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VCHT Bird Walk - December 20, 2023

12 birders met on the Malecon across the street from the Trust in Esperanza for the first of the season VCHT Bird Walk. We introduced ourselves, explained the route, set up the scope, and found our first bird, a Royal Tern resting on a buoy.


Our first stop was at the wetland under the Towers just outside town. Our first sighting was 2 Red Tailed Hawks perched on the tower wires. In the wet areas beneath the tower we had distant, but good scope views of 1 Western Cattle Egret, 2 Spotted Sandpipers, 1 Great Egret and 1 Green Heron. We also watched 2 Grey Kingbirds dart about the area. 


Seeing no birds at our second stop just inside the entrance to Sunbay, we moved on to the East end of Sunbay beach where we heard and saw 1 Mangrove Cuckoo. We walked on through the bush to a viewing area of the Salitral aka. Sunbay Lagoon. We were richly rewarded with views of scores of birds. Counting by groups of five, we estimated that there 159 wading birds with several Brown Pelicans swimming among them. With binoculars and the scope we easily identified many Great and Snowy Egrets, Great Blue and Little Blue Herons, and 2 Greater and 3 Lesser Yellowlegs. A Magnificent Frigatebird circled overhead.


Our final stop, was a small pond on the far eastern shore of Sunbay where we had great views of 12 Black-necked Stilts, 3 Greater Yellowlegs, and 2 Spotted Sandpipers.



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