Hawk Watching Trip to Raptor Ridge
I recently spent a couple of days doing some hawk watching and general birding up at Raptor Ridge with Larry Landstrom and Ruth Rodriguez. We had some great bird watching with the skies around the mountain filled with raptors. We had many looks at the pair of white hawks that nest nearby and we also had good sightings of King Vulture, with two being seen at the same time. It seems like the presence of King Vulture in Tambor Bay may be greater then we previously thought. Other species sighted include short-tailed hawk, zone-tailed hawk, plumbeous kite, broad-winged hawk, gray hawk and even a bat falcon! You can CLICK HERE to see more photos on facebook.
As if that wasn’t enough, the canopy of the trees below the watch site were alive with activity. Red-legged honeycreeper, yellow throated euphonia, western tanager, rose-breasted grosbeak, and painted bunting were just a few of the species we recorded in one fruiting tree.
In the early morning, Larry and I set out along the trail system and encountered a large flock of birds that were feeding above a swarm of army ants. The flock contained many species; gray headed and red-crowned ant-tanagers, ruddy, northern barred, streaked and olivaceous woodcreeper, blue-crowned motmot, long-tailed manakin, barred antshrike and yellow-billed cacique. We even caught a glimpse of the elegant trogon.
Other birds of interest included a grayish saltator that was very vocal around the property and black-and-white owls that were heard throughout the night.
It will be interesting to spend more time at this location during spring hawk migration, when thousands of migrant raptors push northward to their breeding grounds in the United States and Canada. It appears that little is known about hawk migration on the Nicoya Peninsula of Costa Rica. Please stay tuned for news of upcoming events related to hawk watching at Raptor Ridge!