4 / 7 February - 18 February 2023
by Pete Morris
With the closing of the Cana Airstrip in Eastern Panama, our birding tours to Panama had been put on hold for some time, while we waited, and waited, and waited… It eventually became clear that it wasn’t coming back in a hurry and consequently a new strategy was required, and a little more time in-country needed! The strategy we came up with was to split Panama into two reasonably short trips, each with some great key birds, but with a major difference. This, the Western and Central tour is the ‘easier’ half, largely staying in comfortable accommodation, and with relatively easy walking and living conditions. The Darien half on the other hand, requires both a lot more physical effort and much more tricky living conditions, with a lot of very basic camping. The two tours complement each other perfectly, and if combined, as some clients did this year, give a very complete coverage of this extremely birdy country, and indeed, we managed a very high proportion of the targets we were seeking.
So back to this tour, which began with an optional three days around Panama City and the Canal Zone, before flying out to David in the far west of the country. From here we made our way back through various highlands, took a side trip out to Coiba Island and finished at Nusagandi, just to the east of Panama City. In just two weeks we recorded just over 450 species, a phenomenal number in such a short space of time. But of course, it’s not the quantity, it’s the quality, and that too was high! For most of us, spending time with a couple of incredible Rufous-vented Ground Cuckoos at an active army ant swarm, was the absolute pinnacle! Seeing the rare Maroon-chested Ground Dove, a singing male, in the western highlands was another top moment, whilst our exploration of the highlands yielded endemics such as White-throated Mountaingem and Yellow-green Brushfinch as well as regional specialities such as Lattice-tailed Trogon and Wrenthrush. Our day trip out to Coiba was great fun, allowing us to see Coiba Spinetail and Azuero Dove, and our final destination, Nusagandi, added some real class with the stunning Black-crowned Antpitta, the much-wanted Sapayoa, and the poorly known Speckled Antshrike, a virtual endemic that is placed in its own monotypic genus. Of course, this is barely scratching the surface, so read on…
We began the pre-tour extension in Panama City itself, where we kicked off our birding in the excellent Metropolitan Park. Here we picked our way through the numerous joggers and walkers and managed to find some great birds, almost the first of which was the much-wanted Rosy Thrush-tanager, a species now placed in its own monotypic family. Even at this dark and early hour, the bubble-gum pink underparts of this gaudy species glowed out of the undergrowth! Almost as popular was a lovely Green Shrike-Vireo, and other good early species included Black-throated Trogon, Golden-fronted Greenlet, migrant Yellow-throated Vireos and chunky Black-chested Jays. As the trails became busier and busier, we switched to another nearby reserve, where we were quickly able to find the other main target for the morning, the somewhat less impressive, though endemic, Panama Tyrannulet, a pair of which showed extremely well.
We then made our way over to our comfortable hotel in the Canal Zone, where we spent most of the rest of the day, eating relaxing and exploring the nearby areas. This proved to be a great introduction to the Central American avifauna as we found a good variety of typical species including the smart Whooping Motmot, musical Rufous-breasted and Rufous-and-white Wrens, a good variety of warblers including Chestnut-capped Warbler, and north American migrants such as Bay-breasted, Chestnut-sided and delightful Prothonotary Warblers, and some smart tanagers including the gaudy Golden-hooded Tanager and the localized Plain-coloured Tanager. Late in the afternoon we enjoyed a pair of Yellow Tyrannulets, some busy Mangrove Swallows, and a variety of colourful denizens perching out in the late afternoon sun, including dazzling honeycreepers and Blue Dacnis.
The following day we were out early and made our way into Soberania National Park, and to the top of the tower at the Rainforest Discovery Centre. It’s quite a climb up, but once there, you really do get an amazing view over the extensive rainforest canopy and unique views of some of the birds that spend their time in or even above the canopy! The electric Blue Cotinga was a top target, and after much scanning we enjoyed good scope views of this lovely species. A Black-breasted Puffbird gave really awesome views, as did some smart Cinnamon Woodpeckers. Parrots, including many Red-lored Amazons were frequently passing whilst it was great to be at eye-level with magnificent Keel-billed and Yellow-billed Toucans. At the opposite end of the spectrum, we spent some time watching a tiny, but thankfully vocal, Moustached Antwren, that was way smaller than the leaves it foraged in.
Back down at ground level, we walked some trails, enjoying a Great Tinamou, lekking Long-billed Hermits, a Crane Hawk, the docile White-whiskered Puffbird, smart Fasciated Antshrikes, the strange Southern Bentbill, Black-bellied Wren, Red-throated Ant Tanager and Grey-headed Tanager. We also encountered a mixed flock with the excellent Spot-crowned Antvireo, Checker-throated Stipplethroat, and Dot-winged Antwren, and watched some hummingbird feeders where highlights included the gaudy Violet-bellied Hummingbird as well as the more subtle Snowy-bellied and Blue-chested Hummingbirds. Here we also had a close-up encounter with a confiding Broad-billed Motmot. Just before lunch we found a couple of Bicolored Antbirds that were briefly joined by two Ocellated Antbirds. After lunch we made further explorations along the pipeline road, though it was fairly quiet. We did manage a few new species, such as a male Ruddy Quail-Dove and Purple-throated Fruitcrow, and in some more open areas found some other new species including Panama Flycatcher, Isthmian Wren, Yellow-backed and Yellow-tailed Orioles, and in the pools, Muscovy Duck and Rufescent Tiger Heron.
News had reached us that just over a couple of hours away, an active army antswarm had been found, complete with the holy grail, Rufous-vented Ground Cuckoo. Even better, the army ants had gone to roost in a known spot! This proved to be too much of a temptation, and we set off well before dawn, heading for El Valle. Sadly, the day of our visit proved to be a pretty damp and unpleasant one, and in such weather, ants often remain inside, not coming out to play. They did appear a little, but never really got going, and consequently the attendees of the swarm were equally uncooperative. The Rufous-vented Ground Cuckoo was there, but seemed very shy, and most did not see it well sadly. We did find a few other species, best of which was the very showy Streak-chested Antpitta. Other species of note included Rufous Motmot, Spotted and Chestnut-backed Antbirds, entertaining Black-faced Antthrushes, Southern Nightingale and Song Wrens, Tawny-faced Gnatwren and gangs of Tawny-crested Tanagers. We spent a long time hanging around, and ultimately left the area somewhat deflated, one of those so close yet so far experiences for those that failed to get great views. Luckily, it wasn’t to be our last chance!
We returned to Panama City and spent the late afternoon at the incredible Panama Viejo. Here we found Northern Scrub Flycatcher, but it was the huge numbers of gulls, terns, waders and herons that were quite staggering. Amongst the thousands of Laughing Gulls, we managed to pick out a number of Franklin’s Gulls as well as a couple of Ring-billed Gulls and American Herring Gulls, an adult Lesser Black-backed Gull and even a Grey-headed Gull! Amongst the waders, Marbled Godwits, Short-billed Dowitchers and (Western) Willets stood out, Northern Shovelers were unexpected, and an incredibly white Neotropic Cormorant caused some excitement! After a long day, we made our way to Tocumen, where the main tour commenced.
The main tour began the following morning with a flight to David, way over in the far west of the country. By the time we left the airport at David it was already pretty warm. Fortunately, we were joined by one of Panama’s finest bird guides, Ito, and we soon realised that we were in safe hands as we were guided straight to our first target, the localized Veraguan Mango, which showed well in roadside trees as a Pearl Kite drifted overhead. As we headed up into the highlands we paused at another spot where we soon found another target, the localized Chiriqui Yellowthroat, which showed well after some effort.
We then made our way up to Cerro Punta, our base for the next couple of nights. Much to our delight, the immediate vicinity of our hotel was alive with birds. Hummingbird feeders held the smart endemic White-throated Mountaingem (our main target here), as well as Violet Sabrewing, Stripe-tailed and Snowy-bellied Hummingbirds, Slaty Flowerpiercer and an elusive Scintillant Hummingbird, whilst the lovely gardens provided entertaining Long-tailed Silky-flycatchers, as well as colourful Flame-coloured and Silver-throated Tanagers.
That afternoon we made our way higher into the highlands. Our first stop yielded a lovely Resplendent Quetzal, the subtle but scarce White-fronted Tyrannulet and the elusive Black-thighed Grosbeak. Moving higher to the Sendero Quetzales, we were treated to an absolute feast of highland Chiriqui Highland endemics, birds that are only otherwise found in the highlands of Costa Rica. These included a fantastic Costa Rican Pygmy Owl that was mobbed by a Volcano Hummingbird and Collared Whitestart amongst others, an attractive pair of (Orange-bellied) Collared Trogons, smart Spot-crowned Woodcreeper and Ruddy Treerunner, the skulking Silvery-fronted Tapaculo, Yellowish Flycatcher, and a mixed flock that included Yellow-winged Vireo, Ochraceous Wren, Sooty-capped Chlorospingus, the brilliant Flame-throated Warbler and Black-cheeked Warbler. We also saw our first Wrenthrush, but it wasn’t too obliging. That aside, it had been a fantastic start to the tour.
The following morning, we found ourselves on a rather unimpressive-looking hillside on the outside of Volcan. As the light improved, our perception of the hillside soon changed, as we had a brilliant male Maroon-chested Ground Dove lined up in the scope; and smiling faces! With that under the belt, we headed back to the highlands, and spent some time around an excellent set of feeders. Here the stars of the show were the fantastic Fiery-throated Hummingbirds and the numerous showy male White-throated Mountaingems and these were joined by impressive Talamanca Hummingbirds and a Green-crowned Brilliant. Also on offer was some seed, and this lured in both Large-footed Finch and Yellow-thighed Brushfinch. We also made a short walk along the trails where many of the highland endemics were again present, but best of all was a fantastically showy Wrenthrush and some cute Black-billed Nightingale-Thrushes along the trail.
In the afternoon we dropped down to some lower forest near to Volcan. Here our first target was the localized Costa Rican Brushfinch, which we found grovelling in the undergrowth alongside Orange-billed Sparrows and Chestnut-capped Brushfinches. Also here was the recently split Chiriqui Foliage-gleaner, as well as some other nice additions to our ever-growing list including White-throated Spadebill, White-ruffed Manakin, a gorgeous male Golden-winged Warbler and Red-crowned Ant Tanager.
We visited another highland area the following morning at Los Nubes, where we concentrated on finding a few more of the highland specialities. Another Costa Rican Pygmy Owl entertained us, this time a bright rufous individual! Also here were an entertaining pair of Prong-billed Barbets, showy Streak-breasted Treehunters, Buffy Tuftedcheek, the impressive Black-and-yellow Phainoptila, the regionally endemic Black-capped Flycatcher, a lovely Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush and rather drab Mountain Thrushes. The local races of Acorn and Hairy Woodpeckers were appreciated, and a few Sulphur-winged Parakeets flashed by.
In the afternoon we headed lower, as we were spending the night in David, but stopped on the way and spent some time at one of Ito’s friend’s properties. Here we spent some time chasing displaying manakins in the undergrowth and came away with brilliant views of stunning Velvety and Orange-collared Manakins. Also here we found the localized Grey-headed Chachalaca, a Laughing Falcon, and a Fiery-billed Aracari for some, whilst the feeders attracted a number of species including Scaly-breasted Hummingbird, and the attractive Spot-crowned Euphonia.
The following day we made our way up to another of Western Panama’s birding hotspots, the Fortuna Road. Birding was slow at first though we did find a female Lattice-tailed Trogon, one of our main targets. Also along the road were Crested Guan, the recently split Fawn-throated Foliage-gleaner, smart Dull-mantled and Zeledon’s Antbirds, Tawny-capped Euphonia, colourful Crimson-collared and Emerald Tanagers, and Yellow-throated Chlorospingus, of the local race which is split by some as Drab-breasted Chlorospingus. We also tried a side road higher up where it was somewhat cool and misty. Here we found a few more goodies including White-bellied Mountaingem, Black-bellied Hummingbird, the localized Black-eared Warbler, and more widespread species including Lineated Foliage-gleaner, Golden-bellied Flycatcher and Band-backed Wren. With birding getting quieter and quieter, we headed lower for lunch, and here we were delighted to find a soaring Ornate Hawk-Eagle and a couple of White Hawks.
After lunch we made our way back over the mountain and down to the coast at Los Lajos. Here, once it cooled down a little, we explored some nearby wetlands where huge numbers of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks were joined by a few Semipalmated and Western Sandpipers. The nearby trees held a number of open country species, including more Veraguan Mangos, and Grey-cowled Wood Rails foraged, but perhaps the sighting of the afternoon was of a most unexpected Neotropical River Otter that caused excitement as it swam through the waterbirds!
The following morning, we made our way up to Cerro Colorado. The journey itself was quite interesting as we made our way up the mountain and past landslides in a rather uncomfortable jeep, whilst outside there was a howling gale, fog and rain – the ultimate combination!! We eventually made it to our destination and found a little shelter as we birded along the road through patches of decent forest. It took a while, but we did in the end succeed with great views of a couple of pairs of the endemic Yellow-green Brushfinch, one pair hanging out with a pair of White-naped Brushfinches. Also here were Purple-throated Mountaingems, a terrific Brown-billed Scythebill, and several smart Spangle-cheeked Tanagers, though sadly the views of Black-faced Solitaire and Golden-browed Chlorophonia were relatively brief. The weather really wasn’t on our side, and to be honest it was good to escape the mountain having secured our treasure! It was then a long drive to the coastal resort of Santa Catalina, where some of us explored near to the hotel, finding Ferruginous Pygmy Owl and a few Sapphire-throated Hummingbirds.
The following day was another big day, as it was our day out to Coiba Island. We boarded our speedboat at first light and embarked on the rather lumpy two hour crossing to the island which was sadly somewhat birdless! Once at the island we made our way to a great little trail where our two Birdquest Lifers soon obliged, with stunning views of both the Azuero Dove and Coiba Spinetail. Also here were some smart Lance-tailed Manakins. excellent Blue-throated Sapphires and more Grey-cowled Wood Rails as well as a number of species represented on Coiba by endemic subspecies, and these included, Red-crowned Woodpecker, Barred Antshrike, Sepia-capped Flycatcher, Rufous-browed Peppershrike, Scrub Greenlet, White-browed Gnatcatcher, Black-striped Sparrow, Chestnut-capped Warbler and Crimson-backed Tanager. After a great morning we made our way around to the park headquarters to register, and for our lunch. Here, a fine Bare-throated Tiger Heron graced the beach, a smart King Vulture drifted over, a confiding pair of Common Black Hawks entertained, and some brilliant Scarlet Macaws gave great views. We also found the very dark and distinctive Coiba subspecies of Yellow-faced Grassquit before we left!
Well the next day was ’round 2′, and again an early start was required as we returned to La Mesa, near to El Valle. The news was that the antswarm and its attendees were still present the previous day, and once again hopes were high. Sadly the weather was once more a little dreary, and upon arrival not much was happening, but the ants were still there; just having a lie-in! Eventually they did begin to swarm, and once they had, the holy grail arrived! We then spent the next hour or so having the most incredible and intimate experience with at least two stunning Rufous-vented Ground Cuckoos! One of those once in a lifetime experiences that everyone dreams of, but not everyone is lucky enough to achieve! Nearby, we waited at some heliconia flowers, where it didn’t take too long for a brilliant White-tipped Sicklebill to come in to feed. It’s always interesting watching these strange hummingbirds, as they cling clumsily on to the flower with their tiny feet! A few other widespread birds were seen again, but hey, it was really a two species morning!!
That afternoon we popped down to an interesting road close to the coast. Here, in dry woodland we found Sapphire-throated Hummingbird, Northern Mouse-coloured Tyrannulet and Pale-eyed Pygmy Tyrant, whilst over the open areas we found a number of raptors including Savanna and Zone-tailed Hawks, as well as a few American Cliff Swallows. Down at the beach a few waders and terns included a fine Elegant Tern with the Cabot’s and Royal Terns.
A trip to Omar Torrijos NP was next on the agenda, and once again the weather was not exactly kind to us. We soldiered on regardless and managed a few good birds during the morning which included a lovely Yellow-eared Toucanet, a fantastic male Lattice-tailed Trogon, an amazing Mottled Owl in broad daylight, a Spot-crowned Barbet in a fruiting tree, a really showy Northern Schiffornis, Isthmian Wrens, Black-and-yellow Tanagers, and, for some, a Snowcap. Actually, put like that, it doesn’t sound too bad at all!! We then made our way back to Panama City where we paused at Coste del Este. Not a huge amount was going on, but we were very pleased to see a Mangrove Cuckoo.
It was now time for the final leg of our tour, and the following morning we set off for Nusagandi, situated in the foothills on the rather wet Caribbean slope to the northwest of Panama City. And wet it was! We endured rather more rain and mud than we would have liked, as we trudged along some rather difficult trails with a few very specific targets in mind! And although the trails were not overly pleasant, we did end up finding nearly all of our targets. Our reason for sliding down muddy trails was to get to ravines favoured by the unique Sapayoa, which we were lucky to get first class views of. Also here was a Choco Manakin and a somewhat bedraggled Plumbeous Hawk, and, on our second attempt, the ‘holy grail’ of Nusagandi, the rare Speckled Antshrike! Although not the greatest looker, this scarce species is placed in its own genus and is a hard species to find!
On another trail, we had a fabulous time with a superb Black-crowned Antpitta, whilst along the road we pulled in a stunning male Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker, and the much-wanted Sulphur-rumped Tanager. Other interesting species here included Purple-crowned Fairy, Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer, Short-billed Pigeon, a delightful male Red-capped Manakin, Carmiol’s Tanager, Shining Honeycreeper, the smart Scarlet-thighed Dacnis and the excellent Rufous-winged Tanager. We also found more Spot-crowned Antvireos. Around the lodge we enjoyed some superb Short-tailed Nighthawks, though sadly the Choco Screech Owls that we heard steadfastly refused to show.
And that was it… As we made our way back to Panama City’s Tocumen Airport, we added a Double-toothed Kite, and by popular demand, popped in to see the talking and laughing Mealy Parrots!! It really had been an excellent inaugural Western and Central Panama tour, one which had found nearly all of the hoped-for regional specialities. For some, the long flights home lay ahead, for others, the adventures of Panama’s Darien Wilderness were about to commence!!
BIRD OF THE TOUR
1ST RUFOUS-VENTED GROUND CUCKOO
2nd MAROON-CHESTED GROUND DOVE
4th Speckled Antshrike
5th= White-tipped Sicklebill
SYSTEMATIC LIST OF SPECIES RECORDED
Species marked with the diamond symbol (◊) are either endemic to the country or local region or considered ‘special’ birds for some other reason (e.g., it is only seen on one or two Birdquest tours; it is difficult to see across all or most of its range; the local form is endemic or restricted-range and may in future be treated as a full species).
The species names and taxonomy used in the bird list follows Gill, F., Donsker, D., & Rasmussen, P.(Eds). 2023. IOC World Bird List (v13.2) (this was the current version when the checklist for the tour report was created).
Where the subspecies seen is/are known, these are often given in parentheses at the end of the species comment.
Species only seen on the pre-tour extension are marked (P).
Great Tinamou Tinamus major (P) One seen at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [saturatus].
Black-bellied Whistling Duck Dendrocygna autumnalis 100s at Playa Las Lajas [fulgens].
Muscovy Duck Cairina moschata (P) Good views of one at the start of the Pipeline Road.
Blue-winged Teal Spatula discors
Northern Shoveler Spatula clypeata (P) Three at Panama Viejo were probably unusual.
Grey-headed Chachalaca ◊ Ortalis cinereiceps
Crested Guan Penelope purpurascens Seen well along the Fortuna Road [aequatorialis].
Black-eared Wood Quail ◊ Odontophorus melanotis Heard only [nominate].
Spotted Wood Quail ◊ Odontophorus guttatus Heard only.
Short-tailed Nighthawk Lurocalis semitorquatus Brilliant views of two around Burbayar Lodge at Nusagandi [stonei].
White-collared Swift Streptoprocne zonaris [bouchellii].
Band-rumped Swift Chaetura spinicaudus
Vaux’s Swift Chaetura vauxi Several seen over the road at Nusagandi [ochropygia].
Short-tailed Swift Chaetura brachyura (P) [nominate].
White-necked Jacobin Florisuga mellivora [nominate].
White-tipped Sicklebill Eutoxeres aquila Great views of one coming to Heliconias at La Mesa, above El Valle [salvini].
Stripe-throated Hermit Phaethornis striigularis [saturatus].
Green Hermit Phaethornis guy [corruscus].
Long-billed Hermit Phaethornis longirostris [cephalus].
Lesser Violetear Colibri cyanotus [cabanidis].
Purple-crowned Fairy Heliothryx barroti One seen at Nusagandi.
Veraguan Mango ◊ Anthracothorax veraguensis Great views of a male and female near to David Airport. Also great views of a male at Playa Las Lajas.
Black-throated Mango Anthracothorax nigricollis (P) [nominate].
Green-crowned Brilliant ◊ Heliodoxa jacula [henryi].
Talamanca Hummingbird ◊ Eugenes spectabilis Several seen well around Cerro Punta.
Fiery-throated Hummingbird ◊ Panterpe insignis Common at the Tamandua Reserve above the Cabanas Quetzales, Cerro Punta [nominate].
Long-billed Starthroat Heliomaster longirostris [nominate].
White-bellied Mountaingem ◊ Lampornis hemileucus A male and female seen high on the Fortuna Road.
Purple-throated Mountaingem ◊ Lampornis calolaemus Several seen well at Cerro Colorado [homogenes].
White-throated Mountaingem ◊ Lampornis castaneoventris Brilliant views of many in the highlands around Cerro Punta.
Volcano Hummingbird ◊ Selasphorus flammula A male seen at the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP [torridus].
Scintillant Hummingbird ◊ Selasphorus scintilla A male seen at the feeders in Barrio Guadalupe and another female later.
Violet-headed Hummingbird Klais guimeti A female seen at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope [merrittii].
Violet Sabrewing ◊ Campylopterus hemileucurus Several seen well around Cerro Punta [mellitus].
Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer Chalybura urochrysia A couple seen at Nusagandi [isaurae].
Crowned Woodnymph Thalurania colombica [venusta].
Snowcap ◊ Microchera albocoronata A male for some of the group.
White-tailed Emerald ◊ Microchera chionura Heard only.
Stripe-tailed Hummingbird ◊ Eupherusa eximia Several seen well around Cerro Punta [egregia].
Black-bellied Hummingbird ◊ Eupherusa nigriventris A cracking male seen in the upper forest along the Fortuna Road.
Scaly-breasted Hummingbird ◊ Phaeochroa cuvierii Several at Birder’s Paradise, near Volcan [furvescens].
Snowy-bellied Hummingbird ◊ Saucerottia edward Nominate seen around Panama City. Also seen around Cerro Punta and on Coiba Island [niveoventer].
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird Amazilia tzacatl [nominate].
Sapphire-throated Hummingbird ◊ Chrysuronia coeruleogularis A couple seen in a flowering tree at Playa Las Lajas. A few others noted. A nice male along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton [nominate].
Blue-chested Hummingbird Polyerata amabilis Seen at the feeders at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road.
Blue-throated Sapphire ◊ (B-t Goldentail) Chlorestes eliciae Several seen well along the Sendero Los Pozos on Coiba Island [earina].
Violet-bellied Hummingbird ◊ Chlorestes julie (P) Seen at the feeders at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [panamensis].
Greater Ani Crotophaga major (P) One for some.
Smooth-billed Ani Crotophaga ani
Groove-billed Ani Crotophaga sulcirostris
Rufous-vented Ground Cuckoo ◊ Neomorphus geoffroyi On our second visit to the antswarm at La Mesa, above El Valle, the ants became active by 10am and we had an amazing couple of hours watching the ground cuckoos at times down to just a few metres. A stunning experience watching the crest raise up and down and tail cock up and down as they pounced on insects. Purple and green iridescence in the sunlight amazing. Largely silent other than quiet snaps as they grabbed insects! A MEGA experience and our bird-of-the-trip!!! [salvini].
Squirrel Cuckoo Piaya cayana [thermophila].
Mangrove Cuckoo Coccyzus minor Good views of one at Costa del Este.
Rock Dove (Feral Pigeon) Columba livia ‘feral’
Scaled Pigeon Patagioenas speciosa (P)
Band-tailed Pigeon Patagioenas fasciata [crissalis].
Pale-vented Pigeon Patagioenas cayennensis [pallidicrissa].
Short-billed Pigeon Patagioenas nigrirostris Seen very well at Nusagandi.
Plain-breasted Ground Dove Columbina minuta Non leader.
Ruddy Ground Dove Columbina talpacoti [rufipennis].
Blue Ground Dove Claravis pretiosa Seen well along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton.
Maroon-chested Ground Dove ◊ Paraclaravis mondetoura Great views of a male that came to playback in some thick scrub at the border between forest and agriculture, near to Cerro Punta. Great bird, seen very well!
Ruddy Quail-Dove Geotrygon montana (P) A male seen well along the Pipeline Road [nominate].
White-tipped Dove Leptotila verreauxi [nominate].
Azuero Dove ◊ Leptotila battyi Brilliant views of four along the Sendero Los Pozos on Coiba Island. Seen very well on the deck and singing from trees. A very smart bird [nominate]!
Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura [turturilla].
Grey-cowled Wood Rail Aramides cajaneus A few including two along the Sendero Los Pozos on Coiba Island [nominate].
Common Gallinule Gallinula galeata [cachinnans].
American Coot Fulica americana [nominate].
Purple Gallinule Porphyrio martinica
White-throated Crake Laterallus albigularis Heard only [nominate].
Pied-billed Grebe Podilymbus podiceps [nominate].
Black-necked Stilt Himantopus mexicanus [nominate].
Southern Lapwing Vanellus chilensis [cayennensis].
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola [cynosurae].
Semipalmated Plover Charadrius semipalmatus
Killdeer Charadrius vociferus [nominate].
Northern Jacana Jacana spinosa
Wattled Jacana (Black-backed W J) Jacana [jacana] hypomelaena
Hudsonian Whimbrel Numenius hudsonicus
Marbled Godwit Limosa fedoa Two in amongst all the waders at Panama Viejo [nominate].
Sanderling Calidris alba A small flock on Coiba Island [rubida].
Least Sandpiper Calidris minutilla
Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla
Western Sandpiper Calidris mauri One or two in the waders at Playa Las Lajas.
Short-billed Dowitcher Limnodromus griseus
Spotted Sandpiper Actitis macularius
Solitary Sandpiper Tringa solitaria
Lesser Yellowlegs Tringa flavipes
Willet (Western W) Tringa [semipalmata] inornata
Greater Yellowlegs Tringa melanoleuca
Grey-headed Gull Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus (P) One in the large flock of Laughing Gulls at Panama Viejo [nominate].
Laughing Gull Leucophaeus atricilla [megalopterus].
Franklin’s Gull Leucophaeus pipixcan A few 1st winters (2cys) in the large flock of Laughing Gulls at Panama Viejo.
Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis A 1st winter (2cy) in the large flock of Laughing Gulls at Panama Viejo. Also one at Costa del Este.
American Herring Gull Larus smithsonianus Two 1st winters (2cys) in the large flock of Laughing Gulls at Panama Viejo. Also one at Costa del Este.
Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus (P) An adult in the large flock of Laughing Gulls at Panama Viejo [graellsii].
Royal Tern Thalasseus maximus
Cabot’s Tern Thalasseus acuflavidus [nominate].
Elegant Tern Thalasseus elegans One on the beach at Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton.
Wood Stork Mycteria americana
Magnificent Frigatebird Fregata magnificens [rothschildi].
Brown Booby Sula leucogaster Five seen on the way back from Coiba Island [etesiaca].
Anhinga Anhinga anhinga (P) [leucogaster].
Neotropic Cormorant Nannopterum brasilianum Including an extremely pale and confusing 2cy at Panama Viejo [nominate].
American White Ibis Eudocimus albus [nominate].
Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus
Roseate Spoonbill Platalea ajaja
Rufescent Tiger Heron Tigrisoma lineatum (P) [nominate].
Bare-throated Tiger Heron Tigrisoma mexicanum Great views of a couple on Coiba Island.
Yellow-crowned Night Heron Nyctanassa violacea [caliginis].
Green Heron Butorides virescens [nominate].
Western Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias [nominate].
Cocoi Heron (White-necked H) Ardea cocoi
Great Egret (American G E) Ardea [alba] egretta
Tricolored Heron Egretta tricolor [ruficollis].
Little Blue Heron Egretta caerulea
Snowy Egret Egretta thula [nominate].
Brown Pelican Pelecanus occidentalis [nominate].
King Vulture Sarcoramphus papa One circling at the ranger station on Coiba Island.
Black Vulture Coragyps atratus
Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture Cathartes burrovianus [nominate].
Osprey (American O) Pandion [haliaetus] carolinensis
White-tailed Kite Elanus leucurus [nominate].
Pearl Kite Gampsonyx swainsonii [leonae].
Swallow-tailed Kite Elanoides forficatus A few seen at Nusagandi.
Ornate Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus ornatus A circling adult along the Fortuna Road was a nice surprise [vicarius]!
Double-toothed Kite Harpagus bidentatus One seen as we were leaving Nusagandi [fasciatus].
Northern Harrier Circus hudsonius One seen along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton.
Crane Hawk Geranospiza caerulescens (P) Nice views of a couple around Panama City [nigra].
Plumbeous Hawk ◊ Cryptoleucopteryx plumbea A wet and bedraggled individual seen at close range along the stream at Nusagandi.
Common Black Hawk (Mangrove B H) Buteogallus anthracinus Great views of a pair at the ranger station on Coiba Island [bangsi].
Savanna Hawk Buteogallus meridionalis One seen along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton.
Roadside Hawk Rupornis magnirostris [petulans].
White Hawk Pseudastur albicollis Good views of a couple along the Fortuna Road [costaricensis].
Grey-lined Hawk Buteo nitidus One seen along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton [blakei].
Broad-winged Hawk Buteo platypterus [nominate].
Short-tailed Hawk Buteo brachyurus [fuliginosus].
Zone-tailed Hawk Buteo albonotatus One seen along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton.
Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis A few seen in the highlands [costaricensis].
Costa Rican Pygmy Owl ◊ Glaucidium costaricanum Great views of two brown morphs at the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP, and an amazing plain rufous morph bird at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta.
Ferruginous Pygmy Owl Glaucidium brasilianum A couple in Santa Catalina [ridgwayi].
Choco Screech Owl ◊ Megascops centralis Heard only, despite much effort, at Nusagandi.
Mottled Owl Strix virgata Great views of one in broad daylight at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope [centralis].
Resplendent Quetzal ◊ Pharomachrus mocinno A young male on the way up to the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP, and a couple of flyover female types at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta [costaricensis].
Lattice-tailed Trogon ◊ Trogon clathratus Great views of one or two females on the Fortuna Road, and then brilliant views of a male at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope.
Slaty-tailed Trogon Trogon massena (P) [hoffmanni].
Black-tailed Trogon Trogon melanurus (P) Seen by some of the group.
Gartered Trogon Trogon caligatus A male seen at Nusagandi [concinnus].
Black-throated Trogon Trogon rufus [tenellus].
Collared Trogon ◊ (Orange-bellied T) Trogon [collaris] aurantiiventris Very nice ‘Orange-bellied’ birds, including a pair at the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP.
Green Kingfisher Chloroceryle americana One at the ranger station on Coiba Island [septentrionalis].
Whooping Motmot Momotus subrufescens (P) [nominate].
Rufous Motmot Baryphthengus martii [semirufus].
Broad-billed Motmot Electron platyrhynchum (P) Including great views at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [minus].
Rufous-tailed Jacamar Galbula ruficauda Heard only [melanogenia].
Black-breasted Puffbird ◊ Notharchus pectoralis (P) Brilliant views from the tower at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road.
White-whiskered Puffbird Malacoptila panamensis (P) Great views at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [nominate].
Spot-crowned Barbet ◊ Capito maculicoronatus One in a fruiting tree at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope [nominate].
Prong-billed Barbet ◊ Semnornis frantzii A few seen well in the highlands, the first at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta.
Collared Aracari Pteroglossus torquatus [nominate].
Fiery-billed Aracari ◊ Pteroglossus frantzii Non leader.
Yellow-eared Toucanet ◊ Selenidera spectabilis Great views of a pair at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope. Also one seen at Nusagandi.
Keel-billed Toucan Ramphastos sulfuratus [brevicarinatus].
Yellow-throated Toucan (Chestnut-mandibled T) Ramphastos [ambiguus] swainsonii
Olivaceous Piculet Picumnus olivaceus [flavotinctus].
Acorn Woodpecker Melanerpes formicivorus [striatipectus].
Black-cheeked Woodpecker Melanerpes pucherani
Red-crowned Woodpecker Melanerpes rubricapillus Most seen were nominate. A few along the Sendero Los Pozos on Coiba Island were the endemic subspecies subfusculus.
Smoky-brown Woodpecker Leuconotopicus fumigatus Heard only.
Hairy Woodpecker Leuconotopicus villosus Including great views at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta [extimus].
Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker ◊ Piculus callopterus Brilliant views of a male along the road at Nusagandi.
Cinnamon Woodpecker Celeus loricatus (P) Great views from the tower at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [mentalis].
Lineated Woodpecker Dryocopus lineatus (P) Heard only [nominate].
Crimson-crested Woodpecker Campephilus melanoleucos [malherbii].
Crested Caracara (Northern C C) Caracara [plancus] cheriway
Yellow-headed Caracara Milvago chimachima [cordata].
Laughing Falcon Herpetotheres cachinnans A couple seen very well [nominate].
American Kestrel Falco sparverius [nominate].
Blue-fronted Parrotlet ◊ Touit dilectissimus Heard only.
Orange-chinned Parakeet Brotogeris jugularis [nominate].
Brown-hooded Parrot ◊ Pyrilia haematotis (P) Heard only.
Blue-headed Parrot Pionus menstruus [rubrigularis].
Red-lored Amazon Amazona autumnalis Including an orange-fronted hybrid at Playa Las Lajas [salvini].
Mealy Amazon (Southern M A) Amazona [farinosa] farinosa
Sulphur-winged Parakeet ◊ Pyrrhura hoffmanni Flyovers only, at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta and along the Fortuna Road [gaudens].
Brown-throated Parakeet Eupsittula pertinax [ocularis].
Scarlet Macaw Ara macao Great views of a few at the ranger station on Coiba Island [macao].
Sapayoa ◊ Sapayoa aenigma Two along the stream at Nusagandi on our first visit, and brilliant views of three there the following day.
Olivaceous Woodcreeper Sittasomus griseicapillus [sylvioides].
Plain-brown Woodcreeper Dendrocincla fuliginosa Plenty seen, including attending the antswarm [ridgwayi].
Wedge-billed Woodcreeper Glyphorynchus spirurus Two forms: pectoralis in the west; subrufescens at Nusagandi.
Cocoa Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus susurrans (P) [marginatus].
Black-striped Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus lachrymosus Good views of one at Nusagandi [nominate].
Spotted Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus erythropygius A few seen, the first at La Mesa, above El Valle [punctigula].
Straight-billed Woodcreeper Dendroplex picus One seen at Costa del Este in Panama City [extimus].
Brown-billed Scythebill ◊ Campylorhamphus pusillus Brilliant views of one at Cerro Colorado [borealis].
Spot-crowned Woodcreeper Lepidocolaptes affinis A few seen well in the Western Highlands around Cerro Punta [neglectus].
Plain Xenops Xenops genibarbis [ridgwayi].
Buffy Tuftedcheek ◊ Pseudocolaptes lawrencii Best views were at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta.
Lineated Foliage-gleaner Syndactyla subalaris One seen well in the upper forest along the Fortuna Road [lineata].
Streak-breasted Treehunter ◊ Thripadectes rufobrunneus Excellent views of a pair at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta.
Fawn-throated Foliage-gleaner ◊ Automolus cervinigularis One seen well along the Fortuna Road. Now split from Buff-throated Foliage-gleaner [hypophaeus].
Chiriqui Foliage-gleaner ◊ Automolus exsertus One seen at Lagunas Volcan, near to Volcan. Others heard there.
Ruddy Treerunner ◊ Margarornis rubiginosus A few seen well in the highlands [nominate].
Coiba Spinetail ◊ Cranioleuca dissita Brilliant views of two or three pairs along the Sendero Los Pozos on Coiba Island. Very distinct.
Red-faced Spinetail Cranioleuca erythrops [rufigenis].
Slaty Spinetail Synallaxis brachyura Heard only [nigrifumosa].
Pale-breasted Spinetail Synallaxis albescens [latitabunda].
Dot-winged Antwren Microrhopias quixensis (P) [boucardi-group].
Checker-throated Stipplethroat ◊ Epinecrophylla fulviventris Great views of several, especially at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road.
Moustached Antwren Myrmotherula ignota (P) Great views from both the tower and in the car park at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [nominate].
White-flanked Antwren Myrmotherula axillaris [albigula].
Slaty Antwren Myrmotherula schisticolor (P) [nominate].
Plain Antvireo Dysithamnus mentalis [septentrionalis].
Spot-crowned Antvireo ◊ Dysithamnus puncticeps Great views by the car park at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road. Also, excellent views of a pair at Nusagandi.
Barred Antshrike Thamnophilus doliatus Two forms: nigricristatus on the mainland; endemic eremnus on Coiba Island.
Black-crowned Antshrike Thamnophilus atrinucha [nominate].
Fasciated Antshrike Cymbilaimus lineatus (P) [fasciatus].
Speckled Antshrike ◊ Xenornis setifrons Brilliant views of a pair along the stream at Nusagandi, on the second attempt.
Ocellated Antbird ◊ Phaenostictus mcleannani (P) A couple seen by the turn to the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road.
Bicolored Antbird Gymnopithys bicolor Two forms seen well: nominate in the east, and olivascens in the east.
Dusky Antbird Cercomacroides tyrannina (P)
Spotted Antbird Hylophylax naevioides (P) An elusive singing individual seen at La Mesa, above El Valle.
Chestnut-backed Antbird Poliocrania exsul First seen at La Mesa, above El Valle [exsul-group]. Subspecies niglarus at Nusagandi.
Dull-mantled Antbird ◊ Sipia laemosticta Great views of a couple the Fortuna Road.
White-bellied Antbird Myrmeciza longipes (P) [panamensis].
Zeledon’s Antbird ◊ Hafferia zeledoni A couple seen and others heard along the Fortuna Road [nominate].
Black-faced Antthrush Formicarius analis First seen along the Pipeline Road, also seen well at La Mesa, above El Valle [hoffmanni-group].
Streak-chested Antpitta ◊ Hylopezus perspicillatus Heard along the Pipeline Road, then brilliant views of one at La Mesa, above El Valle [perspicillatus].
Black-crowned Antpitta ◊ Pittasoma michleri Excellent views of one at Nusagandi [nominate].
Silvery-fronted Tapaculo ◊ Scytalopus argentifrons Two forms seen: argentifrons and chiriquensis.
White-fronted Tyrannulet (Zeledon’s T) Phyllomyias [zeledoni] zeledoni Great views of one on the way up to the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP.
Yellow-crowned Tyrannulet Tyrannulus elatus
Forest Elaenia Myiopagis gaimardii [macilvainii].
Greenish Elaenia Myiopagis viridicata (P) [accola].
Yellow-bellied Elaenia Elaenia flavogaster Two forms: pallididorsalis on the mainland; subpagana on Coiba Island.
Lesser Elaenia Elaenia chiriquensis Including one seen on Coiba Island [nominate].
Mountain Elaenia Elaenia frantzii [nominate].
Brown-capped Tyrannulet Ornithion brunneicapillus (P).
Southern Beardless Tyrannulet Camptostoma obsoletum [flaviventre].
Northern Mouse-colored Tyrannulet Nesotriccus incomtus One seen well along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton [eremonomus]. Note the recent split.
Yellow Tyrannulet Capsiempis flaveola (P) Good views of a pair at the Summit Rainforest Resort [semiflava].
Mistletoe Tyrannulet Zimmerius parvus
Panama Tyrannulet ◊ (Yellow-green T) Phylloscartes flavovirens (P) Great views of responsive pair at Camino de Cruces NP. Seen well, heard singing and distinctive!
Olive-striped Flycatcher Mionectes galbinus Seen at Nusagandi [hederaceus].
Ochre-bellied Flycatcher Mionectes oleagineus Two forms noted, assimilis (west) and parcus (east).
Sepia-capped Flycatcher Leptopogon amaurocephalus Non leader. The endemic idius was seen on Coiba Island by some of the group.
Slaty-capped Flycatcher Leptopogon superciliaris [nominate].
Northern Scrub Flycatcher Sublegatus arenarum One seen along the Sendero Los Pozos on Coiba Island. A couple of others seen well too [nominate].
Black-capped Pygmy Tyrant Myiornis atricapillus (P) Heard only.
Southern Bentbill Oncostoma olivaceum Brilliant views of one at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road. Heard at Nusagandi.
Scale-crested Pygmy Tyrant Lophotriccus pileatus [luteiventris].
Pale-eyed Pygmy Tyrant Atalotriccus pilaris One seen along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton [wilcoxi].
Slaty-headed Tody-Flycatcher Poecilotriccus sylvia [schistaceiceps].
Common Tody-Flycatcher Todirostrum cinereum [wetmorei].
Black-headed Tody-Flycatcher Todirostrum nigriceps Heard only (P).
Western Olivaceous Flatbill Rhynchocyclus aequinoctialis (P) Note the recent split [bardus].
Yellow-olive Flatbill Tolmomyias sulphurescens [flavoolivaceus].
Yellow-winged Flatbill Tolmomyias flavotectus Note the English name change.
White-throated Spadebill Platyrinchus mystaceus Good views of one at Lagunas Volcan, near to Volcan [neglectus].
Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans [amnicola].
Northern Tufted Flycatcher Mitrephanes phaeocercus [aurantiiventris].
Ochraceous Pewee ◊ Contopus ochraceus Heard only, despite much effort.
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher Empidonax flaviventris
Acadian Flycatcher Empidonax virescens
Yellowish Flycatcher ◊ Empidonax flavescens A few seen well in the Western Highlands [nominate].
Black-capped Flycatcher ◊ Empidonax atriceps Great views at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta.
Piratic Flycatcher Legatus leucophaius [nominate].
Rusty-margined Flycatcher Myiozetetes cayanensis (P) [hellmayri].
Social Flycatcher Myiozetetes similis [columbianus].
Grey-capped Flycatcher Myiozetetes granadensis One seen low down along the Fortuna Road [nominate].
Great Kiskadee Pitangus sulphuratus [guatimalensis].
Lesser Kiskadee Philohydor lictor (P) [panamensis].
Golden-bellied Flycatcher Myiodynastes hemichrysus views of a pair on the upper part of the Fortuna Road. Note the reorganisation of this species and Golden-crowned Flycatcher [nominate].
Streaked Flycatcher Myiodynastes maculatus [difficilis].
Boat-billed Flycatcher Megarynchus pitangua [mexicanus].
Tropical Kingbird Tyrannus melancholicus [satrapa].
Fork-tailed Flycatcher Tyrannus savana [monachus].
Rufous Mourner Rhytipterna holerythra Non leader.
Dusky-capped Flycatcher Myiarchus tuberculifer [nigricapillus].
Panama Flycatcher ◊ Myiarchus panamensis A few seen, at the beginning of the pipeline road and great looks on Coiba Island [nominate].
Great Crested Flycatcher Myiarchus crinitus Non leader.
Bright-rumped Attila Attila spadiceus [flammulatus-group].
Purple-throated Fruitcrow ◊ Querula purpurata (P) A couple seen well along the Pipeline Road.
Rufous Piha Lipaugus unirufus Heard at Nusagandi [nominate].
Blue Cotinga ◊ Cotinga nattererii (P) A couple of males and a female seen from the tower at the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road.
Lance-tailed Manakin Chiroxiphia lanceolata Great views of a few along the Sendero Los Pozos and at the ranger station on Coiba Island.
White-ruffed Manakin Corapipo altera A male seen well near to Volcan, and a few in a fruiting tree at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope [nominate].
Choco Manakin ◊ Cryptopipo litae Excellent views of a rather dull individual along the stream at Nusagandi [suffusa].
Velvety Manakin ◊ Lepidothrix velutina Two forms: great views of lekking birds at Birder’s Paradise near Volcan [nominate], and also seen at Nusagandi [minuscula].
Golden-collared Manakin ◊ Manacus vitellinus [nominate].
Orange-collared Manakin ◊ Manacus aurantiacus Great views of lekking birds at Birder’s Paradise, near Volcan.
Red-capped Manakin Ceratopipra mentalis A male seen well at Nusagandi [ignifera].
Sulphur-rumped Myiobius Myiobius sulphureipygius [aureatus].
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher Terenotriccus erythrurus [fulvigularis].
Masked Tityra Tityra semifasciata [costaricensis].
Northern Schiffornis ◊ Schiffornis veraepacis Brilliant views of one at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope [dumicola].
Barred Becard Pachyramphus versicolor Nice views of a few in the Western Highlands [costaricensis].
Cinnamon Becard Pachyramphus cinnamomeus [nominate].
Rufous-browed Peppershrike Cyclarhis gujanensis Two forms: subflavescens heard on the mainland; endemic coibae seen on Coiba Island.
Green Shrike-vireo ◊ Vireolanius pulchellus Excellent views of a singing bird in Metropolitan Park, Panama City. A few others heard [viridiceps].
Scrub Greenlet Hylophilus flavipes Two forms: viridiflavus seen on the extension; endemic xuthus seen on Coiba Island.
Lesser Greenlet Pachysylvia decurtata [nominate].
Golden-fronted Greenlet Pachysylvia aurantiifrons (P) [nominate].
Yellow-green Vireo Vireo flavoviridis
Philadelphia Vireo Vireo philadelphicus Heard only.
Brown-capped Vireo Vireo leucophrys
Yellow-throated Vireo Vireo flavifrons (P).
Yellow-winged Vireo ◊ Vireo carmioli Seen well at the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP.
Black-chested Jay Cyanocorax affinis [zeledoni].
Black-and-yellow Phainoptila ◊ Phainoptila melanoxantha A few seen well in the Western Highlands, the best views at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta [nominate].
Long-tailed Silky-flycatcher ◊ Ptiliogonys caudatus Several seen well in the highlands around Cerro Punta.
Mangrove Swallow Tachycineta albilinea
Blue-and-white Swallow Pygochelidon cyanoleuca [nominate].
Southern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx ruficollis (P) [uropygialis].
Grey-breasted Martin Progne chalybea [nominate].
Barn Swallow (American B S) Hirundo [rustica] erythrogaster
American Cliff Swallow Petrochelidon pyrrhonota Good views of a couple near the beach at Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton [pyrrhonota-group].
Band-backed Wren Campylorhynchus zonatus One seen high up along the Fortuna Road [costaricensis].
Black-bellied Wren Pheugopedius fasciatoventris (P) [albigularis].
Rufous-breasted Wren Pheugopedius rutilus [hyperythrus].
Rufous-and-white Wren Thryophilus rufalbus (P) [castanonotus].
Isthmian Wren ◊ Cantorchilus elutus
Buff-breasted Wren Cantorchilus leucotis (P) [galbraithii].
Riverside Wren ◊ Cantorchilus semibadius Heard only.
Bay Wren Cantorchilus nigricapillus Two forms: costaricensis in the west; castaneus seen at Nusagandi.
Stripe-throated Wren ◊ Cantorchilus leucopogon Heard only, at Nusagandi.
House Wren Troglodytes aedon Two forms: inquietus seen on the mainland; endemic carychrous seen on Coiba Island.
Ochraceous Wren ◊ Troglodytes ochraceus Several seen well in the Western Highlands [nominate].
White-breasted Wood Wren Henicorhina leucosticta Seen very well at La Mesa, above El Valle [pittieri].
Grey-breasted Wood Wren Henicorhina leucophrys [collina].
Southern Nightingale-Wren (Scaly-breasted W) Microcerculus marginatus Good views of one on the ground around ants at La Mesa, above El Valle. Others heard [luscinia].
Song Wren Cyphorhinus phaeocephalus Good views of a couple on the ground at La Mesa, above El Valle. Also seen very well at Nusagandi [lawrencii].
Trilling Gnatwren Ramphocaenus melanurus
Tawny-faced Gnatwren Microbates cinereiventris Best was the one on the first visit to La Mesa, above El Valle [nominate].
White-browed Gnatcatcher Polioptila bilineata Two forms: superciliaris seen on the mainland; endemic cinericia seen on Coiba Island.
Tropical Mockingbird Mimus gilvus [tolimensis].
Black-faced Solitaire ◊ Myadestes melanops A brief view of one at Cerro Colorado. Others heard.
Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush Catharus aurantiirostris Heard only [griseiceps].
Black-billed Nightingale-Thrush ◊ Catharus gracilirostris Excellent views at the Tamandua Reserve above the Cabanas Quetzales, Cerro Punta [accentor].
Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush ◊ Catharus frantzii Excellent views of a couple at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta [wetmorei].
Mountain Thrush ◊ Turdus plebejus Common in the Western Highlands [nominate].
White-throated Thrush Turdus assimilis [cnephosus].
Clay-colored Thrush Turdus grayi [casius].
House Sparrow (introduced) Passer domesticus [nominate].
Yellow-bellied Siskin Spinus xanthogastrus [nominate].
Elegant Euphonia Chlorophonia elegantissima Heard only [vincens].
Golden-browed Chlorophonia ◊ Chlorophonia callophrys One briefly at Cerro Colorado.
Yellow-crowned Euphonia Euphonia luteicapilla
Thick-billed Euphonia Euphonia laniirostris [crassirostris].
Spot-crowned Euphonia ◊ Euphonia imitans Great views on the bananas at Birder’s Paradise, near Volcan.
Tawny-capped Euphonia Euphonia anneae Several seen well [anneae].
Rosy Thrush-tanager Rhodinocichla rosea (P) Great views of a male in Metropolitan Park, Panama City.
Yellow-throated Chlorospingus ◊ (Drab-breasted C) Chlorospingus [flavigularis] hypophaeus Several seen along the Fortuna Road. A distinctive, drab form, which may well end up split.
Sooty-capped Chlorospingus ◊ Chlorospingus pileatus Fairly common in the Western Highlands, where first seen at the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP.
Common Chlorospingus Chlorospingus flavopectus Quite common in the Western Highlands [regionalis]. The darker headed form punctulatus was common at Cerro Colorado.
Black-striped Sparrow Arremonops conirostris Heard only on the mainland [striaticeps]. The endemic viridicatus was seen well on Coiba Island.
Costa Rican Brushfinch ◊ Arremon costaricensis Good views of a few at Lagunas Volcan, near to Volcan.
Orange-billed Sparrow Arremon aurantiirostris A few seen well, the first at Lagunas Volcan, near to Volcan [aurantiirostris].
Chestnut-capped Brushfinch Arremon brunneinucha [elsae].
Rufous-collared Sparrow Zonotrichia capensis [costaricensis].
Large-footed Finch ◊ Pezopetes capitalis Seen well at the Tamandua Reserve above the Cabanas Quetzales, Cerro Punta.
White-naped Brushfinch Atlapetes albinucha A pair seen at Cerro Colorado [brunnescens].
Yellow-thighed Brushfinch ◊ Atlapetes tibialis A few seen well in the highlands around Cerro Punta.
Yellow-green Brushfinch ◊ Atlapetes luteoviridis Great views of 2 or 3 pairs in the grim weather at Cerro Colorado.
Wrenthrush ◊ Zeledonia coronata A few heard and seen briefly in the highlands around Cerro Punta and then brilliant views of a pair at the Tamandua Reserve above the Cabanas Quetzales, Cerro Punta.
Eastern Meadowlark Sturnella magna [subulata].
Yellow-billed Cacique Amblycercus holosericeus Heard only [holosericeus].
Chestnut-headed Oropendola Psarocolius wagleri [ridgwayi].
Crested Oropendola Psarocolius decumanus [melanterus].
Yellow-rumped Cacique Cacicus cela (P) [vitellinus].
Scarlet-rumped Cacique Cacicus microrhynchus [nominate].
Yellow-backed Oriole Icterus chrysater (P) [giraudii].
Baltimore Oriole Icterus galbula
Yellow-tailed Oriole Icterus mesomelas (P) Just one seen at the start of the Pipeline Road [carrikeri].
Giant Cowbird Molothrus oryzivorus (P)
Shiny Cowbird Molothrus bonariensis [cabanisii].
Great-tailed Grackle Quiscalus mexicanus [peruvianus].
Northern Waterthrush Parkesia noveboracensis
Golden-winged Warbler Vermivora chrysoptera A couple of males seen well. Smart birds.
Black-and-white Warbler Mniotilta varia
Prothonotary Warbler Protonotaria citrea
Flame-throated Warbler ◊ Oreothlypis gutturalis Several seen in the highlands around Cerro Punta.
Tennessee Warbler Leiothlypis peregrina
Chiriqui Yellowthroat ◊ Geothlypis chiriquensis Excellent views of a male near to Volcan.
Olive-crowned Yellowthroat Geothlypis semiflava Heard only [bairdi].
American Redstart Setophaga ruticilla One seen on Coiba Island.
Tropical Parula Setophaga pitiayumi [inornata].
Magnolia Warbler Setophaga magnolia A couple seen at the Summit Rainforest Resort.
Bay-breasted Warbler Setophaga castanea
Blackburnian Warbler Setophaga fusca
American Yellow Warbler Setophaga aestiva
Mangrove Warbler Setophaga petechia [erithachorides].
Chestnut-sided Warbler Setophaga pensylvanica
Myrtle Warbler Setophaga coronata
Black-throated Green Warbler Setophaga virens
Buff-rumped Warbler Myiothlypis fulvicauda [veraguensis].
Chestnut-capped Warbler Basileuterus delattrii Two forms: mesochrysus seen on the mainland; endemic actuosus seen on Coiba Island.
Black-cheeked Warbler ◊ Basileuterus melanogenys Several seen in the highlands around Cerro Punta [eximius].
Golden-crowned Warbler Basileuterus culicivorus [godmani].
Black-eared Warbler ◊ Basileuterus melanotis A pair seen high up along the Fortuna Road.
Canada Warbler Cardellina canadensis One seen at La Mesa, above El Valle.
Wilson’s Warbler Cardellina pusilla
Slate-throated Whitestart Myioborus miniatus [ballux].
Collared Whitestart Myioborus torquatus Common in the Western Highlands.
Dusky-faced Tanager Mitrospingus cassinii Two forms: costaricensis in the west; nominate in the east.
Flame-colored Tanager ◊ Piranga bidentata A male at Los Quetzales Lodge in Barrio Guadalupe [citrea].
Tooth-billed Tanager Piranga lutea [testacea].
Summer Tanager Piranga rubra [nominate].
White-winged Tanager Piranga leucoptera [latifasciata].
Red-crowned Ant Tanager Habia rubica Nice views at Lagunas Volcan, near to Volcan [vinacea].
Red-throated Ant Tanager Habia fuscicauda Several seen well, including a male to the fruit feeders at the Summit Rainforest Resort [willisi].Also seen in the west [nominate].
Carmiol’s Tanager ◊ Chlorothraupis carmioli Seen at Nusagandi [lutescens].
Black-thighed Grosbeak ◊ Pheucticus tibialis A male seen on the way to the start of the Sendero Quetzales, in Volcan Baru NP. Another briefly at Los Nubes, near to Cerro Punta.
Rose-breasted Grosbeak Pheucticus ludovicianus
Blue-black Grosbeak Cyanoloxia cyanoides One briefly in the car park of the Rainforest Discovery Centre, Pipeline Road [nominate].
Painted Bunting Passerina ciris Non leader [pallidior].
Green Honeycreeper Chlorophanes spiza [argutus].
Black-and-yellow Tanager ◊ Chrysothlypis chrysomelas A few seen well, including a fine male, at Omar Torrijos NP, above El Cope [nominate].
Sulphur-rumped Tanager ◊ Heterospingus rubrifrons Excellent views of several at Nusagandi.
Red-legged Honeycreeper Cyanerpes cyaneus [carneipes].
Shining Honeycreeper ◊ Cyanerpes lucidus Great views at Nusagandi [isthmicus].
Scarlet-thighed Dacnis ◊ Dacnis venusta Two forms: nominate in the west; fuliginata at Nusagandi.
Blue Dacnis Dacnis cayana [ultramarina].
Streaked Saltator Saltator striatipectus Two forms: furax seen on the mainland; endemic scotinus seen on Coiba Island.
Buff-throated Saltator Saltator maximus Two forms: intermedius in the west; iungens at Nusagandi.
Bananaquit Coereba flaveola [mexicana].
Yellow-faced Grassquit Tiaris olivaceus Two forms: pusillus seen on the mainland; endemic ravidus seen on Coiba Island. The latter a distinctive subspecies, with very dark underparts.
Blue-black Grassquit Volatinia jacarina [splendens].
Grey-headed Tanager Eucometis penicillata Two forms: stictothorax in the west; cristata in the east.
White-shouldered Tanager Loriotus luctuosus Two forms: nitidissimus in the west; panamensis in the east.
Tawny-crested Tanager Tachyphonus delatrii
White-lined Tanager Tachyphonus rufus
Crimson-collared Tanager ◊ Ramphocelus sanguinolentus A few seen well along the Fortuna Road [apricus].
Scarlet-rumped Tanager (Passerini’s T) Ramphocelus [passerinii] passerinii Caribbean slope.
Scarlet-rumped Tanager (Cherrie’s T) Ramphocelus [passerinii] costaricensis Pacific slope.
Crimson-backed Tanager Ramphocelus dimidiatus Two forms: nominate seen on the mainland; endemic arestus seen on Coiba Island
Morelet’s Seedeater Sporophila morelleti A few seen at Playa Las Lajas [nominate].
Variable Seedeater Sporophila corvina Two forms: hoffmanni in the west; hicksii in the east.
Yellow-bellied Seedeater Sporophila nigricollis (P) [nominate].
Thick-billed Seed Finch Sporophila funerea
Ruddy-breasted Seedeater Sporophila minuta A few seen along the road to Juan Hombron, southeast of Anton [centralis].
Saffron Finch Sicalis flaveola
Slaty Flowerpiercer ◊ Diglossa plumbea Common in the Western Highlands.
Speckled Tanager Ixothraupis guttata [eusticta].
Blue-grey Tanager Thraupis episcopus [cana].
Palm Tanager Thraupis palmarum [atripennis].
Golden-hooded Tanager Stilpnia larvata Several seen well around Panama City [fanny] and seen in the west [franciscae].
Spangle-cheeked Tanager ◊ Tangara dowii Several seen well at Cerro Colorado.
Bay-headed Tanager Tangara gyrola Two forms: bangsi in the west; deleticia in the east.
Rufous-winged Tanager ◊ Tangara lavinia Great views of a smart male at Nusagandi [nominate].
Emerald Tanager ◊ Tangara florida Good views of several along the Fortuna Road.
Silver-throated Tanager Tangara icterocephala [frantzii].
Plain-colored Tanager Tangara inornata Two forms: rava in the west; languens in the east
Brown-throated Sloth (B-t Three-toed S) Bradypus variegatus (P)
White-nosed Coati Nasua narica (P)
Neotropical Otter Lontra longicaudis A surprise in the wetlands at Los Lajas.
Panamanian White-faced Capuchin Cebus imitator The endemic form on Coiba Island.
Panamanian Night Monkey Aotus zonalis (P)
Mantled Howler Monkey Alouatta palliata Including the endemic form on Coiba Island.
Central American Agouti Dasyprocta punctata
Central American Dwarf Squirrel (Alfaro’s Pygmy S) Microsciurus alfari
Red-tailed Squirrel Sciurus granatensis
Variegated Squirrel Sciurus variegatoides