Birds / 22.06.2010

[caption id="attachment_934" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Band-tailed Barbthroat by Gianfranco Gomez"][/caption] The Band-tailed Barbthroat (Threnetes ruckeri) is a medium sized hermit in the hummingbird family.  They are a common resident of wet lowland forest on the Caribbean and Pacific slopes and range from Guatemala on down to Western Venezuela and Ecuador.  They are often found along edges and the understory of old second growth feeding on mainly Heliconia, Calathea and banana flowers with their specially shaped decurved bill.  This and other hermit species can be found here at Friends of...

Birds / 11.06.2010

[caption id="attachment_907" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Buff-throated Foliage Gleaner by Gianfranco Gomez"][/caption] The Buff-throated Foliage Gleaner (Automolus ochrolaemus) is part of the ovenbird family, an extremely diverse group of birds in form and habits.  Besides, foliage gleaners, there are treerunners, leaftossers, castlebuilders and treehunters.  The ovenbird name comes from nests of many species that resemble “baking ovens” placed on the ground.  Most species in the ovenbird family build some sort of covered nest or place it in a covered structure.  The Buff-throated Foliage Gleaner builds its nest at the end of...

Birds / 31.05.2010

[caption id="attachment_876" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Black-cheeked Ant-Tanager"][/caption] Of the over 850 bird species listed in Costa Rica, 3 are mainland endemics.  In other words they are unique to Costa Rica not found anywhere else in the world.  Two of the three species are endangered and one of them is restricted solely to the Osa Peninsula.  That restricted endangered species is the Black-cheeked Ant-Tanager (Habia atrimaxillaris).  Logging and habitat loss outside of protected areas appears to be its main threat with its range being halved since 1960 according to BirdLife International. The...

Birds / 22.05.2010

This little golden chatterbox is endemic to Costa Rica and Panama.  It is found in the southern Pacific slope from Carara down through the Osa Peninsula.  Like most birds it is reliant on the remaining intact forests and begins to disappear where forests become fragmented.  This is why large tracks of forest found on the Osa Peninsula and those of Friends of the Osa for example are so important to this species. [caption id="attachment_831" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Golden-naped Woodpecker "][/caption] In the Golden-naped Woodpecker (Melanerpes chrysauchen) the female lacks...

Birds / 15.05.2010

[caption id="attachment_764" align="alignleft" width="181" caption="Black-hooded Antshrike Male"][/caption] If you want to see a Black-hooded Antshrike (Thamnophilus bridgesi) then Friends of the Osa's Osa Biodiversity Center is the place to come.  They often love living on the edge, forest edges that is, and for those us who live at or visit the Center they are an easy species to enjoy and tick off your life list. The Black-hood Antshrike is a common resident of the southern pacific slope of Costa Rica and Western Panama.  The adult male is distinguished...

Birds / 08.05.2010

Also known as the Beryl-crowned Hummingbird the Charming Hummingbird (Amazilia decora) is regionally endemic to the Southern Pacific lowlands and coastal areas of Costa Rica north to Carara and Panama.  It is sometimes considered conspecific with the Blue-chested Hummingbird found on the Caribbean slope as they are nearly identical.  You will often see them in coffee plantations, gardens, forest edges and along streams and open clearings feeding on Inga, Hamelia, Satryia and Heliconia.  Like many tropical species Charming Hummingbirds form courtship assemblies or “leks” of up to 12...

Birds / 01.05.2010

Of the 22 species of wrens found in Costa Rica, 6 are found here on the Osa Peninsula.  The Riverside wren, a common resident on the Osa, is only found in the southern pacific lowlands of Costa Rica and western Panama up to ~1,200 m.  Wrens as a whole belong to an interesting family of songbirds.  The sexes are alike and the tropical species often remain with their mate throughout the year.  They roam amongst the dense vegetation singing duets with each other in alternating phrases and one...

Birds / 24.04.2010

Mealy parrots are the largest of the Amazonas (38 - 41cm in length) found on the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica.  They are distinguished from the Red-lored parrots by the absence of the red markings on the forehead and their large white eye ring.  Most amazons can be aggressive but the mealy parrots have a docile temperament and are considered to be the gentle giants of the amazon parrots. They are found from South Mexico down through Ecuador, Bolivia and Brazil, but its population has declined in its range...

Birds / 06.04.2010

The largest and possibly the most raucous of the five toucan species found in Costa Rica the Chestnut-mandibled Toucan is a common inhabitant of the Osa Peninsula.  Its characteristic calls and large yellow and chestnut colored bill are unique to this bird and is only one of two toucan species found on the peninsula.   You can usually find them in forested and semi-open areas and trees in clearings feeding mainly on fruit and an occasional insect, lizard, snake or bird nestling.  Toucans will commonly feed their mate. It...