Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Steely-vented Hummingbird

On the morning of 3 July 2017, we visited Carara National Park near our eco-lodge, Villa Lapas. The park contains the northern remnant of the western Costa Rican rainforest. Well marked trails run into the jungle from the park headquarters.

We waited at the headquarter’s parking lot while our leaders negotiated our entrance fees. Surrounding the lot and headquarters was a swampy, weedy field—perfect for both dragonflies and birds. This Steely-vented Hummingbird greeted us at a patch of flowering bushes in the middle of the lot.

These hummers are found from southern Nicaragua to Costa Rica and in western Colombia and Venezuela. They inhabit shrubby areas, forest edges, gardens and secondary growth. They appear to be absent from Panama. The resulting isolation of the northern population, and because their calls are different from South American birds, makes some ornithologists suggest they are a distinct species (Handbook of Birds of the World Alive). 

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