Suriname, 22d day, hummingbird and macaw


This video says about itself:

The making of a sculpture of Barack Obama, by the well-known Surinamese Artist, Erwin de Vries.

Also about Erwin de Vries: here.

One of the background sounds of the video is the call of the great kiskadee, a common bird in Suriname, also in Paramaribo city.

Suriname, 24 February 2009.

After coming back from eastern Suriname yesterday, this is our last day.

In the afternoon, we will go to the airport.

But in the morning, still the last opportunity to look for birds around Leonsberg.

And it would turn out that this was the best birding day of all in Leonsberg; in spite of interruptions by a few rainy showers.

On this morning, rusty margined flycatcher and tropical kingbird on a wire.

On a shrub: a blue-black grassquit.

In a ditch: tri-coloured heron, catching a fish.

Male and female wing-barred seedeater.

Black vultures.

Great kiskadee. Buff-throated saltator.

At the ferry: twelve black skimmers together, hunting for fish near the water’s edge.

Two green-rumped parrotlets sitting on a pole in the water.

Semipalmated sandpiper.

Blue-winged swallow. Little blue heron. Snowy egret.

Blue-grey tanager. Tropical mockingbird.

Orange-winged parrots flying overhead.

A whimbrel near the Suriname river.

White-lined tanager.

Then, in a leafless tree, a yellow-headed caracara. Not a very unusual bird around Paramaribo. However, that a blue-and yellow macaw sits below it is really unusual. This species occurs naturally in the coastal regions of Suriname. But catching them as cage birds has really diminished the blue-and-yellow macaw numbers, certainly around Paramaribo.

Is this an escaped cage bird? It calls. Other macaws, who are certainly in cages, call back. The bird in the tree calls back again. Then, it flies away.

This is a video about macaws, both in captivity and in nature.

Then, a much smaller and less brightly coloured bird, much more common about Paramaribo, but beautiful nevertheless: a pied water-tyrant.

A short-tailed swift high in the air.

Ruddy ground-doves.

A turkey vulture, driven away by a roadside hawk.

A pale-breasted thrush on a wire.

A grey-breasted martin.

A wattled jacana in a ditch.

The rufous crab-hawk sits on his usual tree again.

A black-collared hawk flying.

Two brown-throated parakeets in a leafless tree.

In another tree, a snail kite.

Snail kites in Florida: here.

In yet another tree, a ringed kingfisher and a scaled pigeon.

A smooth-billed ani on a wire.

A common tody-flycatcher.

A boat-billed flycatcher on a wire.

A plain-breasted ground dove on the road.

On another leafless tree, a slender-billed kite. A great kiskadee tries to drive it away, but the hawk is not impressed and stays on the branch. The great kiskadee seemingly gives up, and sits down above the slender-billed kite. Maybe realizing that, though a bird of prey, this kite eats snails, not baby kiskadees.

A monarch butterfly.

Two tropical kingbirds on a palm tree.

A plain-crested elaenia.

Two crested oropendolas just behind the swimming pool.

A pygmy kingfisher diving from a branch into a ditch.

Near the sluice, teju lizard and green garden lizard.

Twenty-five black skimmers resting on the muddy Suriname river bank.

A wattled jacana.

A house wren singing from an electricity pole.

A green-throated mango hummingbird sitting on a branch, quite close.

Then, as last Leonsberg bird, a species that we have not seen before: blood-colored woodpecker. Male and female on a small tree.

From the bus to the airport, near Onverwacht: a cattle egret.

After Onverwacht, a swallow-tailed kite.

The last bird of Suriname, which we see at Zanderij airport, is also a swallow-tailed kite.

March 2010. A brightly coloured, new subspecies of Mountain-Tanager has been discovered in Colombia. It was first found in the Serranía de los Yariguíes Mountains, near ProAvesCerulean Warbler Bird Reserve in 2005: here.

Cock-tailed tyrant (Alectrurus tricolor): here.

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Suriname, scarlet ibis, great kiskadee


This is a video about a great kiskadee; one of the most common birds in Suriname.

Suriname, 23 February; after the nightly turtle watching.

Today, from eastern Suriname back to Paramaribo.

First, on Baboensanti beach: scarlet ibises crossing the sea.

And a gull-billed tern, one of few species which one may see both in Suriname and Europe.

A ghost crab leaves its hole in the sand, runs around briefly, and gets back in the hole. A bit unusual, since these crabs are considered to be nocturnal.

The ship leaves, going up the Marowijne estuary.

Just before Albina, a plumbeous kite, and a yellow-billed tern.

West of Albina, there is Moi Wana. Since 2007, there is a monument with Native American cultural symbols by Marcel Pinas there for the 38 maroon and Native American inhabitants of this village, massacred during the 1980s civil war.

A great kiskadee calls.

A swallow-tailed kite flying in Commewijne district.

Flying above central Paramaribo: an osprey.

Suriname, more green turtles


This video is about Green Sea Turtles (Chelonia mydas).

A video which is no longer on the Internet used to say about itself:

Over 275 seaweeds and two seagrasses are eaten by Hawaiian green turtles, Chelonia mydas Linnaeus, the most common sea turtle and the largest marine herbivore in the Hawaiian Islands. The Hawaiian green turtle population has increased in numbers since protection under the U.S. Endangered Species Act; however, there has been a long-term decline in immature turtles’ somatic growth rates.

Because forage type and nutrition may have a role in green turtle growth, reproduction and long-term species viability, 16 macroalgal species, two seagrass species, and multi-specific turf from turtle foraging areas on four different islands were analyzed for protein, lipid, carbohydrate, water, ash, energy, amino acid, vitamin and mineral content.

Suriname, 23 February.

Tonight, we start looking for turtles a bit later than yesterday, at 1:15.

Many tracks of green turtles who have already gone back to the sea.

The first and second turtles of tonight have their nests closely together. The first one was still digging; the second one was going back to sea.

The third one was just laying its last eggs; then it started covering and camouflaging them.

Close to the nest, a ghost crab; a predator of baby turtles. The world’s fastest crustacean is the ghost crab, capable of reaching 4.5mph.

Turtles number four and five were still digging nest holes.

Green turtles and seagrass: here. And here.

Suriname, scarlet ibis and jaguar


This video says about itself:

The Amazon rainforest is home to a bewildering array of wildlife, including macaws, toucans, tyrant flycatchers, capybaras, tapir, sloths, squirrel monkeys, red howler monkeys, jaguars, caimans, anacondas, tarantulas, leaf-cutter ants, scarlet ibis, and black skimmers.

Suriname, 22 February.

After the nightly green turtle watching, still at Baboensanti.

On the beach, sanderlings. Sanderlings: these birds are one of the few bird species which one can see both in Europe and Suriname (and in Australia).

Quite some wood, and a piece of rope, with barnacles on it.

A scaled pigeon in a tree.

About 45 scarlet ibises flying over the sea.

A forest walk.

Yellow-rumped cacique; see also here.

Squirrel monkeys not far away.

Red-bellied macaws.

A tortoise between the trees: Geochelone carbonaria; red-footed tortoise.

An armadillo-made hole in the forest floor. Not made by a giant armadillo, like in the Kayser mountains. A smaller hole, by a nine-banded armadillo, a smaller species.

When we reach a savanna at the forest edge, brown-throated parakeets in treetops.

A pirate flycatcher.

A turkey vulture.

Jaguar footprints and faeces.

Frigatebirds overhead, showing that we are not really far from the sea yet.

On the beach in the afternoon.

Many black vultures, but also red-bellied macaws flying noisily.

A green turtle, killed by a jaguar. Acorn barnacles on its back. Tonight, we will see living turtles again.

Magnificent frigatebird in Britain: here.

Suriname, vultures and snake


This video from Florida in the USA is called Black Vultures working on a dead cat.

Suriname, 21 February.

After going aboard in Albina, sailing for hours, and seeing a yellow-headed caracara, our ship arrives at Baboensanti.

There are unexpectedly few seashells on the beach.

There are many dead catfish: crucifix sea catfish. Apparently, this estuarine species is often thrown overboard by fishing ships. If a big catfish, nearly a meter in size, beaches, it attracts five or more black vultures to eat it. Smaller catfish attract only about two vultures. If one knows that they are basically beautiful fish, then this is a somewhat sad end for them, here as rotting cadavers on the beach. Good then to have the vultures.

One other dead fish species on the beach (not as often as the catfish): puffer fish.

Also dead on the beach: a Leach’s petrel.

A snake on the beach. Not a dead snake, and not a sea snake: Hydrops triangularis, the water coral snake.

Talking about reptiles: we are here mainly for the marine turtles. Four species nest here: leatherback turtle; green turtle; olive ridley; and hawksbill turtle.

It is still early in the egg laying season. Now, mainly green turtles are to be expected. Occasionally, a leatherback turtle coming earlier than most of this species. The turtles lay the eggs at night. So, we will have to wait until 1:00 to see them.

Suriname, osprey and whimbrel


This is a whimbrel video.

Suriname, 20 February.

Today, we arrived in Paramaribo from the upper Suriname river.

Cattle egrets along the road to Leonsberg.

In Leonsberg, a wall with ruddy ground-doves and blue-black grassquits on it.

A pied water-tyrant near a ditch.

A pale-breasted thrush.

On the same tree as days ago, a rufous crab-hawk.

Black vultures.

An osprey with a fish in its claws flies across the ferry landing.

Semipalmated plovers on the mudflats.

A whimbrel, also on the mud flats.

Semipalmated sandpipers. Little blue heron.

On a wire, a tropical mockingbird, a grey kingbird and a great kiskadee.

On a pole and flying across the Suriname river: blue-winged swallow.