It’s February: Contest Rules and Reminder

February is here. Just reminding you of our modified contest for 2021 and the rules.

  1. If you are a San Vito Bird Club member living in a country other than Costa Rica (and we know there are many of you), send us a list of the birds you see on your feeder during the month of February, 2021.
  2. If you are a San Vito Bird Club member living in Costa Rica, send me a few (no more than five) of your best bird photographs TAKEN DURING THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY, 2021. Photo categories are: a. Rarities b. Birds in action c. Birds having a meal d. Baby birds e. Still life Send to:
  3. If you are a San Vito Bird Club member living anywhere in the known (or even the unknown) universe, send a photo of any bird-related artwork you CREATED DURING THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY, 2021. Again, send to:

Teacher Exchange: What Fun–What Success!

A Detectives de Aves (BirdSleuth-International) teacher exchange program between San Vito Bird Club (San Vito, Costa Rica) and Community Cloud Forest Conservation in the highlands of Guatemala recently concluded, with bilateral reports of great success, good fellowship and a promise for the future of Detectives de Aves.

Our San Vito Bird Club education team–Paula Mesen, Carla Azofeifa and SVBC President Peter Wendell–returned from the beautiful highlands of Guatemala in April after spending a week observing and learning from their Guatemalan counterparts. Also attending the visit was Dr. Lilly Briggs from Cornell University, coordinator and leader of  this very special project.

In early May, the Guatemalan education team reciprocated by visiting us and participating in our local classes.  Again, many, many thanks to Dr. Briggs for her guidance and vision.

Based on reports from the Detectives de Aves teachers from both San Vito and Guatemala, this exchange of teaching techniques and styles proved very valuable to all involved and we hope that more of these international visits will become available in the future.

As always, your generous donations to the SVB and the Detectives de Aves classes are much appreciated.



Quiz Bird #3 Revealed/La Respuesta del Prueba!

The winner of Bird Quiz #3 is TERESA BUENO of Atenas, CR, who is fast on her feet, quick with her fingers and good at telling a tale! Congratulations, Teresa! We will find a way to send your binocular cleaning cloth to Quepos, if we have to deliver it ourselves: hmmm, that’s a thought.

The answer is Spotted Sandpiper, Actitis macularia. We had a total of five correct answers, of which Teresa’s was the first received, and one wrong response.

Spotted Sandpiper from Wikepedia.

Spotted Sandpiper from Wikipedia.

Mind you, this was an easy one. We could have tricked you with a photo of this species in non-breeding plumage like the one accompanying this post.

Thank you to all participants!

La respuesta es Spotted Sandpiper, Actitus macularia. Tuvimos seis respuestas este vez, solo uno era incorrecto!

Felicidades a TERESA BUENO de Alajuela de Atenas, Cosa Rica! Su respuesta estaba la primera recibido! Gracias a todos los participantes!

Quiz Bird #3/Examen de aves #3!

This will be a race to see who responds first because this one is easy!

Mystery Bird Photo by Gail Hull

Mystery Bird Photo by Gail Hull

The Two Clues

Location: Finca Cantaros

Time of year: October

This time the prize will be a lens cleaning cloth that you can attach to your binoculars, courtesy of The Audubon Shop in Madison, CT.

Good luck everybody: the clock is ticking!

Please send your answer to: and if your initials are GH, JF, JG, JZ or FS, you are not eligible for this one!

Espanol aqui

¡Esta será una carrera para ver quien responde primero porque esta es fácil!

 Las Dos Pistas

La ubicación: Finca Cántaros

El momento del año: el mes octubre

Esta vez el premio será un pañito para limpiar lentes que puede sujetar a sus binoculares, cortesía de The Audobon Shop en Madison, CT.

Por favor envíe su respuesta a:

Suerte a todo el mundo: ¡El reloj está corriendo!

Annual Meeting 2015 on Saturday, Feb. 21/¡Reunión Anual 2015 el 21 de febrero!

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Please join us at this year’s Annual Meeting, Saturday, Feb. 21. We will begin the day with a Bird Walk at the Wilson Botanical Garden, starting at 7:30 am at the Reception Building – please note this is not our usual meeting place! The walk will be led by our Special Guest Robert Dean, illustrator of The Birds of Costa Rica.

New, revised edition of The Birds of Costa Rica by Richard Garrigues and Robert Dean

New, revised edition of The Birds of Costa Rica by Richard Garrigues and Robert Dean

At 10:30 am, we will adjourn to Cascata del Bosco for brunch followed by the general meeting. This year we will dedicate our gathering to Ernie Vogt. The agenda will include reports by Treasurer Fred Schroeder, ‘Detectives de Pajaros’ Head Teacher Roni Chernin and Communications Committee Chair Harry Hull, a vote to approve 2015 slate of officers, a special surprise event, and a chat and book signing with Robert focusing on his inspiration to illustrate this invaluable field guide, artistic methods and more. Note the meeting is for members only so if you would like to attend but have not as yet paid your annual dues for 2015 — Resident Members $20 or C10,000; International Members $15 or C7,500 — please bring them!

Brunch will cost C5,000 (or $10) per person and will include fresh fruit, fancy eggs, hash browned potatoes, juice, tea, coffee and dessert.

We need a final count for Cascatas by the morning of Friday, Feb. 20, so PLEASE send an email to: or click here to let us know you will attend!

¡Reunión Anual 2015 el 21 de febrero!

Por favor acompáñenos en la próxima Reunión Anual el sábado 21 de febrero. Comenzaremos el día con una caminata para ver pájaros en el Jardín Botánico Wilson, saliendo a las 7:30 am en el Edificio de la Recepción – ¡Por favor note que este no es nuestro punto de reunión usual! La caminata será guiada por nuestro Invitado Especial, Robert Dean, ilustrador de The Birds of Costa Rica.

A las 10:03 am, nos retiraremos a Cascata del Bosco para un desayuno tardío seguido de la reunión general que será dedicada a Ernie Vogt este año. La agenda incluirá reportes del Tesorero Fred Schroeder, La Profesora Principal de “Detectives de Pájaros”; Roni Chernin y el Presidente del Comité de Comunicaciones; Harry Hull, una votación para aprobar la nómina de oficiales para el 2015, un evento sorpresa especial y firma de libros y charla con Robert enfocada en su inspiración para ilustrar esta invaluable guía de cambio, métodos artísticos y demás.

Este evento es solamente para miembros así que, si no ha pagado sus cuotas para 2015 pero le gustaría asistir, por favor esté preparado para pagar en la reunión (C10,000 miembros residentes).

El almuerzo tardío costará C5,000 (o $10) por persona e incluirá fruta fresca, huevos elegantes, picadillo de papas doradas, jugo, té, café y postre.

Necesitamos un número final de participantes para Cascatas para la mañana del viernes 20 de febrero, ¡Así que POR FAVOR envíe un correo electrónico a: o haga clic aquí para dejarnos saber que va a asistir!


Trip to Aguas Calientes and Finca La Libertad on Thursday, February 12

Please join us Thursday, Feb. 12 for a day trip to Aguas Calientes and Finca La Libertad. Once again, we will meet at the cemetery in San Vito to consolidate car pooling. Please be there no later than 8:15 am.

Rufous-tailed Hummingbird in flight. Photo by Julie Girard.

Rufous-tailed Hummingbird in flight. Photo by Julie Girard.

Our first stop will be Aguas Calientes, a natural thermal pool near Gutierrez Braun on the way to Amistad Park. We will bird around the entrance and along the path to the pool. In the past we have seen many species of migrants there including American Redstarts, Ovenbirds, Black-and-white warblers, Kentucky Warblers, Northern Waterthrushes plus local hummingbirds and Sulphur-winged Parakeets. Please bring bathing suits and a towel if you’d like to take a dip in the pool!

We’ll travel from there to Finca La Libertad, a working farm belonging to the Barrantes family where we will have a tour of the fruit orchard and vegetable garden and do some birding on the forest edge. A tasty Tico lunch will be provided while we feast our eyes on the beautiful Talamanca Mountains.

At $25 per person, a minimum of six people will be needed to run the trip with a maximum of 12 as space is somewhat limited at the pool. Please let us know ASAP if you would like to attend by sending an email to:  First come, first served!

This adventure is for members only so if you would like to participate but have not paid your dues for 2015, please bring them with you! Hope to see you there!

2nd Annual Big Birdfeeder Competition/2ª Gran Competencia Anual de Comederos de Pájaros!

Sigue en espanol

This year’s Big Birdfeeder Competition will run from January 14 through February 14 – one month to watch your feeder and make a list of all the species you see landing there or foraging underneath.

“Bird feeder” is defined by fruit (or other appropriate bird food) placed in the same spot for the duration of the contest. The odd hummingbird (or other non-feeding species) that lands on the feeder can be counted as can any bird that actively feeds on dropped scraps underneath but you may NOT count a bird randomly hopping under the feeder with no active feeding behavior.

Fiery-billed Aracari, first class feeder bird. Photo by Terry Farling.

Fiery-billed Aracari, first class feeder bird. Photo by Terry Farling.

Member Pat Morgan won the First Competition last year with 25 species! Let’s see if you can beat her record in 2015!

Please submit your list by February 19 to – the winner will be announced (and prizes handed out) at the 2015 Annual Meeting on February 21.


Este año la Gran Competencia de Comederos de Pájaros será desde el 14 de enero hasta el 14 de febrero – un mes para observar su comedero y hacer una lista de todas las especies que vea posándose o buscando alimento en él.

Un “Comedero de Pájaros” comprende fruta (u otro alimento apropiado para pájaros) colocado en el mismo lugar durante todo el concurso. El extraño colibrí que se pose en el comedero (o otro especies solo visitando) puede ser contado como cualquier otro pájaro que se alimenta activamente de los residuos caídos del comedero pero no puede contarse un pájaro que brinca de forma espontánea bajo el alimentador sin mostrar comportamiento alguno de estarse alimentando activamente.

¡La miembro Pat Morgan ganó la Primera Competencia el año pasado con 25 especies! ¡Vamos a ver si usted puede batir su record en 2015!

Por favor envíe su lista antes del 19 de febrero a – el ganador será anunciado (con premios) en la Reunión Anual 2015 el 21 de febrero.


Happy New Year 2015! ¡Feliz Año Nuevo 2015!

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December's Double Rainbow in Linda Vista. Photo by Jo Davidson.

December’s Double Rainbow in Linda Vista. Photo by Jo Davidson.

We begin the New Year with a Membership Drive, so please don’t forget to pay your annual dues as soon as possible: International Membership $15 per person; Resident Dues are $20 per person.

While you are thinking about your SVBC membership, please also consider supporting our innovative education program, “Detectives de Pajaros”. This year we hope to have four teachers to present the class in at least 10 schools. One complete program of 10 lessons plus a community project for the school costs $350. We’re counting on your support for continued success in local schools!

The Big Birdfeeder Competition will begin January 14 and go for one month, ending on Valentine’s Day, February 14. You will then have a week to submit your birdfeeder counts as the winner will be announced at the Annual Meeting 2015 on February 21.

Here is a recap of the rules: the idea is to count the MOST species at your birdfeeder in a month. A “birdfeeder” can include just a hanging bunch of bananas but the location must remain constant for the month. Any bird that lands on the feeder is countable – yes, even a hummingbird or other oddity. Birds under the feeder that are actually feeding also qualify but not birds that accidentally land or hop there. Remember: this is an Honor System Competition!

We will provide details about the upcoming Annual Meeting in subsequent posts. In the meantime, the SVBC wishes you Good Birding in 2015!

Espanol aqui

Empezamos el Año Nuevo con una Campaña de Membresía, así que por favor no olvide pagar sus cuotas anuales tan pronto como le sea posible: la Membresía Internacional es de $15 por persona; las Cuotas Residentes son de $20 por persona.

Mientras está pensando en su membresía al SVBC, por favor considere también apoyar nuestro innovador programa educativo, “Detectives de Pájaros”. Este año esperamos tener cuatro maestros para dar la clase en al menos 10 escuelas. Un programa completo de 10 lecciones más un proyecto comunal para la escuela cuesta $350. ¡Estamos contando con su apoyo para el éxito continuo en las escuelas locales!

La Gran Competencia de Comederos de Pájaros va a comenzar el 14 de enero y durará un mes, terminando el 14 de febrero, Día de San Valentín.  Usted tendrá entonces una semana para enviar los conteos de su comedero de aves ya que el ganador será anunciado el 21 de febrero en la Reunión Anual 2015.

Aquí hay una recapitulación de las reglas: la idea es contar la MAYOR CANTIDAD de especies en su comedero de pájaros en un mes. Un “comedero  de pájaros” puede ser sólo un montón de bananas colgadas pero la ubicación deberá ser constante durante el mes. Cualquier pájaro que se pose en el comedero cuenta – sí, incluso un colibrí o cualquier otra rareza. Los pájaros debajo del comedero que están comiendo del mismo también califican pero no los pájaros que accidentalmente se posan o saltan ahí. Recuerde: ¡Esta es una Competición con Sistema de Honor!

Proveeremos detalles sobre la próxima Reunión Anual en mensajes subsecuentes. Mientras tanto, el SVBC le desea ¡Una buena Observación de Pájaros en 2015!


Pop Quiz #2: What Bird Is This?/Prueba numero 2: cual ave es?

Sigue en espanol

Everybody ready? Hints for Quiz Bird #2: it’s smaller than a robin/thrush; the photograph was taken in Linda Vista near a house with shrubs and small trees but no real garden; this bird sings a lovely song.

Quiz Bird #2: cual es?

Quiz Bird #2: cual es?

First person to correctly identify this bird wins the same prize offered last time: one dozen home-made Chocolate Chip Cookies!

Listo? Algunas pistas estan: mas pequeno de un yiguirro, foto de Linda Vista cerca una casa con arbustos y arbolitos pero falta jardin; este pajaro canta muy bien!

Lo mismo premio: 12 galletas de chocolate, hizo de mano!


SEND YOUR ANSWER to: or click here to contact us.

ENVIA SU CONTESTA a: o haga clic aqui para contactarnos.



Escuela Lourdes Festival del Maiz este fin de semana 25-27 julio!

Festival del Maiz at Escuela Lourdes!

Festival del Maiz at Escuela Lourdes!

Please join us at the Festival del Maiz this weekend, July 25-27, at the Lourdes School on the left-hand side of the road to Sabalito! This event is the school’s fund raiser for the year and it will be filled with delicious local food, games, prizes, music, dancing and other events!

Friday evening starting at 6, the event will open with a coronation as one of the students is crowned King of the Corn Festival. On Saturday from 1:00 pm on, the fun continues with games, prizes, activities, food and music. That night will feature a Dance Exhibit with several different kinds of Latin dancing and North American jitterbug and swing starting at 6:00 pm. On Sunday, the festival continues throughout the day and will feature a Marimba Band at 1:00 pm.

All by themselves, the chorreados (a typical local food at this time of year, these are pancakes made with ground young corn) will be worth the trip — you can have them sweetened with syrup, doused with sour cream or just the way they are = DELICIOUS!



Students in the 5th grade at Escuela Lourdes have just finished the ‘Detectives de Pajaros’ course taught by Roni Chernin. Please come to support this wonderful school!