Arenal area

The first place we stayed on our week long exploratory vacation with the Quirks was a hotel on the flanks of the great Arenal Volcano.

Arenal had a serious 3-part eruption in 1992, destroying a couple of villages on its slopes, and adding a new peak.
Katie and I fell in love with morning birding. It became addictive. And in this region (and Costa Rica in general) you can just go walking to see amazing birds.
For instance we say this little beauty, called the red-legged honey creeper.

On  Feb 12th we saw:

  • a caiman in the ponds at the hotel
  • passerini’s tanager
  • a purple gallinule in the ponds at the hotel
  • the red-legged honey creeper (above)
  • a rufous-collared sparrow
  • a black mandibled toucan ( a whole bunch of them in the national park)
  • and a couple of very large crested guans
We went for a nice and silly walk in Arenal National Park.
Various people climbed various trees. They were happy.
Reid accompanied us one morning for a birding walk. He was a determined wildlife spotter.
We saw a variable seed eater which we first thought was a blue-black tanager, then a thick billed seed finch. But no, it was a variable seed eater.

on Feb 13th, we saw:

  • Passerini’s tanager
  • blue and grey tanager
  • grey headed chachalaca
  • northern Jacana (swamp bird)
  • red-billed pigeon
  • a rufous-collared sparrow
  • a variable seed finch (above)
  • and a red winged black bird (old friend)
Reid inspects the variable seed eater.
This is a blue-grey tanager. We saw these a lot on the hotel campus.
Finally, we visited the hot river that flows from Arenal volcano. Here, Tim and Reid soak it up.