Madre Selva

Just back from four days at about 9,000 feet in Costa Rica’s highlands. Ed and I banded birds with two local volunteers, stayed at our supervisor’s family’s weekend house, shivered in the 50-degree mist, and saw some cool stuff. Unfortunately, it looks like the quetzals have moved to lower elevations this time of year, so we didn’t see any. But several hummingbirds were around, including tiny, near-endemic Volcano Hummingbirds, of which we banded two – at 1.9 grams each, the pair of them wouldn’t outweigh a nickel!

After a 10-hour journey by bus and boat yesterday (taking the long way around a landslide, I guess), we are now back in Tortuguero on the northern Caribbean coast for another week of banding. We arrived to find 20 American study abroad students filling our otherwise empty dorm. They fly home tomorrow after two weeks of travel, and most of them couldn’t even remember the names of the places they’d visited. It’s nice to live here long enough to get to know the place – Ed and I still have two months to go.

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