Extra Swamp Tales – 10,000 Birds


One of many fascinating facets of Trinidad’s nature is that each southern corners of the roughly boot-shaped island are dotted with wetlands. Some weeks in the past, I elaborated on a few of my experiences on the eastern and southeastern ends. Not too long ago we took a extra social drive to the alternative southern nook, to the very finish of the island the place the ocean is progressively reclaiming land, highway and all. Right here too, the forest is interspersed with marshy habitat, and in some locations significantly sized our bodies of water.

Trinidad’s southwestern peninsula has pockets of moist savanna that assist sizeable groves of moriche palm. As such, the world is without doubt one of the finest locations to catch a glimpse of a Crimson-bellied Macaw or two. These small macaws don’t present their namesake pink bellies typically, however with yellow faces and blue flight feathers they’re nonetheless flashy little birds.

Considered one of two Crimson-bellied Macaws that made an in depth go whereas we had breakfast on a distant entry highway by way of the forest.

The mangrove swamps on the very finish of the peninsula are comparable in some methods to these on the alternative finish. Whereas we have been there, a pair of Rufous Crab Hawks noisily protested the presence of a Frequent Black Hawk that was comfortably perched within the vegetation. Ultimately, the strain mounted and the supposed interloper departed. Nearer to the highway, a Noticed Tody-flycatcher was busy constructing a nest. A Cocoi Heron flew over, presumably in search of a spot to mount the traditional sit-and-wait however as a substitute discovered human observers. It aborted its mission with a clumsy financial institution over the treeline. Typically Scarlet Ibis could be seen right here as properly, however there have been no vivid pink splotches among the many mangrove roots and branches this time.

A Tricolored Heron stalked the darkish waterways.

The Icacos Lagoon is a magnificent spectacle even with out contemplating its wildlife. Lots of of individuals go to right here every year, a lot of that are locals in awe of the panorama and dedicated to a number of hours in a automobile. From Port of Spain, the journey can take roughly three hours. Nonetheless, it’s past refreshing to behold the unbroken wind over expansive wetland bordered by hundreds of thousands of coconut timber. On the uncommon event the place there isn’t any wind, the lagoon quiets and creates a close to impeccable reflection.

Birds are after all, plentiful right here. In case you don’t see not less than one Nice Egret whereas right here, you’re most likely having a lower than common day and may self-prescribe an ice cream.

4 juvenile American Flamingoes have been a welcome shock. One other Nice Egret discovered itself within the body ultimately, and unsettled the flamingoes who have been resting quietly.

Eagle eyes discovered this Pinnated Bittern within the reeds.

One other pretty giant denizen of this space, Cocoi Herons nonetheless require some extent of luck to come across. Regardless of their measurement and imposing stature, they’re skittish and are usually among the many first to vanish.

The one downfall of this picturesque location is the truth that there may be little or no shade, and with the solar climbing to near-overhead the warmth can simply vary between oppressive and debilitating. For these it’s extremely really useful to make the required sacrifices to get there for dawn!



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