Counting Birds In Costa Ballena
Text and photos by Jack Ewing
Why is bird watching such a popular activity?
I believe the answer lies in the great diversity of birds, not only in the number of species -- around 9800 worldwide -- but also in diversity of habitat, being found in places as different as the polar caps, tropical rain forests, and even the very center of large cities.
Their diversity in appearance is equally extreme: some colorful, others drab, and some so well camouflaged as to be nearly invisible.
Some are melodious, some obnoxious, and others mute. Some soar, others fl like stunt planes, and some are flightless.
And, their sizes range from that of the tiniest humming bird, only slightly larger than a bumble bee and weighing no more than a couple of paper clips (1.95 gm,) to the enormous Andean Condor with a wing span upwards of 3 meters and a weight of over 13 kg.
Birds, in all their extremes, are fascinating, and, for that reason, bird watching has become a very popular activity all over the world, and especially in Costa Ballena.
For over a century, the American Audubon Society has diligently gathered, organized, and disseminated information about birds. One of the best-known activities of the society is the Christmas Bird Count (CBC) which monitors bird species in many locations throughout the Americas, from Alaska to Argentina. In Costa Rica, there are six count areas.
In the past ten years our area, the Fila Costeña, has participated in six CBCs and identified more than 425 species of birds between the coast and the Tinamastes ridge.
INFO: Jack Ewing – Hacienda barú