Birding Cuba, or Observación de aves en Cuba

10,000 Birds

I just returned from a glorious birding trip all over Cuba, so I am just going to ignore the pile of spring bird books on my dining room table (most of which arrived while I was gone), and write a bit about my favorite Cuban birds. Of course, it’s the colorful and tiny birds that get the most attention when one thinks of Cuba. There’s the Cuban Trogon, majestic (the national bird of Cuba), brilliantly colored, and surprisingly common. Birds Cuba rare birds

Cuba 63

The Lost Macaw of Cuba

10,000 Birds

There were potentially up to ten or more species of macaw in the West Indies, scattered on most of the major islands from Cuba in the west to Martinique in the east. Its last stronghold was the Zapata Swamp in western Cuba. … Birds Cuba Extinction Week parrots Islands, with their high levels of endemism and specialization, are particularly fragile and vulnerable to human activity.

Cuba 82

Endemic Birds of Cuba: A Book Review

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Cuba is on my mind. birders have been able to visit Cuba as part of survey groups and cultural exchanges for years, but those trips have been few in number and not always easy to find. With the recent opening of travel restrictions, the options for birding the “forbidden” island have increased and Cuba has changed from a “maybe, if…” to a “yes!” and Cuba.). Also available in Spanish: Aves Endémicas de Cuba: Guía de Campo.

Cuba 78

Cool Green Heron

10,000 Birds

Photographed in Cuba , the bird appears to be a melanistic Green Heron though it might perhaps be a dark form or even stained by algae. home about advertise archives birds conservation contact galleries links reviews subscribe Browse: Home / Asides / Cool Green Heron Cool Green Heron By Corey • March 5, 2011 • 3 comments Tweet Share If, like me, you like Green Herons and if, like me, you like birds with oddball plumages, then this post is for you.

2011 52

Collaborative List – March 2017

10,000 Birds

Lists from nine countries have been shared this month with Cuba appearing for the first time. With Corey’s February jollies to The Bahamas (when he should have been at home looking for GGOs), Lichtenstein, Austria and Switzerland our country/province/principality/kingdom/territory list has swollen to 37. 79 checklists were contributed for 624 birds during March and bring the running total for 2017 to 1162. The lifetime list reaches 2747.

2017 48

Enjoy Innovative Electronic Music = Help Endangered Birds

10,000 Birds

However, even if songs of the avian kind are more your musical thing, you will still find them in ten innovative, unique tracks that pay homage to endangered birds from Mexico, Nicaragua, Cuba, and seven other countries. Other birds featured on A Guide to the Birdsong of Mexico, Central America & the Caribbean include the Zapata Wren from Cuba, the Thick-billed Parrot from Mexico, and the Keel-billed Motmot from Nicaragua. Do you want to help endangered birds?

2020 70

Never Say Never Again

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detente with Cuba perhaps a mixed blessing for the birds. If you’ve given up hope of ever seeing a Zapata Rail , this post is for you. And if (like me) you’ve never heard of the Zapata Rail before, this post is for you too. In either case, your chance to learn more about this super-secretive bird may be in the offing, as scientists recently discovered a Zapata Rail nest after more than 40 years with no sightings.

2015 71

Birds of the West Indies by Kirwan, Levesque, Oberle & Sharpe

10,000 Birds

As an homage, a contemporary edition of the Bond’s field guide Birds of the West Indies was featured in the twentieth 007 film, Die Another Day (2002), where Bond (Pierce Brosnan) in Cuba poses as an ornithologist. The first author, Guy Kirwan, is a freelance editor and ornithologist, and a regular visitor to the West Indies since the early 1990s, who is currently finalizing a detailed checklist of the birds of Cuba. Or How a Serbian Suave Playboy Promoted Birding the Caribbean.

2019 67

But…It’s a Canada Goose?

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Luis Gonzalez is a Miami resident and IT major who was originally born and raised in Cuba. His only birding regret was not starting sooner while he was still in Cuba and his final goal is to be able to bird at least once on every continent of the world, although he is mostly a Florida birder.

Clapper and King rails may represent four or five species

10,000 Birds

Their taxonomic status long has been unclear due to their overall similarity and the fact that in eastern North America and Cuba, they hybridize. King Rails occur widely in eastern North America, in eastern and central Mexico, and in Cuba. Rallus elegans , which would presumably keep the name King Rail and would include the subspecies elegans of eastern North America and ramsdeni of Cuba. Clapper and King rails ( Rallus longirostris and R.

2013 83

Where America dreams of/goes birding?

10,000 Birds

Some of those “statistical errors” came as surprises to me, e.g. Cuba, Bolivia, Uganda, Sri Lanka, Thailand (this is also a clear message to their tourism boards to invest more into promoting avitourism). I had no intention of making a questionnaire or analysing the results. I was just curious what the US birders dream about, so I posted a question in the ABA’s FB group: a) what are the most popular foreign destinations and b) where would you go with unlimited funds?

2019 70

Birding Acapulco

10,000 Birds

Cuba (twice), South America (twice), Europe and Morocco (once) and Bali (once). During the period from 1994 through 2006, I mostly dedicated myself to itinerant ministry. In other words, I travelled, sometimes every weekend. Most of this travel was in Mexico, but I also visited different regions of the U.S., But here is the truly tragic part: I was not birding during those years! I can only imagine what my life list would be like now, if I had.

2020 55

The Swallow-tailed Kites in Florida Are Now Heading South…

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Similar observation have been made in Cuba and the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico where up to 47,000 migrating Mississippi Kites are counted every season as they fly south. Kites generally fly to Cuba and then over the ocean to arrive in the Yucatan Peninsula or areas further south. I am sure you know how it goes…when you are a birder, your friends (non-birders) will tell bird stories, anecdotes or ask questions about birds they have seen.

2013 83

Savannah Sparrows on Breeding Territory

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Savannah Sparrows breed across the northern United States and most of Canada and Alaska and winter as far south as northern Central America and Cuba. Savannah Sparrows have been very kind to me over the last couple of years, whether at Brigantine , Breezy Point , or Lake Perris. Passerculus sandwichensis just seems willing to be confiding, a trait about which I certainly can’t imagine complaining.

Gray Kingbird: An Awesome Parking Lot Bird

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Populations in the eastern part of its range, including the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and the Lesser Antilles are resident while those in the western part of its range such as Florida, Cuba, Jamaica, and the Bahamas are migratory. Parking lots in Miami-Dade county offer a mostly standard assortment of birds compared to the rest of the United States.

2014 81

The Razorbill Invasion of Florida

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As the storm was pulled northward across Cuba and the Bahamas, it began to temporarily weaken, lose convection, and suffer from dry air intrusion before it began interacting with an incoming trough. Perhaps more due to being underbirded, there have been no reports of Razorbills from Cuba or the Bahamas (both would be first national records). Razorbills ( Alca torda ) have invaded the coastal waters of Florida on an unprecedented scale this December of 2012.

Bufflehead in Maine and Florida

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They breed in Canada and Alaska, but in the summer they can be found across the United States, as far south as Florida, Cuba, and into Mexico, and as far north as the Pacific coast of Alaska and the Atlantic coast of Maine. Within one week, I saw Bufflehead over 1,200 miles apart, first in Maine, and then along the Florida Panhandle. For my post this week, I wanted to take a moment to marvel at the impressive range of this super cool species.

Rev. Bachman’s Lost Warbler

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It’s not known for sure whether the entirety of the population of the species always wintered on the island of Cuba but by the time people cared enough to find out that’s where they were going. By about 1940, reports began to come saddled with the depressing qualification “last certain” From Cuba in 1940. Rightly or wrongly, there’s an hierarchy of extinct birds in North America, in the United States in particular.

2014 68

The Whistle Blowers

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They are found in the Bahamas, Cuba, the Cayman Islands, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, the Turks and Caicos, Antigua, Barbuda and Jamaica. Working Group committees have been established in island countries where the duck is still present, namely the Bahamas, Cuba, Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Antigua/Barbuda and Turks and Caicos Islands, as well as other islands concerned about wetlands education and protection.

The Endangered Florida Bonneted Bat

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The Florida Bonneted was initially regarded as a subspecies of the widespread Bonneted Bat ( Eumops glaucinus glaucinus ), which ranges in Cuba, Jamaica, and Peninsular Florida. You may not have heard about the Florida Bonneted Bat (Eumops floridanus) , and that is fine, not many know this bat even existed. This bat is rare and range-restricted in South Florida, which are some of the reasons it was recently listed as an endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

Bats 59

But What Do Flamingos Mean?

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Flamingos represented Vegas and Miami and pre-Castro Cuba. Why can’t I shut up about this? In 1999, a woman named Jennifer Price published a fascinating — if since largely forgotten — book called Flight Maps. Flight Maps was a collection of essays about the interactions between culture and nature in the U.S., and the most memorable part of the book, the section that inspired the cover art, was the essay “A Brief Natural History of the Pink Flamingo.”

2012 59

Extinction Week Recap

10,000 Birds

The Lost Macaw of Cuba. Extinction endures long past regret or even memory. We nature lovers, celebrants of life in all its exquisite multiformity, feel more keenly than most the loss of even the most undifferentiated species. We miss them all: the parrots, the pigeons, the moas and titan-hawks and stilt-owls and myriads of endlessly exotic avifauna we will never ever know again as they were when they graced this Earth. How many have we lost, have we never even known?

2014 69

My Top Ten Birds of 2016

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Cuban Vireo is a bird I would never have expected to see unless I went to Cuba and I went and got one on the cheap! The year 2016 has been a pretty good year. I opened the year in California and even though I flew out in the evening on New Year’s Day I did see some species out there that I would otherwise not have seen for the year. Winter birding around New York City was just so-so but I did add one species to my Queens list.

2016 61

Jamaica Birding Trip 2013 Part 1

10,000 Birds

Many of the Caribbean islands (except Cuba and Hispaniola) make for ideal, quick birding trips where one can see all the endemics and Caribbean specialties at a leisurely pace — usually, with extra spare time to explore historic cities such as old San Juan in Puerto Rico or lounge on beautiful beaches such as Frenchman’s Cove in Jamaica.

2013 70

Potpourri of Amazing Bird Science

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The storm, which spawned more than 80 tornadoes across the US and killed 35 people, was 900km away when the birds, apparently acting independently of one another, fled south, with one bird embarking on a 1,500km flight to Cuba before making the return trip once the storm had passed. I was going to have something for you this month about the dinosaur-bird thing, but I never got to it. The gallery at Analiese Miller’s site with her Sax Zim shots.

Hang your hammock in the hummingbird family tree

10,000 Birds

Ringer Bees Bees are small to very small hummingbirds, including Cuba’s Bee Hummingbird , the smallest bird in the world at about 2 inches long and weighing less than a dime (!).

Winter Wood-Warblers in Southeast Florida

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Black-and-white Warbler by Carlos Sanchez With the northern Bahamas just to the east and Cuba just to the south, southeast Florida biogeographically sits on the northern edge of the Caribbean and so the wintering wood-warbler species are mostly those typically found further south in the islands. Carlos Sanchez is an excellent birder, a Miami resident, and a polyglot.

Peterson Reference Guide to Owls of North America and the Caribbean: A Book Review by a Lover of Parliaments

10,000 Birds

Mexico, Bermuda, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Cuba, and other islands that make up the Greater and Lesser Antilles. Here are some things I’ve learned from the Peterson Reference Guide to Owls of North America and the Caribbean by Scott Weidensaul: The Burrowing Owl is the only North American owl species where the male is larger than the female, albeit, only slightly larger. And the term is ‘non-reversed size dimorphism.’). ’).

2015 81

Birding Maricao, Puerto Rico

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Sadly, as we drove to Maricao I started getting a pretty bad sinus headache that, by the time we reached the picnic area that Kirwin, Kirkconnel, and Flieg recommend as the best spot to find Elfin-woods Warbler in their great book, A Birdwatcher’s Guide to Cuba, Jamaica, Hispaniola, and the Caymans , was causing me serious pain. Though it’s been over a month since Mike and I returned from Puerto Rico my blogging about the trip has been sadly lacking.

Come@Me: Don’t Mourn for Extinct Birds

10,000 Birds

Bachman’s Warblers were seen so infrequently that they are probably known more for being extinct than as an integral part of the ecology of the southern United States and Cuba, but it would be interesting to still have them around. It was the Pink Pigeons (Nesoenas mayeri) that got me thinking. Pink Pigeons were featured on episode four of the second season of The Zoo , the excellent television series about The Bronx Zoo,* and their story was disturbing.

2018 43

The Case for Adding the U.S. Territories in the Caribbean to the ABA Area

10,000 Birds

Indeed, Puerto Rico is second only to the much larger Cuba in terms of bird species in the West Indies. I recently asked whether Puerto Rico should be part of the American Birding Association’s ABA Area. That post led to a spirited discussion on the ABA Facebook page. I will suggest an answer to the question: this post makes the argument that both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands should be added to the ABA Area. # # #.

2017 66

The Kirtland’s Warbler: The Story of a Bird’s Fight Against Extinction and the People Who Saved It: A Book Review

10,000 Birds

I say this not only because he is president of the Grosse Pointe Audubon Society and because his official bio says he “has traveled across North America and to Cuba, Iceland, and Thailand to view and research birds”. What do you say when someone tells you they will be spending the summer in the Lower Michigan Peninsula? If you are a birder, you say “Kirtland’s Warbler!” likely scaring the poor non-birder telling you her vacation plans.

2012 82

Best Bird of the Weekend (First of July 2016)

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My holiday weekend festivities included pointing out common yet charismatic Cedar Waxwings all weekend to friends in Cuba, NY; everyone loves those little charmers. Every moment of leisure implies a celebration of freedom. The ability to relax, enjoy time with friends and family, travel, watch birds, or indulge in any expression of recreation derives from liberty from oppression few of us really understand.

2016 40

National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America, 7th Edition: A Field Guide Review

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In the interests of disclosure, I had the pleasure of being part of a Wings tour to Cuba led by Jon Dunn earlier this year, which gave me the advantage of hearing about the work he put into this and past volumes and about how the timing of this volume was just missing final decisions on the newest AOU taxonomic supplement. October 23 2017: I read the text message confirming that there is indeed a Common Greenshank at Edwin B. Forsythe NWR.

2017 63

Collaborative List – April 2017

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Donna is still recovering after a speed-reading accident, but has shared some more wonderful birds from her Cuba trip that will retrospectively be added to the March totals. It worked! After last month’s chastisement for shying away from the share button, Mike has come good. Humiliating him in front of his public had a far more productive effect than I could have hoped for in fact, as he upped and took himself off to Panama in an attempt to appease the compiler.

2017 40

Twenty Hummingbirds To See Before You Die

10,000 Birds

Found only in Cuba and weighing in at a whopping 1.8 You are wandering through a tropical rainforest. It is late morning and the humidity seems to rise with every step. Life is crawling, buzzing, slithering, climbing, burrowing all around you. Brightly-colored poison dart frogs light up the dark undergrowth like mobile glow-sticks. Fantastic caterpillars, otherworldly insects, ghoulish spiders, tiny scattering creatures. All aspects of nature fascinate you. But you are here for the birds.

2011 87

Collaborative List – August 2017

10,000 Birds

9 beats, birded 9 countries this month; Belize , Guatamala , Costa Rica, UK, Iran, USA, Greece, Australia and Mexico. They submitted 144 checklists, noting 628 species adding 72 to the year’s running total bringing it to 1890. The western hemisphere’s pasting last year has been reversed as it currently out-scores the eastern hemisphere by 1210 to 746. This month dealt a humiliating blow to us easterners as we went down 537 to 105. Come on the Orientals, we are still in this!

2017 40