When we went to Minca we saw lots of birds, as we mentioned in our last post. But we didn’t explain it very well so I am going to explain it to you now. Minca is famous for its amazing birds of all different kinds. Even though Minca is only a very small town, you can see 162 different species of bird just in this small place! And when you explore the mountains around Minca, you can find 320 species of bird! Altogether, there are almost 2000 species of birds in Colombia – more than any other country in the world. So now you know what I mean when I say we saw lots of birds in Minca!
To see toucans and parrots and other fascinating birds, you need to get up at 5 o’clock in the morning or even earlier. We got up early to go bird watching two mornings in a row. The toucan is a bird that everyone wants to see and we were lucky enough to see one, but if a toucan hears or sees you they fly away so that’s why we couldn’t take a picture of one in the real wild.
I did get some good photos (on my own camera) of some other of my favorites, like wonderful macaws, hummingbirds which flap their wings at an unbelievable speed, and an amazing black and yellow bird called a crested oropendola that makes a nest in the shape of a bag hanging from a tree.
The blue headed parrot is a incredible bird of all different colors. But it is given its name by its amazing blue head. The males don’t even have blue heads. The reason it is given its name is because of the females amazing blue stipe down the center of its head. We also saw woodpeckers and parakeets and lots of other birds that you won’t have heard of.
My favourite group of animals is primates but my second is definitely reptiles, and in Minca I saw the most amazing reptile I have ever seen! It was a three-foot long green iguana (that is its species’ name but they have different colors as well) climbing slowly up the tree outside our window in Minca. When I spotted it I thought it was a dream at first but then I got back to my senses and called my family. It was one of the best experiences of my life.
I have one other small animal update (in both senses of the word). When we were doing one of Niall’s tours we saw some amazing luminous colored bugs, one on our bag and one crawling on the path we were walking along. Here are some pictures:
The first Colombian animals post can be found here
In Colombia there is a huge range of animal species ranging from exotic birds to monkeys. Colombia holds the biggest range of butterflies and the second most of birds in the whole world! The national park ‘Parque Tayrona’, near where we live, is home to hundreds of species of animals. Today my family and I went on a trek up a mountain and then floated down the river on a tyre. As we peered into the jungle canopy I was amazed to see a huge king fisher sitting on a branch acting still, staring down at us. It was the first one my mum and dad had seen in forty-one years, and I spotted it!
In Colombia everyone wakes up really early. In Palomino (where we stayed this week) at about six in the morning you can see little red squirrels scurrying in the trees. They are adorable! You can also see lots of interesting birds and hear their calls. There is a bird that looks like a black bird with a really long tail, which has an amazing amount of calls – it is squawking at me right now.
My dream is to see a monkey in the wild and I might be able to see one in ‘parque Tayrona’. We also saw a Portuguese man-of-war (it looks like a jellyfish but it’s actually something called a siphonophore!). For humans their sting is excruciatingly painful but rarely deadly, even dead ones can sting you. On the way back from Palomino we saw two massive green iguanas basking in the sun but they ran away before we could take a photo.
This is a good time to tell you that I’ve always felt passionate about animals, so having this opportunity to see so many new ones is unbelievably awesome!