Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Gray-headed Piprites, a report by Euclides Campos

On Friday, March 26th, on our way to Bocas del Toro, we made a one-day birding stop at Cerro Redondo, a community located near the entrance of La Mesa in Veraguas, and saw the Rufous Nightjar which is common in the area.


We arrived at Changuinola the following day. On Sunday the 28th we headed to Bongik, located close to Wekso. That afternoon we spotted a Snowy Cotinga and plenty of White-collared Manakins. Next day, we started hiking up the Bongik River and saw a Barred Hawk, three Snowy Cotingas and a Solitary Eagle. This was seen very well against a dark background close to the Rancho Quemado community. It had a very short tail with one tail band and, of course, its slaty gray color. We had a clear sky that day. Further at Rancho Quemado we reached a spectacular forest that yielded Rufous-winged Tanager, Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush, Buff-throated Foliage-gleaner (hypophaeus subspecies), a pair of Cerulean Warblers, and a heard Thicket Antpitta.
On Monday 30th, we visited a place called Michilá where we heard the Gray-headed Pipitres. My iPod ran out of battery, so we hiked down to Bongik to recharge it. Birds seen that day included Band-backed Wren, Rufous-winged Woodpecker, Crested Owl and Northern Bentbill.
Finally on Tuesday 31th we saw the Gray-headed Pipitres really well, but got no good pictures. The bird started calling around 7:30 a.m. very close to where we were. I called it back and it responded right away, pearching roughly 15 meters above the ground. Alex Guevara and Juan Pablo Rios were with me during the whole trip.


On April 1st we birded at Guabito (La Mesa area) where we heard Northern Bentbill and saw Grayish Saltator, White-collared Manakin and a Bran-colored Flycatcher (or is it a young, scruffy White-throated Flycatcher?).


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