Saturday, 16 April 2016

Birding Around Riu Palace, Guanacaste, Costa Rica

So just back from a family holiday to Costa Rica, Staying at the Riu Palace in the Guanacaste province, situated in the north west of the country on the pacific coast.

Couldn't fault the hotel, fantastic food, great service and very clean and the best part for me - very birdy........

Will start my first post with the common birds seen around the hotel grounds before venturing in the nearby dry forest.

Our room had a garden view opposed to a sea view, this resulted in me getting the best out of the birding and quickly got my eye in to pick out the different species amongst the more regulars.

Great-tailed grackles are the obvious and common birds making plenty of noise around the gardens, followed by Melodious blackbirds, both Great Kiskadee and Tropical Kingbirds which are both busy flycatching as the morning warms up.  Similar colour to the Kiskadee but a fair size smaller are the Social flycatchers which as there name suggests can be in small flocks of 3 or 4.

White-winged doves are very common as well as the smart Inca dove.  Hummingbirds are constantly buzzing around but after the first few days ID ing them becomes easier!!

Hurrundines were abundant especially in my second week where there was a big push of birds heading north, mostly Barn Swallows but the eagle eyed will pick out Cliff, Mangrove, Tree swallow, gray-breasted and Purple martin + Bank swallow.

Yellow and Tennessee warblers were common, Hoffman's woodpecker, Black-headed Trogon and Turquoise-browed Motmots are regular on the south west side of the complex.

Rufous-napped wrens can be seen in small groups as are both Baltimore and Streak-backed orioles.

Black and Turkey Vultures are a constant sight above the hotel as are Magnificent Frigatebirds.

Tropical kingbird

Social flycatcher

Hoffmanns woodpecker

Great-tailed grackle

Black-headed trogon 

Turquoise-browed motmot

Yellow Warbler

Great Kiskadee

Streak-backed oriole

Gray-breasted Martin

Rufous-napped wren


  1. some nice images there Paul

  2. Just up to around 35 species around the hotel and have high hopes for Palo Verde tomorrow

  3. Lovely photos and very useful info before my trip next week.

    Many thanks