Birds / 05.07.2010

[caption id="attachment_1011" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Dahl_Vermiculated Screech Owl Pair"][/caption] Owls may arguably be the most interesting family of birds.  There are actually two families of owls, but the Vermiculated Screech Owl (Otus guatemalae) belongs to the Strigidae family of typical owls.  Owls are unique to other birds in a multitude of ways.  They have specialized wing feathers allowing them to fly silently which enables them to hunt by sound and catch prey easier while avoiding detection.  They can actually hear sounds 10 times fainter than a human can and have...

Birds / 28.06.2010

[caption id="attachment_989" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Crested Guan by Kory Kramer"][/caption] Lately we have been seeing Crested Guans (Penelope purpurascens) along the road up in the trees heading up to Friends of the Osa's Osa Biodiversity Center at Cerro Osa.  I first noticed a family of 4 Guan individuals in one of our forest restoration plots a few weeks back as I was conducting bird counts.  The adult female of the group became fairly agitated as I walked right underneath her on my way to my next monitoring point.  I assumed...

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 / 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...

Miscellaneous / 18.05.2010

[caption id="attachment_798" align="alignleft" width="300"] Recording a Stream Soundscape: Jeff Woodman, Luis Vargas & Leo Garrigues[/caption] By Karen Leavelle & Jeff Woodman The Osa Peninsula is known for its high level of biodiversity and is one of the most “biologically intense” places on earth according to National Geographic. The Osa has over half of all species found in Costa Rica. This is evident in the over 400 bird species found here. That’s quite a few birds for such a small area. Well, its time then to make them heard; to record...

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...

Miscellaneous / 18.04.2010

Finding solutions and alternatives for human and feline coexistence Since mid 2006, Aída Bustamante and Ricardo Moreno, researchers of the Wildcat Conservation Program, have worked hand in hand with FOO on applied research, education and involvement with key actors (cattle ranchers, hunters, local children and youth, ecolodges, local authorities and NGOs). We recognize the need to address the livelihoods of local human populations so that they are in a better position to care about jaguars. The long-term conservation of jaguars and their ecosystem will not be possible with scientific research...

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...

Environmental Education / 09.03.2010

International Day for the Protection of Mangroves [caption id="attachment_207" align="alignright" width="400" caption="“In the mangrove there is no place for trash”"][/caption] In three days in early August 2009, Friend of the Osa participated in awareness activities in Puerto Jiménez celebrating the International Day for the Protection of Mangroves. The Environmental Coalition of Puerto Jiménez delivered 50 mini waste collection centers to encourage garbage separation in households, and gave a talk about the importance of recycling and the impact of plastic bags on the environment. Pilar Bernal, our Environmental Education and Volunteer...