Friday, April 22, 2011

Agami Heron & Sungrebe on the Rio Papaturro

Agami Heron
Curtis Smalling reports that members of Audubon North Carolina (ANC) recently spent 17 days in Nicaragua visiting many sites from El Jaguar to Sabalos and observed 289 species, including nice looks at Red-capped, White-ruffed, White-collared, and Long-tailed Manakins.  The group encountered several Sungrebes (Heliornis fulica) during their trip, first on March 24, on the Rio Papaturro about halfway from Lake Nicaragua down to Los Guatuzos, then a couple days later on the Sabalos River very near the town of Boca de Sabalos. The ANC group was also delighted to find three Agami Herons (Agamia agami) along the Rio Papaturro in the more forested sections of the river.


Black-crested Coquette
Other avian highlights included Thicket Tinamou (Crypturellus cinnamomeus) at Domitila, Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis) at Sabalos Lodge, Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture (Cathartes burrovianus) at Los Guatuzos, Plumbeous (Ictinia plumbea) and Mississippi Kites (Ictinia mississippiensis) at Finca Esperanza Verde, Scaled Pigeon (Patagioenas speciosa) at Sabalos, Mangrove (Coccyzus minor) and Striped Cuckoos (Tapera naevia) at Montibelli, Pheasant Cuckoo (Dromococcyx phasianellus) at El Jaguar, Northern Potoo (Nyctibius jamaicensis) at Montibelli, Black-crested Coquette (Lophornis helenae) at Sabalos, Resplendent Quetzal (Pharomachrus mocinno) at Selva Negra, Slaty Spinetail (Synallaxis brachyura) at Los Guatuzos, Bare-crowned Antbird (Gymnocichla nudiceps) at Sabalos, Eye-ringed Flatbill (Rhynchocyclus brevirostris) at El Jaguar, White-lored Gnatcatcher (Polioptila albiloris) at Domitila, Thick-billed Seed-Finch (Oryzoborus funereus) at Sabalos, Nicaraguan Grackle (Quiscalus nicaraguensis) at Laguna de Tisma, Yellow-billed Cacique (Amblycercus holosericeus) at Montibelli, and Elegant Euphonia (Euphonia elegantissima) at Selva Negra.

Bare-crowned Antbird (female)
In addition to the spectacular diversity of birds, the ANC group observed 11 species of mammals and 19 species of reptiles and amphibians during their visit to Nicaragua. This trip was organized and led by Dave Davenport of EcoQuest Travel, who has been leading birding groups to Nicaragua for several years, and who according to Curtis is a great supporter of bird conservation projects here. Curtis also notes that it was "good to see many of our partners in Golden-winged warbler research like Georges and Lili Duriaux and Salvadora Morales."

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