OTHER WILDLIFE – Tortuguero

And there were more! A wetland rainforest like Tortuguero has many animals and this is just a sampling from the River Otter to the Spider Monkey – a lot more than just my birds! To keep it simple I’ll use the auto-slideshow today, randomly presented and the name of each animal appears at the bottom of photo. This is part of the beauty of Tortuguero National Park – enjoy!

OTHER WILDLIFE – Tortuguero

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“A forest’s beauty lies with its inhabitants.” 
― Anthony T. Hincks

 

Turtle Beach Lodge, Tortuguero, Costa Rica

¡Pura Vida!

Butterflies & Flower Enroute

I have so many photos, it is late, and I am tired. So I’m just sharing the a couple of butterfly and flower photos made at our breakfast stop in Guapiles this morning. The lodge and the whole National Park is wonderful, but I can’t start showing it tonight. Here’s some color on the way to the jungle!  🙂

Butterflies & Flowers in Guapiles

 

¡Pura Vida!

Maquenque Wildlife

Here are some shots of non-bird wildlife I haven’t already shown on the blog other than the monkeys and frogs that got their own blog posts earlier. A real rainforest like this is full of wildlife of all kinds and the photo ops are numerous and I’ve seen more than shown here.

 

The photos of my main target, birds, is almost overwhelming as I now have gotten photos here at Maquenque of over 50 different species and with new lifers my total Costa Rica collection is close to 300 species now, though not tabulated yet. I am still sorting and labeling photos and may be for days,  🙂    but will soon have a blog post and an online gallery of Birds at Maquenque. That will include 2 manikins, 2 trogons, plus a Little Tinamou and a Water Thrush as lifers plus more new ones for me!

¡Pura Vida!

You may also enjoy my Other Wildlife Gallery

and my 2019 Maquenque Lodge Trip Gallery 

See the lodge website:  Maquenque Ecolodge

Church Group Cancels & I Add Monteverde!

Anytime you are dealing with groups of people there are complications and changes and this happened with the First Baptist Nashville group that were coming back to Atenas to work again in the Hogar de Vida Children’s Home this April. Pam told me yesterday that it did not work out, so instead of a week with them I now have scheduled a week in the Quaker town of Monteverde in April and already scheduling guided birding hikes while there.   🙂

IMG_1732-A-WEB
Rare Three-wattled Bellbird I photographed at Selvatura Monteverde in 2016

I limit myself to one birding trip a month and somehow for 2 years now I have not been able to get back to Monteverde where I had only 2.5 days back in 2016 on a Birding Club Trip that I added an extra night to but still did not have enough time for all the reserves and other places for nature. I’ll stay 6 nights this time with my first priorities guided birding hikes in three reserves: Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve (or Official Site in English), Santa Elena Reserve (or Official Site in Spanish), and Curi-Cancha Reserve. That’s three days! Then a really good commercial nature reserve there called Selvatura that has the longest canopy hanging-bridges in the country plus a fabulous butterfly garden & hummingbird garden and more! That will be another full day, to which I will then add shorter trips like one of the best night hikes in the country, the excellent Monteverde Butterfly Garden, not to mention the trails and gardens at the Monteverde Lodge & Gardens where I will be staying. A full and fulfilling week!   🙂   So Nashville guys, I will miss you, but not be bored!   🙂

And I change my 2019 Trips Map with #4 (April) moved from Atenas to Monteverde.

Click to enlarge

 

 

¡Pura Vida!

2018 in Review – Photo A Month

One favorite photo from each month of 2018 – And I had trouble picking just one! Thus the header photo above is an extra one from October and the only one here from Esquinas Rainforest Lodge, Piedras Blancas National Park, my #1 lodge this year. 

 

January 2018 – My Discovery of Calle Nueva in my own neighborhood!
February 2018 – Visiting Orosi Valley & this Mirador de Ujarras along with Tapanti National Park & more!
March 2018 – Red-eyed Tree Frog, Danta Corcovado Lodge, Corcovado National Park, Los Patos
April 2018 – A group from First Baptist Nashville on my front porch. They came a volunteers working in the Hogar de Vida Children’s Home for a week. I’m not allowed to show children faces, thus picked this photo.
May 2018 – Mantled Howler Monkey, just one of many great shots from Arenal Observatory Lodge, Arenal Volcano National Park.
June 2018 – Golden Collared Manakin at Tranquilo Bay Lodge, Bocas del Toro, Panama.
July 2018 – Xandari Nature Resort, Alajuela for nature hikes, art and spa!
August 2018 – Emerald Toucanet, Soda y Mirador Cinchona, Alajuela Province
September 2018 – 3-Toed Sloth, Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica Caribbean.
October 2018 – Keel-billed Toucan on my Terrace for Breakfast, Roca Verde, Atenas, Costa Rica
November 2018 – Snow Egrets’ Ballet, Rancho Humo, Palo Verde National Park on the Tempisque River
December 2018 – Blue Morpho Butterfly, Si como No Resort, Manuel Antonio National Park & Quepos

Wow! This was too hard to do! My very best photos were probably all in 3 or 4 months, so I will try something different next year, like maybe my top 5 or so favorite photos. I think I will also try to rank the hotels/lodges/parks I visited this year.

Ranking My Top 7 Lodges in 2018

I rank for all aspects of the lodge for a birder and/or nature lover, not necessarily in this order: number of birds and other wildlife seen, quality of guides, quality of overall service, restfulness of room, quality meals, overall ecology consciousness and sometimes the extra services, depending on the place and situation. My 2018 Top 7 lodges and hotels in order of my preference or enjoyment:

  1. Esquinas Rainforest Lodge, Piedras Blancas National Park, north of Golfito
  2. Danta Corcovado Lodge, Corcovado National Park, Los Patos Ranger Station
  3. Arenal Observatory Lodge, Arenal Volcano National Park, inside the park
  4. Rancho Humo, Palo Verde National Park in Guanacaste
  5. Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo
  6. Tranquilo Bay, Bocas del Toro, Panama
  7. Xandari Nature Resort, Alajuela

¡Pura Vida!

Butterflies

On the hotel property’s “Wildlife Refuge” or nature trail is a “Butterfly Garden” like you find all over Costa Rica, a big, high ceiling cage with lots of flowering plants and continuously hatching butterflies. Here’s some of the ones I saw there today in a simple little slideshow. I do not have my butterfly book with me, meaning I could have mis-labeled one or two and there is one I have no idea of the name and there was no attendant to help me label them. Most I already knew from all I have photographed all over Costa Rica. Enjoy what Robert Frost calls “Flying Flowers!”

Today’s Butterflies

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“Well, I must endure the presence of a few caterpillars if I wish to become acquainted with the butterflies.” 
― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

 

See this TRIP GALLERY   2018 December Si Como No.

Sun Setting on 2018 & My Celebration Begins!

The above photo is one of my sunsets at Manuel Antonio National Park in 2015, my first year here! I go back to celebrate 4 years living here! Photographing new birds and other animals, walking forest trails and one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica, getting one or more relaxation massages, and eating gourmet food every day for a week as I create more Costa Rica Nature Photos! That is my kind of Christmas Celebration and I anticipate a fabulous week! Here’s one of the resort’s several videos:

Or browse the Si Como No Website   —   This is living!   🙂

3-toed Sloth I photographed there in 2015.

Retired in Costa Rica 4 Years Christmas Celebration

Starts Tomorrow, 21 December 2018

¡Pura Vida!

Palo Verde National Park Visit

There is plenty to see and photograph on the 5,000+ acres of Rancho Humo, birds, other wildlife, and scenery! But across the river from the ranch is another wonderful and large Costa Rica park: Palo Verde National Park.

Costa Rica is blessed with many national parks and wildlife reserves, more than 25% of country’s total land!  This park is a combination of Tropical Dry Forest, the Tempisque River and its surrounding wetlands which bloom with wildlife.

 

Tomorrow (Wednesday) I float down the river for a different experience in the park. But here are 3 slideshows for what was seen on Tuesday on a 6 km hike and posting here on Wednesday. Will post boat trip later today or tomorrow.

Birds in Palo Verde National Park

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Other Wildlife in Palo Verde National Park

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Views Surrounding Us in Palo Verde National Park

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Today at Esquinas Rainforest Lodge

No rain today – so far at 3pm! I had a wonderful 6am birding hike with birding guide Kevin and returned for breakfast and the morning photographing wildlife from my cabin terrace – amazing!

Below is a slideshow of a few of today’s photos – mostly birds but some other animals. Tomorrow Kevin and I go on a boat trip through the mangroves which always yields a lot of birds rain or shine. Then over the weekend I plan to just enjoy walking the forests that surround me here and the really good food someone else is preparing!  🙂  And oh yeah,  a night hike one of those nights which is always interesting!

And I’m hearing thunder now, so rain tonight which is always the best time and well, it just started at 3:42!  🙂

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Among the scenes which are deeply impressed on my mind, none exceed in sublimity the primeval [tropical] forests, … temples filled with the varied productions of the God of Nature. No one can stand in these solitudes unmoved, and not feel that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. 

— Charles Darwin

¡Pura Vida!