Pale-billeds at Yaxha
On March 4, many of the participants in The International Birdwatching Encounter in Guatemala were split up into teams for a birding challenge. The team that saw the most bird species during the day would be the winners! There was much kvetching about who would be on what team and where would we go and so forth. It ended up just being another wonderful day of birding in The Peten.
We were bussed to Yaxha, an ancient Maya city much like Tikal, but less developed and excavated. The birding was brilliant. The weather varied between hot and humid, hot and rainy, hot and sunny, and just plain hot.
The day started auspiciously with at first one, then a pair of pale-billed woodpeckers. Although it was foggy, we all took many photos of these members of the genus Campephilus—same genus as the ivory-billed woodpecker.
This image looks like a painting to me.
Though these images aren't top quality, I thought I'd share them. These are special birds. Wish we still had our own Campephilus woodpeckers here in the USA. Who knows, maybe we do?