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panama, day 2: “there’s a cracker on your pants”

An exhausting day yesterday, full of birds and bugs on only the first mile of Pipeline Road. The coolest life bird was a White-whiskered Puffbird sitting, still-life, by the side of the road. Like all other puffbirds I’ve ever seen, it didn’t move more than an inch. Kingfisher took this photo with his point-and-shoot:


Other memorable moments:

  • Watching a female Fasciated Antshrike a few yards away seemingly trying to pick up a 6-inch branch. It turned out to be an enormous grasshopper. She’s still digesting.
  • Finding three army ant swarms and their attending birds. I was studying where Sam Britton, our guide, was trying to get me on a Chestnut-backed Antbird, and instead saw a gray- and pigeon-headed fat bird with yellow legs strolling by — Little Tinamou. A bird most often heard than seen, and less common than Great Tinamou.
  • Watching one of many Bicolored Antbirds hunt in an ant swarm right at our feet, intent on finding lunch. Amazing.
  • Seeing at least four species of crackers, noise-making Neotropical butterflies I’ve written about before, one of which landed on my leg.
  • Sam taking to a location where he found a jaguar track in the mud, which was still recognizable as one big cat print.
  • Last lifer of the day, a gorgeous Green-and-rufous Kingfisher at Summit Ponds.
  • Hiking up to the new Pipeline Road visitors center (below) which is opening later this month. It’s about 2 km from the first gate at the beginning of the road, near the first stream crossing (Juan Grande).

We are picking up our rental car today, and I think we’re going back to Pipeline. More later

Filed in Travel

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Patrick January 8, 2008, 9:30 am

    Sounds awesome!

    I've had the same experience with Puffbirds. I've never seen one move.

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