NEW Butterfly Gallery

For the butterfly lovers who have visited my photo gallery of butterflies, you may have found it “busy” or confusing or difficult to navigate through and find specific butterflies. I have now fixed that. I have wanted to add multiple shots of the same species and did some but that made for more photos to wade through. It was 205 photos and growing! Difficult!

NOW I have a separate gallery or sub gallery for each species all grouped together in a “folder” gallery for all butterflies. The above feature photo is the first page of the alphabetically arranged butterflies. You can more easily skim through the 76 sub galleries and open only the one you are looking for. It will make my butterfly gallery useful to people wanting to ID a butterfly in Costa Rica or just find a photo of a particular butterfly. I’ve seen other Costa Rica butterfly galleries by hobbyist like me and personally think mine is the best!   🙂

This means that a lot of links in my blog posts will be to the old gallery which I am temporarily leaving up. I hope to tackle the big job of going through all references to the old gallery and change the link! Whew! Not a global fix for that!

Tuesday Birds

The little trip to the beach gave me some different birds than the many toucans & macaws around the hotel, plus I saw a new type of Euphonia today in a tree off my room terrace, just not a good photo, but a “lifer” for me! (First time to see that species.) Only 6 birds but interesting ones:

Tuesday Birds

CLICK image to enlarge.


Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is still dark.

~Rabindranath Tagore

¡Pura Vida!

Birthday Retreat Tomorrow

Monday morning Walter will drive me to Xandari Nature Resort, just about an hour away, north of our Provincial Capital, Alajuela (location of San Jose Airport) for my second visit to a very “arty” nature reserve, farm and hotel made the way I think Frank Lloyd Wright would have designed it! And every room and garden is filled with art!

Restaurant & lobby building at Xandar

The gardens, nature trails (many birds) and 5 waterfalls are fabulous as are all the meals and the Spa where you can have a private Jacuzzi overlooking the Central Valley, as will my room! Though I will be hiking and birding every morning, this is more of a relaxation retreat than some of my trips and I might even get a relaxation massage!   🙂

I was there last July:  2018-July-14-18–Xandari Nature Resort   (photos)

I made a photo book on that trip too:  Xandari: Enchanted by Nature   with the book cover my featured photo at top today.   🙂

I do believe that I have the best possible retirement that anyone could have!   🙂   And I’m guaranteed a Happy Birthday too!    🙂

Sunrise from my room last year.

My wish is to stay always like this, living quietly in a corner of nature.

~Claude Monet

¡Pura Vida!

A Cabin in the Woods

Mine was so surrounded by forest on top of a hill that I could not get a distance shot of it, thus the featured photo is of another cabin, #9, not quite as big as mine (#12) since mine had a kitchen which I did not need but used like an office for my computer & camera stuff. I guess the kitchen is good for families.


I sat on the porch every day with my camera but did not photograph many birds there, just a dove, kiskadee, clay-colored thrush and one little lizard with a dewlap. But a nice peaceful place!

The electricity is from solar-powered batteries (a bunch of batteries!). The “hot” water was a separate device with a long pipe running back and forth on a board out in the sun. Since it is rainy season and limited sun I barely had warmish water after letting it run for three minutes. Showering first thing in the morning means a cold shower. Ahhh nature!   🙂

These “eco” lodges all encourage you to reuse your towel, hanging it on the towel rack for multiple uses all for ecology (but even more to save on their laundry costs!). The problem is that in a coastal rainforest like the one I was in, It is very hot 24-7 with humidity in the 90 percentiles, thus hanging towels never get dry (unless in direct sunlight). A wet towel will not dry you! I was not very ecological!   🙂

Macaw Lodge Cabins

Click an image to enlarge it.


Yes, you have to walk up a trail to your cabin, uphill! But they have strong young men on staff to carry your luggage up! A part of the remoteness!

There are elements of intrinsic beauty in the simplification of a house built on the log cabin idea.

~Gustav Stickley

I’m starting a “Trip Gallery” on my visit to Macaw Lodge, but it may be a week before finished.  It is titled:  2019-06–18-24–Macaw Lodge

Macaw Lodge

¡Pura Vida!

Last Minute Birds

In these last 2 or 3 days I’ve seen a lot of the same birds but also got 5 new species shown here plus I’m adding the juvenile of the kingfisher and a new shot of a Muscovy Duck in the rain that I really like which is different from the Mom and babies I shared earlier. Enjoy!

Final Birds, Macaw Lodge


Birds are a miracle because they prove to us there is a finer, simpler state of being which we may strive to attain.

~Douglas Coupland

Macaw Lodge

¡Pura vida!

Brilliant Forest Frog

On my waterfall hike the other day I photographed a frog that was new to me. Lisa here at the lodge helped identify it at a Brilliant Forest Frog or Lithobates warszewitschii which is among the 194 species of frogs here in Costa Rica. The link to frog name is to Wikipedia but more research has info on:   (1) IUCN Red List, (2) Amphibiaweb, (3) CRBio, and many more!

The first photo below is of the back of the frog made on my cell phone and the other, a side view, with my Canon. To avoid scaring him away, both had to be shot from a distance in little forest light,f thus had to be cropped a lot, so not very good shots, but you can see what he basically looks like and online you will see some varieties of colors, etc.


See also my Costa Rica Amphibians Photo Gallery for more than 20 species I have photograph and about that many more unidentified!   🙂

Macaw Lodge

¡Pura Vida!

Trees & Trails

More shots from Selva Verde Lodge Sarapiqui as I sit at my computer with another wonderful afternoon rain! It rained every afternoon at Selva Verde and it was like I brought the rainy season back with me, rain every afternoon in Atenas now! I love it! And tempted to take a little nap as I’m doing more now.   🙂

Everyday for a week I walked through the grounds of Selva Verde Lodge among these big old trees and one day across the river on that long swinging bridge to the protected old-growth rainforest where I saw those Manakin Leks and several other birds. One must have a guide to go with you to cross the river into that forest thus most of these shots are on the lodge side, still magnificent!

“Today I have grown taller from walking with the trees.”

― Karle Wilson Baker


¡Pura Vida!

Boat Safari

On Saturday, my 3rd day here I chose to do the boat tour of part of the Sarapiqui River and part on the Puerto Viejo River. When I was here before in a December it was one of my best places for a large number of bird, but this time, like everywhere else in May, there were not as many birds. But it was still a good tour and a nice young couple from Austin, TX also in Selva Verde Lodge went on the same tour with me plus about 5 others on the boat. Here’s my photos in three categories:

Birds on the River

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Other Wildlife on the River

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Boat & River Shots

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


“Have you also learned that secret from the river; that there is no such thing as time?” That the river is everywhere at the same time, at the source and at the mouth, at the waterfall, at the ferry, at the current, in the ocean and in the mountains, everywhere and that the present only exists for it, not the shadow of the past nor the shadow of the future.” 
― Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha


¡Pura Vida!

Last Day Birds

Today, Tuesday, is my last full day at Selva Verde Lodge, (link to their website) so of course I tried to get some more bird photos! Most of these are repeat birds, but different images and two are new for this trip. I just can’t stop photographing that baby Aracari and this morning after breakfast I saw him fly out of his hole to the nearest branch, not far, but he is learning! A treat to experience!

Last Day Birds

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


I woke up this morning, 
Smiled at the rising sun, 
Three little birds, 
Sat on my doorstep, 
Singing sweet songs

~Bob Marley
¡Pura Vida!