
522. Ochraceous Pewee: Two of this rare species were heard but not seen!
523: Western Wood Pewee: A few of the pewees we saw were definitely this species.
524. Barred Becard: Great looks at this handsome high elevation species.
525. Silver-throated Jay: A very good bird to get! An uncommon jay that requires high quality, high elevation oak forest.
526. Elegant Euphonia: Nice to pick up this beautiful little bird.
527. Yellow-bellied Siskin: Fairly common up that way.

Tuesday 15th May 2012, 18:22
A weekend of guiding at Punta Leona combined with the mangrove birding tour turned up a few more year birds. I was surprised to discover that I still needed some of these:

528. Back-bellied Plover: I could hardly believe that I still needed this common migrant.
529. Black and White Owl: I thought I had this one but the last one I recorded was at the end of December.
530. Willow Flycatcher: Several Empids were around and I suspected they were Willows but I didn't want to count one until hearing it's distinctive "fitz-bew" volcalization.
531. Panama Flycatcher: Good to see a few of these in the mangroves.

Wednesday 16th May 2012, 16:22
I forgot to mention one other species that was new for the year:
532. Cherrie's Tanager- this species is very uncommon around Carara, much more abundant a bit further south. One male was seen during the mangrove birding tour on the Rio Tarcoles.

Thursday 17th May 2012, 16:52
533. Heard from the house today, a calling Crested Bobwhite!

Sunday 20th May 2012, 16:00
Two new species for the year on a morning visit to cloud forest near San Ramon:
534. Orange-bellied Trogon: A common species in the Tilaran mountains, I had perfect, eye level looks at a beautiful male.
535. Three-wattled Bellbird: An emblematic species that is much more common in the Tilaran Mountains than the central mountain range. Several males and females were seen in cloud forest above San Ramon.

Monday 4th June 2012, 21:10
536. Dull-mantled Antbird at Quebrada Gonzalez on Saturday was one that I should have picked up by now.

Thursday 14th June 2012, 23:50
Number 537 is one of my best birds of the year. While guiding yesterday in the Poas/Cinchona area, I saw a gorgeous, male Lovely Cotinga. This is one of the rarest resident species in Costa Rica so I was pretty pleased with seeing it.

Here is a blog post (http://birdingcraft.com/wordpress/2012/06/14/an-impressive-day-of-birding-around-poas/) I wrote that details that memorable day (we also had 2 quetzals, Black Guan, Peg-billed Finch, and many other good birds).

Thursday 21st June 2012, 17:42
Guiding the past two days in montane forests on Poas Volcano and middle elevation forests near the Manuel Brenes Reserve turned up dozens of great birds (Black Guan, Emerald Tanager, Scarlet-thighed Dacnis, Zeledonia, and much more) but the only new species for the year was Thicket Antpitta (538).

Monday 9th July 2012, 21:33
Guiding down at Esquinas Lodge in southwestern Costa Rica turned up a bunch of new birds for the year. A number of species are more easily found in that area than other parts of Costa Rica so I was looking forward to that trip. In a few days, we recorded over 160 species including killer looks at Little Tinamou, Great Curassow, King Vulture, Back-cheeked Ant-Tanager, Black-bellied Wren, Scarlet Macaws, 11 species of hummingbirds, and much more. I also got most of my year targets. These were:

539. American Oystercatcher: Not actually seen at the lodge but on a rocky beach near Dominical.
540. Gray-breasted Crake: Several heard from wet, grassy fields but as usual, they were invisible.
541. Blue-headed Parrot: Bad but positive looks at a few at the lodge.
542. Smooth-billed Ani: Expected and several were seen.
543. Striped Owl: Wonderful views of this one at night.
544. Olivaceous Piculet: Heard a couple and saw one of this tiny woodpecker.
545. Red-crowned Woodpecker: At least a few of this common edge species.
546. Pale-breasted Spinetail: Great, close looks at this skulker!
547. Yellow-bellied Tyrannulet: Very happy to get looks (if brief) at this tough species!
548. Yellow-crowned Tyrannulet: Saw a couple of these.
549. Blue-crowned Manakin: I only saw one of these but was glad that I did because I thought I has already gotten it for the year.
550. Black-cheeked Ant-Tanager: Glad to get good looks at this Costa Rican endemic.
551. Thick-billed Euphonia: Expected this one.
552. White-vented Euphonia: Got a few great looks at this uncommon species.
553. Ruddy-breasted Seedeater: Was hoping to get this, we only saw it on the way to the lodge.
554. Streaked Saltator: Nice surprise since they are usually found at other sites.
555. Red-breasted Blackbird: Expected and happy to see several of this striking species.

Friday 13th July 2012, 03:54
Around 6:30 this morning, I was amazed to hear an unfamiliar parakeet calling from the vicinity of the house. Incredibly, there was a rare Red-fronted Parrotlet perched on a telephone wire! The looks werent the best but they were definitive. This species is very little known and infrequently seen and appears to wander up and down the mountains in search of fruiting trees. It isnt expected in the Central Valley but apparently shows up on occasion because a friend of mine had several at this time last year in the Central Valley. The Central Valley of Costa Rica is the most urbanized area in the country. If this species historically occurred in the valley, the lack of habitat could partly explain its rarity.
That excellent, unexpected find makes 556 for the year.

Friday 3rd August 2012, 15:50
A search for Unspotted Saw-whet Owl and guiding around Carara National Park has turned up a bunch of new birds for the year.

While the spotless owl refused to show in the montane forests of Irazu Volcano, I did pick up Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl (557) as it vocalized during the cold dawn. Flyover Bare-shanked Screech-Owl, Fiery-throated Hummingbirds, and Sooty Robins were also nice but they werent new for the year. The one other year bird was the hoped for Lesser Goldfinch (558). Formerly common, trapping has made it a rare species in Costa Rica and Irazu seems to be the most reliable spot in the country to find it.

Among the 160 plus species from two days of recent guiding near Carara were the following new additions for the year:
559. Pearl Kite: Fantastic looks at a bird right from the crocodile bridge. I havent seen it there before but sure hope that it takes up residence at that conspicuous location!
560. Crane Hawk: One flying past the Cerro Lodge lookout in the afternoon.}
561. Mangrove Hummingbird: Best bird of the trip! Good looks at a male during the mangrove birding boat tour.
562. Western Sandpiper: Fair-sized flock on mudflats in the Tarcoles estuary.
563. Short-billed Dowitcher: Small group of birds in the Tarcoles estuary.
564. Wilsons Plover: Several hanging out with the other shorebirds, including several Collared Plovers.
565. Northern Scrub Flycatcher: Great looks at a few of this mangrove bird along with Panama Flycatchers after we finished the boat tour.
566. Ruddy Turnstone: Unbelievably, I still needed this one!
567. Ruddy Quail-Dove: Good looks at a male in the dim recesses of the rainforest in Carara.

Monday 20th August 2012, 22:14
A morning trip to the Pacific coast on Saturday turned up 7 new birds for the year list. Although a hoped for shorebird hotspot had a little too much water for most wader's liking, a rocky shoreline near there turned up hoped for Surfbird. Since this was number 718 on my Costa Rican list, it was of course the star of the day. They pass through the country every Spring and Fall but are tough to find.

Watching the ocean from the same area turned up other year birds as Black Tern, Brown Booby, Sanderling, and Semipalmated Sandpiper, and I picked up my 2012 Black-crowned Night-Heron in an area of scrubby mangroves that hosted dozens of White Ibis.
Just after lunch, I picked up my final and 574th bird of the year in the form of a single Sandwich Tern.

With migrants starting to pass through Costa Rica, I will hopefully pick up a few species by their nocturnal flight calls.

Monday 27th August 2012, 03:48
8 new year birds today after a trip to the Costa Rican shorebird hotspot known as Chomes. Costa Ricas Gulf of Nicoya is used by thousands of shorebirds but there are very few places with accessible shorebird habitat. The shrimp ponds at Chomes are one of the best and todays lived up to its reputation with hundreds of waders. Diversity was actually a bit low but it is always a good day when more than 100 Marbled Godwits and hundreds of Western Sandpipers are seen.

New species for the year were:
575. Marbled Godwit
576. Semipalmated Plover- hard to believe that I still needed this one.
577. Least Tern- always a good site for this one.
578. Common Tern- not so common in CR.
579. Black Skimmer- great birds to watch that somehow blend elegance with a cumbersome appearance.
580. Gull-billed Tern
581. Purple Martin
582. Dickcissel- At least 2 heard as flyovers.

Tuesday 4th September 2012, 04:42
I picked up two more new birds from middle elevation forests on the Caribbean slope of Turrialba volcano while participating in a Cerulean Warbler count on Sunday. These were:
583. Tropical Screech Owl: Long overdue for the year as they are common in the Central Valley but I hadnt heard one until Saturday night.
584. Black-bellied Hummingbird: A local regional endemic of middle elevations.

Thursday 13th September 2012, 14:55
Guiding this past weekend at Laguna del Lagarto turned up 4 new species for the year. A heard Tawny-throated Leaftosser during a dawn stop near Cinchona was 585. and the only year bird for the first day. You know that new year birds are tough to get when you only pick up one out of 150 plus species for the day!

There were several rare possibilities at Laguna and I tried for things like Tawny-faced Quail and Slaty-breasted Tinamou but 2 days wasn't enough time to find them. Laguna came through with its signature bird though- Agami Heron for number 586.

The other two species were Brown-capped Tyrannulet and a striking Scaled Pigeon for bird 588. Not too many migrants were around other than big flocks of Mississippi Kites and Red-eyed Vireos but other species should be coming through in numbers in a week or two. I doubt the migrants alone will push the year list over 600 but I should add a few.

Tuesday 18th September 2012, 14:16
A short morning search for migrants near the Varablanca on Sunday area turned up a calling Alder Flycatcher for bird number 589.

Monday 24th September 2012, 14:38
A day of guiding at Quebrada Gonzalez, Braulio Carrillo National Park, Costa Rica turned up two year birds during one of my most memorable birding days ever. Number 590 was a calling Striped Woodhaunter but number 591 took the spotlight. That special bird was my lifer Rufous-vented Ground-Cuckoo!

Fantastic species for the year, a highlight of my birding career, and number 720 for my Costa Rica list. I briefly summed up the sighting in the "Latest Lifer (http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=40923&page=88)" thread.

Saturday 29th September 2012, 14:52
Birding at Quebrada Gonzalez on Tuesday turned up two more year birds along with the ground-cuckoo again. These were:
592. Black-crowned Antpitta: I usually get this spectacular understory species earlier in the year at this site. On Tuesday, one was singing and popped out for a brief look.
593. White-crowned Manakin: This uncommon species descends to foothill sites at this time of year so it was somewhat expected. Nice to see a striking white-crowned male though instead of a dull olive female.
594. Upland Sandpiper: I was very pleased to get great looks at one of these rare migrants at a turf farm near the airport on Friday! I have only heard them calling at night as they migrate through Costa Rica so it was nice to actually see one.

Getting closer to 600, if I cant get out and see some migrants, I might hit that milestone in a couple of weeks.

Monday 15th October 2012, 15:38
Two more birds for the year after an owling sojourn on Saturday to Turrialba Volcano. One of those was a mega lifer and the reason for the trip. After an hour and a half of waiting, listening, and watching, the bird started calling and we walked through wet pastures to track it down- Unspotted Saw-whet Owl for number 595!

This species is arguably the most difficult, regularly occurring bird species in Costa Rica so myself and a few others jumped at the chance to look for it when word got out that Ernesto Carman had located at least 2. To give an idea of how tough this birds is, these were the first he had found after searching for the past 5 years.

While looking for that tiny mega owl, we also glimpsed a Barn Owl- number 596 for my 2012 list. I should break 600 next weekend while guiding in Manzanillo, an overlooked area that rivals La Selva for lowland rainforest birding.

Tuesday 23rd October 2012, 05:27
Even though there weren't as many migrants as I had hoped for, visiting the little known birding hotspot of Manzanillo, Costa Rica paid off with enough new year species to surpass my goal of 600 for 2012.

597. First new bird was an excellent one for the year- Tiny Hawk! This uncommon raptor is infrequently seen so myself and the people I was guiding were quite happy to study one through the scope for 10 minutes.
598. Common Yellowthroat- I had hoped to pick up this uncommon migrant. We saw 2-3 birds.
599. Gray Catbird- Another much needed migrant that is easier on the coast.
600. Bay-breasted Warbler- A bunch of these were in the area.
601. Merlin- Manzanillo can be good for migrating falcons. One Merlin zipped by during our stay and that's all I needed for the year list.
602. Least Flycatcher- Although I have seen thousands of this species further north, it's a rare vagrant to Costa Rica so I was very pleased to add this for both the year and to my country list (number 722).
603. Purple-throated Fruitcrow- I wanted to pick up this fancy bird for the year over the course of the weekend. We had a family group foraging with oropendolas and toucans on our last day.

Monday 19th November 2012, 13:27
Added 6 more species to my 2012 CR list on a recent guiding trip to the Playa Hermosa area.
Birding in dry forest, rice fields, and wetlands turned up:

604. Orchard Oriole: Our group had several of these and this species isn't rare by any means so it was odd to have not seen it yet.
605. American Coot: A uncommon species in Costa Rica. We had 2 at the catfish ponds near Sardinal- an excellent, underbirded wetland site that has a lot of potential.
606. Northern Shoveler: 3 individuals among hundreds of Blue-winged Teal.
607. Harris's Hawk: Nice to pick up this uncommon species near the catfish farms.
608. Solitary Sandpiper: I was surprised to see that I still needed this one. Heard at least one in flooded rice fields.
609. Tricolored Munia: An introduced species established near Playa Hermosa.

Monday 26th November 2012, 04:06
A morning visit to the Cartago area and Ujarras didnt turn up vagrant Nashville and Cape May Warblers but I still picked up 3 year birds and had a good, birdy morning overall with several Prevosts Ground Sparrows (might be best site for this species), 6 species of hummingbirds and quite a few warblers.

610. Common Moorhen- pretty uncommon in Costa Rica.
611. Worm-eating Warbler- also uncommon in country, I always love seeing this odd wood warbler that sort of resembles something from the Phylloscopus crowned warbler complex.
612. White-throated Flycatcher- heard one in sedge habitat in front of Lankester Gardens. Not a peep from the Sedge Wrens so I still need those for the year!

Monday 3rd December 2012, 14:23
Another mostly fruitless visit to Ujarras turned up lots of looks at Prevosts Ground Sparrow and another new bird for the year-
613. Garden Emerald

Amazing thing is, if I had the time, I could still pick up several new species for the year! Writing projects will probably keep me out of the field though so I suspect that I will be lucky if I get 5 new species.

Thursday 13th December 2012, 18:33
Short trips to the cloud forests of Varablanca resulted in a male MacGillivray's Warbler (614.) and the lowland rainforests of Tirimbina yielded two excellent species for the year:

615. Bare-necked Umbrellabird- I was hoping we would get this one at Tirimbina as they are in the lowlands at this time of the year. We watched on bizarre looking male for several minutes and may have glimpsed another individual in the excellent lowland rainforests of this private reserve.

616. White-fronted Nunbird- Tirimbina is one of the few sites where this spectacular species can still be reliably seen in the Sarapiqui area.

I doubt I will get anything new for the year before leaving Costa Rica for a short visit to the states on December 17th but who knows- maybe I will get something new while guiding this Saturday. If I do, it will have to be something really good.