We then wandered off down a side track, and managed to call in a black-crested antshrike - all the antshrikes are good looking birds, but the male of this species is pretty cool. Especially when feeding a female. The a rufous-tailed jacamar called off in the bushes on the side of the trail, and Kenny said 'Come on' as he bravely strode off through the mid-calf length grass... I had applied my new 'Deep Woods' strength repellent to all lower torso, sprayed my socks and lowers pant legs, and had my pants nerdily tucked into my socks...oh well here goes. To be honest there probably isn't a lot of real estate left on my lower half that isn't already blistered and red, so good luck to a chigger in finding a spot to gnaw on and digest my cellular contents! So off I went thinking this would be the ultimate test...of course as soon as the jacamar was in sight all worries about chiggers, snakes, and anything else went out the window and it was pure focus. Managed a few nice shots and got to see it catching a few insects in the air which was pretty cool, so I gingerly stepped back out onto the track, already feeling a little itchy as reality set in.
We headed back up towards the car, keeping eyes peeled, and checked out a few other places along the road, before it was time to start heading back towards Pax. We did see another grey hawk, and flushed a white hawk from the side of the road as well.
Back at Pax I anxiously showered, searching for new bites...what's this no new bites!!! The ultimate test had passed, perhaps the citronella and low rate deet repellent I had been using previously had been a mere taste of chilli to the meal, but it seems the 'Deep Woods' ahd survived the ultimate test. Yipeee! A quick lunch and then a nap, and then back to Caroni Swamp to watch the scarlet ibis coming in. I had done this on the last night with the ship, and it was fantastic, so I headed back there with a couple of others from Pax. This time we went out with Shawn from Madoo's Bird Tours and boy was that a good move. Shawn is another guide with unbelievable eyes and we had an awesome trip. We had four Cook's tree boas, a silky anteater (that the boat in front of us missed), and three common potoo! As well as this we had more species of birds than I got on the last trip, including a stonking male green-throated mango, great views of bicoloured conebill, and several more straight-billed woodcreeper. I did miss the northern scrub flycatcher though as was intent on the silky anteater...oh well. This time the little guy was curled up with has face towards us, so got a cute shot of him. We then headed for the main course, with the scarlet ibis heading in to roost, and again had a stunning display. I tried for some more artsy blurred shots, and not sure of the outcome. I kinda like them, but I guess the proof will be in the selling...
Anyway, as we headed back to the dock, the finale was a brief view of a lesser nighthawk as it flew out and over the channel we were heading down, nice! So if you are planning a trip to Caroni, the only group to go with is Madoo's. They really have the best guides and know the place like no one else.
|Cocoa woodcreeper...finally nailed him!|
|Green-backed trogon finally close enough to photograph|
|Rufous-tailed jacamar, worth the risk of more chiggers!|
|What a bill!|
|White hawk flushed from the side of the road|
|Little blue heron at the start of the Caroni trip|
|Straight-billed woodcreeper, a mangrove specialist|
|Mangrove crabs on the aerial roots of red mangrove|
|Cute as! Silky anteater curled in the mangroves|
|Cook's tree boa also curled|
|Common potoo, a very well camouflaged bird and Sean found us three of them|
|The stars of the show, literally|
|Coming in to roost|
|Getting artsy, does it work?|
|Shawn with the sun hitting the clouds as it goes down|
|Sunset as a flock of ibis approach|