Friday, 18 December 2009

Another Stroll in the Park

Yes I know, it's a White Ibis. Lack of concentration and too much time enjoying myself, I labeled the White Ibis a Wood Stork but the appropriate amendment has been made. I bet Julie didn't get any sleep last night as she's such a stickler for making sure my bird notes are correct ("White Ibis"? "here Miss" - te he ay Ju?)

The more affluent part of Caracas, built to be able to look down on the lowly!

It was more of the same today, so after breakfast I headed for the park. The morning wasn't quiet so hot, only about 72F, and the sky was completely covered so made ideal conditions for birding. It was a hour into the session before I picked up a new bird, another small reminder of home, Ring-necked Parakeet. Sharing the same status here as the Studland birds it has been added to the Trip List. Up until mid-day a total of 45 species were seen, 2 of which were new for the trip (the afore mentioned Parakeet and a pair of stunning Masked Cardinals which were also a 'lifer'. Most species were the same as yesterday, except for those already mentioned, plus Ringed Kingfisher and Black-faced Grassquit (a late identification of yesterdays bird, seen again this morning) which were added to the Park List, yes 'Park List', sad what you get up to when your on your own!!!!

Distantly, the Ghetto area of Caracas. I hadn't realised yesterday the views available from the main road footbridge from where these images were taken.

Anyway, by noon I was glad of 2 little inventions they have come up with out here. Firstly the coffee, of which I havn't had a bad cup, and 'siesta'. The first I got from the cafe across the road from the hotel, I ordered 'grande' as the usual serving doesn't fill a thimble, and was by far the best all trip. The Colombian freshly ground takes some beating (in fact I think I'll use it exclusively when I get home) but this was 'home produced' and OK at 4 quid for a large mug a bit expensive, but worth every penny. Sleeping at lunch time has never been my thing, but to return to the cool sanctuary of the hotel room is bliss and this is where I'll stay until 'birding part II' at 16-00. Asta la Vista.

These little beauties were not only extremely handsome to view, but saved the day as far as a 'lifer' was concerned. A day hasn't gone by yet when a new species has been missed, but this one could easily have been overlooked! On first sight I thought it was Red-capped Cardinal which I have seen before in Buenos Aires, but luckily a flick through the Field Guide revealed its true identity.

Masked Cardinal

Great Kiskadee, more like a Kingfisher than a Flycatcher.

The Chestnut-fronted Macaws were showing much better today, hence another photo. Their cousins, Blue-and-Yellow also put in a brief appearance.

Ringed Kingfisher

Thought worthy of another shot in preening pose.

Terrapin Sp relaxing in the cool, clear waters of the local lake.

Tropical Mockingbird, should have been on yesterday's list.

A trio of 'head shots'

Green Iguana

Black-crowned Night Heron

Rufescent Tiger Heron

A very nice man with pencil moustache, pork-pie hat and pinstriped suit came up to me in the street and said he had a ticket for the Zeppelin in the Park Concert yesterday afternoon. He assured me that Bonzo would be making a special guest appearance on drums, so how could I miss such an opportunity. I parted with my $200 and took my place as the photo shows. So far none of the other 'ticket holders' have arrived, and nor for that matter have Led but I'll stick it out for another hour or so and see what transpires. I'm glad I didn't buy the other ticket to Heaven via the specially constructed Stairway as the man put it!

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