A Travellerspoint blog

Birding with Jonathan

semi-overcast 65 °F

SATURDAY, MAY 4, 2024:

Today, my friend Jonathan Mott and I headed out to Lakeview Community Church Trail and Braddock Bay in search of migrants. And migrants, we found!

YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS were still the predominant warbler like two days ago, though there was a much greater diversity around now:
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As evidenced by the presence of species like BLACK-THROATED GREEN WARBLER:
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And BROWN THRASHER:
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YELLOW WARBLER:
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BALTIMORE ORIOLE:
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AMERICAN REDSTART:
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NORTHERN PARULA:
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More BALTIMORE ORIOLE:
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BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER, an extremely welcome and beautiful FOY:
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One heard-only for me was a GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, a local rarity that Jonathan glimpsed briefly. Very cool!

ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK:
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LEAST FLYCATCHER:
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BLUE-HEADED VIREO:
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PALM WARBLER:
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BLUE JAY:
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CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER:
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GREAT CRESTED FLYCATCHER:
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AMERICAN GOLDFINCH:
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We headed over to Braddock Bay where we hoped for some raptor movement including a Swainson’s Hawk that has been hanging around for about a week.

COOPER’S HAWK:
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MUTE SWAN:
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WHITE-CROWNED SPARROWS:
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GREAT BLUE HERON:
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BOBOLINKS:
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Female BALTIMORE ORIOLE:
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We unfortunately dipped on the Swainson’s Hawk.

LESSER SCAUP and RUDDY DUCKS, distantly in the bay:
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Bird-of-the-day to the Golden-winged Warbler with runner-up for me going to the Blackburnian.

Overall, an extremely enjoyable morning of birding! Thanks to Jonathan for driving. Stay tuned for much more to come!

Happy birding,
Henry
World Life List: 1303 Species

Posted by skwclar 03:14 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Welcoming in May!

sunny 69 °F

MAY 2:

Still catching up, now at least I’m under a month behind — but as always — May brings in the most birding and this year was no exception so it will take me a while to truly catch up.

On May 2 after a brutal spring season of studying, performing, and getting sick a lot, I finally got out to see what sort of neotropical migrant activity had moved into the area.

My day started over with a flyover GREAT BLUE HERON:
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EASTERN PHOEBE:
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SONG SPARROW:
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PALM WARBLER:
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WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW:
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YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS by far dominated the warbler/migrant passerine scene today, as expected for very early may:
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Though there were other gems to be found, such as this NASHVILLE, my first of the year:
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This beautiful NORTHERN FLICKER posed nicely for me in the morning light:
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COMMON GRACKLE — I have to remember to take photos of these birds as unfortunately their population is actually in a sharp decline, believe it or not:
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RED-TAILED HAWK:
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NORTHERN MOCKINGBIRD, a species that is expanding its population northwards:
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Another Song Sparrow:
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KILLDEER:
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And this NORTHERN PARULA, my first of the year, will be my bird of the day, with runner-up to the Nashville Warbler. It was a nice appetizer of May birding — now stay tuned for the main course! :)
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Happy birding,
Henry
World Life List: 1303 Species

Posted by skwclar 03:27 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Twitch: Solar Eclipse!

Buffalo, NY

semi-overcast 50 °F

APRIL 8, 2024:

Yes, and eclipse twitch! And yes, I know I am miserably behind in posting!

As you may know, the weather was NOT cooperating through the path of totality in western New York. It was OVERCAST! Ugh.

So, on a whim, I called up my friend Jiabao to ask if he might be willing to “chase” the eclipse to see if we could find an opening in the overcast. Luckily, he was game, and we were in the car 90 minutes before totality, charging down I-90 in hopes of finding a break in the clouds. I also had my mom on the phone, giving me directions to what looked, on the satellite, like the thinnest layer in the clouds.

She directed me toward Caledonia, NY as we were driving down I-90 but I saw lighter clouds further west and while making the decision, I missed the exit so I decided to head towards the little town of Le Roy. Essentially, at this point, I was hoping upon hopes to find a break in what seemed a completely overcast sky.

The clouds kept looking lighter to the west so we drove west on Highway 20, parallel to I-90. At this point, we were minutes away from totality and just hoping that this lighter patch would somehow miraculously line up with the eclipse.

Suddenly, as we were coasting westward down the highway, I SPOTTED IT so I yelled “Jiabao pull over!!!” and I kid you not when I say we pulled over into a random person’s driveway, hoping they would understand given the special circumstances.

It was AMAZING!
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The skies were darkening…
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And soon, especially with the overcast skies, it was pitch black! We took a selfie for a before/after—
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The 360-degree sunset all around was absolutely incredible:
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And, as the corona was unfortunately never visible (the clouds became too thick), we tracked the horizon as totality gradually left us:
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And here is the “after” of the before/after:
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Later, we made a quick stop at Darien Lake State Park where we also had a chance to admire the sun on the “other” side of the eclipse. Too cool!
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Happy birding and eclipsing!

Many more exciting things to come!

Happy birding,
Henry
World Life List: 1133 Species

Posted by skwclar 01:09 Archived in USA Comments (1)

Catching up with Family

New York

semi-overcast 47 °F

As disappointing as it is to blog about non-Panama birding, that time has to come eventually! So here we are…

About a month ago it was great for family to come visit! It also allowed some opportunity for birding together, even if not in a particularly interesting time of year avian-wise.

We tried to find a pair of rare (to the area) Trumpeter Swans and unfortunately dipped but did turn up a few more common MUTE:
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DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT:
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RED-BREASTED MERGANSERS:
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I took my family to a local trail that is known for hand-fed BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEES, and suffice to say they didn’t disappoint! This is family-friendly birding :)
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On the drive out of the area, we had beautiful looks at male EASTERN BLUEBIRDS:
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And a female:
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GADWALL were present in great numbers:
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Along with a few flashy BUFFLEHEAD:
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And some very distant RING-NECKED DUCKS:
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Overall, it was great to catch up with family!

Stay tuned for my (albeit late) solar eclipse post, as well as some exciting plans for the summer! Here’s what I’m up to this summer: on May 22, I fly out to Inspiration Point, Arkansas to sing my first Verdi role with orchestra: Germont in La Traviata! On July 20 I fly back to NYS, on August 3 I fly to Vienna, Austria to be a conducting fellow at the Musikverein for a week, and August 11 I fly out west to Idaho for my annual trip with family out there! It’s sure to be another action-packed summer, and I couldn’t be more excited! Hopefully, there will be a few lifers and other avian and herpetological highlights along the way!! :)

Happy birding,
Henry
World Life List: 1303 Species

Posted by skwclar 19:17 Archived in USA Comments (1)

Panama Day 6: Vipers, Antshrikes, and Trenchfoot

Nusagandi, Guna Yala Province

all seasons in one day 90 °F

FRIDAY, MARCH 15: the final Panama post!

A 4:45am wake-up this morning gave me just enough time to bid Kim and Susie a groggy, bleary-eyed adieu as they had to catch their 7:30 flight back to Chicago. I had other plans, though: I had specifically booked a red eye back in the evening so I could squeeze in one more full day of birding and finding lifers with Mario Ocana.

We had discussed a few different options for today include the gated foothill region of Cerro Azul; however, Mario advised me that if we drove a bit further east, we would have better chances of getting both a wider variety of birds and more specialized, interesting species. Since Mario is an absolute beast of a guide, of course we went with the latter option. Just after Kim and Susie left, Mario arrived to the hotel, and I said goodbye to the Summit Golf Resort. Can’t say I can recommend the hotel other than the fabulous birding on the grounds; however, it holds a special place in my heart for my trip here in 2013 with family and now this incredible trip.

Mario and I made our way over to the Pan-American highway and followed it about 90 minutes to the east, in the direction of the Darien province, before turning north and winding our way through the humid foothills. Target birds for the day included incredibly range-restricted birds like Sapayoa, Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker, & Spiny-faced Antshrike as well as more widespread species I still needed to clean up like White Hawk, Black-and-yellow, Rufous-winged, Sulphur-winged, and Dusky-faced Tanagers, Scarlet-thighed Dacnis, and the like. There were LOTS of possibilities for the day and I was hoping to get the 20 lifers I needed to get to 1300 species on my life list by the end of the day.

Our destination was the indigenous province of Guna Yala, one of the least-visited parts of Panama as tourism is mainly restricted to guided tours (Mario wasn’t even completely sure if provincial border patrol would let us in).
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Before entering the province proper, we had a few stops right alongside the road including my first lifer of the day, this PLUMBEOUS KITE which turned out to be a somewhat common bird in this part of Panama! Super duper cool, as it was one of my targets for the day!
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Its relative the SWALLOW-TAILED KITE was an even more abundant species today!
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MASKED TITYRA was also nice to see from alongside the road, where I felt rather exposed — most of the folks we saw today were locals with the exception of one other bird photographer (more on him later). To say we were in a remote part of the world would be an understatement.
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One quick pull-off alongside the road yielded this SLATE-COLORED GROSBEAK, a lifer for me with a beautifully pink bill and a warbly song. This is an amazing photo considering the dense fog in which we were shooting.
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Then, it was time to enter the province proper. Non-indigenous Panamanians have to pay $10 and show ID and foreigners have to pay $20 and show passport upon entry to this province because it is technically an autonomous region of Panama with a unique structure of government. Luckily, after a brief check, they let us through for our day of birding!
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Another stop right alongside the road (and in the misty, cloudy conditions — great for birding) yielded my second-ever LONG-TAILED TYRANTS — I have only ever seen this charismatic flycatcher species at La Selva in Costa Rica before today.
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A BLUE-HEADED PARROT perched nearby:
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And we admired a tree adorned with nests of the CRESTED OROPENDOLA:
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One of which is pictured here:
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Best looks at a BLACK-CHEEKED WOODPECKER of the trip:
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As well as of this GORGEOUS male GOLDEN-HOODED TANAGER — I’ve said it before, but I will never tire of this bird:
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Nice views of a LINEATED WOODPECKER:
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And KEEL-BILLED TOUCANS: I was enjoying my last day in a long time I would be seeing incredible tropical birds like these, even if they are common in the right areas.
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Slightly better views of a Swallow-tailed Kite this time, perched!
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And one surprise was a migrant EASTERN MEADOWLARK, My Panama lifer but certainly not my lifer!
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BANANAQUIT:
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Quick look at my F.O.Y. SHINING HONEYCREEPER, my first of the trip! Its yellow legs weren’t visible in this brief glimpse, unfortunately…
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Migrant TENNESSEE WARBLER:
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Then, we spotted a hummingbird that gave us a bit of an ID challenge — in the moment we identified this as a Blue-throated Goldentail, but upon inspection of photos, the overall green bird with the combination of the black bill makes this my lifer SAPPHIRE-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD!!! Wow!!!
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Much better looks at this male SNOWY-BELLIED HUMMINGBIRD than I had at the Rainforest Discovery Center yesterday:
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STREAKED FLYCATCHER:
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A short hike was moderately productive, with the highlight for us being my visual and photographic lifer WHITE-TAILED TROGON, a heard-only lifer for me on the trip up until today!
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The trail led us to this interesting clear cut on top of a hill. It was pretty quiet up there but we did enjoy my only views of the trip of the Caribbean Sea, way off in the distance! We were birding on the Caribbean slope (as opposed to the Pacific slope) for the first time this trip which makes a big difference in avifauna in Central America.
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Our next stop was a longer one. Targets included Sulphur-rumped Tanager, Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker, Sapayoa, Streak-chested & Black-crowned Antpittas, and more! We met up with a local guide here who was extremely knowledgeable about the surrounding trails and very helpful and warm, even though he didn’t speak English. We started out by finding this migrant male SUMMER TANAGER:
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To be completely honest, I am fairly certain we identified this bird in the field at the time but I have no idea what it is. My best guess is Plain-colored Tanager in heavy molt, or maybe a warbler sp. Any thoughts?
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Anyway, next, we had a flock of my lifer CARMIOL’S TANAGERS passing through! Very, very exciting! One of my targets for the day.
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Then, I spotted a woodpecker fly into a tree nearby and remembering we needed a range-restricted woodpecker, I asked Mario, “Is this our target woodpecker for the day?!” He took one look at it and we both rejoiced when we saw the golden back — we had found the rare STRIPE-CHEEKED WOODPECKER, a species restricted to foothills in eastern Panama and the border of Darien in Colombia, so definitely one of the rarest birds of my life. Little did I know, this would become just one of a handful of “global rarities” found today… :)
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The woodpecker gave incredibly confiding views — the best Mario had ever seen! How lucky were we!
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Then, we started our way down a steep, muddy path into the ravine below in search of a tiny bird most closely related to Asian broadbills, believe it or not, called a Sapayoa. It is a greenish-yellow passerine that only lives in wooded ravines in this tiny area of Colombia and Panama and has less than 1000 observations logged on eBird. It is a bucket list species for most and I was so hoping we would luck into a mixed flock with them. After a very steep, slippery climb into the ravine, we did indeed run into a mixed flock, with this CHESTNUT-BACKED ANTBIRD a highlight:
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CHECKER-THROATED STIPPLETHROAT:
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SPOT-CROWNED ANTVIREO:
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Then, Mario shouted “SAPAYOA!” and after a few frantic and agonizing moments, he got me on the bird! WOWOWOW! Definitely a candidate for bird-of-the-trip — again, less than 1000 total observations of this range-restricted species on eBird!
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Another highlight here was clearly hearing the song of my lifer STREAK-CHESTED ANTPITTA, which responded to our whistling imitations but never got close enough for views, unfortunately.

After a long schlep back up to the farm that had the Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker, we birded that property a bit more which revealed better looks at a Shining Honeycreeper male:
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And brief looks at my photographic lifer TAWNY-CRESTED TANAGER — here you can barely see the tawny crest!
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We took a brief break on top of an in-construction observation deck and enjoyed views of another Swallow-tailed Kite flying by:
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Then, Mario asked me, “So are you ready to go hiking?” and I responsed “That wasn’t the hike?!?!”
Turns out, that muddy climb down into the ravine and back up was just the warm-up act, hah! Mario told me we had two options: a longer hike that usually has a Barred Hawk nest at the end, or a shorter, steeper hike to look for one of the rarest birds in Panama, Spiny-faced Antshrike. The Antshrike wasn’t even on my radar and I really wanted to see the Hawk so I asked Mario if the nest was currently active to which I was glad he admitted that he wasn’t sure.

That made the choice easy: we would go for the Spiny-faced Antshrike and brave an even steeper, more brutal trail on the way. Also: keep in mind that this is all happening before I head straight to the airport to catch a red eye back to the states :)

We found a few hummers while leaving the property on the way to the hike, which involved walking along the shoulder of a steep road in the exposed sun. The birding today as awesome but suffice to say I was getting pretty beat.

Female CROWNED WOODNYMPH:
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Female VIOLET-BELLIED HUMMINGBIRD:
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Soon, Mario and the other guide jutted off the road onto a narrow, overgrown “trail” — a very liberal use of this word in this case for a muddy deer path through the woods. I was on high alert for fer de lance and bullet ants and almost missed seeing kind of a crazy sighting: an OCELLATED ANTBIRD flew right across the path just a minute into hiking! We all stopped in wonder at this denizen of the inner forest and tracked it to a mixed army ant swarm flock in hopes of photographing it and others.

Unfortunately, it disappeared into the brush, but there was still plenty of activity through which to sift, such as this PLAIN-BROWN WOODCREEPER:
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A tiny woodcreeper I hadn’t seen before, my lifer WEDGE-BILLED!
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BLACK-CROWNED ANTSHRIKE, not a Spiny-faced but I’ll take it!
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Female VIOLET-HEADED HUMMINGBIRD, another good one for the day list which was quickly building as we hiked away from the army ant swarm and deeper into the thickly-wooded, insanely-muddy hills. I mentally declared my boots a total loss as five minutes into this “hiking” they were positively caked with thick, oozy, orange Panamanian sediment.
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After a pretty grueling hike (where Mario very patiently coached me to take “resting breaths” as I was getting quite warn out at all the sudden ascents and steep descents), we finally made it to a steep, rocky ravine where Mario said it was one of the best places in Panama to find Spiny-faced Antshrike. We saw our first birder of the entire day, a photographer who had traveled all the way from Europe to see this bird and had been waiting in this one spot all day, in the absolute middle of the rainforest, for the bird to show itself. Unfortunately, he had not seen it yet, so I took the opportunity to soak my shirt in the stream as I was absolutely DRENCHED in sweat.

There were a few ravine species around, such as, amazingly, another Sapayoa!!! Wow!!!
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As well as a BUFF-RUMPED WARBLER, a species I have only seen once before, in Costa Rica:
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Male DOT-WINGED ANTWREN:
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Then, as we were climbing along the creek over the slippery, mossy rocks, the other guide said something quickly in Spanish and pointed down into the rocks and lying there was the most dangerous snake in Latin America, the Fer-de-lance. I kept a very respectful distance as this snake accounts for more snake bites in this part of the world than any other — the species was even responsible for putting my Italian diction teacher back in my freshman year into a coma for two weeks!!! So, despite my experience with venomous pit vipers up north, I was not messing around today. This is a neonate — a young snake — they can get up to about Cottonmouth size, and I was on high alert for any of its relatives who could be hunting the stream…
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In my opinion, though, the Fer-de-lance wasn’t even the craziest part of this hike: as we continued along the stream, I nearly fell twice on the slippery rocks and was twice narrowly saved my Mario grabbing onto my shirt. At this point, we were doing some of the craziest shit of my entire life — there were multiple times when I was about to say, “you know, I think I’ve reached my limit” — BUT, on the other hand, I REALLY wanted this Antshrike, and I was also super honored that Mario trusted me to go on such a difficult outing. (Though this apparently pales in comparison to some trekking he has done in the Darien province, hah!)

Anyway, we decided to call it quits and stay a while, trying for the Antshrike once we reached this seepy waterfall that cascaded into the stream. It all seemed pretty surreal that I was here, standing in the middle of truly remote jungle, searching for some of the rarest birds in the world, and in less than eight hours would be on a plane back to the states. More on that later…
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There was a flock of my lifer DUSKY-FACED TANAGERS that kept us on our toes with their scattered calling and movement as we were carefully combing through the forest, looking for the Spiny-faced Antshrike:
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My teeny tiny lifer BLACK-HEADED PYGMY-TYRANT made a brief appearance too:
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Then, we HEARD IT! The SPINY-FACED ANTSHRIKE, in what Mario described as the “top five rarest birds in Panama,” called its high-pitched, descending “wheer!” call typical of a male. You can hear it faintly in this audio recording I uploaded to eBird.org at 0:01, 0:07, 0:11, and 0:27 — an INCREDIBLE honor to be one of only TWENTY-FOUR recordings of this bird on earth, at the time of this posting! Yes, this is how rare this bird is! In this checklist, scroll down to Spiny-faced Antshrike and click on the attached audio to listen.
https://ebird.org/checklist/S164969182

Despite an hour of our best efforts at tracking down the bird, we never did get to see it which was a shame because it would also be a visual lifer for Mario (yes, that’s how rare it is!), but being the lister I am — I was content with the identifiable recordings of this incredible rarity. At 2:00pm on March 15, Spiny-faced Antshrike officially took first place on the global scale of the rarest bird I have ever identified.

The trek back was merciless. It was relentless climbing up from the ravine, and I heard the other guide mumble under his breath, “Black-and-yellow Tanager” — so I said, “Hold up, Black-and-yellow Tanager? That’s a target for me!!” So, we backtracked a few steps on the mud-laden path and soon spotted a pair of my lifer BLACK-AND-YELLOW TANAGERS in the canopy:
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We spished them down and the male came in for JAW-DROPPING views. Now this was a stunner of the bird and if the Antshrike is the rarest bird I’ve ever identified, this bird might be a contender for the most attractive. Anybody who knows me knows I am sucker for gold and black birds (yes, looking at you Hooded Warbler) and this bird does NOT disappoint:
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But do you know what combination is equally attractive for me? red and black! And that was our next sighting — I finally had good views of a pair of lekking male RED-CAPPED MANAKINS, and their red and black look is only augmented by their golden slippers. Jeez, what an absolutely jaw-dropping bird — the size of a hummer!
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JUST LOOK AT HIM!!!
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A highlight from the hike back was a brief, unphotographed view of my lifer OLIVE-BACKED QUAIL-DOVE: I had been hoping to see a Quail-Dove this trip and although my view of this retiring species was incredibly short, it was a sufficient look straight down the trail to be a lifer. Cool!

Finally, after a grueling hike — the hardest I have EVER done in all my years of hiking the Rockies, New Zealand, and Patagonia — we got back to the farm where we had parked and guess what? We kept on birding. Here is a female BALTIMORE ORIOLE:
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And my LIFER male SCARLET-THIGHED DACNIS, an incredibly smart-looking tanager I was SO hoping to see on this trip! WAY COOL!
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Finally, it was time to start heading back in the direction of Panama City. Mario had one more trick up his sleeve, though: we could either head just a bit further east on the Pan-American highway to try for Cocoi Heron or take a backroad on the way back to try for Capped Heron. Capped would be my lifer so I chose the latter. The birding along this agricultural road in the dry savanna habitat turned out to be very productive in these evening hours (5:15-6:30pm), with this video originally identified as Red-eyed actually turning out to be my lifer YELLOW-GREEN, my 1300th LIFE BIRD!!!!!!!! I reached my target for the trip.
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Molting BLUE-BLACK GRASSQUIT:
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Fabulous views of BARRED ANTSHRIKE:
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Flyover Mealy Parrots:
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Flyover Band-rumped Swift:
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Then, we saw this Tityra which was originally misidentified as Masked but turns out, because of its fully black bill, it was my lifer female BLACK-CROWNED TITYRA!!! Way cool!!!
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Pair of CRESTED CARACARAS:
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Tennessee Warbler in the golden hour light:
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Loved seeing this FORK-TAILED FLYCATCHER, my first of the trip (and only second ever!) as Susie was the only one to spot it on the first day:
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Distant BLACK VULTURE in a tree:
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YELLOW WARBLER:
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SMOOTH-BILLED ANI:
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Plumbeous Kite — identified by rufous underwing in flight:
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PANAMA FLYCATCHER, my best views of this fun species yet:
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We also had my heard-only lifer STRIPED CUCKOO singing from a hedgerow, as well as this GREATER ANI, a cuckoo species I have only seen once before, and a fleeting view, in Costa Rica!
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Then, we spotted a “Great Blue Heron with accents” — COCOI HERON, a very ironic sighting as we had gone looking for the Capped Heron specifically instead of the Cocoi, and dipped on the Capped but got this beautiful Cocoi. An awesome species, and also one I’ve only seen once before! Mario really knows his spots.
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The light was getting low as the sun was about to set but that didn’t deter us from birding — we picked up our only LESSER GOLDFINCHES of the trip:
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And a nice male YELLOW-CROWNED EUPHONIA:
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And my last bird photo from Panama were these distant CATTLE EGRETS while scoping in one last vain attempt for Capped Heron, after sunset. Well, it was after 6:30 by then and as my flight departure was approaching at 10:55pm and the sun set, we decided to wrap it up and begin our return trip up the Pan-American Highway 1 towards Tocumen Airport.
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WHAT A DAY! I had broken 1300 on my life list by the end of the day, with a total of 1303 — 23 lifers today!!!

Well, the adventure wasn’t over yet. I bid Mario an emotional goodbye at the airport that almost chocked me up (it was incredible re-connecting with him after ten years and I really hope it isn’t another ten until I get to bird with him again…) And, thank you Mario. You are just THE most incredible guide out there — today was above and beyond my expectations and the insane memories of the day will live on with me all the rest of my life.

As I took my boots off through security, a huge puddle of Guna Yala mud slurped out onto the conveyer belt and all of the travelers around me gasped and took a revolted step back as the stench was also — just beyond description. This was easily one of the most embarrassing moments of my life thus far and you know what’s worse? Because Panama has a combined domestic/international terminal, we had to clear a SECOND security check at the gate and I went through this embarrassing ordeal of a stinky, muddy boot reveal again.

To make matters worse, I was wearing my birding attire: swim trunks and a long rain jacket, making it appear as if I was a vagrant. Suffice to say, this was the most disheveled I have ever looked traveling and I definitely kept my boots ON during both of my flights home, praying the stench from the Guna Yala mud would not infect the cabin. I think that aspect was fine, but the first leg from Panama to Newark turned out to be one of the bumpiest flights I have experienced, to the point of discomfort and feeling motion sick which never happens to me on planes. I didn’t get a wink of sleep. It was certainly an interesting way to end an otherwise flawless trip. Anyway, my connecting flight was uneventful and within twelve hours of my departure from Panama, I was back home.
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Except, for the fact that I literally had Trenchfoot from being in wet boots and socks for over 24 hours. Gah. Luckily some anti-fungal cream cleared it up, but at the time of this posting, over a month later, the bottoms of my feet are still peeling! Ahahaha!

It was certainly the adventure of a lifetime and I have to thank Kim and Susie for being the BEST travel companions and to Mario and Sam for being incredible guides. I do have to also give myself a small pat on the back — over five days and a couple hours extra of birding, I racked up 282 species, over 220 of those photographed, 113 lifers, and over 175 photographic lifers — thanks to a great deal of THOROUGH research and study I did prior to the trip. It certainly paid off and the trip was about as close to perfect as could be! It is too difficult to choose a bird-of-the-trip but some contenders include King Vulture, Wedge-tailed Grass-Finch, Emerald Tanager, Ocellated Antbird, Sapayoa, Spiny-faced Antshrike, just to name a few. Whew! The full eBird trip report with ALL species and most photos from the trip can be found here:
https://ebird.org/tripreport/212751

Stay tuned — May migration is just around the corner and many of the migrant species from Panama will be up here, in their breeding plumage too!

Happy, happy birding and safe traveling!
Henry
World Life List: 1303 Species (23 lifers today, 113 lifers in Panama this week)

1. Olive-backed Quail-Dove
2. Striped Cuckoo
3. Rufous-breasted Hermit
4. Purple-crowned Fairy
5. Sapphire-throated Hummingbird
6. Plumbeous Kite
7. White-tailed Trogon
8. Stripe-cheeked Woodpecker
9. Sapayoa
10. Spiny-faced Antshrike
11. Streak-chested Antpitta
12. Wedge-billed Woodcreeper
13. Golden-crowned Spadebill
14. Black-capped Pygmy-Tyrant
15. Stripe-throated Wren
16. Tawny-crested Tanager
17. Carmiol’s Tanager
18. Scarlet-thighed Dacnis
19. Black-and-yellow Tanager
20. Slate-colored Grosbeak
21. Yellow-green Vireo
22. Masked Tityra
23. Striped Cuckoo

Posted by skwclar 01:23 Archived in Panama Comments (3)

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