Monday, 4 March 2013

Reasons To Be Cheerful 1, 2, 3 - Ian Dury and the Blockheads

Having experienced the difficulties of getting back from Awala-Yalimapo and then onward to Sinnamary should have alerted me to the possibilities of even more snags to come, but oh no just keep bumbling on. There were 3 good reasons to pay a visit to Kourou, just 60Km further east, but first I had to get there with most people advising of no or little public transport, I felt another 'hitch' coming on. When the great deal of help from Steve, diving round trying to recruit one of his mates to drive me there, drew a blank all that was left was Plan B - yes 'stick up a thumb'! He then drove me to a hotel on the outskirts of town, which was thought a strategic position to get a lift, and departed saying "if he could be of further help I needed only to return to his house". After 2 hours at the roadside, first in blazing sunshine followed by pouring rain, I decided to try my luck recruiting a ride from within the hotel. Ride? - they didn't even have a cup of coffee but where most pleasant for all that. After 5 hours I decided to return to town, book another night at my former digs and pay Steve a visit to offer an incentive to drive me to Kourou the next morning. He agreed to pick me up at 06:00 but by 07:00 he was still a 'no show' so I tried my hand elsewhere, firstly asking the advice of passers-by, second finding a collectivo taxi which was gallingly 'full' then approaching a gentleman using an ATM. Simple approach, "are you going to Kourou", simple answer "yes", I thought he was joking but sure enough within minutes we had picked up my bag and were on our way. Just over a hour and we were in the main square, me thanking my benefactor and offering a payment which he refused and heading off to find a hotel.
First of the 3 reasons for the visit were the 3 interesting looking 'Lakes' clearly marked on the map, which surely held some bird life, but 2 turning out to be stagnant.
Luckily the third, Lac du Bols Diable, was clean, on first inspection had an Osprey flying over it and was conveniently at the side of the hotelI found through a lovely lady working in a coffee bar.
The hope was to circumnavigate it but unfortunately the shore was blocked at the distant building, while there seemed to be no access at all to the Mangroves beyond. A very pleasant stroll in ideal weather conditions was a nice change and there were quite a few bird which in the main amounted to more of what we have seen already - you can only photograph it if it's there!
It's been a while since we've clapped eyes on
so a good start followed by
and a 'flushed'
RUDDY PIGEON quickly followed
along with one of three SPOTTED SANDPIPER
and distant views of a well populated colony of
The first and only addition
to the Trip List today
was a
later joined by 2 others
but none closing to decent camera range.
A nice reminder of the Little Terns that may well 
be awaiting my return to Ferry Bridge!
TROPICAL MOCKINGBIRD was represented by c3 individuals,
while GREAT KISKADEE numbers were nearer 300?
and RUDDY GROUND DOVE by a few,
and then that OSPREY again.
There was then something of a 'heart-stopping' moment
as I peered up a tree to see what at first was thought to be a 
but I fear not
these top three looking like moulting male
in a fairly large colony of several dozen including
and juveniles.
Another species great to see again was
while all day long there were familiar calls of what sounded like
which indeed they were.
Interestingly, there is no indication of this species on the distribution maps
for any of the Guiana's in Restall, from which I have noted them in all three.
This fine looking IGUANA welcomed me back through the hotel security gate
but when I showed it to the 2 Receptionist their only comment was
"we bet it would be tasty".
This rather formidable looking Insect completed the day's 
wildlife activities, but it was worth taking a look
around the tidy community of SAVANE

just to give the reader some idea of this smart little town.
Even the graffiti of the town name was well placed,
and beyond there was some excellent looking forest
and areas of cultivation which I did take a long look around.
Everything looked healthy in this Vine Grove
with COCONUTS at the back,
while there was even a 'pose' from the busy Banana Man.