Birds So Far

Here is the list again of birds I saw within just a few days of arrival at Valdivia,Chile, to save you having to refer back to that earlier posting.

Southern Lapwings
Chilean Seaside Cinclodes
Ringed Kingfisher,
Green Backed Firecrown hummingbird (known locally as Picaflor Chico)
Austral Parakeet
Lesser Yellowlegs (finally a familiar bird)
Chimango Caracaras
Turkey Vulture
Black Necked Swans
Black Faced Ibises
Cocoi (White Necked) Heron -sure looked like a GBH to me
Snowy Egret
Cattle Egrets
Neotropic Cormorant or Yeco
Great Grebe or Huala

Here is a list of birds that I saw on a trip to Villarrica and Pucon.

California Quail

Cinclodes – either Dark Bellied or Gray-Flanked

Plumbeous Rail

Long-Tailed Meadow-Lark

Parakeet -either Austral or Slender-billed

Fire-eyed Diucon

Tufted Tit-Tyrant (it’s true)

White-Browed Ground Tyrant

Austral Thrush

Magellanic Woodpecker         ( even bigger and more flamboyant than a Pileated Woodpecker) – we saw this bird in an                                                                  Aurucaria forest (Monkeypuzzle trees) at sub alpine in Parque Huerquehue)

Chilean Flicker

And here is the latest list from a kayak paddling outing this afternoon up a small side estuary from the Rio Valdivia.

I think that this whole marsh area was formed by the 9.5 earthquake here in 1960. Still evidence of drowned forest. This was and still is the most powerful earthquake EVER recorded.

The marsh area is dominated by rush and tule (scirpus).

Austral Cowbird

White-Winged Coot

Cinnamon Teal

Cocoi Heron (again)

Great Egret

Red-Legged Cormorant

Many-Coloured Rush Tyrant – which made my day.

Well , I considered copying photos of  these birds found online but that would entail a lot more time on the internet.

I do take some photos of birds but the outcome is hilarious (maximum zoom in poor light from a kayak with a point and shoot camera). Not worth it , even for the record.

There are lots of photos on the web of all of these birds.

It is so easy to find humour in birdwatching that I won’t even bother.

NO Photos Yet

“It never happened if you don’t post the photos”
I read that somewhere , on a skiing site.

Meredith is busy editing videos. They are really cool. The highlights are going to be ,for me , footage of our mid-ocean rendezvous with ‘Bobbie’.
Another good one will be the ‘windy’ ones. It is really blowing hard , but it doesn’t show well. Unless you look carefully and you can see the odd wave top being blown away to leeward.
The short segment where we are putting out the Series Drogue is pure documentary, which is very exciting for me.
These vids will be on Meredith’s linked site soon.

Meantime , back at the river ,for the first time EVER I have pretty reliable wifi connection on the boat (courtesy of an unknown homeowner a few hundred metres away – Thanks!) , most of the time , with plenty of electrical power (I bought a 220v to 110 v transformer from Lucas on ‘Lambada’), and time to spend online.
That means that soon I will post my photos from Mexico to Chile. A lot of sailing in the open ocean and a few of the Galapagos and Easter Island.

I had a skype session with daughter Susan (and Sarah R.) who was at the house in Courtenay just before she returns to UBC for Spring session.
Makes you want to wander outside in the middle of the night and look up at the stars and wonder if there really is a dog.

Also I went to Facebook.
Well, here I learned that Gavin has a job at Crown Isle Golf Course – yahoo!

I also learned that I have 28 friends which made Meredith laugh. Especially when 24 of them are family members. People like Ron Q and Haidan S are ‘real’ friends , at least on facebook.
But Chris M approved of my new profile photo. Actually I think she approved of the ‘living on the river’ comment , but I will take it as tacit approval of my new photo. The skiing photo is nice but kind of yesterday.
The new photo looks a lot like me, but there’s no way its me. Dork hat , headphones , headlamp , spectacles – no way.

I went to Valdivia by bus(400 pesos or about 90 cents) and had fried Sierra mackerel, potatoes , and an Escudo beer for about $5.
I looked into the bus to Santiago in a few days – it takes 11 hrs, has comfortable reclining seats on the 2nd floor , serves meals and costs about $20. I am going to take the night bus, so this will be a job for Zopiclone (1/4 tab , thanks,Jack).

On return to Marina Estancilla the sun was warm so I launched the kayak and paddled for a couple of hours around Isla San Francisco. Lots of birds in the calm backwaters.

Southern Lapwings
Chilean Seaside Cinclodes
Ringed Kingfisher,
Green Backed Firecrown hummingbird (known locally as Picaflor Chico)
Austral Parakeet
Lesser Yellowlegs (finally a familiar bird)
Chimango Caracaras
Turkey Vulture
Black Necked Swans
Black Faced Ibises
Cocoi (White Necked) Heron -sure looked like a GBH to me
Snowy Egret
Cattle Egrets
Neotropic Cormorant or Yeco
Great Grebe or Huala
And what about the trees and shrubs ? They are all different.

Carnero del Cabo

“Carnero del Cabo”

Translated this means Cape Ram (as in male sheep). This is the Wandering Albatross , Diomedea Exulans.

We saw some today.

Longest wingspan of any bird. It looked at us at it sailed directly at us. This is a grand bird of consequence.

I saw Wandering Albatrosses for the first time in 1974 , on the way from New Zealand to the Cook Islands. Thirty-seven years later I see them again. I wrote a paper on Dynamic Soaring in Albatrosses for first year Biology at UBC. Sitting down in the dusty stacks of the main library reading obscure articles in obscure journals about Albatross soaring , some of the volumes had never been cracked. Obscure fun.

I was impressed then and I was impressed today. They made the Buller’s Albatrosses (or ? Gray- Headed) look diminutive.

Albatrosses apparently view the equatorial calms like we might view a mountain range or a desert – a difficult barrier. They don’t cross. They eat when they swim on the sea surface at night.

Lots of petrels , shearwaters.

We sail on into the southern ocean night.

38 28 S and 83 21W sailing 100 T at 6 k. Wind SW 18 knots. Baro 1025 down 1 mb in 3 hrs.