The Two Basilisks

In the Caribe where I was last week, there two kinds of Basilisks, both called “Miniature Dinosaurs” and “Jesus Christ Lizards” (because they both “walk on water”). The most popular is the Plumed or Emerald Basilisk (Wikipedia link) and the Common, Striped or Brown Basilisk (Wikipedia link). Here are a couple of photos of each from last week, then be sure to see my galleries for each below that! And I prefer the names of Emerald and Brown! 🙂

Plumed, Green or Emerald Basilisk

Common, Striped or Brown Basilisk

My Gallery titled: Emerald Basilisk

My Gallery titled: Common, Brown or Striped Basilisk

¡Pura Vida!

2 More As I Left . . .

Yesterday morning I did the sunrise shoot, showered, ate breakfast, packed and had maybe an hour before my transportation to the little Limón Aeropuerto, hoping I might find another new butterfly species. And I DID! Two in fact! Two totally new species of butterflies for my rapidly growing collection. Not spectacular or particularly beautiful, but exciting to me because they are new! 🙂

Sharp-banded Skipper, Autochton zarex, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Limón
Red-studded Skipper, Noctuana stator, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Limón

¡Pura Vida!

More of my growing Costa Rica butterfly collection in my photo galleries:

BUTTERFLIES and Moths of Costa Rica

Wet Birds at Gandoca-Manzanillo

This morning’s rain not only interfered with a beautiful sunrise but also dampened my birding expedition with a great guide this morning. I try not to give up too quickly on such efforts, but did cut our hike a little shorter after my camera fogged up on the inside. All 12 of the following birds were photographed in the rain even if not obvious! 🙂 And we saw more birds and other animals, even in the rain! 🙂 Just imagine what it would have been like with a clear morning!

Broad-winged Hawk, Gandoca-Manzanillo Refuge, Limón, Costa Rica
Continue reading “Wet Birds at Gandoca-Manzanillo”

Cahuita National Park

This morning I got a driver who knew “the best guide” in nearby Cahuita National Park and I spent a couple of hours photographing wildlife there with the same two guys taking me to Gandoca-Manzanillo Refuge tomorrow for probably even more wildlife. Below is one shot then a gallery of only some of the wildlife I saw and photographed . . .

Laughing Falcon, Cahuita NP, Limón,, Costa Rica
Continue reading “Cahuita National Park”

Tropical Buckeye

I photographed many butterflies today and still haven’t processed all the photos, so I decided to feature just this one colorful and ragged fellow. You can read about them on Butterflies and Moths and see a map there of where they have been seen or look at my collection in the gallery: Tropical Buckeye. Here’s three photos from today’s walk.

Tropical Buckeye, Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Limón
Continue reading “Tropical Buckeye”

My 2 Favorite Birds Today

I’m seeing a lot more birds here than at home these days and I got photos of only one butterfly today here at the hotel. 🙂 The butterfly garden I was to visit has closed – not enough tourists! Much of tourism has been similarly hurt by the two-year pandemic. So I explored more around here and pleased with all my several bird shots, but especially these two, one of which is a “lifer” or first-time seen bird for me, the Brown Noddy, a rare seabird on the hotel beach. And though I’ve seen lots of Common Black Hawks, I’m particularly pleased with this shot and some other similar shots before he flew off. They don’t always pose for you like this! 🙂

Brown Noddy, Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Limón, Costa Rica.
Common Black Hawk, Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Limón, Costa Rica.

¡Pura Vida!

I now have a new Brown Noddy Gallery with some more shots in it! 🙂

And my Common Black Hawk Gallery is growing! 🙂

Busy As a Bee!

I arrived later that usual, in the afternoon, and was personally greeted by the manager at my taxi and he carried my luggage in himself! 🙂 I gave him his gift photo book for this year and he treated me to a steak dinner tonight. Wow! Being nice pays off in more ways than one! 🙂

Caribe Fun Tours got their photo book gift also and have arranged a driver to the new Butterfly Garden in Cahuita (their first request) where I will be their first to report back on it, plus I will also take a walk in Cahuita National Park after the butterfly house, which is nearby. They are also finding me a guide for Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge which is wilder and less visited than Cahuita with more wildlife. The only other place I may visit is a nearby organic farm and botanical gardens for the butterflies I remember seeing last time I was there. Otherwise I stay around this friendly hotel and their rainforest beach road looking for things to photograph! I’ve already seen more birds than I’ve been having at home and I’m very relaxed, having gotten the best relaxation massage in Costa Rica! 🙂

Bee on the grounds of Hotel Banana Azul, Puerto Viejo, Limón, Costa Rica.

¡Pura Vida!

Hotel Banana Azul Website.

Puerto Viejo Slide Show

Caribbean Retreat Tomorrow

Most years in September I make a week relaxation adventure in the “Caribe South” which refers to the southern half of the Atlantic coast of Costa Rica around Puerto Viejo de Talamanca and the smaller town of Manzanillo where I explore two national parks/refuges (Cahuita & Gandoca-Manzanillo) for birds, butterflies, monkeys, sloths and other nature, visit some of the Bribri indigenous villages, botanical gardens, and maybe this year a new butterfly garden (if my tour people say it is okay). 🙂

And not to ignore the northern Caribbean side of Costa Rica or Limón Province; that’s where the provincial capital and port city of Limón is located and then above that a favorite national park, Tortuguero, which I hope to return to in 2023! It’s “The Amazon of Costa Rica” or a river and beach based jungle rainforest full of incredible wildlife and other nature! I can’t wait to get back there! 🙂 So much to see and do here!

But this trip is mostly relaxing in the beachside Hotel Banana Azul, walking a forested beachside road (for sloths, birds, butterflies) and walks or just relaxation on the beach (I don’t swim or surf in the ocean anymore) and this is the only place I’ve found that gives a “Relaxation Massage” that is actually relaxing. 🙂 So it is my only get-a-way that is not totally inside a dense rain or cloud forest (though Cahuita & Gandoca-Manzanillo are dense rainforests), yet still nature-centered and very relaxing. I missed it in 2020 due to Covid and no flights there, but here’s a couple of photos from last year’s post-cancer retreat in the “Howler Suite” or Room #1. 🙂

View from my “Howler Suite” Room through gardens to the beach.
One of the many varied sunrises at Banana Azul Beach.

And just one more of the many things I look forward to each year that I’m “Retired in Costa Rica,” from rainforest and cloud forest photo trips to cultural activities and enjoying my little flower garden in Atenas! I have achieved my idea of pure life in paradise! And this December I will celebrate 8 years of living here! 🙂

¡Pura Vida!

Costa Rican band will participate in the Rose Parade

And that linked title takes you to this week’s Tico Times article about a community-wide band and dance team from Zarcero which will represent Costa Rica a second time in the Rose Parade, Pasadena, California.

Zarcero is a town (called pueblo here) that is a little smaller than Atenas and north of us. It is known for topiaries in their Central Park, cheese-making and this large and professional community band of all ages. If you are one of those Americans who always watch the Rose Parade on TV, be sure to watch for the Costa Rica band! 🙂

More photo views of “My Costa Rica” in

My Photo Galleries.