On the Road to 100 Species at Xandari

Silhouette of the Blue-crowned Motmot, one of Xandari’s most colorful and exciting resident species due to its racquet-tipped tail and partly iridescent plumage.

Over the last four months or so that I’ve been birding around Xandari, in the beginning with the help and company of James, Xandari’s species list on its eBird hotspot has been growing, if not daily, then at least weekly. James and I had charged ourselves with documenting every resident species before the migrants came down starting in September and October. When James left to go back to school in early August, we had seen or heard 80 species on or from property.

A pair of Gray-headed Chachalacas enjoying the view of Alajuela. Seen from Xandari’s balcony restaurant.

Since then, I’ve seen two other species that are Costa Rica residents but not normally found around Xandari; heard one timid, evasive bird called the Buffy-crowned Wood-Partridge that James and I knew we should be hearing but hadn’t caught yet; and saw a type of hummingbird that James and I had been searching for. The two species that are found in other parts of Costa Rica were the Chestnut-mandibled Toucan and Crested Caracara, both of which have ranges generally outside the Central Valley. Hopefully they’ll decide that the great bird habitat around Xandari is worth sticking around for!

The Clay-colored Thrush, or yigüirro, Costa Rica’s national bird.

So that puts Xandari at 84 Costa Rican resident birds, and since mid-September I’ve seen fifteen migrant species — among others, there were several warblers, the rare (for Central Valley) Black-billed Cuckoo, the US backyard favorite Baltimore Oriole, and today an immature male Rose-breasted Grosbeak. Now we’re at 99 species and I’m sure another migrant species will wander its way over to our forty-odd acres of garden and forest to bump us up to a hundred!

One thought on “On the Road to 100 Species at Xandari

  1. Pingback: The Barred Antshrike | Raxa Collective

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