Monday, 7 May 2012

Tortuguera NP, NE Costa Rica, April 2012

Getting to Tortuguero involves 2hrs e/w on a coach on an unsealed road- a free massage is the best way to look at it.  Then another 2hrs e/w by long speed boats to Tortuguero village and we stayed in Mawamba Lodge which looked amazing but was just ok underneath it all.  There were a good few species around and the Caribbean was only 50 metres away.  This 25mile stretch of beach sees the annual return of 4 turtle species (Loggerhead, green, hawksbill and leatherback) and draws in thousands of tourists during those seasons.  We were only there for 2 nights and didn't get to see any but there was beer.  Apparently green turtles were starting to arrive.  
The boat journey in produced: Roseate Spoonbill, Tricoloured Heron, Spotted Sands, Royal Tern, Green Ibis, Little Blue Heron, Magnificent Frigatebird, Anhinga, Neotropical Cormorant whilst around the grounds there were Grey-necked Wood Rail, Summer Tanager, Red-eyed Vireo, Yellow Warbler, a few Swainson, Lesser Greenlet, Brown Pelican, Ringed and Green Kingfishers.  The next morning boat ride along the fresh water river networks followed the palm forests and produced several Boat-billed Heron, Great White Egret, Mealy Parrot, Chestnut-mandibled and Keel-billed Toucan, Collared Aracari, Common Black Hawk, Olive-backed Euphonia, Laughing Falcon, Northern Jacana, a bonus Limpkin and Slatey-tailed Trogon were logged.
Other bits seen inc: Green Iguana, Basilisk/JC Lizards, Long-nosed Bat, Brown Vine Snake, Caiman, Black River Turtle, Mantled Howler (Monkey), Three-toed Sloth, White-headed Capuchin and Neotropic River Otter.

A walk along the beach in the evening produced 2 Sanderling and 2 Black-bellied Plover/Grey Plover.  The boat out produced more herons inc a few Great-blue.   

 Roseates and the Caribbean looking south

 About everything you need in life above: 
Tricoloured below:

 Grey-necked Wood Rail in the rubbish
Ringed Kingfisher below:

 Anhinga and GWE

 Northern Jacana

 Green Kingfisher and Boat-billed Heron

 Black River Turtle with a JC Lizard hitching a ride!

 Eastern Wood Pewee and Bare-throated Tiger Heron
 Common Tody-flycatcher

If you want any further info on the trip please get in touch:


  1. Brilliant stuff Rob! Glad your trip went well. Glad you saw so many species but that little selfish part of me is quite glad you didn't see anything at Tortuguero that I didn't see whilst I was there!! :0) Limpkin is very good for there though (Only something like 4 seen in the whole of 2010 by us at GVI).
    BTW that view along the beach is very familiar except I was 15 miles south looking back north!!
    Look forward to catching up with when I'm back from Scotland in the Autumn.
    Oh yeah and Congratulations too!!!
    Jonathan G

  2. Superb Rob! Glad you had a great trip!