10 Mar 2018

10 Mar 18 - Colombia: Late Morning On The Guajira Peninsula

After a good start in the hot & arid Guajira Peninsula, we had left the waterhole & carried on Birding in the scrub as it just got hotter & hotter. We headed off for another local track which we could walk down through the scrub, until we reached a dried field on the right hand side which was a stakeout for Double-striped Thick-knees. There were plenty of Birds as we walked down the track & it was good to see the Double-striped Thick-knees only nineteen years after I first saw them in Venezuela.
Double-striped Thick-knee: This Thick-knee is restricted to the dry scrub of Northern Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana & extreme Northern Brazil
There was a good selection of the other species along the track, but I didn't get the chance to photograph many as they either quickly disappeared into a tangle of vegetation or headed away from the track. With fences on either side of the track it limited my opportunity to try following them. However, there wasn't a lot of opportunity to do that anyway, as moving off the track generally meant heading into areas with a lot of dead leaves & branches which were noisy to walk through.
Brown-throated Parakeet: This species occurs from Colombia & Venezuela to Northern Brazil
Chestnut Piculet: One for the Brits: imagine a Woodpecker that is the size of a Goldcrest
Chestnut Piculet: Another Tick. This species occurs in Northern coastal Colombia & Venezuela
Chestnut Piculet signboard: This signboard for the Los Flamencos (Flamingos) sanctuary looks pretty good
Russet-throated Puffbird: Not a Tick, but this Northern Colombian & Venezuelan species was probably the best-looking species I saw all day
Russet-throated Puffbird: Another individual
That's another speciality from the sanctuary boards seen
Straight-billed Woodcreeper
Tocuyo Sparrow: Another speciality of the dry coastal scrub of Northern Colombia & neighbouring Venezuela
Bananaquit: One of the most widespread of species in Latin America & the Caribbean, so a bit of a surprise this was my first photo
South American Yellow Oriole: A species that occurs from coastal Colombia & Venezuela to North Brazil. This was one occasion where the plate in the Pro Aves field guide wasn't great as it doesn't show the wingbar
As we were heading for the beach, we stopped for this Pearl Kite.
Pearl Kite
By late morning, it had passed Mad Dogs & Englishmen temperatures & we headed for a small beach village with a couple of very basic cafes. At least, they provided some shade & there was a coastal breeze. We managed to get some food, albeit it was a bit more varied for the others as they ate fish. After that there wasn't a lot to do, apart from a seawatch which didn't produce much more than the occasional Magnificent Frigatebird & some Royal Terns flying past.
Brian Field: Taking a more sensible approach to the heat
Doug had found a good position to seawatch from
We were there for a good three hours until we had to head out again. However, it was more the clock telling us to go, rather than a drop in temperature.