First, a selection from the Barra de Navidad region where both marsh and beach habitats, and what must be a healthy ecosystem with ample food supplies, make for abundant and diverse bird life:
|A jacana, with stilt-like legs and splayed toes
designed for treading across the floating water hyacinths.
|A glossy ibis swallows a snail.
|A stilt poses gracefully on one long leg.
|One of the many "cocodrillos" to be seen in
the mangrove swamp at nearby La Manzanilla.
|An egret just a few feet from the crocodiles,
perhaps attempting camoflage.
|Two shorebirds, two different speices: a whimbrel, left, and
a willet, right. (Hopefully I have identified them correctly!)
|A hapless fish becomes lunch for an egret
|From my sketchbook - a snowy egret
And from the botanical gardens in Puerto Vallarta, about 150 kilometres to the north of Barra de Navidad, I can't leave out this colourful show-off, a yellow-winged cacique. He was avidly demonstrating his gymnastic abilities in an effort to impress a demure female of his species.
|Checking to see that she's watching.
|The lively courtship display (she flew away unimpressed).
So on that colourful note, I say farewell to Mexico for now. I treasure the memories and cherish the opportunity to have observed and recorded so many bird species (you've seen only a handful). As one of my travelling companions noted, "Who knew Mexico had so many birds?"!