Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Costa Rica Day 2 - March 17, 2016

We woke up the next morning in the best possible the sound of Howler Monkeys!  Who cares that it was at 5:15 AM.  There really isn't anything like that experience and we enjoy it every time it happens.  Too bad I can't find an alarm clock with Howler Monkeys on it to help me wake up for work...

After a decent breakfast that would quickly grow tiresome after 4 days of the same thing, we ventured out into the garden and it was birds galore...

Passerini's Tanager:
Passerini's Tanager

Golden-hooded Tanager:
Golden-hooded Tanager


Green Honeycreeper:
Green Honeycreeper

Arenal Observatory Lodge (AOL) has a free morning hike for all guests.  We had planned to join this hike until we saw that about 20 other people had the same plan.  So, we ventured out on our own instead since we had a much better chance to see wildlife by ourselves.  That was a good call:

Pale-billed Woodpecker:
Pale-billed Woodpecker

Crested Guan:
Crested Guan

We even found a group of about 12 White-nosed Coatis foraging around the garden.  They were obviously used to people since they paid no attention to us and walked within touching distance:

White-nosed Coati

White-nosed Coati Pair

Right at my feet, one found a big bug and just started chomping away...
White-nosed Coati Snack

Here's a Central American Ameiva (Whiptail) that was one of our first herps of the trip:
Central American Whiptail (Ameiva)

We were happy to see that Arenal became visible a little later in the morning when some low clouds burned off.  It's quite spectacular to see this mountain.  It's no longer very active but you can see steam coming out almost all day long:

Arenal with Fumarole

After lunch, we walked some more of the trails including venturing out into the pasture areas.  The trails at AOL are really well done.  They keep the leaf litter to a minimum on the trails and they use cement blocks or wood boards in areas that would otherwise be muddy.  The afternoon hike was a really good one.

Besides the opportunity for some artsy shots like this Eucalyptus tree trunk:
Eucalyptus Bark

We had one of our best looks ever at a Northern Tamandua:
Northern Tamandua

We also had a huge butterfly flutter by and land for a picture:

And of course, we saw more birds including this Scarlet-thighed Dacnis:
Scarlet-thighed Dacnis

And then, on the way back through the garden another Northern Tamandua was scampering down a tree.  It came down in some thick bushes and we waited hoping it would come did but the light was low and focusing was tough:
Northern Tamandua (2nd One)

Back in our room, there were quite a few people on the observation deck which wasn't abnormal but I heard one of them say "Tamandua".  Yup, up in a tree by the feeder was a 3rd Northern Tamandua. That's a nice way to end a hike.

Unfortunately, the day went downhill from there as something I had eaten made me sick.  So, we had to cancel our planned night walked at a nearby reserve and we laid low instead.  Thank goodness for Cipro is all I can say because I was 100% the next morning.  Don't travel without it!

1 comment:

Cantcopenhagen said...

Thank you so much for all your stunning photography! We're definitely going to Bosque now instead of our first choice -- purely based on your blog posts. Amazing stuff :)