Sunday, July 25, 2010

Day trip to Nusagandi

Rosabel and Karl Kaufmann and Delicia and Darién Montañez spent their Sunday checking just how good the new and renewed El Llano-Cartí road was. And it was very good: all asphalt all the way to the Caribbean (except for the still unfinished bridge over the Cartí River, which should be done by August) The birding was good, too, as long as you don't mind no shoulders and cars zipping by at breakneck speed—but then we've all birded Achiote Road, right?
The first stop, well before Burbayar, produced a few Sulphur-rumped Tanagers in the first of many tanager flocks, mostly of the Tawny-crested denomination. At Ina Igar we saw Striped Woodhaunter and an Olive-backed Quail Dove before being rained out. Back on the road, a culvert a few kilometers beyond the trailhead had an adult Fasciated Tiger-Heron, seen both on our way to Cartí and on our way back. Well in the lowlands we found plenty Blue Cotingas, a pair of calling Jet Antbirds and a fruiting shrub with four female Scarlet-thighed Dacnis. Great Antshrikes and Pacific Antwrens were at the Cartí River. Heading back from Cartí we stopped at the start of a projected road to Mula, which we didn't get to explore as the road itself was so birdy: more Sulphur-rumped Tanagers, Sirystes, and two Red-throated Caracaras, one seen and one heard. Last stop was Ibe Igar, where the only thing we saw was a pair of Sapayoas—not that we're complaining.
Back at El Llano, we decided to head for río Mono to see what we found. A small group of martins sitting on the power lines before Cañita included at least two Brown-chested Martins. Río Mono itself was pretty quiet, but on the way back we stopped at a mixed flock that included a few male White-eared Conebills, a female One-colored Becard and a Golden-green Woodpecker of indeterminate gender.

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