Punta Leona Photo Gallery

I really got a lot of good photos on this last trip and finally have them culled and organized into a gallery for the trip. See this newest photo gallery at:

2019 Mar 5-10 – Punta Leona

I’m not doing a photo book on this trip yet but plan on a book of the area after two more trips there, giving a broader picture of the Jaco-Carara Mid-Pacific Costa Rica. I have trips to that area in both June and July, so a book in August maybe? And it will include my earlier trips to Carara, Tarcoles and Jaco – so maybe a larger-format book. Change is good.

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”

~ Marcel Proust

¡Pura Vida!


I did not get as many photos as in some places, but “other wildlife” was not my goal. There were lots of squirrels and iguanas which I mainly ignored. And of course the birds and butterflies were in separate posts! Click an image to enlarge or start a manual slideshow:


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


See my Other Wildlife Galleries for many more Costa Rica animals

See my Punta Leona Trip Gallery

And visit the Hotel Punta Leona Website for more about this nature place!

¡Pura Vida!

BIRDS – Carara National Park

The hotel secured an outside guide to take me to nearby Carara National Park birding at 7:30 AM which should have been at 5:30 but they do that to fit their 7 AM Breakfast. If I had it to do over I would have asked for a “box breakfast” and a 5:30 departure! We would have seen more birds. This is my third guided walk in the park and equal to or better than my second one on the number of birds. We saw more than 20 species easily though I only have here the halfway decent photos of 13 species.

About half of these photos were made on a fruiting tree in the rainforest called huevos de caballo or “horse’s balls” which look in these photos like a pair of little hamburgers or egg mcmuffins.  🙂   These two fruits were cracked open from the heat or dryness and lots of different birds were picking the little red seeds out of the center of the fruit. You will see the seeds in some photos. 

Explanation of the two Trogon photo IDs: The one labeled Black-headed is based on the wings which are showing in that image. The one labeled Black-throated is based mainly on the type of stripes on the tail, which though not showing as well, could cause me to label the other one black-throated too. These are the only two trogons with yellow breasts that also have light blue eye-rings and are very similar. But the black-headed male is the only one with green on shoulder, thus that label. ID of birds is not always easy. These two IDs were made with the aide of my guide in the park.

The Ovenbird (featured photo) is one lifer on this hike and it is similar to the Northern Waterthrush from my first hotel birding hike which is another “lifer” or first time seen bird. Also on this trip I saw for the first time the Gray-chested Dove, another “lifer.”

Click an image to enlarge or start a manual slide show:


¡Pura Vida!


See my Punta Leona Trip Gallery

And visit the Hotel Punta Leona Website for more about this nature place!

Non-Bird Wildlife at Carara

White-faced Capuchin Monkey – Just hanging around!  Pura Vida!
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Variegated Squirrel
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Northern Ghost Bat
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Some Kind of Fungus!
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Unless I do a post on plants, that is all from the Campesinos/Carara trip. But every trip seems to have about a week’s worth of posts! Always a lot to share! I love it here!

As the attorney told me, I went to the local Atenas Social Security office to be “inscribed.” I took Jason (one of my language helpers) with me as an interpreter and he was absolutely needed! In short, the first desk sent us to another desk which was the appointments desk. Of course we needed to make an appointment (but you do it only in person-not by phone!). I am on standby for July 8 with a firm appointment on July 15.

I have a two-page form in Spanish to be filled out in Spanish. David is going to make it a class project next week in Spanish Class!  🙂  There are a bunch of other things I need to bring like proof of at least $1,000 income, the resolution I got, an electric bill, and a copy of my housing rental agreement. I can hire ” a professional” to help me walk through this, but it is more fun to work with friends and get closer to local Ticos! (And cheaper!) Ten to one odds that there will be some document not exactly right for the July appointment and I will have to go back again, but that is part of the adventure of government bureaucracies!

Birds at Carara National Park

Orange-Collared Manakin
Carara National Park, Costa Rica
White-whiskered Puffbird
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Montezuma Oropendola
Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Black-mandibled Toucan
Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Scarlet Macaw
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Pale-billed Woodpecker
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Blue-crowned Motmot
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Common Black-Hawk (most likely)
Carara National Park, Costa Rica
NOTE: The front is lighter than usual, but it happens on them some.
It does not match other characteristics of Gray or Gray-bellied Hawks
Tomorrow I will post a few shots of other non-bird animals I shot at Carara. 

Last Bird Photo Today – A First-Timer for Me!

Orange-collared Manakin
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

I spent Sunday afternoon and night at Cerro Lodge, Tarcoles, Costa Rica and because there was not a group boat ride available to bird on the river, I birded around my cabin and down the road yesterday. This morning I again birded around the lodge property with several birds then had an appointment with a birding guide named Antonio who was good and help me get lots of bird photos in my two hours there. Because this is a “first-time” bird for me, it is sort of my favorite, but I haven’t had time to go through the others yet and still haven’t posted the photos from Campesinos, so busy the rest of this week with this and lots of other projects. Stay tuned!  🙂

Carara National Park Plants

Pixie Cup Fungi, Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Ceiba Tree, Carra National Park, Costa Rica
Also called Kapok or Silk Cotton Tree
In all tropical forests I’ve seen, Africa, South America
The back side of the above Ceiba has a “cave”


Rain forests have an incredible variety of trees
and plants. My guide Victor leads the way down
and old road used as trail now.
One of the several varieties of Cecropia Trees,
similar to my Guarumo but not the same. Cousins!
This whole family of trees has multiple medicinal uses.
Rare plant that only grows in this particular
transitional forest and only in the shade.
Has medicinal uses.
And another fungus!   🙂

“The clearest way to the Universe is through a forest wilderness.”

— John Muir


Carara National Park Mammals

Central American Agouti, a large rodent, Carara National Park, Costa Rica.
Spider Monkey, Carara National Park, Costa Rica (baby on her back)

Spider Monkey, Carara National Park, Costa Rica.

White-nosed Coati, Carara National Park, Costa Rica
White-nosed Coati, Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Costa Rican White Bat
Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Cell phone through guide’s spotting scope

We also passed the bridge where the week before my guide Victor saw a Puma resting. And we saw some howler monkeys but no photos. Most mammals here are nocturnal. Insects were more visible in the day but also more difficult to photograph. 

The tropical rain forests of the world harbor the majority of the planet’s species, yet this wealth of species is being quickly spent. While the exact numbers of species involved and the rate of forest clearing are still under debate, the trend is unmistakable—the richest terrestrial biome is being altered at a scale unparalleled in geologic history. 
— Larry D. Harris
Also see my PHOTO GALLERY of Costa Rica Mammals

Carara National Park Insects

I started going through over 600 photos made in the park, and though disappointed in not many birds, I discovered I had too many photos for one post. So here’s 4 insects! Mammals tomorrow!

Owl Butterfly, Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Helicopter Damselfly, Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Helicopter Damselfly in tree showing color better.
Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Red-tailed Dragonfly, Carara National Park, Costa Rica
Check out my better photo of one at Corcovado National Park in 09.
Termite Nest, Carara National Park, Costa Rica

Of course we saw lots of ants, including the leaf-cutter ants and many other flying insects, but these are my only usable photos. Maybe mammals tomorrow and then a day for plants with one really cool fungus! Rain-forests are so so much fun to visit, even when I don’t get many bird photos!

Newly discovered wasp named after Costa Rica President! Cool huh!?

And remember, I now have PHOTO GALLERIES for my

Endangered forests are being slaughtered for toilet paper.~Daphne Zuniga