Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Cool for Cats

Monday 21st December 2009

After all that rigmarole about posting on correct dated, I have missed the deadline for getting Monday's post under Monday's date, so let's hope I get it right tomorrow, or today if you're over there. Well, we managed to thwart the Osbourn's, as I have wrongly dubbed them, and set out at 05-30, just Leo and I in search of Sungrebe. That too was destined to fail as by some language difficulty he thought we were trying for 'forest species' else so we didn't end up at the river. However, we did get a few very good birds including Pale-eyed Pygmy Tyrant, Striped Woodcreeper and the endemic Bearded Flycatcher. We were back at base by 07-00 and after breakfast set out with the others (now much calmer than yesterday, probably having got over the initial holiday fervor) for another morning in the bush. As part of the morning we did walk the river but without being in contact with the Grebe, but did get some photos of Hoatzin, saw 2 of the secretive Red-legged Tinamou, plus 'ticking' Pale-tipped Inesia and Yellow-crowned Amazon.

Hoatzin

Rufous-vented Chachalaca

The male partner of yesterday's Yellow-knobbed Curassow (including knob)

Yellow-crowned Amazon

Yellow-headed Caracara

Jabiru at the nest

Wattled Jacana

Common Black Hawk

Capped Heron

The remarkably beautiful and diminutive Pearl Kite

That excellent invention 'siesta' was most welcome after lunch, and a hours 'head down' was followed by some editing work on the photies, then out to meet the new arrivals who joined us this afternoon. They had already picked up on our finest moment yesterday and wanted 'first hand' accounts of the Jaguar and what of our prospects today (lightning striking twice - I doubt it). It was also great to see Thomas again who had driven me here in the first place, and Mario who was the driver on the Ascanio leg. Thomas had to return to Caracas, while Leo and Mario jockeyed for position as to who was going to take me, and what species I wanted. In the end, it will be Leo at 05-15 in search of Sungrebe and Mario after dark in search of Spectacled Owl.

video
Double-striped Thick-knee

Setting of at 16-00 the sun was still a little high but we did pick up a couple of Anhinga (Snakebird) and a 'lifer' by way of Lesser Kiskadee, but the best came as the light faded and the lights were turned on. The dirt roads we were travelling were littered with Common Paurque, Lesser & Band-tailed Nighthawk plus White-tailed Nightjars, seen that well the white outer tail-feathers on the former could be see quite clearly.. A Great Horned Owl put in a lingering appearance at point blank range, while 3 Great Potoo did likewise as 2 Double-striped Thick-knees were all but asking to be run over. Fishing Bats were also busy at most water courses, were we could see them catching their tiny prey, as thousands of birds returned to roost. The afore mentioned lightning did in fact strike, and at first we thought we had another Jaguar, but better still when this tiny cat emerged completely it was seen to be an Ocelot, what a find. I served aboard the Submarine 'Ocelot' in 1968 and many a day as 'casing sentry' (Quartermaster) gazed at her crest bearing an image of this small feline. Agreed, the videos are a little rough, but tell the story, hope you enjoy them!

video
Ocelot

Today's Trip Additions

BLACK-COLLARED HAWK
GREEN IBIS
STRIPED WOODCREEPER*
RED-LEGGED TINAMOU*
HOODED TANAGER*
PALE-TIPPED INESIA*
YELLOW-CROWNED AMAZON*
LESSER KISKADEE*
BAND-WINGED NIGHTJAR*
DOUBLE-STRIPED THICK-KNEE*
GREAT POTOO
GREAT HORNED OWL
BEARDED FLYCATCHER* (E)

Total Trip List - 652 Total 'Lifers' - 451 Total Endemics - 51

1 comment:

  1. Now lets see if I can manage this today. It won't be through lack of trying.....Love the blog, read it as often as I can. Happy New Year and see you soon. Love Tess xxxxx

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