Whos keeping an eye on me....

Monday, 7 May 2012

Venezuela - Part 5 Cerro Montalban & Mt San Isidro

Fairly close to our base at Casa Maria were 2 mountains that proved to be worthwhile trips, Cerro Montalban & Mt San Isidro. 4 wheel drive was the only way to navigate the steep and rocky terrain. A small cloud forest adorned the top of each mountain as well as patches of dry arid land that provided a few contrasting birding habitats.

Both cloud forests bagged us some real skulkers. 
Identifying by call is one thing but actualy getting to see some of these birds was testing.... none more than this Stripe- Breasted Spinetail

 although this Grey Breasted Woodwren did eventually show quite well even if it meant me being on both hands and knees ..... and boy can it sing!

another skulker.... but worth the effort
Whiskered Wren


and unfortunatly birding megas such as the Black Faced Ant thrush never made it onto the camera but the experience and excitment of eventually seeing it cant be taken away

It wasnt all hard work though!
We would have been happy enough with just a single sighting of 
White Tipped Quetzel
 however around half a dozen individuals showed well for us - it was just a pity the cloud got lower and thicker just at the wrong time.



Other species seen and not always captured were Short Tailed Ant thrush,
Violet fronted Brilliant, Smoke Coloured Pheobe
Scarlet fronted Parakeet, Bat FalconEastern Meadowlark, Green Jay.

 Black faced Tanager
we were treated to a large flock of these wonderful birds




Scale Crested Pygmy Tyrant


Three Striped Warbler


Grassland Sparrow


White Tailed Hawk


and the best  just at the last
Burrowing owl
A single Owl stood on guard outside its nest hole


it kept an eye on us......


then overhead passed a solitary eagle and White Tailed Hawk, the Owl immediatly became edgy and went to higher ground just to make sure there would be no unwelcomed raptors visiting






16 comments:

Adam Tilt said...

Great photos Dave. Looks like you had a very successful trip.

Vita Stunder said...

Amazing photography!

heyBJK said...

Great selection of birds! I really like the owl.

Gary said...

Great series!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Andrew said...

Superb images Dave.
It looks like a holiday you won't forget for a while.

eileeninmd said...

Those burrowing owls are so cute and I love the Quetzel. Wonderful post and awesome birds.

mick said...

A great series of photos and birds. Some wonderful memories of your holiday there.

TexWisGirl said...

great selection of exotic birds! :)

NatureStop said...

Great series...thanks for sharing!

Linda said...

Fabulous photos! The one of the piercing-eyes stare of the owl is fantastic!

Pat said...

Wonderful series ending with that beautiful little owl!

Hilke Breder said...

Beautiful shots, Dave! Sounds like a thrilling trip!

Sallie (FullTime-Life.com said...

Oh my gosh Dave, what an amazingly wonderful vacation. Those birds are all new to me except the Owl -- we actually have a species of burrowing owls here near where we live in Florida (I've blogged them) and yes, they are absolutely adorable.

But I would be in seventh heaven if I could see even any few of the other Venezuela birds you show so beautifully. Thanks so much.

Larry said...

An incredible journey you had Dave! Gorgeous shots of all the birds but I must admit the Burrowing Owl is, of course, my favorite. We are still trying to bring them back from oblivion here in the Western United States.

phylliso said...

Beautiful birds!phyllis

Sallie (FullTime-Life.com said...

Gorgeous pictures -- and an amazing trip.