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Global Big Day 2019:  May 04 —-   Nature enthusiasts look forward to the annual Global Big Day, where birders around the world document the bird species in their area.  Cornel Lab/Ebird hosts this event, and the bird-sighting information helps scientists track changes in the birds’ habits and numbers.

P1880613 2 brown wood rails eating bananas may 7 6 pm small file

The elusive Brown Wood Rail – 2018 – Parent (with yellow bill) teaches the juvenile how to select the perfect banana!

I’ve noted a great change in the most-common birds near my house since last year’s bird census.   The  carambolas, plantains and oranges – favorite fruits for the Barbets, Motmots and Caciques – often go untouched until they eventually drop to the ground.

P1920615 two scarlet rumped caciques eating oranges

2018 – Scarlet-rumped Caciques. Oranges, Starfruit or Bananas? (They prefer the oranges!)

scene P1540873 SCARLET RUMPED CACIQUE

Where oh where have the caciques gone?

P2020024 july 2 5'30 til 6 whooping motmot

July 2 2018 – Whooping Motmot

P2190014 whooping motmots small file

October 2018 – Lovely Garden Ornaments

P2580063 BLACK CHEEKED WOODPECKER DETAILS

The Black-cheeked Woodpecker continues to drop in for banana feasts.

P2580050 BLACK CHEEKED WOODPECKER

At times the fruit feeder remains untouched, and the ripe plantains rot.   After last year’s abundance of birds at the feeder, this year brings a sobering concern about the changes.

P1470747 ORANGE FRONTED BARBET Y BANANA Personality

2018 – Orange-fronted Barbet

The butterflies, however, enjoy their now-private fruit feasts.

P2510750 how many butterfilesP2510484 few birds but lots of butterflies

P2510589 orange butterflies

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While marveling at the beauty in front of our eyes, we often forget the ones that are absent.  This happened when I was searching for Seedeaters and Grassquits, but I overlooked the absence of the Scarlet-rumped Caciques, the Orange-fronted Barbets and the Whooping Motmots.  The Snail Kites no longer dotted the treetops.   Are their numbers dwindling, or have they moved – and if so, why?  Devoting one day to study the local birds might help decipher these mysteries, especially when scientists compare data from around the globe.

Below are a few birds that have recently dropped in for a photo op:

P2560661 scarlet backed woodpecker

Scarlet-backed Woodpecker

P2570510 rufous browed peppershrike

Rufous-browed Peppershrike

P2580077 FEMALE ORANGE FRONTED BARBET

Yay-yay-yay!!!!  Orange-fronted Barbet

P2580334 GREAT ANTSHRIKE MALE W INSECT poza honda ecuador cropped

Great Antshrike (Male)

P1960684 yellow tailed oriole

Yellow-tailed Oriole

 

P2530532 between rains ONE OF TWO PERUVIAN PYGMY OWLS poza honda ecuador

Peruvian Pygmy Owl – Between Rains

Take a timeout on Saturday May 4 and spend time with your feathered neighbors.  If possible, share your sightings with eBird.