Parque las Vegas/Portoviejo/Manabi Province/Ecuador
Feb. 2, 2022 02/02/2022 – a lovely number!
New Moon. New Month. New Chinese Year of the Tiger.
Bravery. Wisdom. Strength.
All of these traits are important to moving forward, being stronger, having the courage to believe in yourself – and your own unique destiny. Trying to stay neutral and centered – being on the offensive so that you’re not in the defensive.
Sometimes we can be brave, wise and strong – and still be caught off guard. Like a tiger pouncing from a concealed location, our planet continues to express distress. Maybe it’s not premeditated – our earth’s wrath, but an involuntary reaction to its own pain. The headlines from Quito illustrate that point:
The month started with disasters that stretched around the world.
With so much misery, and two years with a virus that seems to stay one step ahead of mankind, it’s sometimes hard to share sunny stories – yet without hope for positive, we would all wither.
Parque las Vegas celebrates its four year anniversary. A token phoenix that emerged from 2016’s 7.8 earthquake, the park now offers a solace for healing and reflection.
Today it also gives us an extra bonus for observing World Wetlands Day. The area along Rio Portoviejo and the little pond give the visitors an easy glimpse into natural wetland habitats – and the birds are thriving!
One or two Striated Herons lurk in the shadows most every day.
They have their own watcher or three:
Yes, we should take a moment to appreciate our wetlands, even little postage-stamped sized ponds can provide easy refuge to many species.
Recently another symbol of hope stepped into the scene while I admired the species from the bridge. Arturo, a student of ambiente at the nearby university sidled up to me and asked, “Is it bad to feed rice to the birds?”
His question led to a rewarding conversation, and he told me that he’d seen me from the family’s upstairs window, which overlooked the park. Then he described a bird that visits, which we concluded was that stunning yellow and black cacique pictured above. I think that they plan to put a banana feeder outside their window – a great upgrade from giving rice to the finches and gallinules! They might even ‘draw’ the nearby Whooping Motmot that lives in the neighborhood, but is not often seen. This image from Poza Honda inspired him:
What would we do without a connection with nature? We’d probably destroy the entire planet! Emotions can be passed along a current of invisible energy that flows from person to person through subtle and sometimes obvious ways.
In honor of World Wetlands Day – and in honor of PortoParque’s compassion for the wildlife that shares this park, I share some photos from my many visits to the park – a salvation for this child of nature.
There’s that yellow bird again!
To the joy of many, we watched the wetland areas recover from last year’s makeover, and there is abundant habitat for many species. The petite Yellow Warbler, a new species for the park, appears each day around 5 in the afternoon and flits between the grass, lower limbs and the cattails. How did this one lone bird find the park? Did it get lost from its group? Are others nearby, just not an extrovert like this one which stays in perpetual motion?
Six weeks after it first appeared, it’s yellow colors are emerging, and the streaks in its breast are more easily seen. Keb’s ‘City Boy’ continues to resonate while my base remains here in the city and close to the museum. Parque las Vegas provides an easy access to nature and almost total removal from the caustic sounds of the city. Without the park and its wetlands, this would be a more challenging chapter of my life.
I’ll leave you with a peek along the river, where one lone Sora appeared in January. With so much cover, it’s hard to locate that VIP visitor from the northern hemisphere.
Sending you all my love – of course there is a lot to share – hopefully more soon! I’d best get over to the park and show my appreciation for World Wetlands Day!