Bird Watching

Costa Rica has an abundance of birds of spectacular diversity. And none is more famous than the vibrantly-colored quetzal, inhabiting the Monteverde Cloud Forest in the north-central region, and San Gerardo de Dota in the south. Scarlet macaws, toucans and countless other exotic species can be found in the mid-Pacific region's Carara Wildlife Reserve and the secluded Corcovado National Park. Visitor's interested in covering a lot of ground at once should visit La Selva Biological Station. Located in the Caribbean lowlands of Sarapiquí, it is believed that this bird watcher's paradise contains half of the country's bird species. Those interested in migratory birds may want to check out Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge and Palo Verde National Park, both located in the north.

Variety

Location

Best Season for Viewing

Special Information

Black Guan

 

Monteverde

 

All year

   

Blue-crowned Motmot

 

Central Valley, South Pacific slope below 1,800m

 

All year

 

Found in the suburbs of San José

Cerise-throated Hummingbird

 

Poas Barba

 

All year

   

Chestnut-mandibled Toucan

 

Forests of Caribbean and South Pacific below 1,000m

 

All year

   

Collared Redstart

 

Highlands above 2,000m

 

Mar-May

  Sings during this period
Double-striped Thick-knee  

Palo Verde

 

All year

   
Great Curassow  

Corcovado

 

All year

 

Populations being greatly reduced by hunting

Jabaru

 

Marshes of Guanacaste

 

Early day; Jan-Apr

   

Laughing Falcon

 

Wooded lowlands of both coasts

 

All year

   

Masked Tityra

 

Wooded regions below 1,200m

 

Feb-Jul

   

Montezuma Oropendola

 

Caribbean lowlands and slope

 

All year

   

Purple-crowned Fairy Hummingbird

 

Widely distributed below 1,000m

 

All year

   

Quetzal, Resplendent

 

Monteverde, Cerro de la Muerte, Barba Volcano

 

Jan-Jun

 

Calling: Mar-Jun

Scarlet Macaw

 

Corcovado, Palo Verde, Santa Rosa

 

All year

 

Populations are being greatly reduced because of the cutting of nesting trees

Scarlet-rumped Tanager

 

Clearings, Caribbean and South Pacific below 1,200m

 

All year

   

Silvery-fronted Tapaculo

 

Monteverde

 

All year

   

Snow cap

 

Finca la Selva

 

Jan-Apr

   

Squirrel Cuckoo

 

Widely distributed below 1,500m

 

All year

   

Sun Bittern

 

Tortuguero, La Selva, Monteverde

 

All year

 

Along stream banks, very difficult to find

Three-wattled Bellbird

 

Monteverde, Cerro de la Muerte, highland forests

 

All year

 

Mar. Aug. best viewing; calls all year, migrates to coasts, high in trees

Torrent Tyrannulet

 

Mountain torrents, both slopes

 

All year

   

Volcano Junco

 

Highest summits, Irazu

 

All year

   

White-throated Magpie Jay

 

Guanacaste, Northern Puntarenas

 

All year

   

Wren-thrush

 

Monteverde, Cerro de la Muerte

 

All year

   

Yellow-billed Coringa

 

Corcovado

 

All year

 

Mangrove estuaries and adjacent forests

             

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