Catching early spring in Honduras

Published 9:44am Monday, May 13, 2013

Wood Thrush and Gray Catbird feed in the open and often come to the fruit that is put out on the bird feeders; Hooded Warblers are common around the grounds and are readily seen in the trail as we go from our rooms to the reception, or in our case, the dining room. It’s a real pleasure to see these brightly colored birds feeding out in the open when we are so used to seeing them skulking deep in the vegetation of our mountain forests. Other wintering warblers are common around the property, including American Redstart, back-and-white, Magnolia and Chestnut-sided Warblers and even Ovenbird. Yellow-bellied Flycatchers call from the understory and Summer Tanagers give their distinctive notes from vine tangles and treetops.

It’s wonderful to see how common many of these birds are down here in the Honduran forests, but even here their forest habitats are surrounded by a sea of oil palm, banana and sugar cane plantations- poor habitats for any species of bird to attempt to stay alive. It’s a depressing sight to see local forests being axed to make room for yet more plantations of foreign trees with all of the revenues from the crops heading straight out of the country. Thankfully Honduras has a great selection of national parks with Pico Bonito Lodge snuggled right into it allowing wildlife to cross from one property to the other.

To stay at this lodge was a real honor and we all had an amazing week of great birding- I will see you all in the spring, along with many of our migrant birds.

Simon Thompson has lived in WNC for the past 20 years. He owns and operates his own birding tour company, Ventures Birding Tours. www.birdventures.com

He and Chris also own and operate the Asheville Wild Birds Unlimited Store. For more information on any of the birding activities in the area, drop by the store or check his website at www.asheville.wbu.com 

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