White-winged Dove

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Zenaida asiatica.

—Stephen—

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Bare-throated Tiger-Heron

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We saw a fair number of these Tiger-Herons.  This one was standing in a tree, quite some way from water.  It allowed me to get relatively close – had this been a UK equivalent it  would have flown as soon as it saw me approach.

—Stephen—

To Tortuguero

Our guide, who introduced himself during the mid-morning breakfast session, called on us to load our luggage on to the appropriate shuttle-bus for the onward journey to Tortuguero – he was a little bemused by the fact our family had none.  We were soon on our way for the next leg.  It was a bit like “Wagons Roll!” as all the buses set off in convoy down the road. Our guide explained that some of the roads were so rough it was worthwhile that they all stick together, in case one broke down.   Sections of the road were a bit dodgy to say the least.  (Our return ride, after our stay at Tortuguero, was delayed by an hour because of a landslide.)

After what seemed like an age, we arrived at a sort of inland river port – where we were put aboard a covered flat bottom boat equipped with a meaty looking outboard engine.  We were asked to don life-vests before setting off down the river at a fair rate of knots towards our ‘hotel’.

_MG_7634Many of this type of boat filled with orange clad tourists zipped up and down the river at ‘changeover’ time.

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Lop eared cattle seemed to be the main breed in this part of Costa Rica – I guess these arrived by boat too.

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A little bit of excitement when a young fawn was seen swimming across the wide river in front of us – everyone was relieved when we watched it struggle ashore – crocs and caiman are present in the rivers hereabouts.

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.. and a kingfisher staring into space…. a bit weird, but who’s to know the mind of kingfisher!

—Stephen—

 

 

 

Water Rail

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This little character is a Water Rail, one of a pair I watched at the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust nature reserve at Staveley, North Yorkshire.

I’ve recently resumed my pastime of birdwatching, after an absence of several years.  A new pair of binoculars and a freshly dusted spotting scope have already been put to good use as I brush up on my recognition skills.  I’ve given myself a couple of years to get into the flow again before I get into the twitching side of things.

—Stephen—