Sunday, April 2, 2017


It's now Friday, February 9th in Panama and having left Darien Province and now in Panama Province we stopped by San Francisco Nature Reserve near the small town of Torti. If I remember this correctly, the property was purchased by an American priest who lives in Panama and who is conserving the property as a nature reserve.

We had some target species here and I don't even remember what they were or if we saw them.  There was an opening in the trees where we stood to look for raptors in the open sky.  I think we all saw the large raptor fly in close.  Suddenly, Domi called out, "harpy eagle, harpy eagle!  No really, right here."  And sure enough a male Harpy Eagle was perched on an open branch right in front of us.  

The bird stayed for at least 10 minutes or more before flying off as in the video above.  I thought about this later and it seemed the perfect experience to occur on this trip and a perfect example of  serendipity when it occurs in birding. 

Above:  The kinds of raptors we had been looking at before being distracted by the Harpy Eagle; high above the swarm of dragonflies, a pin-prick of a soaring raptor high overhead.  

Above:  Sooty-headed Tyrannulet (Phyllomyias griseiceps).

Above:  Bright-rumpted Attila (Attila spadiceus).  Spadiceus would seem to describe the attila's bill structure nicely, but I think it might actually be translated as light brown or date colored.

Above:  Semiplumbeous Hawk (Leucopternis semiplumbeus)

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