Monday, January 8, 2018

La Calandria and the Monteverde Humingbird Garden

I'm having a lot of trouble finding fast enough internet to load these pictures onto the blog, so I'm going to cut the postings into pieces.  Yesterday, we went for a visit to the Monteverde Hummingbird Garden, hiked in the cloud forest, listened to a lecture by Tim on the forest restoration research he and Deb are doing, and caught bats in mist nets with bat expert Dr. Richard LaVal.  Here's what we saw...

 I got up early, stretched, and had my normal many cups of too strong, too sweet tea looking from the porch at this view of the gulf.  This is the Pacific side of Costa Rica.

 Josh was one of the first to join me, and like most students, carrying binoculars.

 It's even more beautiful than this looks...

 Here's the trail up to the bus.  This is a sign of success.  This area was open pasture land, and was reforested about 25 years ago.

 Heather and I are calling this tiny flower an orchid.  I bet my wife edits this post to tell us whether or not it IS an orchid, and will tell us which one it is.

Heather is very proud that she scored a Dr. V orchid point. 

 Lot of rainbows around Monteverde.  The pot of gold at the end of this rainbow was this incredible trip!

 Chloe braiding Kate's hair on the bus.  Other students are busy laughing, talking, journaling, or trying (unsuccessfully) to text family and friends.

 It's hard to describe the Hummingbird Garden.  Imagine swarm of bees buzzing around you.  There were many many Hummingbirds of many species (8, I think). 

 They didn't allow flash photography and it was pretty dark, so a lot of these photos are not the greatest.  This Green Crowed Brillant, however, shows the beautiful emerald green color.

 If you view carefully, you'll see the bright blue iridescent throat.

 Macklin is very proud of the camera his Uncle gave him.  I'm kinda jealous of this one.  This is a Cannon 5D, one of the finest cameras in the world.  This camera is dust proof, largely waterproof, and it has a metal body that IS Costa Rica field work TOUGH.  You never see him without it.

 Depending on how I look at MY monitor, this Violet Saberwing is either black, or a beautiful deep iridescent blue.

 You can see the color as this bird hits the brakes.

 Here's Mark explaining some hummingbird natural history to the crew.

 We were impressed to have the very rare Olingo show up.  This one is about the size of a very large cat or a raccoon.

 This hummingbird feeder was just filled up while we were there, and this fellow drunk it dry.

 By the time he was done, his belly was bulging.

 This little tiny guy on the right is small, but the world record holder for the fastest wingbeat - 80 per minute.  So, he just looks like a body cut and pasted on the picture with no wings.  He is a White Bellied Mountain Gem.

 Kate's folks got her this cool backpack for Christmas....she's very proud of it.  I like it too, but she didn't want to trade for my ratty 8 year-old pack.

 Apparently, Bekah is slowly stealing this pack from her mum, along with the cool ventilated hat.  If you are reading this blog Bekah's Mum, don't be expecting these back any time soon...

 Mark treated us all to hot drinks and pastries to warm us up after watching the Humming birds.  Bridget got this cappuccino and chocolate muffin.

 Tastes as good as it looks.....

An orchid for my sweetie - this one just sitting on a tree outside the café.

Next, we got our packs and boots, and headed out to the cloud forest.


  1. I'm so excited for you guys! I can't believe it's been three years since I made that trip. Just a bit of advice, try to keep up with the journals despite how tired you get. There is so much you forget and it's fun to go back and remember interesting facts and jokes that were made. Enjoy a cup of coffee for me and I can't wait to see more posts!


  2. Happy Birthday Reebs!! 21 Years Young.

    Mom and I love you very much and pray for you every day. We miss you.

    1. Hi Whittiers,

      Bekah is doing great, but she keeps making me laugh till I cry :-)