Monday, September 26, 2016

Pantanal Day 2 - Pouso Alegre

Our only complaint about Pouso Alegre (and it's a minor complaint) is that our room had 3 twin beds all of which were rock hard.  Plus, there were only two flat pillows for the 3 beds so you couldn't even use two to make one regular sized pillow.  Good thing my girlfriend didn't join us for the trip since there would be no pillow for her at all.  OW!...(that was the elbow I just got from my wife and blog editor..)

Because of the beds, getting up for a 6AM walk was a pleasure.  We joined Julinho as he took us along a trail outside the main lodge area.  We saw lots of birds on the trip but a highlight was the Rufous-tailed Jacamar:

Rufous-tailed Jacamar

A bit later, Julinho spotted some Marmosets.  We circled around for a better view and enjoyed these Black-tailed Marmosets in just about perfect morning light:
Black-tailed Marmoset

Black-tailed Marmoset

One female was even carrying a baby:
Black-tailed Marmoset with Baby

The tails on these guys were exquisite:
Black-tailed Marmoset

Black-tailed Marmoset

A bit later, we startled a grazing Coati who didn't realize our presence until the last moment and quickly loped off but not before I got a picture:
South American Coati

After breakfast, we did another drive with Julinho. The plan was to drive the road again and then stake out the Tapir pond in the heat of the day to see if one showed up to cool off.  Sounded like a great plan to us.

We stopped at a big pond along the road to enjoy all the wildlife and raucous sounds.

 Refuscent Tiger Heron:
Refuscent Tiger Heron

Jabiru Pair:

Heck we even saw a Vermilion Flycatcher which is common in our own backyard in Az:
Vermilion Flycatcher

Some of the raucous noise was due to a flock of Monk Parakeets.  Boy these guys are loud:
 Monk Parakeet

An aquatic resident of the pond looked on hoping one of the birds would get a bit too close...

Yacare Caiman:
 Spectacled Caiman

Of course we enjoyed watching our new favorite rodent (actually, I don't think we had a favorite rodent before this trip...)

Green Ibis:
Green Ibis

We reached the Tapir pond and waited for a while.  Julinho heard an owl calling and asked if we wanted to try to locate it.  You don't have to ask us that twice.  Once we got in the thicket where we could hear the call, Julinho told us to watch for movement as he called out.  Sure enough, Karen spotted movement and soon after I had a nice picture of a Ferruginous Pygmy Owl:
Ferruginous Pygmy Owl

I also saw a Pale-crested Woodpecker near by:
Pale-crested Woodpecker

A group of Brown Capuchin Monkeys came through the trees over our heads and towards the pond.  They were calling loudly and angrily which could have been alarm calls or just monkey on monkey anger.  After scouring the area for signs of a predator we decided it was the latter:
Brown Capuchin

Angry Brown Capuchin

We left the thicket and went back to the pond.  One by one, the monkeys came down to drink.  They were very cautious and once one finished drinking it sprinted along the ground and back to the nearest tree.  It was interesting behavior to watch.

After the monkeys left, we had many other visitors to the pond.

 Southern Lapwing:
Southern Lapwing

Great Black Hawk:
Great Black Hawk

Some of the horses that have free range of the area when not in use by the cowboys came to drink:
Quenching a Thirst

No Tapirs showed up before it was time to head back for lunch.  But, we agreed to try the pond at dusk again.

After lunch, I wandered around the grounds again to see what I could find.

Yup, another Toco Toucan:
Toco Toucan

We had seen a few Agouti on this trip before but I finally found one that would hold still for pictures:

And, of course, the Black and White Tegu were everywhere:
Black and White Tegu

Both midday strolls I took yesterday and today were quite successful.  So, obviously not all wildlife hides in the heat of the day.

We rested a bit and then met Julinho at 3PM for another drive which started out with a family of Capybara that had just come from the spa.  Nothing like a little mud to get rid of those pesky bugs:
 Muddy Capybara

We also saw many deer including this little Red Brocket Deer:
Juvenile Red Brocket Deer

Mama was close by:
Red Brocket Deer

Back at the Tapir pond we were visited by 5 different Crab-eating Foxes during our stakeout time.  These guys had no issues with us and we had close views of them the entire trip:
Crab-eating Fox

At one point, the Capuchins thought about coming for another drink but this scout must have seen something we didn't because they decided to go the other direction instead of coming to the pond:
Capuchin Scout

In the distance we could hear some Black Howler monkeys and we did finally manage to see them but the few pictures I have aren't worth posting.  We really wanted to see the blond females this trip but never did.

That was pretty much all we saw of note during the afternoon into evening drive.  We did see a Great Horned Owl as we pulled into the lodge parking lot but it flew before any proof could be taken.

After another tasty dinner with a heaping helping of rice and beans and some sort of chicken pie that was really good, we set off for a night walk on our own around the grounds.  The walk was really successful because we saw lots of frogs and toads at the small pond on the grounds.

Update: Originally I had issues identifying these but I stumbled upon a great resource online. There is now only one frog that is as yet unidentified.

Chaco Frog or Cei's white-lipped frog:

Chaco Tree Frog:

Unknown Frog:

Lesser-snouted Tree Frog:

The highlight of the night walk occurred just as we were approaching our room when Karen exclaimed "I found a Pygmy Owl"!  Sure enough, she did:
Ferruginous Pygmy Owl

Now THAT is a nice way to end the day.

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