17 March - 9 April 2023
by Leo Garrigues
Without a doubt our Classic Costa Rica tour proved to be very successful, in terms of specialties where we managed to record 194 diamond birds! Many of these are near-endemics shared with Panama and others with Nicaragua, plus the four endemic species that only occur in Costa Rica.
In terms of diversity, the tour was very remarkable with 608 species seen (by one member of the group at least) and 624 species recorded during the trip, 4 species more than last year which makes it the year with the highest number of birds recorded in this tour. Also 11 species were added to the cumulative Costa Rican list: Common Nighthawk, Maroon-chested Ground-Dove, Ocellated Crake, Pacific Golden Plover, Heermann’s Gull, Parasitic Jaeger, Northern Harrier, Green-and-rufous Kingfisher, Grey-headed Piprites, Willow Flycatcher and Veery.
Regarding highlights of the tour probably the main one was the show, at eye-level, of the Three-wattled Bellbird, which made it the clear bird of the trip, as well the show of the Rosy-thrush Tanager, which was one of the favourite species of the group. We did quite well with the Cotingas where we saw the Bare-necked Umbrellabird in two consecutive days, as well good views of Snowy, Turquoise and Yellow-billed Cotinga. We got to see all the species of Trogon really well, including the majestic Resplendent Quetzal and tricky ones like the Lattice-tailed and Elegant Trogon. Good views of Lanceolated Monklet, Cabanis’s Seedeater and Maroon-chested Ground-Dove which were some of the main rarities of the trip, as well good views of four species of Quail-Doves (Purplish-backed, Olive-backed, Ruddy and Buff-fronted) and 4 species of Antpittas (Scaled, Thicket, Streak-chested and Ochre-breasted). Other highlights to mention include the Black Guan, Buffy-crowned Wood Partridge, Black-breasted and Spotted Wood Quail, Dusky Nightjar, White-tipped Sicklebill, Black-crested and White-crested Coquette, White-bellied and Grey-tailed Mountaingem, Snowcap, Lesser Ground Cuckoo, Mangrove Cuckoo, Sungrebe, Uniform, Ocellated, Yellow-breasted and White-throated Crake, Wandering Tattler, Pinnated Bittern, Tiny Hawk, Central American Pygmy Owl, Bare-shanked and Vermiculated Screech-Owl, Spectacled and Black-and-white Owl, Tody Motmot, Prong-billed Barbet, Yellow-eared Toucanet, Collared Forest Falcon, Sulphur-winged Parakeet, Great Green Macaw, Tawny-throated and Grey-throated Leaftosser, Ruddy Woodcreeper, Brown-billed Scythebill, Ocellated, Bare-crowned and Zeledon’s Antbird, White-fronted, Yellow-bellied, Brown-capped Tyrannulet, Tawny-chested Flycatcher, Dark and Ochraceous Pewee, Northern Royal Flycatcher, Green-Shrike Vireo, Black-chested Jay, Grass Wren, Northern and Southern Nightingale-Wren, American Dipper, Spot-crowned, Elegant and White-vented Euphonia, Golden-browed Chlorophonia, Ashy-throated Bush Tanager, Costa Rican Brushfinch, Sooty-faced Finch, Cabanis’s Ground-Sparrow, Wrenthrush, Flame-throated, Hooded, Cerulean, Black-cheeked and Black-eared Warbler, Black-thighed and Slate-coloured Grosbeak, White-throated Shrike-Tanager, Peg-billed Finch, Blue-and-Gold, Black-and-yellow, Emerald, Speckled and Spangled-cheeked Tanager, among others!
The tour began at the Hotel Bougainvillea, from here we headed up directly to Cartago to cross the city before rush hour and do a bit of birding in the late afternoon. The first bird that we tried was the Grass Wren, which responded quite well and even while it was hiding in the long grass, like its name would suggest, everyone got good views (even in the scope). Other birds that we got that afternoon were Cooper’s Hawk, American Kestrel, Red-billed Pigeon, Eastern Meadowlark, Shiny Cowbird, Indigo Bunting, Cinnamon-bellied Saltator and Blue-grey Tanager. After dinner we did our first owling session that got us very good views of Bare-Shanked Screech-Owl! We also heard Dusky Nightjar.
The following day we went to Irazu Volcano, where we did a pre-dawn owling session to try for Unspotted Saw-whet Owl without success, but we got our first sighting of Dusky Nightjar. Once dawn set in, our first target was the Resplendent Quetzal and we got to see it right away. Later on, we heard a Maroon-chested Ground-Dove just out of sight. It was calling continuously but wasn’t responsive, but finally we got to spot a male that everyone got good views of. Other birds that morning where Buffy-crowned Wood Partridge, Lesser Violetear, Talamanca, Fiery-throated and Volcano Hummingbird, Band-tailed Pigeon, Mourning Dove, Red-tailed Hawk, Spot-crowned Woodcreeper, Mountain Elaenia, Black-capped Flycatcher, Long-tailed Silky-Flycatcher, Sooty-capped Bush Tanager, Large-footed Finch, Flame-throated, Black-throated-green and Wilson’s Warbler and Slaty Flowerpiercer.
After our morning session at Irazu we went to Ujarrás, stopping at a roosting site for Tropical Screech-Owl on the way. Once at Ujarrás we looked for Cabanis’s Ground Sparrow, which we eventually managed to see while it was playing hide-and-seek with us, as well other birds like Green-breasted Mango, Garden Emerald, White-tailed and Hook-billed Kite, Lesson’s Motmot, Finsch’s Parakeet, Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher, Orchard and Baltimore Oriole, Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Black-headed Saltator.
The end of our day was at a new hotel, which proves to be a great addition to the tour. We got here in time to see the afternoon antpitta show, were we got to see three different individuals of Scaled Antpitta. Don Jose (the owner) became just the second person to train antpittas in Costa Rica, and with a very peculiar style of calling them in. Other birds that we saw during that afternoon here were the Green-fronted Lancebill, Green Thorntail, White-bellied Mountaingem, Violet Sabrewing, Black-bellied Hummingbird, Sooty-faced Finch, White-eared Ground Sparrow and Chestnut-headed Oropendola.
The following morning produced sights of Black-breasted Wood Quail, Violet Sabrewing, Coppery-headed Emerald, Swallow-tailed Kite, Rufous Motmot, Red-headed Barbet, Keel-billed Toucan, Golden-olive Woodpecker, Tawny-throated Leaftosser, Olivaceous Woodcreeper, Zeledon’s Antbird, Olive-streaked Flycatcher, White-throated Spadebill, Yellowish Flycatcher, Brown-capped Vireo, White-throated Thrush, Elegant Euphonia, Speckled, Golden-hooded, Bay-headed and Silver-throated Tanager.
After breakfast we went on and spent the rest of the morning at Pejibaye area where we got several good birds such as Tawny-chested Flycatcher, Ashy-throated Bush Tanager, Fasciated Tiger-Heron and the rare and mythical Lanceolated Monklet who gave us really nice views. After lunch we looked for White-throated Flycatcher that we managed to see, as well other birds like Slaty Spinetail, Black-striped Sparrow, Montezuma Oropendola, Blue-black Grassquit and other common birds.
At the end of the day, we arrived at Rancho Naturalista to enjoy a delicious dinner.
After an early breakfast we headed up to the upper trails of Rancho Naturalista with the help of Steven during the day. The activity during the morning was slow but we got to see Crested Guan, a roosting Crested Owl, Buff-throated Foliage-gleaner, Checker-throated Stipplethroat, Plain Antvireo, Thicket Antpitta, Slaty-capped Flycatcher, White-crowned Manakin, Northern Schiffornis, Emerald and Black-and-yellow Tanager, and we also heard Black-headed Antthrush and Grey-headed Piprites from the viewpoint in the highest part of the trails from the boundary property of Rancho, but unfortunately they decided not to show themselves!
At the flowers at Rancho Bajo, we managed to see Snowcap, Black-crested Coquette and Green Thorntail.
The afternoon session we looked for the Lovely Cotinga without success, but we added some common species to our tour list and had a brief sighting of Band-tailed Barbthroat. For the last section of our afternoon, we went to the Rancho pools to see birds that came to bathe, which included Purple-crowned Fairy, Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer, Crowned Woodnymph, Ochre-bellied Flycatcher, Wood and Swainson’s Thrush, Chestnut-capped Brushfinch and Kentucky Warbler.
We did an owling session that produced sights of a pair of Mottled Owls, a nice way to end this lovely day.
The next day we left Rancho early in the morning, with our destination being El Copal Reserve. At El Copal we managed to see a good combination of species! Some of the additions were Ruddy and Purplish-backed Quail Dove, Yellow-eared Toucanet, Northern Barred Woodcreeper, Brown-billed Scythebill, Ochre-breasted Antpitta, Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher, White-vented Euphonia, Scarlet-rumped Cacique, Black-faced Grosbeak, Scarlet-thighed Dacnis. Other good birds previously seen were the Snowcap, Ashy-throated Bush Tanager, and the good variety of Tanagers like Emerald, Speckled, Tawny-crested, Black-and-yellow and Bay-headed Tanagers.
In the afternoon we got our first views of the rare Peg-billed Finch, a very difficult bird! Other birds included Hairy Woodpecker, Sooty and Mountain Thrush, Large-footed Finch and Slaty Flowerpiercer. During the night we improved our views of Dusky Nightjar.
The next day we did a pre-dawn owling session, without any owls. However, we did at least get Ochraceous Pewee once the daylight came. Some of the birds that we got in the morning were Black Guan, a small flock of Barred Parakeet flying by, Ruddy Treerunner, Barred Becard, Yellow-winged Vireo, Long-tailed Silky-Flycatcher, Black-billed Nightingale-Thrush, Yellow-thighed Brushfinch, Flame-throated Warbler and another Peg-billed Finch.
For the remainder of the day, we visited the Providencia Road. Some of the birds seen here were Ruddy Pigeon, Acorn Woodpecker, Buffy Tuftedcheek, Streak-breasted Treehunter, White-fronted Tyrannulet, Northern Tufted Flycatcher, Dark Pewee, Black-and-yellow Phainoptila, Ochraceous and Timberline Wren, Elegant Euphonia, Wrenthrush, Black-cheeked Warbler, Collared Whitestart, and also, a Silver-throated Jay was heard in the distance.
Savegre produced some additions like the Spotted Wood-Quail, Grey-tailed Mountaingem, Scintillant Hummingbird, Sulphur-winged Parakeet and Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush. On the visit to the oak forest the main target was the Silver-throated Jay, that, despite our efforts, we didn’t get any signs of. Luckily, we did manage to see Buff-fronted Quail-Dove and Silvery-fronted Tapaculo as great additions to our list.
On the way to San Isidro, we visited the paramo, to look for the Volcano Junco, that was found without complications along with a Red-tailed Hawk of the Costa Rican race.
At San Isidro Valley we got to see Grey-headed Chachalaca, Common Potoo, Orange-chinned Parakeet, White-crowned Parrot, Yellow-bellied Elaenia, Streaked Flycatcher, Turquoise Cotinga, Mourning Warbler and Streaked Saltator.
The following morning, we headed up to Buenos Aires that has been quite productive this year. Patches of forest between pineapple fields were the habitat that we spent the morning looking for our targets with the help of our local guide Leandro. The first bird that we tried was the member of the monotypic family Rhodinocichlidae, the Rosy Thrush-Tanager. We got great views of the male and also managed to see a female, which is shyer. Other birds during our morning included Snowy-bellied Hummingbird, Southern Lapwing, Baird’s, Gartered and Black-throated Trogon, Olivaceous Piculet, Red-crowned Woodpecker, Plain Xenops, Chiriqui Foliage-gleaner, Dot-winged Antwren, Barred, Black-hooded Antshrike, Streak-chested Antpitta, Greenish Elaenia, Yellow-bellied Tyrannulet, Northern Bentbill, Slate-headed Tody-Flycatcher, Golden-crowned Spadebill, Rufous Piha, Orange-collared, Red-capped Manakin, Sulphur-rumped and Black-tailed Myiobius, Green Shrike-Vireo, Rufous-breasted, Isthmian and Riverside Wren, Trilling Gnatwren, Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush, Grey-headed and Bay-headed Tanager, among others. Later on, we visited other areas with savannas and more open habitats where we got to see the Ocellated Crake and Lesser Elaenia.
The afternoon was spent at San Vito where we initially got to see the Costa Rican Brushfinch. After that, we focussed on find the Chiriqui Yellowthroat, in which we succeeded, and we got to see other species like Grey-crowned Yellowthroat, Scaled Pigeon and Fiery-billed Aracari. After our afternoon birding session, we headed up to Las Cruces Biological Station where we spent the night.
We started the day with a pre-dawn owling session where we heard the Choco Screech Owl. At dawn we got species like Great Tinamou, Grey-chested Dove, Collared Trogon, Collared Forest Falcon, Tawny-winged Woodcreeper, Slaty Antwren, Black-faced Antthrush, Eye-ringed Flatbill, Velvety Manakin, White-throated Thrush, Black-chested Jay, Costa Rican Brushfinch, Crested Oropendola, Blackburnian Warbler, Scarlet, White-shouldered, Speckled, Golden-hooded and Bay-headed Tanager.
We spent a significant amount of time looking for hummingbirds around the garden, and sideroads in the area, which resulted in sightings of a White-crested Coquette female attending a nest and other species like Garden Emerald, Crowned Woodnymph, Snowy-bellied and Charming Hummingbird.
We spent the afternoon in the area of Ciudad Neily and Coto 47, with the help of the local expert Daniel. The habitats were a combination of agricultural areas, with cattle pastures and riparian forest edges, where certain species only occur for Costa Rica on this southern corner of the country. Our session produced birds like Sapphire-throated Hummingbird, Smooth-billed Ani, Purple Gallinule, Bare-throated Tiger Heron, Boat-billed Heron, Brown-throated and Finch’s Parakeet, Pale-breasted Spinetail, Yellow-crowned Tyrannulet, Rusty-margined and Fork-tailed Flycatcher, Red-breasted Blackbird, Morelet’s and Yellow-bellied Seedeater and more.
A heavy rain gave us a warm welcome to our lodge for the following two nights.
After an early morning coffee, our target was to see the Costa Rican endemic (which apparently was found recently just across the Panamanian border) with a very restricted range: Black-cheeked Ant Tanager! This was easily done so we spent the rest of the day birding a combination of forest trails and roadsides, giving priority to the species that we needed to see in this area as they are difficult in other parts of Costa Rica. Our full day in Esquinas produces the best views of Great Curassow of the trip, as well Costa Rican Swift, Band-tailed Barbthroat, Long-billed Hermit, Violet-headed, Scaly-breasted and Charming Hummingbird, Uniform Crake, White Hawk, Baird’s Trogon, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Golden-napped Woodpecker, Dot-winged Antwren, Black-hooded Antshrike, Chestnut-backed Antbird, Southern Beardless Tyrannulet, Red-capped Manakin, Tawny-crowned Greenlet, Southern Nightingale Wren, Thick-billed and Spot-crowned Euphonia and Blue-black Grosbeak. A major highlight from Esquinas was a visit to the plantain feeders for Tayra (mammal)!
Our following day we left Esquinas early in the morning to visit the famous Rio Rincon Bridge, one of the best sites for Yellow-billed Cotinga, if is not the best one! We got several sights of male and female cotingas, but mostly flying across the river, or distant when perched. Other birds that we managed to see at the Rincon Bridge were White-collared, Costa Rican and Lesser Swallow-tailed Swift, Mangrove Hummingbird, Hudsonian Whimbrel, Roseate Spoonbill, Common Black Hawk, Fiery-billed Aracari, Red-lored and Northern Mealy Amazon, Scarlet Macaw, Black-crowned and Masked Tityra, among other common birds.
We continued our journey to the Central Pacific, with some stops on the way, one of which was at Quepos to look for the Wandering Tattler, and other common ocean birds like Magnificent Frigatebird and Brown Pelican.
We went for a birding session in the late afternoon in the Tarcoles Mangroves where we got to see Scaly-breasted, Blue-vented and Mangrove Hummingbird, Striped Cuckoo, Hoffmann’s Woodpecker, Barred Antshrike, Greenish Elaenia, Yellow-green Vireo, Scrub Euphonia, Streak-backed Oriole, Northern Waterthrush and Mangrove Warbler, and several Lesser Nighthawks flying at dusk.
Our following day was spent at Carara National Park, where we invested the whole morning to look for the last birds that we needed of the humid Pacific lowlands. Not many were remaining at this stage! We had a great morning at Carara and even had several additions to the tour, as well as improved views of some of the birds that we saw before. This included Great Tinamou, Chestnut-collared Swift, Purple-crowned Fairy, Blue-throated Sapphire, Crane Hawk, Slaty-tailed Trogon, White-necked and White-whiskered Puffbird, Laughing Falcon, Collared Forest Falcon, Scarlet Macaw, Northern Barred Woodpecker, Chiriqui Foliage-gleaner, Russet Antshrike, Slaty Antwren, Black-faced Antthrush, Streak-chested Antpitta, Rufous Mourner, Northern Royal Flycatcher, White-winged Becard, Trilling Gnatwren, Spot-crowned Euphonia and Grey-headed Tanager.
In the afternoon we focussed on the mangrove birds that we still needed to see, as well as some dry forest birds and owls too. Here we had the local assistance of Santiago, who knew very good stakeouts for owls. Species we saw here were, amonst many, Blue Ground Dove, Plumbeous Kite, Grey Hawk, Ferruginous Pygmy Owl, Black-and-white Owl (at its roosting site), Black-headed Trogon, Amazon, American Pygmy, Green, Ringed and Belted Kingfisher, Turquoise-browed Motmot, Peregrine Falcon, Northern Scrub Flycatcher, Panama Flycatcher, Rose-throated Becard, Rufous-browed Peppershrike, Mangrove Vireo and Painted Bunting. Once the sun had set. Santiago took us to his site to look for Spectacled Owl, and after a while, we got a pair of Spectacled Owls, the third owl species of the day. Nice way to end of our birding day!
The following morning, we did an early morning session at the Villa Lapas trails, where we got to see Grey-chested Dove, Pale-billed Woodpecker, Dusky Antbird, Golden-crowned Spadebill and Red-crowned Ant Tanager, plus other birds that we already saw on the trip.
After breakfast, we continued to Monteverde, but we did a stop on the way at the port of Puntarenas, that produces some interesting birds to the list of the trip with species like Laughing Gull, Caspian, Royal and Cabot’s Tern, Brown Booby and Yellow-headed Caracara, but more unusual stuff included sights of the Pacific Golden Plover (previously reported in the area) which is a vagrant for Costa Rica, as well as a distant sight of a Heermann’s Gull (previously reported in the area) that is the second known report for Costa Rica. The other unexpected sight was a Parasitic Jaeger chasing a Cabot’s Tern, that rested on the water close from the coastline. After this nice stop, we continued for lunch where we got close views of Olive Sparrow. Once we finished our lunch, we continued to Monteverde Reserve, to visit one of the nicest cloud forests of Costa Rica.
At Monteverde Reserve, we first took a look at the Hummingbird gallery feeders, where we got to see 7 species that included Lesser Violetear, Green-crowned Brilliant, Violet Sabrewing, Coppery-headed Emerald, Stripe-tailed Hummingbird and the new ones for the trip that included Purple-throated Mountaingem and Magenta-throated Woodstar.
Our visit to Monteverde Reserve produced encounters with Black-breasted Wood Quail, a female Ruddy Quail-Dove (unusual sighting for the area), Prong-billed Barbet, Tawny-throated Leaftosser, Spotted Woodcreeper, Lineated Foliage-gleaner, Spotted Barbtail, Golden-bellied Flycatcher, Grey-breasted Wood Wren, Black-faced Solitaire, Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrush, Common Bush Tanager, Black-eared Warbler and Slate-throated and Collared Whitestart.
Our following day we enjoyed a nice breakfast with birding that included Blue-vented Hummingbird, Collared Trogon, Lesson’s Motmot, Brown Jay, Rufous-and-white Wren, Yellow-throated Euphonia, White-eared Ground Sparrow, Chestnut-capped and Wilson’s Warbler, and Yellow-faced Grassquit. After breakfast we headed to Santa Elena Reserve, another cloud forest reserve in the area, with a great system of trails and an amazing forest. The birds seen at Santa Elena included Black Guan, Swallow-tailed Kite, Smoky-brown Woodpecker, Brown-billed Scythebill, Ruddy Treerunner, Red-faced Spinetail, Silvery-fronted Tapaculo, Olive-Streaked Flycatcher, Eye-ringed Flatbill, White-throated Spadebill, Barred Becard, Ochraceous Wren, Black-faced Solitaire, Sooty-faced Finch, Black-eared Warbler and Spangled-cheeked Warbler.
After lunch, we went to try for other targets in a different woodland located in the pacific slope of the mountains in Monteverde. Here we got to see the Grey-throated Leaftosser, but also other birds like Long-tailed Manakin, and the Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush, and other birds that we saw it already.
Our last morning in the Monteverde area we visited a lodge where we got to see the Ruddy Woodcreeper and Long-tailed Manakin doing their dance display, as well as other birds like Grey-headed Chachalaca, Canivet’s Emerald, Blue-vented Hummingbird, White-eared Ground-Sparrow and Chestnut-capped Warbler.
After breakfast we went to Bajo del Tigre Reserve where we got stunning views of the male Three-wattled Bellbird, which became the bird of the trip. We also got nice views of White-fronted Amazon, Collared Trogon and Blue-throated Toucanet.
Once we left Monteverde area, we went to the dry Pacific lowlands, to look for some of the dry forest birds like Lesser Ground Cuckoo, Cinnamon Hummingbird, Orange-fronted Parakeet, Brown-crested and Nutting’s Flycatcher, Streak-backed and Spot-breasted Oriole and White-lored Gnatcatcher. The tide at the salt ponds was not quite right, so we didn’t have many birds there, apart from mostly regular stuff like Black-necked Stilt, Grey and Semipalmated Plover, Hudsonian Whimbrel, Stilt Sandpiper and Lesser Yellowlegs. Not much activity of terns and we got to see some groups of gulls on the edge of the gulf where we got to see some Franklin’s Gulls mixed with the Laughing Gulls. We arrived at our lodge in the early evening to enjoy a nice dinner at the hotel. After we finished the list, we went for a short owling session where we got to see the Pacific Screech Owl.
The morning at our lodge was quite active, with birds like Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Canivet’s Emerald, Blue-vented and Cinnamon Hummingbird, Mangrove Cuckoo, Double-striped Thick-knee, Crane Hawk, Ferruginous Pygmy Owl, Black-headed Trogon, Lineated Woodpecker, Yellow-napped Amazon, Orange-fronted Parakeet, Northern Beardless Tyrannulet, Yellow-olive Flatbill, White-throated Magpie Jay, Banded Wren, White-browed and White-lored Gnatcatcher, Stripe-headed Sparrow and Morelet’s Seedeater.
On the way to our next accommodation, we visited the Colorado salt ponds and some dry forest patches at Cañas where we got the Elegant Trogon. At the salt ponds we got to see Wilson’s Plover, Marbled Godwit, Stilt, Least, Semipalmated and Western Sandpiper, Short-billed Dowitcher, Yellow-crowned Night Heron, Tricolored Heron and Swainson’s Hawk.
The afternoon at the lodge didn’t offer too much, but we got the first sights of Tody Motmot, but not everyone got on it in time. Other good sightings included the Northern Nightingale-Wren which gave us really nice views in the open and were the Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer, Golden-crowned Warbler and Montezuma Oropendola.
Since this morning we started to have some bad weather for the following days, which made the birding quite difficult during the early morning walk at our lodge, but we still managed to see Spotted and Dull-mantled Antbird, Long-billed Hermit and Black-cowled Oriole.
After breakfast we went to Heliconias Lodge, where we still had to deal with the rain. Taking advantage of the moments when the rain stopped, we managed to find Tody Motmot, Golden-olive Woodpecker, Streak-crowned Antvireo, White-ruffed Manakin, Wood, Swainson’s and White-throated Thrush as well Veery (but only leader and one client got to see it). At some point we found an ant swarm with the presence of Ocellated, Bicolored and Spotted Antbird, as well Northern Barred Woodcreeper.
After lunch we continued to Caño Negro. On the way we got to see a nice male Nicaraguan Seed Finch, as well other common but new birds like Olive-throated Parakeet and Northern Tropical Pewee. Once at Caño Negro we got to see the Spot-breasted Wren, as well other species like Black-bellied Whistling Duck, Blue-winged Teal (the only one during tour), Green Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, White-tailed Kite, and Barred Antshrike.
Our next morning in Caño Negro was clouded by heavy and continuous rain, so we switched the Caño Negro for the Medio Queso boat ride. This plan worked out quite well and gave us a good trip at Medio Queso where we got to see the main target of the area, the very restricted range Nicaraguan Grackle. Other birds included Muscovy Duck, Mangrove Cuckoo, Sora, Common and Purple Gallinule, Yellow-breasted Crake, Solitary Sandpiper, Pinnated Bittern, Black-collared and Harris’s Hawk, Northern Harrier, American Pygmy Kingfisher, Bat Falcon, Fork-tailed Flycatcher, Sand Martin, Canebrake Wren, Yellow-billed Cacique, Grey-crowned and Olive-crowned Yellowthroat, as well good views of Jabiru on the drive back to Caño Negro.
The afternoon we did the boat ride at Caño Negro where the weather had improved and gave us a great afternoon. The highlights were the Snowy Cotinga, Green-and-Rufous Kingfisher, Grey-headed Dove and Yellow-tailed Oriole. Other birds during the tour included Great Potoo, Russet-naped Wood Rail, Boat-billed Heron, White-necked and Pied Puffbird, Rufous-winged Woodpecker, Yellow-bellied Tyrannulet, Black-throated Wren and Grey-headed Tanager.
Our last morning in the Caño Negro area we added Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, Bare-crowned Antbird, Willow Flycatcher (identified based on vocals) and Ruddy-breasted Seedeater.
We then continued to Arenal, where we visited the Bogarin Trails on the way to our lodge. The Bogarin trails once again gave us a very productive visit with amazing views of Uniform Crake, coming out in the open, as well as White-throated Crake, Black-and-white Owl in a roosting perch, Grey-headed Dove, Keel-billed Motmot, Acadian Flycatcher, White-collared Manakin, Red-eyed Vireo and Hooded Warbler. There was also a nice Brown-throated Three-toed Sloth here. After our visit to Bogarin trails, we continued to the Arenal Observatory Lodge where we spent the night.
Our morning at the Observatory Lodge, we had to deal with rain again which made for trying birding conditions, but we managed to see birds like Thicket Antpitta, female Black-crested Coquette, Brown Violetear, Green Thorntail, Violet-headed Hummingbird, Cinnamon Becard and Tooth-billed Tanager. Once we left the Observatory Lodge, we went to check for the Sungrebe in a nearby lagoon, with success!
During part of the afternoon, we visited the area of Virgen del Socorro where we got to see some interesting birds like American Dipper, Scale-crested Pygmy-Tyrant, Louisiana Waterthrush and Blue-and-gold Tanager. After our time here, we continued to the lowlands of Sarapiqui at La Selva Biological Station, but first we went for a short stop on the way to look for Great Green Macaws.
Finally, we had a day with good weather at La Selva. La Selva Biological Station offers one of the best Caribbean lowland forest birding in, and this day wasn’t an exception! The compilation of birds of our full day in La Selva included Crested Guan, Great Curassow, Olive-backed Quail-Dove, Grey-headed and Hook-billed Kite, Vermiculated Screech Owl, Rufous Motmot, Cinnamon and Chestnut-coloured, Pale-billed Woodpecker, Northern Mealy Amazon, Plain-brown Woodcreeper, Checker-throated Stipplethroat, Black-crowned Antshrike, Ocellated Antbird, Long-tailed Tyrant, White-ringed Flycatcher, Eastern Kingbird, Purple-throated Fruitcrow, Snowy Cotinga, White-collared Manakin, Olive-backed Euphonia, Scarlet-rumped Cacique, Dusky-faced Tanager, Red-throated Ant-Tanager, Rose-breasted and Black-faced Grosbeak, Shining Honeycreeper and Plain-coloured Tanager. We also had some nice mammals here like Neotropical River Otter, Collared Peccary, Mantled Howler Monkey and Central American Agouti.
During our last morning at La Selva we managed to add the Semiplumbeous Hawk, Fasciated Antshrike, Black-cowled Oriole, Cerulean Warbler and White-lined Tanager. After breakfast, we left La Selva and we visited the area of La Union de Guapiles where we got birds like Brown-capped Tyrannulet and Slate-coloured Grosbeak. Then, we visited Braulio Carrillo National Park at the Quebrada Gonzales Ranger Station. The trails of Braulio Carrillo gave us views of White-whiskered Puffbird, White-flanked Antwren, Tawny-faced Gnatwren and Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush. After this, we ended our day at the Tapirus Lodge, where we got to see the Striped Woodhaunter, Olive-backed Quail-Dove, Carmiol’s and Tawny-crested Tanager. For the people who joined me until the end of our afternoon walk, we managed to see the first sight of a female Bare-necked Umbrellabird.
The next morning was spent at the facilities of the Aerial Tram, where we got to see several surprises that included a close encounter with a Baird’s Tapir, as well our second sight of a female Umbrellabird. Other birds during our morning at the tram included the Tiny and Semiplumbeous Hawk, Lattice-tailed Trogon, Yellow-eared Toucanet, Streak-crowned Antvireo, Rufous Piha, White-ruffed Manakin, Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher, Chestnut-headed Oropendola, White-throated Shrike-Tanager and some tanagers like Black-and-yellow, White-shouldered, Carmiol’s and Speckled.
The afternoon session was dedicated to Cope’s Place, where we got to see the White-tipped Sicklebill as the first bird in the place. We were quite lucky because the bird had become a bit erratic the previous days here. A lovely session at Cope’s feeders followed, with commoner birds, but great chances for photography and close-up views. After we enjoyed the feeders, we went to look for Central American Pygmy Owl. Finally, the pygmy owl answered and eventually showed itself very nicely. We went on to try for more and saw a Bushy-tailed Olingo (a rare arboreal mammal). A nice way to end the day!
During our last day of the trip, we walked the forest trails in the Tram, where we got encounters with antwrens and tanager mixed-species flocks and we got to see the Western Woodhaunter again. The only new bird of the morning was a Canada Warbler, but not everyone got to see it. Once we left the Aerial Tram, we enjoyed the landscape of the Braulio Carrillo National Park on the way back to the Central Valley. Our last birding spot of the tour was in the eastern side of the valley at the area of Rio Tiribí, where we got Cabanis’s Seedeater foraging with chusquea bamboo. After our lunch we continued our way to the airport, with very smooth traffic on the way.
Many thanks to all the members of the group, as well to our local guides and staff of the lodges who helped us to run this tour in the best way, and above all to our driver, Luis, who moved us around all over the country in the past 24 days.
BIRD OF THE TRIP
1st: Three-wattled Bellbird
2nd: Rosy Thrush-Tanager
3rd: Bare-necked Umbrellabird
4th: Long-tailed Manakin
5th: Yellow-breasted Crake
SYSTEMATIC LIST OF SPECIES RECORDED
Great Tinamou Tinamus major Good views in 4 different occasions during the trip.
Little Tinamou Crypturellus soui (H) Heard only at Esquinas and Rincon Bridge.
Thicket Tinamou ◊ Crypturellus cinnamomeus (H) Heard only at Ensenada Lodge.
Slaty-breasted Tinamou ◊ Crypturellus boucardi (H) Heard only at Chilamate, Sarapiqui.
Black-bellied Whistling Duck Dendrocygna autumnalis Best views at Caño Negro.
Muscovy Duck Cairina moschata Few birds were seen at Medio Queso.
Blue-winged Teal (W) Spatula discors Only one bird (female) at Caño Negro.
Grey-headed Chachalaca ◊ Ortalis cinereiceps
Crested Guan Penelope purpurascens First seen at Rancho Naturalista, but also in other sites.
Black Guan ◊ Chamaepetes unicolor Best view at Santa Elena Reserve, also seen at Talamanca Highlands.
Great Curassow ◊ Crax rubra Best views at Esquinas, but also at Arenal Observatory Lodge and La Selva.
Buffy-crowned Wood Partridge ◊ Dendrortyx leucophrys Good views at Irazu Volcano area.
Marbled Wood Quail Odontophorus gujanensis (H) Heard only at Las Cruces.
Black-breasted Wood Quail ◊ Odontophorus leucolaemus Near endemic. Seen well at Quelitales and Monteverde Reserve.
Spotted Wood Quail ◊ Odontophorus guttatus Excellent views at Savegre Lodge.
Lesser Nighthawk Chordeiles acutipennis Seen at dusk at Tarcoles and Ensenada Lodge.
Common Nighthawk Chordeiles minor One bird was seen at dusk at Cope’s place. A write-in for the tour.
Short-tailed Nighthawk Lurocalis semitorquatus Good views of a pair at Caño Negro.
Pauraque Nyctidromus albicollis First seen at Esquinas, also in another localities.
Dusky Nightjar ◊ Antrostomus saturatus Near endemic. Great views at Paraiso Quetzal, also at Irazu.
Great Potoo Nyctibius grandis Good views at Caño Negro.
Common Potoo Nyctibius griseus A young bird at San Isidro, at daytime.
Chestnut-collared Swift Streptoprocne rutila Few individuals were seen at Carara.
White-collared Swift Streptoprocne zonaris
Grey-rumped Swift Chaetura cinereiventris First sightings once we got to La Selva area.
Costa Rican Swift ◊ Chaetura fumosa Near endemic. Seen well at La Gamba and Rincon Bridge.
Vaux’s Swift Chaetura [vauxi] richmondi Seen at Savegre Valley and Wilsons Botanical Gardens.
Lesser Swallow-tailed Swift* Panyptila cayennensis Two birds were seen at Rincon Bridge.
White-necked Jacobin Florisuga mellivora Quite common at the feeders of Rancho Naturalista and Cope’s place.
White-tipped Sicklebill ◊ Eutoxeres aquila One bird seen on a perch at Cope’s place, also some got to see it at the Aerial Tram coming to Heliconias flowers.
Band-tailed Barbthroat Threnetes ruckeri Seen at Rancho, Esquinas and La Selva.
Stripe-throated Hermit Phaethornis striigularis Several sights during the trip.
Green Hermit Phaethornis guy Seen at Quelitales, Monteverde and Celeste Mountain Lodge.
Long-billed Hermit Phaethornis longirostris Seen at different localities, mostly in humid lowlands.
Green-fronted Lancebill Doryfera ludovicae Great views at Hotel Quelitales.
Brown Violetear Colibri delphinae Seen at Pejibaye area, and Arenal Observatory Lodge.
Lesser Violetear Colibri cyanotus
Purple-crowned Fairy Heliothryx barroti Seen at Rancho, Copal, Carara and the Aerial Tram.
Green-breasted Mango Anthracothorax prevostii First seen at Ujarras, but also in other localities.
Green Thorntail Discosura conversii Good views at Quelitales, Rancho, Copal and Arenal area.
Black-crested Coquette ◊ Lophornis helenae One male at Rancho, and a female at Arenal.
White-crested Coquette ◊ Lophornis adorabilis Near endemic. A female attending a nest at Las Cruces.
Green-crowned Brilliant Heliodoxa jacula A common species in some of the feeders stations.
Talamanca Hummingbird ◊ Eugenes spectabilis Near endemic. Common in the highlands.
Fiery-throated Hummingbird ◊ Panterpe insignis Near endemic. Best views at Paraiso Quetzal feeders.
White-bellied Mountaingem ◊ Lampornis hemileucus Near endemic. Good views at Quelitales.
Purple-throated Mountaingem ◊ Lampornis calolaemus Near endemic. Seen at Monteverde area.
Grey-tailed Mountaingem ◊ Lampornis cinereicauda Endemic. Seen at Savegre area.
Magenta-throated Woodstar ◊ (W) Philodice bryantae Near endemic. One male at Monteverde feeders.
Ruby-throated Hummingbird (W) Archilochus colubris One sight at Ensenada Lodge.
Volcano Hummingbird ◊ Selasphorus flammula Near endemic. Seen at Irazu Volcano and Talamanca Highlands.
Scintillant Hummingbird ◊ Selasphorus scintilla Near endemic. Best views at Savegre area, other sight at Quelitales.
Canivet’s Emerald ◊ Cynanthus canivetii Seen at our hotel at Monteverde, Santuario Ecologico and Ensenada Lodge.
Garden Emerald ◊ Chlorostilbon assimilis Near endemic. Seen at Ujarras and San Vito area.
Violet-headed Hummingbird Klais guimeti First seen at Esquinas, also at Arenal and the Aerial Tram.
Violet Sabrewing ◊ Campylopterus hemileucurus Common at Quelitales and Monteverde.
Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer ◊ Chalybura urochrysia First seen at Celeste, also at Arenal and Cope’s place.
Crowned Woodnymph Thalurania colombica Several sights on the trip.
Snowcap ◊ Microchera albocoronata Good views at Rancho and El Copal.
Coppery-headed Emerald ◊ Microchera cupreiceps Endemic. First seen at Quelitales, as well in Monteverde.
White-tailed Emerald ◊ Microchera chionura (LO) Seen by leader and driver at San Vito area. Near endemic.
Stripe-tailed Hummingbird ◊ Eupherusa eximia Seen at Savegre and Monteverde.
Black-bellied Hummingbird ◊ Eupherusa nigriventris Near endemic. Seen our first afternoon at Quelitales.
Scaly-breasted Hummingbird ◊ Phaeochroa cuvierii Different sights during the trip.
Blue-vented Hummingbird ◊ Saucerottia hoffmanni Near endemic. A regular species in the dry areas and transition zones.
Snowy-bellied Hummingbird ◊ Saucerottia edward Near endemic. Seen at Buenos Aires area and Las Cruces.
Cinnamon Hummingbird Amazilia rutila Seen at Ensenada and other dry regions in the tour.
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird Amazilia tzacatl
Mangrove Hummingbird ◊ Amazilia boucardi Endemic. Seen at Rincon Mangroves, also at Tarcoles Mangroves.
Sapphire-throated Hummingbird ◊ Chrysuronia coeruleogularis Seen at Ciudad Neily area.
Blue-chested Hummingbird Polyerata amabilis Good views at La Selva.
Charming Hummingbird ◊ Polyerata decora Near endemic. First seen at Las Cruces, also at Esquinas.
Blue-throated Sapphire ◊ Chlorestes eliciae Best views at Arenal, also at Esquinas and Carara.
Smooth-billed Ani Crotophaga ani Common in open areas in the South Pacific of the country.
Groove-billed Ani Crotophaga sulcirostris Common at the dry areas, and Caribbean lowlands.
Striped Cuckoo Tapera naevia Seen at Tarcoles.
Lesser Ground Cuckoo ◊ Morococcyx erythropygus Good views at Punta Morales.
Squirrel Cuckoo Piaya cayana
Mangrove Cuckoo (W) Coccyzus minor First seen at Ensenada Lodge, another sight at Medio Queso.
Rock Dove (introduced) Columba livia
Scaled Pigeon Patagioenas speciosa Seen once at San Vito area.
Band-tailed Pigeon Patagioenas fasciata
Pale-vented Pigeon Patagioenas cayennensis Seen at the South Pacific and Caribbean lowlands.
Red-billed Pigeon Patagioenas flavirostris
Ruddy Pigeon Patagioenas subvinacea Seen at Talamanca Highlands and Monteverde area.
Short-billed Pigeon ◊ Patagioenas nigrirostris
Inca Dove Columbina inca
Common Ground Dove Columbina passerina Seen at Punta Morales.
Ruddy Ground Dove Columbina talpacoti
Blue Ground Dove Claravis pretiosa Seen at Tarcoles mangroves.
Maroon-chested Ground-Dove ◊ Paraclaravis mondetoura A rare and erratic species that show up well at Irazu. A write-in for the tour.
Ruddy Quail-Dove Geotrygon montana Best views of a female at Monteverde Reserve, also one male at El Copal.
Olive-backed Quail-Dove ◊ Leptotrygon veraguensis A couple at La Selva, another sight at the Tram.
White-tipped Dove Leptotila verreauxi
Grey-headed Dove ◊ Leptotila plumbeiceps Good views at Caño Negro also at Bogarin trails.
Grey-chested Dove ◊ Leptotila cassinii First seen at Wilsons, also at Esquinas, Carara and Villa Lapas.
Buff-fronted Quail-Dove ◊ Zentrygon costaricensis Everyone got to see it at Savegre oak forest.
Purplish-backed Quail-Dove ◊ Zentrygon lawrencii Excellent views in the open at El Copal.
Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura Seen on agricultural fields near Irazu.
White-winged Dove Zenaida asiatica
Sungrebe Heliornis fulica
Uniform Crake ◊ Amaurolimnas concolor Great views at Bogarin.
Russet-naped Wood Rail ◊ Aramides albiventris Best views at Caño Negro area.
Grey-cowled Wood Rail Aramides cajaneus A familiar group of 5 birds was seen regularly at Esquinas.
Sora Porzana carolina Good views at Medio Queso.
Common Gallinule Gallinula galeata Seen at Medio Queso.
Purple Gallinule Porphyrio martinica
Ocellated Crake ◊ Micropygia schomburgkii Seen well by the whole group, we were really lucky!! A write-in for the tour.
Yellow-breasted Crake ◊ Laterallus flaviventer A couple at Medio Queso.
White-throated Crake Laterallus albigularis We heard it many times, but the whole group got to see it at Bogarin trails.
Double-striped Thick-knee Burhinus bistriatus Seen at Ensenada Lodge.
Black-necked Stilt Himantopus mexicanus Good number at salt pans and Caño Negro, with other scattered sights.
Southern Lapwing Vanellus chilensis Seen at different sites.
Pacific Golden Plover Pluvialis dominica A vagrant species for Costa Rica which is having more reports on the last years. A write-in for the tour.
Grey Plover (Black-bellied P) Pluvialis squatarola Higher numbers at Colorado salt pans.
Semipalmated Plover Charadrius semipalmatus Seen at different sites.
Wilson’s Plover Charadrius wilsonia Seen at Colorado salt pans.
Collared Plover Charadrius collaris Seen along the edge of Rio Coto.
Northern Jacana Jacana spinosa Seen at different sites.
Hudsonian Whimbrel Numenius hudsonicus Seen on the coast.
Marbled Godwit Limosa fedoa One bird at Colorado salt pans.
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres Seen from Ensenada dock.
Stilt Sandpiper Calidris himantopus Seen at Ensenada and Colorado salt pans.
Least Sandpiper Calidris minutilla
Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla
Western Sandpiper Calidris mauri
Short-billed Dowitcher Limnodromus griseus
Spotted Sandpiper Actitis macularius
Solitary Sandpiper Tringa solitaria Seen at Caño Negro, another sight along the Pacific Coastline Road.
Wandering Tattler Tringa incana Seen on the rocky areas on the Pacific coast.
Lesser Yellowlegs Tringa flavipes Seen at salt pans.
Willet (Western W) Tringa [semipalmata] inornata
Greater Yellowlegs Tringa melanoleuca Seen in the margins of Coto River.
Laughing Gull Leucophaeus atricilla
Franklin’s Gull Leucophaeus pipixcan At least 4 individuals with a group of Laughing Gulls at Nicoya Gulf.
Heermann’s Gull Laurus heermanni An individual that was previously reported at Puntarenas. A write-in for the tour.
Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia One bird at Puntarenas.
Royal Tern (American R T) Thalasseus maximus Seen at Puntarenas.
Cabot’s Tern Thalasseus acuflavidus Seen at Puntarenas.
Parasitic Jaeger Stercorarius parasiticus One bird chasing a Cabot’s Tern at Puntarenas. A write-in for the tour.
Sunbittern Eurypyga Helias An active nest near Rancho Naturalista.
Wood Stork Mycteria americana
Jabiru Jabiru mycteria A single bird seen in San Emilio Fields, at Caño Negro.
Magnificent Frigatebird Fregata magnificens
Brown Booby Sula leucogaster Seen at Puntarenas.
Anhinga Anhinga anhinga
Neotropic Cormorant Nannopterum brasilianum
Green Ibis Mesembrinibis cayennensis Seen at Caño Negro and La Selva.
American White Ibis Eudocimus albus
Roseate Spoonbill Platalea ajaja Seen in different wetlands.
Fasciated Tiger Heron Tigrisoma fasciatum One bird seen at Pejibaye.
Bare-throated Tiger Heron Tigrisoma mexicanum Seen at different locations.
Boat-billed Heron Cochlearius cochlearius
Pinnated Bittern ◊ Botaurus pinnatus Seen at Medio Queso.
Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax One bird seen at Medio Queso.
Yellow-crowned Night Heron Nyctanassa violacea Seen at a few sites.
Green Heron Butorides virescens
Western Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias Seen at different sites.
Great Egret (American G E) Ardea [alba] egretta
Tricolored Heron (Louisiana H) Egretta tricolor First seen at Coto 47, also at Tarcoles and Medio Queso.
Little Blue Heron Egretta caerulea
Snowy Egret Egretta thula
Brown Pelican Pelecanus occidentalis Seen on the coast.
King Vulture Sarcoramphus papa One sight driving true Sarapiqui Region.
Black Vulture Coragyps atratus
Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture Cathartes burrovianus Seen at Medio Queso.
Osprey Pandion haliaetus
White-tailed Kite Elanus leucurus Seen at Ujarrás and Caño Negro area.
Grey-headed Kite Leptodon cayanensis Seen at La Selva.
Hook-billed Kite Chondrohierax uncinatus First sight at Ujarrás, also seen twice at La Selva.
Swallow-tailed Kite Elanoides forficatus Seen at different locations.
Black Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus tyrannus (H) Heard only at Rancho Naturalista.
Double-toothed Kite Harpagus bidentatus Two birds seen at Wilson’s Botanical Gardens.
Tiny Hawk Microspizias superciliosus Excellent views at The Aerial Tram.
Cooper’s Hawk (W) Accipiter cooperii Seen the first and last day of the trip, at Cartago and Rio Tiribi.
Northern Harrier Circus hudsonius One bird seen at Medio Queso. A write-in for the tour.
Plumbeous Kite Ictinia plumbea Two birds seen at Tarcoles.
Black-collared Hawk Busarellus nigricollis Good views at Medio Queso and Caño Negro.
Crane Hawk Geranospiza caerulescens First seen at Carara NP, also a pair at Ensenada Lodge.
Common Black Hawk ◊ Buteogallus anthracinus Seen at Rincon and Tarcoles.
Roadside Hawk Rupornis magnirostris
Harris’s Hawk (Bay-winged H) Parabuteo unicinctus One bird seen at Medio Queso.
White Hawk Pseudastur albicollis Seen at La Gamba, Esquinas area.
Semiplumbeous Hawk ◊ Leucopternis semiplumbeus Good views at La Selva and The Aerial Tram.
Grey Hawk Buteo plagiatus Seen at Tarcoles, also seen on the way to Heliconias at Bijagua.
Broad-winged Hawk (W) Buteo platypterus Several sights during the trip of individuals in migration groups.
Short-tailed Hawk Buteo brachyurus Seen at the Talamanca mountains.
Swainson’s Hawk (W) Buteo swainsoni A big group in migration seen at Savegre, also other sights in Guanacaste areas.
Zone-tailed Hawk Buteo albonotatus One sight at the Pacific Coastline Road.
Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis Seen at Irazu and during our visit to the Paramo.
American Barn Owl Tyto furcate Seen briefly on the way to Irazu and heard at Ensenada Lodge.
Costa Rican Pygmy Owl ◊ Glaucidium costaricanum (H) Heard only at Savegre Oak Forest.
Central American Pygmy Owl ◊ Glaucidium griseiceps Great views at La Union, Guapiles.
Ferruginous Pygmy Owl Glaucidium brasilianum
Striped Owl Asio clamator Just some passengers got to see it briefly in the drive out of Esquinas.
Bare-shanked Screech Owl ◊ Megascops clarkii Good views at Irazu.
Tropical Screech Owl Megascops choliba Seen at a roosting site at Paraiso Park.
Pacific Screech Owl ◊ Megascops cooperi Good views at night in Ensenada Lodge.
Vermiculated Screech Owl ◊ Megascops vermiculatus Seen at La Selva.
Choco Screech Owl ◊ Megascops centralis (H) Heard only at Wilsons Botanical Gardens.
Spectacled Owl Pulsatrix perspicillata Seen during our owling session with Santiago near Tarcoles area.
Crested Owl Lophostrix cristata Seen at daytime at Rancho Naturalista.
Mottled Owl Strix virgata Seen during a night walk at Rancho Naturalista.
Black-and-white Owl Strix nigrolineata Seen at Tarcoles with Santiago.
Resplendent Quetzal ◊ Pharomachrus mocinno Very good views at Irazu and Providencia Road.
Lattice-tailed Trogon ◊ Trogon clathratus Good views at the Tram.
Slaty-tailed Trogon ◊ Trogon massena Seen at various sites in the lowlands and foothills.
Black-headed Trogon ◊ Trogon melanocephalus Best views at Ensenada also at Caño Negro area.
Baird’s Trogon ◊ Trogon bairdii Good views at Buenos Aires and Esquinas.
Gartered Trogon (Northern Violaceous T) Trogon caligatus
Black-throated Trogon Trogon rufus Seen at Buenos Aires, also at La Selva.
Elegant Trogon ◊ Trogon elegans Seen at forest patches near Cañas.
Collared Trogon Trogon collaris Seen at Savegre and Wilsons, and the “Orange-bellied” form seen at Monteverde area.
Amazon Kingfisher Chloroceryle amazona Seen at Tarcoles and Caño Negro area.
American Pygmy Kingfisher Chloroceryle aenea Seen at Tarcoles and Caño Negro area.
Green Kingfisher Chloroceryle americana Seen at Tarcoles and Caño Negro area.
Green-and-rufous Kingfisher Chloroceryle inda A great find from Chambita at Caño Negro. A write-in for the tour.
Ringed Kingfisher Megaceryle torquata Seen at Tarcoles and Caño Negro area.
Belted Kingfisher* (W) Megaceryle alcyon Seen at Tarcoles.
Tody Motmot ◊ Hylomanes momotula Seen at Celeste and Heliconias.
Lesson’s Motmot ◊ (Blue-diademed M) Momotus lessonii First seen at Ujarras, and very good views from Cala Lodge.
Rufous Motmot Baryphthengus martii Seen at Quelitales and La Selva.
Keel-billed Motmot ◊ Electron carinatum Seen at Arenal area.
Broad-billed Motmot Electron platyrhynchum
Turquoise-browed Motmot ◊ Eumomota superciliosa Common in the dry forest.
Rufous-tailed Jacamar Galbula ruficauda Seen at Rancho Naturalista also at Esquinas.
White-necked Puffbird Notharchus hyperrhynchus Seen at Carara and Caño Negro.
Pied Puffbird Notharchus tectus Seen at Caño Negro.
White-whiskered Puffbird Malacoptila panamensis Seen at Carara NP and Braulio Carrillo NP.
Lanceolated Monklet Micromonacha lanceolata Good views at Pejibaye area.
Red-headed Barbet Eubucco bourcierii One female seen at Quelitales.
Prong-billed Barbet ◊ Semnornis frantzii Good views at Monteverde Reserve.
Blue-throated Toucanet ◊ Aulacorhynchus caeruleogularis Best views at Monteverde area, also at Savegre Oak Forest.
Collared Aracari Pteroglossus torquatus
Fiery-billed Aracari ◊ Pteroglossus frantzii Seen at Wilsons, San Vito and Rincon Bridge.
Yellow-eared Toucanet ◊ Selenidera spectabilis Seen at Copal and the Aerial Tram.
Keel-billed Toucan Ramphastos sulfuratus
Yellow-throated Toucan (Chestnut-mandibled T) Ramphastos [ambiguus] swainsonii
Olivaceous Piculet Picumnus olivaceus Seen at Buenos Aires.
Acorn Woodpecker Melanerpes formicivorus Great views at Melvin’s and Mirriam’s Feeders.
Golden-naped Woodpecker ◊ Melanerpes chrysauchen Seen at Esquinas.
Black-cheeked Woodpecker Melanerpes pucherani Common in the Caribbean foothills and lowlands.
Red-crowned Woodpecker Melanerpes rubricapillus Common in the south Pacific.
Hoffmann’s Woodpecker ◊ Melanerpes hoffmannii Common in the dry forest, also in disturbed areas of the Caribbean slope.
Smoky-brown Woodpecker Leuconotopicus fumigatus Good views at Santa Elena.
Hairy Woodpecker Leuconotopicus villosus Seen in the Talamanca highlands.
Rufous-winged Woodpecker ◊ Piculus simplex Seen at Caño Negro.
Golden-olive Woodpecker Colaptes rubiginosus Seen at Quelitales, El Copal and Heliconias.
Cinnamon Woodpecker Celeus loricatus Seen well at La Selva.
Chestnut-colored Woodpecker ◊ Celeus castaneus Good and close views at La Selva.
Lineated Woodpecker Dryocopus lineatus Seen at different locations.
Pale-billed Woodpecker ◊ Campephilus guatemalensis Good views at Villa Lapas and La Selva.
Crested Caracara (Northern C C) Caracara [plancus] cheriway
Yellow-headed Caracara Milvago chimachima
Laughing Falcon Herpetotheres cachinnans Excellent views at Carara.
Collared Forest Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus Seen at Wilsons and Carara NP.
American Kestrel (W) Falco sparverius One bird seen at Cartago attacking a Cooper’s Hawk.
Bat Falcon Falco rufigularis First seen at Medio Queso, also at the pasture fields outside La Selva.
Peregrine Falcon (W) Falco peregrinus Nice scope views at Tarcoles.
Barred Parakeet Bolborhynchus lineola A small group flew over during our morning at Paraiso Quetzal.
Orange-chinned Parakeet (Tovi P) Brotogeris jugularis
Brown-hooded Parrot ◊ Pyrilia haematotis Several sights in flight during the trip, but good views at The Aerial Tram.
Blue-headed Parrot Pionus menstruus Few sights in the farther southern sections of the tour (San Vito and Esquinas).
White-crowned Parrot ◊ Pionus senilis Seen at different locations.
White-fronted Amazon ◊ (W-f Parrot) Amazona albifrons Nice views at Monteverde area and Ensenada.
Red-lored Amazon (R-l Parrot) Amazona autumnalis Common in the humid lowlands.
Yellow-naped Amazon ◊ (Y-n Parrot) Amazona auropalliata Seen at Ensenada Lodge and Tarcoles.
Northern Mealy Amazon ◊ (N M Parrot) Amazona guatemalae Best views at La Selva.
Sulphur-winged Parakeet ◊ Pyrrhura hoffmanni Good views at Savegre.
Olive-throated Parakeet ◊ Eupsittula nana Best views at Caño Negro area.
Orange-fronted Parakeet Eupsittula canicularis Few sights in the dry regions of the tour.
Brown-throated Parakeet Eupsittula pertinax Excellent views at Coto 47.
Great Green Macaw ◊ Ara ambiguus Good views at La Selva.
Scarlet Macaw Ara macao Seen at Rincon and Carara area.
Finsch’s Parakeet ◊ Psittacara finschi
Tawny-throated Leaftosser ◊ Sclerurus mexicanus Good views at Quelitales and Monteverde.
Grey-throated Leaftosser ◊ Sclerurus albigularis Everyone managed to see it at Monteverde area.
Olivaceous Woodcreeper Sittasomus griseicapillus Seen at different locations.
Ruddy Woodcreeper Dendrocincla homochroa Seen at Santuario Ecologico, Monteverde.
Tawny-winged Woodcreeper ◊ Dendrocincla anabatina Good views at Wilsons.
Plain-brown Woodcreeper Dendrocincla fuliginosa Good views at Rancho Naturalista and La Selva.
Wedge-billed Woodcreeper Glyphorynchus spirurus
Northern Barred Woodcreeper Dendrocolaptes sanctithomae Seen at different sites.
Cocoa Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus susurrans A common species in the humid forest areas.
Black-striped Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus lachrymosus Good views at Esquinas.
Spotted Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus erythropygius Best views at Monteverde area, also seen at El Copal.
Brown-billed Scythebill ◊ Campylorhamphus pusillus Nice views at Santa Elena Reserve.
Streak-headed Woodcreeper Lepidocolaptes souleyetii A common species, mainly in the lowlands.
Spot-crowned Woodcreeper Lepidocolaptes affinis A common highland species.
Plain Xenops Xenops minutus Seen at different sites of the trip, like Carara and La Selva.
Buffy Tuftedcheek ◊ Pseudocolaptes lawrencii Good views at Providencia Road and Savegre Oak Forest.
Lineated Foliage-gleaner Syndactyla subalaris Good views at Monteverde and Santa Elena Reserve.
Ruddy Foliage-gleaner Clibanornis rubiginosus (H) Heard only at Las Cruces.
Streak-breasted Treehunter ◊ Thripadectes rufobrunneus Good views at Providencia Road.
Buff-throated Foliage-gleaner Automolus ochrolaemus Good views at Pejibaye and Rancho.
Chiriqui Foliage-gleaner ◊ Automolus exsertus Seen at Buenos Aires and Carara NP. Near endemic.
Western Woodhaunter Automolus virgatus Good views at the Aerial Tram.
Spotted Barbtail Premnoplex brunnescens Seen on several occasions in Monteverde area.
Ruddy Treerunner ◊ Margarornis rubiginosus Seen in the highlands of Irazu, Talamanca mountains and Santa Elena Reserve. Near endemic.
Red-faced Spinetail Cranioleuca erythrops Joining mix-flock species at Santa Elena Reserve.
Slaty Spinetail Synallaxis brachyura First seen at Platanillo, also at Medio Queso and Bogarin Trails.
Pale-breasted Spinetail Synallaxis albescens Good views at Ciudad Neily area.
Russet Antshrike Thamnistes anabatinus Seen at Carara and the Aerial Tram trails.
Dot-winged Antwren Microrhopias quixensis Good views at Buenos Aires and Carara NP.
Checker-throated Stipplethroat Epinecrophylla fulviventris The best views at La Selva, also at Rancho and the Aerial Tram.
White-flanked Antwren Myrmotherula axillaris Seen at Braulio Carrillo NP, hear only at the Aerial Tram.
Slaty Antwren Myrmotherula schisticolor Seen at Las Cruces and Carara NP.
Plain Antvireo Dysithamnus mentalis Seen at Rancho and El Copal.
Streak-crowned Antvireo ◊ Dysithamnus striaticeps First seen at Heliconias trails, good views at the Aerial Tram too.
Barred Antshrike Thamnophilus doliatus Seen at different sites like Caño Negro
Black-hooded Antshrike ◊ Thamnophilus bridgesi Common in central and south Pacific humid forest. Near endemic.
Black-crowned Antshrike Thamnophilus atrinucha Good views at La Selva.
Fasciated Antshrike Cymbilaimus lineatus Finally was seen our last morning at La Selva.
Great Antshrike Taraba major (H) Heard only at Caño Negro.
Ocellated Antbird ◊ Phaenostictus mcleannani With army ants at Heliconias and La Selva.
Bicolored Antbird Gymnopithys bicolor Seen at Heliconias trails.
Dusky Antbird Cercomacroides tyrannina Seen at Villa Lapas and La Selva.
Spotted Antbird Hylophylax naevioides Good views at Celeste and Heliconias trails.
Chestnut-backed Antbird Poliocrania exsul Best views at Carara NP, also at Esquinas and Villa Lapas.
Dull-mantled Antbird ◊ Sipia laemosticta Seen at Rancho and Celeste Lodge trails.
Bare-crowned Antbird ◊ Gymnocichla nudiceps Seen at Caño Negro area.
Zeledon’s Antbird ◊ Hafferia zeledoni See at Quelitales.
Black-faced Antthrush Formicarius analis Seen at Las Cruces, Esquinas and Carara NP.
Black-headed Antthrush Formicarius nigricapillus (H) Heard only very close at El Copal.
Scaled Antpitta Grallaria guatimalensis Amazing show at Quelitales where they feed them with worms. 3 individuals came this day!
Streak-chested Antpitta ◊ Hylopezus perspicillatus Great views at Buenos Aires and Carara NP.
Thicket Antpitta ◊ (Fulvous-bellied A) Hylopezus dives First seen at Rancho, but much better views at Arenal Observatory Lodge.
Ochre-breasted Antpitta Grallaricula flavirostris Seen at El Copal.
Silvery-fronted Tapaculo ◊ Scytalopus argentifrons Near endemic. Seen at Savegre and Santa Elena Reserve.
Grey-headed Piprites ◊ Piprites griseiceps (H) Calling from the boundary property of Rancho Naturalista in an area without access.
White-fronted Tyrannulet ◊ Phyllomyias zeledoni Near endemic. Seen at Providencia Road.
Yellow-crowned Tyrannulet Tyrannulus elatus Good views at Coto 47.
Greenish Elaenia Myiopagis viridicata Seen at different localities.
Yellow-bellied Elaenia Elaenia flavogaster A common and widespread species.
Lesser Elaenia Elaenia chiriquensis Seen at Buenos Aires.
Mountain Elaenia Elaenia frantzii Common at Irazu and Talamanca Mountains.
Yellow-bellied Tyrannulet ◊ Ornithion semiflavum Good views at Buenos Aires and Caño Negro.
Brown-capped Tyrannulet Ornithion brunneicapillus Good views at La Union.
Northern Beardless Tyrannulet Camptostoma imberbe Seen at different moments in the dry forest areas.
Southern Beardless Tyrannulet Camptostoma obsoletum Seen at Esquinas and Tarcoles.
Torrent Tyrannulet Serpophaga cinerea Seen well at Platanillo.
Yellow Tyrannulet Capsiempis flaveola Good views at Caño Negro.
Mistletoe Tyrannulet Zimmerius parvus
Olive-streaked Flycatcher Mionectes olivaceus Near endemic. Best views at Las Cruces, with several sights during the tour.
Ochre-bellied Flycatcher Mionectes oleagineus
Slaty-capped Flycatcher Leptopogon superciliaris Seen at Las Cruces, Rancho and Pejibaye.
Northern Scrub Flycatcher Sublegatus arenarum Good views at Tarcoles and Punta Morales.
Black-capped Pygmy Tyrant Myiornis atricapillus (H) Heard only, at La Selva.
Northern Bentbill ◊ Oncostoma cinereigulare Seen well at Buenos Aires.
Scale-crested Pygmy Tyrant Lophotriccus pileatus Finally we got good views at Virgen del Socorro Road.
Slaty-headed Tody-Flycatcher Poecilotriccus sylvia Seen at Buenos Aires.
Common Tody-Flycatcher Todirostrum cinereum
Black-headed Tody-Flycatcher Todirostrum nigriceps Good views at El Copal.
Eye-ringed Flatbill Rhynchocyclus brevirostris Good views at Las Cruces and Santa Elena Reserve.
Yellow-olive Flatbill Tolmomyias sulphurescens Seen at different locations.
Stub-tailed Spadebill ◊ Platyrinchus cancrominus (H) Heard only at Villa Lapas.
White-throated Spadebill Platyrinchus mystaceus Good views at Quelitales, Copal and Santa Elena Reserve.
Golden-crowned Spadebill Platyrinchus coronatus Good view at Buenos Aires and Villa Lapas.
Tawny-chested Flycatcher ◊ Aphanotriccus capitalis Good views at Pejibaye.
Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans Seen at different rivers during the trip.
Northern Tufted Flycatcher Mitrephanes phaeocercus Common in the Talamanca highlands.
Dark Pewee ◊ Contopus lugubris Good views in the Talamanca highlands.
Ochraceous Pewee ◊ Contopus ochraceus Two sights in the Talamanca highlands.
Eastern Wood Pewee (W) Contopus virens A few seen at widely scattered sites.
Tropical Pewee Contopus cinereus Seen at different locations.
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher Empidonax flaviventris Seen well at El Copal and Esquinas.
Acadian Flycatcher (W) Empidonax virescens Good views at Bogarin Trails and La Selva.
Willow Flycatcher (W) Empidonax traillii We managed to make it to call at Medio Queso, so that is how we confirm the ID. A write-in for the tour.
White-throated Flycatcher ◊ Empidonax albigularis A bit challenging this time but seen at Platanillo.
Yellowish Flycatcher ◊ Empidonax flavescens Seen at Quelitales, Savegre and Monteverde.
Black-capped Flycatcher ◊ Empidonax atriceps Near endemic. Good views at Irazu and Talamanca Highlands.
Long-tailed Tyrant Colonia colonus Good views at La Selva.
Piratic Flycatcher Legatus leucophaius
Rusty-margined Flycatcher Myiozetetes cayanensis Good views at Coto 47.
Social Flycatcher Myiozetetes similis
Grey-capped Flycatcher Myiozetetes granadensis
Great Kiskadee Pitangus sulphuratus
White-ringed Flycatcher Conopias albovittatus Seen at La Selva.
Golden-bellied Flycatcher Myiodynastes hemichrysus Good views at Monteverde Reserve.
Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher Myiodynastes luteiventris Seen at different locations during the trip.
Streaked Flycatcher Myiodynastes maculatus First seen at San Isidro, as well other localities in the lowlands.
Boat-billed Flycatcher Megarynchus pitangua Seen at different locations.
Tropical Kingbird Tyrannus melancholicus
Western Kingbird (W) Tyrannus verticalis Several seen at Ensenada salt pans.
Fork-tailed Flycatcher Tyrannus savana Seen at Ciudad Neily and Medio Queso.
Eastern Kingbird (W) Tyrannus tyrannus Several birds were seen at La Selva.
Rufous Mourner Rhytipterna holerythra First seen at Pejibaye, also at Carara.
Dusky-capped Flycatcher Myiarchus tuberculifer
Panama Flycatcher ◊ Myiarchus panamensis Seen at Tarcoles and Ensenada Lodge.
Nutting’s Flycatcher ◊ Myiarchus nuttingi Seen in different sites in the dry areas of northwest.
Great Crested Flycatcher Myiarchus crinitus Seen at Buenos Aires, Rincon and Caño Negro.
Brown-crested Flycatcher Myiarchus tyrannulus Seen at Punta Morales and Ensenada Lodge.
Bright-rumped Attila Attila spadiceus Seen at Rancho, Rincon and La Selva.
Purple-throated Fruitcrow Querula purpurata Good views at La Selva.
Bare-necked Umbrellabird ◊ Cephalopterus glabricollis Near endemic. A female was seen two consecutive days at the Aerial Tram.
Rufous Piha Lipaugus unirufus Seen at Buenos Aires and the Aerial Tram.
Three-wattled Bellbird ◊ Procnias tricarunculatus Excellent views at Monteverde area. The bird of the trip!!
Turquoise Cotinga ◊ Cotinga ridgwayi Good views at San Isidro.
Yellow-billed Cotinga ◊ Carpodectes antoniae At least 5 different individuals were seen at Rio Rincon.
Snowy Cotinga ◊ Carpodectes nitidus Good views at Caño Negro and La Selva.
Long-tailed Manakin ◊ Chiroxiphia linearis We got to see them doing the dance display, quite a show!
White-ruffed Manakin ◊ Corapipo altera Seen at different localities in the Caribbean Foothills.
Velvety Manakin ◊ Lepidothrix velutina Two males displaying at Las Cruces.
White-collared Manakin ◊ Manacus candei Seen at La Selva, Bogarin and Caño Negro area.
Orange-collared Manakin ◊ Manacus aurantiacus Near endemic. Good views at Buenos Aires.
White-crowned Manakin Pseudopipra pipra One male at the lek territory of Rancho. Heard only at El Copal.
Red-capped Manakin Ceratopipra mentalis First seen at Buenos Aires, also at Esquinas and Carara.
Northern Royal Flycatcher ◊ Onychorhynchus mexicanus Good views at Carara.
Sulphur-rumped Myiobius (S-r Flycatcher) Myiobius sulphureipygius Seen at different localities.
Black-tailed Myiobius (B-t Flycatcher) Myiobius atricaudus Good views at Buenos Aires.
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher Terenotriccus erythrurus Seen at El Copal and the Aerial Tram.
Black-crowned Tityra Tityra inquisitor First seen at Rancho, and different localities.
Masked Tityra Tityra semifasciata
Northern Schiffornis Schiffornis veraepacis Good views at El Copal and Rancho.
Barred Becard Pachyramphus versicolor Seen at Talamanca Highlands and Santa Elena Reserve.
Cinnamon Becard Pachyramphus cinnamomeus Seen at Arenal area and La Selva.
White-winged Becard Pachyramphus polychopterus Good views at Carara NP.
Rose-throated Becard Pachyramphus aglaiae Good views at Tarcoles and Ensenada Lodge.
Rufous-browed Peppershrike Cyclarhis gujanensis Seen at Tarcoles Mangroves.
Green Shrike-Vireo ◊ Vireolanius pulchellus Great views of this canopy species at Buenos Aires.
Scrub Greenlet Hylophilus flavipes Good views at Buenos Aires.
Tawny-crowned Greenlet Tunchiornis ochraceiceps Seen at Esquinas, Carara and the Aerial Tram.
Lesser Greenlet Pachysylvia decurtata
Yellow-green Vireo Vireo flavoviridis Common at Ensenada, Tarcoles and other locations.
Red-eyed Vireo (W) Vireo olivaceus Seen at Bogarin Trails and La Selva.
Philadelphia Vireo (W) Vireo philadelphicus
Brown-capped Vireo Vireo leucophrys Seen at Quelitales and Savegre.
Yellow-throated Vireo (W) Vireo flavifrons
Yellow-winged Vireo ◊ Vireo carmioli Near endemic. Common at the Talamanca Highlands
Mangrove Vireo ◊ Vireo pallens Good views at Tarcoles mangroves.
Silvery-throated Jay ◊ Cyanolyca argentigula (H) Heard only at the distance at Providencia Road. Near endemic.
Black-chested Jay Cyanocorax affinis Good views at San Vito area.
Brown Jay Psilorhinus morio
White-throated Magpie-Jay ◊ Calocitta formosa Seen at Ensenada and other localities in the dry forest.
Black-and-yellow Phainoptila ◊ (B-and-Y Silky-flycatcher) Phainoptila melanoxantha Near endemic. Seen at Providencia Road.
Long-tailed Silky-flycatcher ◊ Ptiliogonys caudatus Near endemic. First seen at Irazu, also in the Talamanca Highlands.
Sand Martin (Bank Swallow) Riparia riparia Seen at Medio Queso.
Mangrove Swallow Tachycineta albilinea
Blue-and-white Swallow Pygochelidon cyanoleuca
Northern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx serripennis Seen at different localities.
Southern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx ruficollis Seen several times in the lowlands.
Grey-breasted Martin Progne chalybea A common and widespread species.
Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica Big numbers passing by the country at this time of the year.
American Cliff Swallow (W) Petrochelidon pyrrhonota Seen few times but with good numbers.
Band-backed Wren Campylorhynchus zonatus Seen briefly at El Copal.
Rufous-backed Wren ◊ Campylorhynchus capistratus Common in the dry areas in the northwest.
Grass Wren Cistothorus platensis Seen the first afternoon of the tour at Cartago.
Black-throated Wren ◊ Pheugopedius atrogularis Seen at Caño Negro and Bogarin Trails.
Black-bellied Wren Pheugopedius fasciatoventris Seen at Ciudad Neily area.
Spot-breasted Wren ◊ Pheugopedius maculipectus Good views at Caño Negro.
Rufous-breasted Wren Pheugopedius rutilus Good views at Buenos Aires.
Banded Wren Thryophilus pleurostictus Good views at Ensenada Lodge.
Rufous-and-white Wren Thryophilus rufalbus Seen at Cala Lodge, we heard it several times in other sites.
Cabanis’s Wren ◊ Cantorchilus modestus Seen our last day at Rio Tiribi.
Canebrake Wren ◊ Cantorchilus zeledoni Good views at Medio Queso.
Isthmian Wren ◊ Cantorchilus elutus Near endemic. First seen at Buenos Aires, also at Coto 47.
Riverside Wren ◊ Cantorchilus semibadius Near endemic. Good views at Buenos Aires and Esquinas.
Bay Wren Cantorchilus nigricapillus Seen at Pejibaye, we heard it several times.
Stripe-breasted Wren ◊ Cantorchilus thoracicus Seen at Rancho, Heliconias and La Selva.
House Wren Troglodytes aedon
Ochraceous Wren ◊ Troglodytes ochraceus Near endemic. Seen at Irazu, Talamanca and Santa Elena Reserve.
Timberline Wren ◊ Thryorchilus browni Near endemic. Seen at Providencia Road.
White-breasted Wood Wren Henicorhina leucosticta Seen at Rancho building a nest.
Grey-breasted Wood Wren Henicorhina leucophrys Seen at Providencia Road and Monteverde area.
Northern Nightingale-Wren ◊ Microcerculus philomela Excellent views in the open at Celeste Mt Lodge.
Southern Nightingale-Wren Microcerculus marginatus First seen at Rancho, also at Esquinas.
Song Wren Cyphorhinus phaeocephalus (H) Heard only at El Copal.
Trilling Gnatwren Ramphocaenus melanurus Seen well at different localities.
Tawny-faced Gnatwren Microbates cinereiventris Seen at Braulio Carrillo NP and the Aerial Tram.
White-browed Gnatcatcher Polioptila bilineata Seen well at different localities.
White-lored Gnatcatcher ◊ Polioptila albiloris Good views at Punta Morales and Ensendada Lodge.
Tropical Mockingbird Mimus gilvus Common around towns throughout the country.
Black-faced Solitaire ◊ Myadestes melanops Seen at Monteverde and Santa Elena Reserve.
Wood Thrush (W) Hylocichla mustelina First seen at Rancho coming to the pools, also seen at other localities too.
Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush Catharus aurantiirostris Best views at Buenos Aires.
Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush ◊ Catharus mexicanus Seen in Monteverde area.
Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrush Catharus fuscater Seen at Monteverde and Santa Elena Reserve.
Swainson’s Thrush (W) Catharus ustulatus Common migrant at this time of the year.
Black-billed Nightingale-Thrush ◊ Catharus gracilirostris Near endemic. Common in the highlands.
Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush ◊ Catharus frantzii Seen at Savegre and Santa Elena Reserve.
Veery Catharus fuscescens Seen by leader and one passenger at Heliconias trails. A write-in for the tour.
Sooty Thrush ◊ Turdus nigrescens Near endemic. Common at Irazu and Talamanca Highlands.
Mountain Thrush ◊ Turdus plebejus Seen regularly at the highlands.
White-throated Thrush Turdus assimilis Seen at Quelitales, Las Cruces and Heliconias trails.
Pale-vented Thrush ◊ Turdus obsoletus (H) Heard only at Copal and Celeste Mt Lodge.
Clay-colored Thrush Turdus grayi
American Dipper Cinclus mexicanus Seen at Virgen del Socorro Road.
House Sparrow (introduced) Passer domesticus
Elegant Euphonia Chlorophonia elegantissima Seen at Quelitales and Providencia Road.
Golden-browed Chlorophonia ◊ Chlorophonia callophrys Seen at Talamanca Highlands.
Scrub Euphonia Euphonia affinis Several sights in the dry areas.
Yellow-crowned Euphonia ◊ Euphonia luteicapilla Seen at Buenos Aires, heard a different localities.
White-vented Euphonia Euphonia minuta Good views at El Copal.
Yellow-throated Euphonia Euphonia hirundinacea Seen at different localities.
Thick-billed Euphonia Euphonia laniirostris Seen at Las Cruces, Esquinas and Rincon.
Spot-crowned Euphonia ◊ Euphonia imitans Near endemic. Good views at Las Cruces, Esquinas and Carara NP.
Olive-backed Euphonia ◊ Euphonia gouldi Common in the Caribbean lowlands and foothills.
Tawny-capped Euphonia ◊ Euphonia anneae Good views at El Copal, Braulio Carrillo NP and the Aerial Tram.
Rosy Thrush-tanager Rhodinocichla rosea Excellent views at Buenos Aires (male and female!!).
Ashy-throated Bush Tanager Chlorospingus canigularis Good views of this uncommon species at Pejibaye and El Copal.
Sooty-capped Bush Tanager ◊ Chlorospingus pileatus Near endemic. Common species in the Talamanca Highlands and Irazu.
Common Bush Tanager Chlorospingus flavopectus Common at mid elevations and also in the upper foothills.
Stripe-headed Sparrow Peucaea ruficauda Good views at Ensenada Lodge.
Olive Sparrow Arremonops rufivirgatus Good views at Guacilmal (route to Monteverde).
Black-striped Sparrow Arremonops conirostris Seen at different localities.
Costa Rican Brushfinch ◊ Arremon costaricensis Near endemic. Nice views at San Vito area.
Orange-billed Sparrow Arremon aurantiirostris
Chestnut-capped Brushfinch Arremon brunneinucha Good views at Rancho and Monteverde Reserve.
Sooty-faced Finch ◊ Arremon crassirostris Near endemic. Seen well at Quelitales and Santa Elena Reserve.
Volcano Junco ◊ Junco vulcani Near endemic. Good views at the Talamanca Highlands.
Rufous-collared Sparrow Zonotrichia capensis
Large-footed Finch ◊ Pezopetes capitalis Near endemic. Seen at Irazu and Talamanca Highlands.
White-eared Ground Sparrow ◊ Melozone leucotis Seen at Quelitales and Monteverde area.
Cabanis’s Ground Sparrow ◊ Melozone cabanisi Endemic. Seen well at Ujarras.
Yellow-thighed Brushfinch ◊ (Y-t Finch) Atlapetes tibialis Near endemic. Seen well in the highlands.
Wrenthrush ◊ (Zeledonia) Zeledonia coronata Near endemic. Excellent views in the open at Providencia Road.
Eastern Meadowlark Sturnella magna First seen at Cartago area, and couple sights in other pastures.
Red-breasted Blackbird Leistes militaris Seen at Ciudad Neily and one female at Medio Queso.
Yellow-billed Cacique Amblycercus holosericeus Good views at Medio Queso.
Chestnut-headed Oropendola Psarocolius wagleri First seen at Quelitales, also at Rancho, La Selva and the Aerial Tram.
Crested Oropendola Psarocolius decumanus Couple sights at San Vito area.
Montezuma Oropendola ◊ Psarocolius montezuma Common on the Caribbean slope, a few sights in Pacific slope as well.
Scarlet-rumped Cacique Cacicus microrhynchus Seen in the humid lowlands and foothills.
Streak-backed Oriole Icterus pustulatus Seen at Tarcoles, Punta Morales and Ensenada Lodge.
Baltimore Oriole (W) Icterus galbula
Yellow-tailed Oriole Icterus mesomelas Good views at Caño Negro. Uncommon species in Costa Rica.
Spot-breasted Oriole ◊ Icterus pectoralis Seen well at Punta Morales.
Black-cowled Oriole ◊ Icterus prosthemelas Best views at La Selva, also at Celeste Mt Lodge.
Orchard Oriole (W) Icterus spurius Seen at Ujarras.
Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus Common in the northern Caribbean Lowlands.
Giant Cowbird Molothrus oryzivorus First seen at Rancho; higher numbers at Ciudad Neily.
Shiny Cowbird Molothrus bonariensis Two birds were seen at Cartago area the first day of the trip.
Bronzed Cowbird Molothrus aeneus Several sights during the trip.
Melodious Blackbird Dives dives Seen at different localities.
Nicaraguan Grackle ◊ Quiscalus nicaraguensis Near endemic. Great views at Medio Queso.
Great-tailed Grackle Quiscalus mexicanus
Louisiana Waterthrush (W) Parkesia motacilla Seen at Virgen del Socorro Road.
Northern Waterthrush (W) Parkesia noveboracensis A few sights in the trip in places like Tarcoles and Carara NP.
Golden-winged Warbler (W) Vermivora chrysoptera Seen at different localities.
Black-and-white Warbler (W) Mniotilta varia Most sights in the first part of the trip, first seen at Rancho.
Flame-throated Warbler ◊ Oreothlypis gutturalis Good views at Irazu and Talamanca Highlands.
Tennessee Warbler (W) Leiothlypis peregrina One of the most common warblers during the trip.
Grey-crowned Yellowthroat Geothlypis poliocephala Good views at San Vito and Medio Queso.
Chiriqui Yellowthroat ◊ Geothlypis chiriquensis Seen well at San Vito.
Mourning Warbler (W) Geothlypis philadelphia Seen at San Isidro.
Kentucky Warbler* (W) Geothlypis formosa Coming to the pools at Rancho.
Olive-crowned Yellowthroat Geothlypis semiflava Great views of a couple at Medio Queso.
Hooded Warbler (W) Setophaga citrina Seen at Bogarin Trails.
American Redstart (W) Setophaga ruticilla Seen at Las Cruces, Rincon and Ensenada Lodge.
Cerulean Warbler Setophaga cerulea One male was seen by our rooms at La Selva.
Tropical Parula Setophaga pitiayumi Seen at Quelitales and El Copal.
Blackburnian Warbler (W) Setophaga fusca Seen at Quelitales, Las Cruces and Monteverde area.
American Yellow Warbler (W) Setophaga aestiva A common migratory species seen at widely scattered sites.
Mangrove Warbler Setophaga petechia Seen at Tarcoles Mangroves.
Chestnut-sided Warbler (W) Setophaga pensylvanica Probably the most common warbler of the trip.
Black-throated Green Warbler (W) Setophaga virens A common warbler in the highlands.
Buff-rumped Warbler Myiothlypis fulvicauda First seen at Carara NP, also at Arenal Observatory Lodge and La Selva.
Chestnut-capped Warbler Basileuterus delattrii Seen at Monteverde area.
Black-cheeked Warbler ◊ Basileuterus melanogenys Near endemic. Good views at Talamanca Highlands.
Golden-crowned Warbler Basileuterus culicivorus Seen at Rancho, El Copal and Monteverde area.
Black-eared Warbler ◊ Basileuterus melanotis Near endemic. Good views at Monteverde and Santa Elena Reserve.
Canada Warbler (W) Cardellina canadensis One sight our last morning of the trip at The Aerial Tram.
Wilson’s Warbler (W) Cardellina pusilla Common migrant in highlands and mid elevations.
Slate-throated Whitestart Myioborus miniatus First seen at Quelitales, common at Monteverde area.
Collared Whitestart ◊ Myioborus torquatus Near endemic. Seen at the Talamanca Highlands, and Monteverde area.
Dusky-faced Tanager Mitrospingus cassinii Seen at La Selva and La Union.
Flame-colored Tanager Piranga bidentata Seen at Irazu and Talamanca Highlands.
Tooth-billed Tanager (Highland Hepatic T) Piranga lutea One sight at the Observatory Lodge, heard only at Celeste Mt Lodge.
Summer Tanager (W) Piranga rubra
Scarlet Tanager (W) Piranga olivacea First seen at Las Cruces, also at La Selva.
White-winged Tanager Piranga leucoptera Good views at Quelitales.
Red-crowned Ant Tanager Habia rubica Seen at Villa Lapas.
Red-throated Ant Tanager Habia fuscicauda Seen at Rancho and La Selva.
Black-cheeked Ant Tanager ◊ Habia atrimaxillaris Endemic. Good views at Esquinas.
Carmiol’s Tanager ◊ Chlorothraupis carmioli Common in the Caribbean Foothills.
Black-thighed Grosbeak ◊ Pheucticus tibialis Near endemic. Seen at Savegre.
Rose-breasted Grosbeak Pheucticus ludovicianus Seen at Ujarras and La Selva.
Black-faced Grosbeak ◊ Caryothraustes poliogaster Good numbers at Copal, La Selva and the Aerial Tram.
Cabanis’s Seedeater ◊ Amaurospiza concolor Seen at Rio Tiribi.
Blue-black Grosbeak Cyanoloxia cyanoides Seen at Esquinas and Carara NP, heard only in other sites.
Indigo Bunting (W) Passerina cyanea Seen the first day at Cartago area.
Painted Bunting (W) Passerina ciris Nice views of two males at Tarcoles.
Green Honeycreeper Chlorophanes spiza
Black-and-yellow Tanager ◊ Chrysothlypis chrysomelas Seen at Rancho, El Copal and the Aerial Tram.
Red-legged Honeycreeper Cyanerpes cyaneus
Shining Honeycreeper ◊ Cyanerpes lucidus Seen at La Selva and the Aerial Tram.
Scarlet-thighed Dacnis Dacnis venusta Seen at El Copal, Las Cruces and Virgen del Socorro.
Blue Dacnis Dacnis cayana Seen at Buenos Aires, Caño Negro and near Cope’s place.
Cinnamon-bellied Saltator Saltator grandis A few seen at different sites.
Streaked Saltator Saltator striatipectus Seen at San Isidro.
Buff-throated Saltator Saltator maximus
Black-headed Saltator Saltator atriceps First seen at Ujarras, also at Pejibaye, and Bogarin Trails.
Slate-colored Grosbeak Saltator grossus Seen at La Union.
Bananaquit Coereba flaveola
Yellow-faced Grassquit Tiaris olivaceus
Blue-black Grassquit Volatinia jacarina
Grey-headed Tanager Eucometis penicillata Seen at Buenos Aires, Carara and Caño Negro.
White-shouldered Tanager Loriotus luctuosus Seen at several sites joining mixed flocks.
Tawny-crested Tanager Tachyphonus delatrii Big flocks at El Copal, Braulio Carrillo NP and the Aerial Tram.
White-lined Tanager Tachyphonus rufus One male seen on the boundaries of La Selva.
White-throated Shrike-Tanager ◊ Lanio leucothorax Nice views of a male at the Aerial Tram.
Scarlet-rumped Tanager ◊ (Passerini’s T) Ramphocelus [passerinii] passerinii Common in the Caribbean slope.
Scarlet-rumped Tanager ◊ (Cherrie’s T) Ramphocelus [passerinii] costaricensis Near endemic. Common in the humid Pacific slope.
Morelet’s Seedeater ◊ Sporophila morelleti Seen several times during the trip, in open fields.
Variable Seedeater (Black-breasted S) Sporophila corvina Seen at different sites in the south Pacific.
Variable Seedeater (Black S) Sporophila [corvina] corvina A common seedeater in the Caribbean slope.
Yellow-bellied Seedeater Sporophila nigricollis A big group (30+) was seen at La Gamba.
Thick-billed Seed Finch Sporophila funerea First seen at Coto 47, also at Caño Negro and La Selva.
Nicaraguan Seed Finch ◊ Sporophila nuttingi Seen on the way to Caño Negro.
Ruddy-breasted Seedeater Sporophila minuta Seen at Medio Queso.
Peg-billed Finch ◊ Acanthidops bairdi Near endemic. Excellent views at Paraiso Quetzal.
Slaty Flowerpiercer ◊ Diglossa plumbea Near endemic. Common in the highlands.
Blue-and-gold Tanager ◊ Bangsia arcaei Near endemic. Seen at Virgen del Socorro Road.
Speckled Tanager Ixothraupis guttata Good views at El Copal, Las Cruces and the Aerial Tram.
Blue-grey Tanager Thraupis episcopus
Palm Tanager Thraupis palmarum
Golden-hooded Tanager Stilpnia larvata
Spangle-cheeked Tanager ◊ Tangara dowii Near endemic. Good views at Santa Elena Reserve.
Bay-headed Tanager Tangara gyrola Seen at different localities in foothills and mid elevations.
Emerald Tanager Tangara florida Good views at El Copal and the Aerial Tram.
Silver-throated Tanager Tangara icterocephala Seen at Rancho, El Copal, Savegre and other localities.
Plain-colored Tanager Tangara inornata Seen at La Selva.
Northern Tamandua Tamandua mexicana Excellent views at the Aerial Tram.
Brown-throated Sloth (B-t Three-toed S) Bradypus variegatus Seen at Bogarin Trails and the Aerial Tram.
Northern Tiger Cat (Oncilla) Leopardus tigrinus Sadly, we found a dead individual on the Savegre Oak forest road. It was a melanistic form (totally black) which is super rare, and possibly just die in a natural way.
Bushy-tailed Olingo Bassaricyon gabbii We got to see one at Cope’s place when we were trying for owls.
White-nosed Coati Nasua narica Seen at different localities, the biggest group seen was at the Aerial Tram.
Tayra Eira barbara Excellent views at Esquinas during our breakfast.
Neotropical Otter Lontra longicaudis One swimming the Puerto Viejo River at La Selva.
Baird’s Tapir Tapirus bairdii A close encounter at the Aerial Tram.
Collared Peccary Pecari tajacu Seen at La Selva and the Aerial Tram.
Bottlenose Dolphin Tursiops truncatus Seen at Puntarenas.
Greater White-lined Bat (W-l Sac-winged B) Saccopteryx bilineata Seen at Carara NP.
Panamanian White-faced Capuchin Cebus imitator First seen at Celeste, Caño Negro and the Aerial Tram.
Mantled Howler Monkey Alouatta palliata Seen at Coto 47, Tarcoles, Ensenada Lodge and other localities.
Black-handed Spider Monkey Ateles geoffroyi Heard only at Santuario Ecologico.
Central American Agouti Dasyprocta punctata Seen at Carara NP, La Selva and the Aerial Tram.
Deppe’s Squirrel Sciurus deppei Seen at Celeste Mt Lodge.
Central American Dwarf Squirrel Microsciurus alfari Seen at Celeste Mountain Lodge.
Red-tailed Squirrel (Tropical Red S) Sciurus granatensis Seen at different localities during the trip.
Variegated Squirrel Sciurus variegatoides Four different subspecies were seen of this squirrel during the trip.
Dusky Rice Rat Melanomys caliginosus Coming to feed on rice at Rancho.
REPTILES & AMPHIBIANS
Nicaraguan Slider Trachemys grayi Seen at Caño Negro.
Black River Turtle Rhinoclemmys funereal Seen from La Selva hanging bridge, in the Puerto Viejo River.
Mexican Wood Turtle Rhinoclemmys pulcherrima One individual walking along the trail at Carara NP.
South American Snapping Turtle Chelydra acutirostris Seen at one of the ponds on the grounds of Esquinas Lodge.
Brown Basilisk Basiliscus basiliscus The brown species of Basilisk that we saw in the Pacific slope, in places like Esquinas and Villa Lapas.
Green Basiliks Basiliscus plumifroms Seen at La Selva.
Common Basilisk Basiliscus vitatus The brown species of Basilisk that we saw in the Caribbean slope, like Caño Negro and Bogarin Trails.
Giant Green Anole Anolis biporcatus One individual seen from the Tram ride, in the forest canopy.
Spiny-tailed Iguana Ctenosaura similis First seen at the restaurant at Quepos, as well Villa Lapas and Ensenada Lodge.
Green Iguana Iguana iguana We encountered gigantic ones at Restaurante Las Iguanas, among other places.
Middle American (Whiptail) Ameiva Holcosus festivus The lizards that we got in places like Carara NP, foraging in the forest understory.
Speckled Racer Drymobius margaritiferus The snake that we saw briefly swimming across a small water channel at Caño Negro.
Fer-de-Lance (Terciopelo) Bothrops apser We got to see a big one when we were looking for owls at Cope’s place at night.
Spectacled (Common) Caiman Caiman crocodilus Very common at Caño Negro area.
American Crocodile Crocodylus acutus Seen at Tarcoles, as well one individual at Caño Negro.
Cane Toad Rhinella marina Seen at different locations.
Green And Black Poison Frog Dendrobates auratus Like 2 or 3 individuals were seen at Carara, another one at Bogarin Trails.
Strawberry Poison-dart Frog Oophaga pumilio Nice views at La Selva of this tiny creature.