Trogons, Trinidad and Tobago

10,000 Birds

Starting with the smallest – our tiny Guianan Trogon (formerly Violaceous) can often be heard within almost any forested area on Trinidad. It could be due to it being our only trogon that can be found on both Trinidad and Tobago.

Hummingbirds of Trinidad

10,000 Birds

The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago may share equal billing in the dichotomous nation’s name, but Trinidad boasts the lion’s share of the land mass, population, and hummingbirds. Visitors to Trinidad can scarcely help encountering stunning hummers just about everywhere. If you feel the same way, this is just one more reason you simply have to visit Trinidad. Birds Caribbean features hummingbirds South America trinidad


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Haus Alpenz: The Scarlet Ibis – Trinidad Rum

10,000 Birds

One of the first things most people think of when they think of Trinidad – perhaps after steel drums and calypso – is rum. I’ve never been to the Caribbean, but I suspect many visitors to Trinidad welcome the end a long day of birding the island’s mountains, beaches, and lush rainforests with a tot of rum – or two. The Scarlet Ibis is one of two national birds of the Republic Trinidad and Tobago , the other being the Rufous-vented Chachalaca.

What is the National Bird of Trinidad and Tobago?

10,000 Birds

The title of this post is a trick question as Trinidad and Tobago actually has two national birds, one for each of the country’s namesake islands. Trinidad is represented by the Scarlet Ibis , a beauty of a bird, resplendent in its crimson hue. I have been unable to dig up the story of how either bird became the emblems of the two islands, but both feature prominently on the coat of arms of Trinidad and Tobago. the coat of arms of Trinidad and Tobago.

The Birds of Trinidad and Tobago: Two Guides, One Book Review

10,000 Birds

There were three profound questions my birding group discussed while we birded Trinidad and Tobago, back in December 2012: (1) How many Bananaquits could fit on a banana? (2) 3) What was the best guide to the birds of Trinidad and Tobago? My friend Ian had purchased Richard ffrench’s classic A Guide to the Birds of Trinidad & Tobago just before we left, the third edition, hot off the presses. Both Mike and Corey have visited Trinidad and Tobago.

The Blackbird that is a Meadowlark – Red-breasted Blackbird in Trinidad

10,000 Birds

However the Red-breasted Blackbird ended up with its appellation doesn’t matter as much as how great a bird it is, well worth a trip to Trinidad and Tobago to see. It was on the island of Trinidad, at the Aripo Agricultural Research Station, where all of these photographs were taken. If you are in Trinidad and are a birder you should definitely make a stop. For more information about visiting Trinidad and Tobago a good place to start is the official tourism website. ….

Creepers in the Forest

10,000 Birds

Turns out that the Streak-headed Woodcreeper was a formerly uncommon resident of Trinidad, its range gradually increasing to cover semi-degraded and altered habitat. Four of those are resident on Trinidad, and one is found only on Tobago. Birds Birding Trinidad and Tobago

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CBC Shenanigans

10,000 Birds

Seven hours in total, reaching halfway up the second highest peak on Trinidad, El Tucuche. Trinidad Lancehead , or Fer-de-lance. This small tanager is widely distributed across Trinidad albeit much less common than the very similar White-lined Tanager.

2020 196

A Reliable Birding Proverb

10,000 Birds

It was a dreary morning, with Trinidad under watch for an incoming tropical wave. We are lucky here in Trinidad to experience migrants from both the south and the north – after we saw the elaenia we enjoyed fleeting views of a male American Redstart. Birding Trinidad and Tobago

2020 231

Sniping: The Final Frontier?

10,000 Birds

Out of the approximately 26 species of snipes worldwide, two have been recorded on Trinidad. On Trinidad it took me some more time until I saw my first snipe. Birding Birds Common Snipe snipe south american snipe Trinidad and Tobago Wilson's Snipe

2020 223

Forest Bathing

10,000 Birds

It had been some months since we had been in the hills of Trinidad’s Northern Range, and let it be known that all forests are very different. Birding Birds Trinidad and TobagoI’m writing this post primarily because I am currently dreaming of the subject.

2020 214

Eco Chick Escapes To: Adventure Trinidad!

Eco Chic

It was a not-so-great Monday, and I was doing an inward gripe about my life, when all of a sudden it turned into the best Monday EVER, when I got an email from a friend asking if I’d like to tag along on a trip to Trinidad to explore the country’s adventure offering for women.

The Longest (and Shortest) Hour

10,000 Birds

This sleepy fishing village on the north coast of Trinidad should ring a bell – it boasts the densest nesting population of Leatherback Turtles in the entire western hemisphere. The mature forest deep in the hills is the single best place in the world to catch a glimpse of the critically endangered Trinidad Piping Guan. This large, arboreal turkey-looking bird is endemic to Trinidad and recent estimates put their total numbers at around 300 individuals.

2020 168

Bitternsweet Moments

10,000 Birds

Birding Birds courtship displays Pinnated Bittern Trinidad and TobagoI promise this will be the last article (for a while at least) on this wetland that’s so close to where I live.

2020 241

Welcome Back

10,000 Birds

These intrepid travelers have captivated the very essence of my being, years ago when I used to work on an industrial port on the west coast of Trinidad I noticed each year these alien looking birds would appear, stick around for a while and then depart. Birding shorebirds Trinidad and Tobag

2020 208

Hawking for Nighthawks

10,000 Birds

Birding Trinidad and TobagoJust under a fortnight ago, I saw a report on the local bird alert of a sighting of a group of approximately 20 Nacunda Nighthawks at a wetland not more than 20 minutes from where I live.

2020 216

Critically Endangered Sea Turtle Eggs Destroyed By Bulldozer In Trinidad

Eco Friendly Daily

However, after a recent event killed thousands of hatchlings on the island of Trinidad, conservationists fear it could impact the species overall and put even greater odds against survival. Trinidad is home to one of the most popular beaches for leatherback sea turtles to lay their eggs, which made the event all the more concerning. Currently workers are attempting to divert a river on Trinidad, largely due to erosion of the surrounding area.

Sampling Manakins

10,000 Birds

Birding in Trinidad and Tobago has been likened to an introductory chapter in the book of birding in the Neotropics. Birds Birding Trinidad and TobagoAnd for good reason. While the 480-odd species recorded within T&T may outstrip our fellow Caribbean islands by leaps and bounds, it pales in comparison to the massive lists of mainland South and Central America.

2020 166

A Growing List of Hummingbirds

10,000 Birds

Trinidad and Tobago has historically had seventeen species on record, sixteen on Trinidad and six on Tobago. The diminutive but rather extravagant Tufted Coquette will likely never come to a feeder, but is perfectly content to feed on the abundance of flowering shrubs throughout forested areas on Trinidad. Birds hummingbirds South America Trinidad and Tobago

2020 169

Quarantine Twitch for the Best Backyard Bird

10,000 Birds

Sightings in Trinidad have been sporadic, 38 to be exact since the formation of the T&T Bird Status and Distribution Committee. Birding backyard birds Trinidad and Tobago TwitchingJust over a week ago I received an urgent phone call from a long-time friend and fellow birder. I was washing the dishes at the time, so my wife took the call.

2020 168

Isolation, a.k.a. Business as Usual

10,000 Birds

Many moons ago, when I used to work in the (supposedly) booming petrochemical industry in Trinidad, most of my time was actually spent birding. Golden-crowned Warbler is one of the three resident warbler species on Trinidad. Birding Trinidad and TobagoI’m certain many birders would agree with me on the fact that the imposed self-isolation and social distancing requirements suit us just fine. Long walks far away from large crowds?

2020 169

Back to the Forest ? but first, Flamingos!

10,000 Birds

Fortunately, I live in Trinidad and Tobago – a twin-island nation that boasts the second highest density of bird species in the world. Birders who are lucky enough to live near Trinidad’s west coast have been reporting up to two hundred American Flamingos from various locations along the coastline. Birding Trinidad and TobagoThere aren’t many places on the planet where one can mention the words ‘forest’ and ‘flamingo’ together.

2020 169

Post Apocalyptic Steampunk Birding

10,000 Birds

This was actually the place where the late Richard ffrench spent much of his time as a music teacher, amassing countless observations of birds that would later form the basis of one of the essential birding guides for Trinidad and Tobago. These large parrots are popular in the pet trade, and that’s a likely source of the population of this species on Trinidad. Birding Trinidad and Tobago waterbirds wetlands

2020 168

Home-bound Bird Photography Tips

10,000 Birds

Birding Birds backyard birds Trinidad and TobagoI’ve always birded from home for as long as I can remember. I remember seeing a Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl sitting on our fencepost just after sunset when I was not even ten. I may not have known their correct species names (I thought Tropical Mockingbirds were roadrunners) but I knew they existed. Tropical Mockingbirds on a neighbor’s tree. A Saffron Finch on the same tree.

2020 175

12 countries with the greatest bird species density

10,000 Birds

What comes as a surprise, two of them have already positioned themselves as known birding destinations attracting a substantial number of birders: Trinidad and Tobago with the world-famous Asa Wright Nature Centre (cover photo), and The Gambia with experienced local guides, plus cheap packages for African beginners from Western Europe. Destinations birding tips Gambia Rwanda Sao Tome and Principe Trinidad and Tobago world birdwatchThe Species per Square Mile Approach.

2019 160

Alien Face

10,000 Birds

Birding Birds Trinidad and Tobago xenopsOver a decade ago I stumbled upon the first edition of the field guide to the birds of T&T and marveled at the astounding diversity within its pages. I had already been birding for some time, but my photography was poor and my identification skills were abysmal. Not only did I have zero clue that a field guide existed, I also was completely unaware that other birders lived here.

2020 165

The Caroni Swamp Scarlet Ibis Show

10,000 Birds

If you are a birder and you visit Trinidad and Tobago you must go to the Caroni Swamp. If you visit Trinidad and Tobago you must visit Caroni Swamp. Just south of Port of Spain on the west coast of Trinidad, the Caroni Swamp is easily accessible and well serviced by tour companies that will take you out into the mangroves safely and efficiently. For more information about visiting Trinidad and Tobago a good place to start is the official tourism website. ….

2013 193

Iguanas Love Roti!

10,000 Birds

Hidden away in that boatyard is an amazingly good spot to buy roti, which rivaled doubles as my favorite food that I sampled while in Trinidad and Tobago. This happened in Trinidad and Guyana in the urban areas to make it easier and faster to eat the items, as the individuals’ hands would not get as dirty. In Trinidad and Tobago, various wrapped “roti” are served, including chicken, conch, beef, and vegetable. Reptiles Lizards Trinidad and Tobago

2013 185

(Humming) Bird (Nest) on a Wire

10,000 Birds

Such was the situation on Saturday morning in Trinidad when Mukesh Ramdass, who was guiding me for the day, suddenly pulled over and told me it was my lucky day. Mukesh informed me that this particular nest had been used previously and also let me know that hummingbird nests are often reused in Trinidad. There is much more to come from my amazing five days in Trinidad and Tobago so make sure to stop back soon for more. It is not every day that you get to see a hummingbird.

2013 150

White-necked Jacobin at Asa Wright Nature Center

10,000 Birds

Of course, the birds in this post were all photographed at the Asa Wright Nature Center on Trinidad which, with Tobago, is as far into the Caribbean as you are likely to find them. My visit to Trinidad and Tobago was sponsored by the Trinidad and Tobago Tourism Development Company but the views expressed in the blog posts regarding the trip are my own. For more information about visiting Trinidad and Tobago a good place to start is the official tourism website. ….

2013 169

Chacachacare Island

10,000 Birds

Chacachacare (pronounced shaka-shaka-reh ) is the westernmost of the Bocas islands off the northwestern tip of Trinidad. Accessible by boat only, it takes about half an hour to get there from mainland Trinidad. Birding Trinidad and Tobago

Large-billed Terns at the Trincity Sewage Ponds

10,000 Birds

The Trincity Sewage Ponds in Trinidad and Tobago are no exception. My visit to the best sewage ponds for birding on the island of Trinidad was on 19 July 2013. My visit to Trinidad and Tobago was sponsored by the Trinidad and Tobago Tourism Development Company but the views expressed in the blog posts regarding the trip are my own. For more information about visiting Trinidad and Tobago a good place to start is the official tourism website. ….

2013 175

Birds at the Bacolet Beach Club Hotel

10,000 Birds

That is why on my trip to Trinidad and Tobago I was up early before the other participants and birding whatever area was available to me. Whether it was the dirt common Spectacled Thrush (which are a pretty cool bird even if they are everywhere in Trinidad and Tobago) or the spectacular Trinidad Motmot , there was always at least one bird in view or in earshot at the Bacolet Beach Club Hotel. Trips Bacolet Beach Club Trinidad and Tobago

Little Big Year – Week 34: We visit Colorado and Texas

10,000 Birds

Trinidad Colorado is located just a few miles north of the Colorado – New Mexico border, and home to the Trinidad Reservoir. Jeanne and I parked the 5th wheel in the Trinidad Lake Campground, and found it to be perhaps the nicest campground we had ever been in. The Trinidad Lake CG had power at each site, beautiful restrooms, complete with showers, and a laundry facility. Trinidad Colorado

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Getting the Guan (Pawi Edition)

10,000 Birds

The island paradise of Trinidad boasts three bands of mountains running east to west. Tanagers in Trinidad are a real treat, especially when crackers like Turquoise , Speckled , Bay-headed , and Swallow turn up with the usual Palm , Blue-gray , and White-lined. I blame Larry, who took pains to prepare us to not see Trinidad’s only non-motmot endemic. The Trinidad Piping Guan ( Pipile pipile ), also known as the Pawi , is a big, beautiful cracid.

2012 149

Birding the Gilpin Trace, Main Ridge Forest Reserve, Tobago

10,000 Birds

More interesting to the non-birders were the Rufous-tailed Jacamar and Trinidad Motmots that we saw, though they did stay rather distant. My visit to Trinidad and Tobago was sponsored by the Trinidad and Tobago Tourism Development Company but the views expressed in the blog posts regarding the trip are my own. For more information about visiting Trinidad and Tobago a good place to start is the official tourism website. ….

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Awesome Birding at Aripo Savannah

10,000 Birds

Such was my introduction to Aripo Savannah in Trinidad. My first morning in Trinidad was dedicated to discovering the myriad wonders of Asa Wright Nature Centre. Fortunately, we weren’t far at all from a mandatory stop on any Trinidad & Tobago nature tour. Aripo Savannah, one of the last and largest natural savannahs in Trinidad, offers rich wet prairie that is home to an array of flora and fauna found nowhere else on the island.

2012 182

Asa Wright? Absolutely!

10,000 Birds

Asa Wright Nature Centre in Trinidad holds a prominent position on that list of luminaries. The dichotomous republic of Trinidad and Tobago may be something of a cipher to anyone unfamiliar with the point where the Caribbean ends and South America begins. And if the birds in this report aren’t enough to get you searching deal sites for airfare to Port of Spain, be advised that the centre is the ideal base of operations for just about everything else you want to do on Trinidad.

2012 200

All I Want for Christmas is a Curlew Sandpiper

10,000 Birds

He graciously serves on the Trinidad and Tobago Bird Status and Distribution Committee (formerly the T&T Rare Birds Committee) and leads birding tours on both islands as well as in East Africa through Cisticola Tours Ltd. Even on the tiny island of Trinidad, with a population of one and a half million people it is quite rare to not encounter a relatively high level of vehicular traffic on any day, at any time. Trips Caribbean sandpipers Trinidad and Tobago

2019 207

Flight of the Ibis

10,000 Birds

Last weekend I ended up spending some time with a few Glossy Ibises at a nearby wetland here on Trinidad and it got me thinking about some of the other ibis species I’ve managed to see.

2020 214

One Blustery Morning on a Desert Island

10,000 Birds

On our departure from Trinidad we experienced a five hour delay which not only dashed the chances of birding in Curaçao that day, but seriously jeopardized us catching two subsequent flights.

2020 185

Living in Paradise

10,000 Birds

The Trinidad Motmot is the only endemic species on the island. I refrain from placing a timestamp on the couple hundred yards of gentle descent into Cuffie River, as it is highly likely one may be distracted by one or two Rufous-tailed Jacamars sallying into the roadway, or a Trinidad Motmot observing the observer from the adjacent bamboo. As is standard operating procedure, once a song gets stuck in your head you must pass it off to someone else.

2020 138

Endangered Species - Ocelot

Green Earth Journey

From Wikipedia The Ocelot (Leopardus pardalis), also known as the Painted Leopard, McKenney's Wildcat, Jaguatirica (in Brazil) or Manigordo (in Costa Rica), is a wild cat distributed over South and Central America and Mexico, but has been reported as far north as Texas and in Trinidad, in the Caribbean. Photo linked to a very informative site.

2010 109