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Carara by my own

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Old Sunday 29th November 2015, 10:39   #1
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Carara by my own

As indicated in an other post I will be visiting Costa Rica in less than one week.

Startin in Bougainvillea, then to La Selva, Monteverde, Carara and San Gerardo de Dota.

I have arranged a few guided tours and I have a lot of information for all my tour but Carara.

I havn´t found any available guide and I havn´t found much on internet. Can anyone advide where to go in Carara and Tarcoles? Available time is not much, a full day and a half. I would like to know specific points where to go and not loose time wandering arround, specially on a river mouth that can be frustrating sometimes. I am staying at Cerro Lodge.

Thanks in advance
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Old Sunday 29th November 2015, 13:50   #2
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Search for Carara at my blog and you should find a fair amount of information. Where you go depends on what you would like to see.

Cerro can be good for many parrot species, and a fair selection of dry forest birds. Yellow-billed Cotinga also shows up on occasion and is usually visible way off in the distance.

Carara National Park- The Laguna Meandrica trail is good for a wide variety of second growth and forest species. Oxbow lake at the end is much drier and not nearly as good as it used to be.
The HQ trails are better for forest species- Great Tinamou, Ruddy Quail-Dove, Streak-chested Antpitta, etc.

The road to Playa Azul and near there can be good for mangrove species, and the mangrove boat ride is a relaxing way to see waterbirds, a chance at mangrove species, Southern Lapwing, Collared Plover, and various other species.

Dry forest species are also possible at sites near Cerro.

It's a very birdy area, you can't go wrong with Cerro Lodge and a day in the national park.
Patrick O'Donnell
my blog about living and birding in Costa Rica:
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Old Sunday 10th January 2016, 20:43   #3
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I finally arranged a full day birding tour in Carara with Patrick O'Donnell. And it was worth it. Pat is a very profesional guy and I enjoyed very much each bird he showed me. We started at 6:00 a.m at Cerro Lodge and after 1 hour birding with great views of a Collared Forest-Falcon we moved to Carara National Park. We spent the whole morning at the path behind the main entance of the Park. Most of the best sightings were here. Then we had lunch at the seashore were there were a lot of movement, especially terns. Then we went to Tarcoles and the river mouth were we show more terns and waders and mangroove speciallities. Then the rain came and we went up some hill (Near villa Lapas) and we end up again at Cerro Lodge.

134 species seen + 20 more heard. Here is the list:

Great Tinamou
Muscovy Duck
Black-bellied Whistling Duck
Blue-winged Teal
Wood Stork
Brown Pelican
Magnificent Frigatebird
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Snowy Egret
Little Blue Heron
Cattle Egret
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Gray Hawk
Short-tailed Hawk
Collared Forest-Falcon
Crested Caracara
Yellow-headed Caracara
Double-striped Thick-Knee
Northern Jacana
Black-necked Stilt
Spotted Sandpiper
Franklin's Gull
Laughing Gull
Arctic Tern
Common Tern
Royal Tern
Elegant Tern
Sandwich (Cabot's) Tern
Black Tern
Red-billed Pigeon
White-tipped Dove
White-winged Dove
Inca Dove
Ruddy Ground-Dove
Groove-billed Ani
Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl
White-collared Swift
Long-billed Hermit
Stripe-throated Hermit
White-necked Jacobin
Rufous-tailed Humingbird
Cinnamon Hummingbird
Steely-vented Hummingbird
Scaly-breasted Hummingbird
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Blue-throated Goldentail
Black-throated Trogon
Turquoise-browed Motmot
Green Kingfisher
White-whiskered Puffbird
Hoffmann's Woodpecker
Scarlet Macaw
Orange-fronted Parakeet
White-fronted Parrot
Red-lored Parrot
Yellow-naped Parrot
White-crowned Parrot
Black-hooded Antshrike
Dusky Antbird
Chestnut-backed Antbird
Dot-winged Antwren
Russet Antshrike
Streak-chested Antpitta
Black-faced Antthrush
Cocoa Woodcreeper
Black-striped Woodcreeper
Streak-headed Woodcreeper
Plain Xenops
Greenish Elaenia
Northern Bentbill
Common Tody-Flycatcher
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher
Yellow-olive Flycatcher
Sulphur-rumped Flycatcher
Royal Flycatcher
Rufous Mourner
Nutting's Flycatcher
Great Kiskadee
Boat-billed Flycatcher
Social Flycatcher
Stub-tailed Spadebill
Northern Scrub Flycatcher
Ochre-bellied Flycatcher
Tropical Kingbird
Rose-throated Becard
Red-capped Manakin
Yellow-throated Vireo
Lesser Greenlet
Mangrove Vireo
Philadelphia Vireo
Gray-breasted Martin
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Mangrove Swallow
Barn Swallow
Rufous-naped Wren
Rufous-breasted Wren
Rufous and white Wren
Riverside Wren
Tropical Gnatcatcher
White-lored Gnatcatcher
Clay-colored Thrush
Black and white Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Tennessee Warbler
Worm-eating Warbler
Northern Waterthrush
Buff-rumped Warbler
Golden-winged Warbler
Prothonotary Warbler
White-shouldered Tanager
Blue-gray Tanager
Palm Tanager
Blue Dacnis
Red-legged Honeycreeper
Buff-throated Saltator
Grayish Saltator
Summer Tanager
Orange-billed Sparrow
Blue-black Grassquit
Stripe-headed Sparrow
White-collared Seedeater
Painted Bunting
Melodious Blackbird
Montezuma Oropendola
Great-tailed Grackle
Baltimore Oriole
Scrub Euphonia

The heard ones:

Green Heron
Laughing Falcon
Short-billed Pigeon
Squirrel Cuckoo
Gartered Trogon
Slaty-tailed Trogon
Baird's Trogon
Rufous-tailed Jacamar
Lineated Woodpecker
Pale-billed Woodpecker
Orange-chinned Parakeet
Slaty Antwren
Streak-headed Woodcreeper
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher
Dusky-capped Flycatcher
Gray-capped Flycatcher
Tropical Pewee
Rufous Piha
White-winged Becard
Northern Schiffornis
Tawny-crowned Greenlet
Tropical Parula
Yellow-crowned Euphonia
Spot-crowned Euphonia
Black-mandibled Toucan

So again I fully recomend Pat as a guide for Carara (He also does Poas Volcano). His contact details are on his previous post.

I promise I will post my whole trip review hee sometime. But I am still reviewing my sightings and photos (+2.000) and I am still stucked on my second day. It will take some time.
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Old Tuesday 12th January 2016, 14:43   #4
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I'm glad you hooked up with Patrick. He guided my parenst and me a couple of years ago at Carara and we had a great day (although not quite as good as yours - 134 sp is great!). Like you, I would also recommend him as a guide. We also had him guide us for a day out of San Jose that was quite good as well.
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Old Thursday 14th January 2016, 13:45   #5
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Originally Posted by ori76 View Post
I finally arranged a full day birding tour in Carara with Patrick O'Donnell. And it was worth it.
Carara & Patrick (with lodging at Cerro) - that's a great combo, and your list speaks for itself. After several full-day tours (including Carara, Poas, Manzanillo & the mountains west of Poas) I can readily second your enthusiastic recommendation.

Gary H
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