Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Agami Heron Sighting!

Canal Bird Survey news this week comes from five week volunteer Johannah Reed, who was lucky enough to be on the GVI Jalova canoe Luisa when her team spotted the rare Agami Heron (Agamia agami), see photo .

There are normally three bird surveys conducted each week but because the main boat had an engine problem at the beginning of the week, we did our only bird survey this morning. The weather was particularly nice, but the overgrown vegetation on Sierpe Viejo was definitely not the easiest to paddle through. It took a lot of effort and man power to make it through the canal, but it was totally worth it. We saw 39 birds on our survey from 12 different species. I always love watching the Northern Jacanas hopping about in the vegetation and we had the opportunity to see a bunch today including some juveniles. We also saw various kingfisher and herons but the most exciting and unique part of this bird survey was seeing two Agami Herons. Agami Herons are rare in these canals and it was a real treat to see two juvenile ones perched on a branch in clear view. We stayed for twenty minutes in the same spot just watching them and taking many pictures. Our survey leader, Jon, told us that he had seen only two other Agami Herons in these canals since January so this was a rare occurrence for him as well. We were all reluctant to leave but we had to begin our journey back up the canal to finish our survey. Seeing such beautiful and rare birds in these canals was an awesome experience that I will definitely take home as a cherished memory. Johannah Reed