|View from our apartment|
A walk in the local park on Saturday produced many common birds, some of which are the same as in Calgary – Rock Pigeon, European Starling, House Wren and the ubiquitous House Sparrow; some which make it to the southern U.S. – Neotropic Cormorant, Snowy Egret, Kiskadee and Monk Parakeet; some are southern cousins of North American birds – Chalk-browed Mockingbird,Rufous-bellied Thrush; and some which common throughout South America – Rufous-Collared Sparrow, Eared Dove, Rufous Hornero.
|Tango - we just learned this step so perhaps Barb needs a dress like this!|
Buenos Aires has a well know ecological reserve – reserva ecologica Costanera Sur – which is just a half hour walk from the city centre. I had visited it over 10 years ago while on a business trip and remembered it as a fantastic place. However, it has been very dry in Buenos Aires the past few years and the lagoons have all dried up! Still, there is a lot of good habitat but one has to work a lot harder to see the birds. To compound problems, the reserve doesn’t open until 8 a.m. which is about an hour and a half after sunrise. I went to the reserve on Tuesday and by 10 a.m. it was too hot for me and the birds. Some of the birds I saw were Green-barred Woodpecker, Streaked Flycatcher, Hooded Siskin, Saffron Finch, and Double-collared Seedeater. I had one lifer in the reserve – a Golden-billed Saltator. I also found my first mammal of the trip but am not sure what is was. I asked a man who was watching it and he called it a “Cu-ee”. This is a medium-sized rodent with prominent (but not large) ears and no apparent tail. I was just about to take a photo when a jogger ran by and the animal scurried into the bushes.
|Palo Barracho trees|
|Trash birds! Monk Parakeets|
I have made contact with a local birder and, in the coming week, I am hoping to venture a little further afield. Maybe I’ll have some uncommon birds to show you in the next post!