Sunday, February 13, 2011

¡Feliz dia de la amistad!

In Costa Rica and some other Spanish speaking countries, February 14th is celebrated as El dia del amor y la amistad or Day of love and friendship. I like that is has been broadened to be not just a day for sweethearts, but also a day for all friends.
  Here's a couple of friends I photographed in our yard yesterday: Blue-crowned motmots sitting on a sunny branch in our tree. I think they must nest nearby. They come and eat banana at our feeder, especially just at dusk and in the early morning. At dawn they make a soft and deep hoop-hoop call that gives them their name.
  While sitting still, they often slowly move their racket-tipped tail back and forth like the pendulum of a clock, earning them the nickname of pajaro reloj or clock bird. Another nicknames is bobo or fool because they are so trusting of humans. It doesn't seem to be a disadvantage to them because they are common in most parts of Costa Rica and have a range that includes Mexico, Peru and Argentina. They tend to sit still for long periods of time as they scan the area for prey such as large insects and small reptiles and amphibians.
  This species of motmot is one of my favorite birds. The iridescent head feathers and the shading from color to color are equally exquisite in both female and male. Because they are tame and sit still for long periods they are easy to see and photograph. Relatives of kingfishers, they dig long, winding burrows in the ground for their nests. The burrow can be 5 to 14 feet long (1.5-4 meters). Both parents feed their chicks.
They don't seem that foolish to me. ¡Feliz dia de amistad mis amigos!


Trudy said...

Remarkable bird! Wonderful photos, too. Hope you are having fun. First warmish day in a while up here..

Carolina said...

Thanks for your comment Trudy. Yes, we are having great fun. I took the first photo, Russ took the other two with his scope, but on different occasions.

Grand Purl Baa said...

Wow! They are exquisite. We get some pretty exotic looking feathered things on our verandah but there is always something magical in the new.

Carolina said...

They are a constant source of color inspiration.