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MY KENYA DIARY: IN QUEST OF EAGLES
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By public demand, and after a delay of an embarrassing number of years, I've finally put my notorious essay, Ender and Hitler: Sympathy for the Superman, free on the fabulous internets.

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a pair of age inappropriate black-chested buzzard-eagles steal the show

2013-01-17 - 8:53 a.m.

Jan. 11, 2013

One of these long driving days from the new hotel near the new road all the way to the brand new eco B&B. Lots of stops along the way to enjoy the local birds, including my long awaited first South American harrier -- the spectacular Long-winged Harrier. We thrilled to the handsome pair of Black-chested Buzzard-Eagles, which included an adult male with a younger female in third year juvenile plumage. I guess he likes the young stuff. They were perched when we discovered them, but eventually they flew, rather lazily, giving us great views from every angle. I think they enjoyed watching us as much as we enjoyed watching them.

Some other highlights:

  • A third year White-tailed Hawk with a prey item who was being mobbed by a brave pair of Guira Cuckoos.
  • Good views of Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, including a bird getting mobbed by a Fork-tailed Flycatcher
  • Everybody was aggressing on everybody, and I made a special note of the Tropical Kingbird mobbing the fine female Long-winged Harrier
  • A large colony of Snail Kites (and I do mean large) gave us the opportunity to attempt to photo the many fine males who were fetching and carrying snails back to the colony

Other new trip birds seen today:

  • Maguiri Stork
  • Cattle Egret
  • Whistling Heron
  • Jabiru
  • Chimango Caracara --not really new, but the first one I looked at with awareness
  • Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture
  • Southern Screamers
  • Wattled Jacana
  • Little Blue Heron
  • Roseate Spoonbills
  • Ringed Kingfisher
  • Black-collared Hawk
  • White-tailed Hawk
  • Red-crested Cardinal
  • Wood Stork
  • Vermilion Flycatcher
  • White Monjita
  • Limpkin
  • Striated Heron
  • Black-bellied Whistling Duck
  • Cocoi Heron
  • Grey-necked Wood-Rail
  • Blue-front Amazons

Worth noting: The fishing restaurant where we stopped for lunch had a spectacular flat fried chicken. "Chicken schnitzel" is a popular food in Argentina, but this particularly piece was especially crunchy, hot, and well spiced. Yum.

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