Sunday, April 07, 2013

Curi Cancha, Monteverde

During our research into this trip we came across a trip report by an English group from 2010.  They mentioned a guide, Erick Bello Carranza (, and provided his contact details so on the Thursday before we flew I emailed him and asked if he could guide us on the Monday morning, starting 6am, to which he agreed.  Erick asked what kind of trip we wanted and advised that the Quetzals were currently in Curi Cancha.  The trip report suggested he took the group to lots of places outside the main reserves (Monteverde itself and Santa Helena) we decided therefore to visit Curi Cancha on the Sunday afternoon.

Curi Cancha, being the least well know of the reserves is also the quietest, which suited us perfectly.  We had a Spanish/English chat with the attendant who advised us of the best place to walk to see the Quetzals.  We followed his advice.

In the trees he directed us to, Black Guan eating fruit:

Tremendously ungainly birds.  Another Blue-browed Motmot, this time the light was sufficient for a picture:

Brown Jays:

House Wren:

And Resplendent Quetzals.  Eight of them, including this male showing well towards the lower edge of the main tree:

A strange and very colourful looking Trogon:

This bird is THE trip bird for most visitors to Costa Rica and we'd seen eight on the first day!

Further around Curi Chanca a Slate-Throated Redstart:

And then to the Hummingbird feeders.  Wherever we went in Costa Rica and hummingbird feeders were up, well you have to stop and take the activity, the buzz and hum in.  I also have to try and photograph the very small, remarkably colourful and very acrobatic and fast-flying birds.  Apologies for blur and any other faults accordingly.

This looks like a Green Violet-ear to me:

Green-crowned Brilliants, male left, female right:

Purple-throated Mountain-Gem, male:

Stripe-tailed Hummingbird, female:

and male:

Violet Sabrewing, the biggest of the Hummingbirds:

Coppery-headed Emerald, female:

A Green-violet-ear, front on:

And finally a male Stripe-tailed Hummingbird:

We really enjoyed our visit to Curi Chancha, it's a lovely spot and well worth a visit.

We finished the first day with 49 species on our list and headed to our accommodation, the Camino Verde B&B.  We were underwhelmed by the accommodation, the construction, the quality of beds, etc., this was one of a few places that we feel are oversold and trade on the reputation of the locale rather than being anything in their own right.  So after a rough night's sleep the alarm went at 5am...



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