Saturday, March 19, 2016

Costa Rica Day 6 - March 21, 2016

While the bed at Tirimbina was a soft feathery dream when compared to AOL, the sleep was poor due to a screaming baby in the room next door.  Who brings a baby to the rain forest!?

But, the early wake up wasn't too terrible because we had booked a 6AM bird tour.  The tour itself was just OK. Our guide was average but we did see a bunch of new species.  The light was pretty bad for bird pictures on the tour but we also stopped to look at other critters as well:

Ground Anole with Breakfast:
Ground Anole

Lesser White-lined Bats:
Lesser White-lined Bats

The highlight for us, and one of the reasons why we chose to go to Tirimbina, was seeing the Strawberry Dart Frog AKA the Blue Jeans Frog:
Strawberry Dart Frog (Blue Jeans Frog)

Before lunch, we headed out hiking on our own and had better luck with bird pictures.

White-fronted Nunbird:
White-fronted Nunbird

Swainson's Thrush:
Swainson's Thrush

Gray-headed Chachalaca (Say it with me..."CHA-CHA-LA-CA!")
Gray-headed Chachalaca

After lunch we walked down the road to the Costa Rica Nature Pavilion to scope out some bird photography opportunities.  We talked to the owners (Dave Sr. and Dave Jr) but decided not to stick around because the afternoon light wasn't ideal and there was a photo tour group there already.  But, we made a mental note to return in the morning sometime.

Despite Tirimbina not having a lot of land on this side of the river, we saw a surprising amount of wildlife around the reception, restaurant, and rooms.

Green Iguana:
Green Iguana

Slender Anole shedding its skin:
Anole Shedding its Skin

Last, but not least, one of the resident Three-toed Sloths posed in some trees near our room.  It just sat there looking around scratching itself...
Three-toed Sloth

After dinner (which was average), we walked around the lodge grounds looking for some night critters.  Tirimbina closes the bridge at dusk so guests are not allowed to go across into the rain forest without a hired guide.

It was during this walk that we met Fred and Ethel.  No, they weren't a nice bickering couple from New York. They were a pair of Smokey Jungle Frogs with adjacent holes.  I think this is Ethel:
Smokey Jungle Frog

We also found, and kept a respectful distance from, some Bullet Ants.  You don't want to find out why they earned this name.  These guys were about an inch long and some think they have the worst sting in the animal kingdom:
Bullet Ants

We also found another frog that, after some expert consultation, we identified as a juvenile Smokey Jungle Frog.  Fred and Ethel have a child?
Unknown Frog

Finally, the highlight of the evening was hearing, then seeing, a Nine-banded Armadillo as it foraged through the leaf litter:
Nine-banded Armadillo

This was a great way to cap off a pretty darn good wildlife day at Tirimbina.

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