Birder's Guide

MAR 2017

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

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70 Birder's Guide to Travel | March 2017 Birding Puerto Rico wintering birds, including shorebirds. In fact, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the salt flats at Cabo Rojo NWR are considered the most im- portant stopover for migratory birds in all of the Caribbean. Guánica State Forest (Bosque Estatal de Guánica) in southwest Puerto Rico is a United Nations Biosphere Reserve and one of the largest and least-disturbed subtropical dry forests in the Caribbean. Guánica has a number of trails, pic- nic areas, and some ruins. It is a good place to look for Key West Quail-Dove, Puerto Rican Lizard-Cuckoo, Smooth- billed Ani, Puerto Rican Screech-Owl, Antillean Mango, Puerto Rican Emerald, Puerto Rican Tody, Puerto Rican Wood- pecker, Caribbean Elaenia, Puerto Rican Flycatcher, Puerto Rican Vireo, Ad- elaide's Warbler, Black-faced Grassquit, and Puerto Rican Bullfinch. Early morn- ings and evenings at Guánica offer the best chance on the island to see or hear the endangered Puerto Rican Nightjar. Researchers from the U.S. Forest Ser- vice, International Institute of Tropical Forestry, and the University of Missouri have been conducting long-term avian studies in Guánica for decades, and they published a comprehensive bird checklist and detailed description of the forest. Birders will find it an invaluable resource. Maricao State Forest (Bosque Estatal de Maricao) in southwestern Puerto Rico is a good place to search for Scaly- naped Pigeon, Ruddy Quail-Dove, Puer- to Rican Lizard-Cuckoo, Puerto Rican Screech-Owl, Green Mango, Puerto Ri- can Emerald, Puerto Rican Tody, Lesser Antillean Pewee, Loggerhead Kingbird, Puerto Rican Vireo, Adelaide's Warbler, Puerto Rican Bullfinch, Puerto Rican Tanager, Puerto Rican Spindalis, Puerto Rican Oriole, and Antillean Euphonia, among others. This is also one of the few locations for the Elfin-woods War- bler, which is limited to a small number of higher-elevation areas. Additionally, a group of captive-raised Puerto Rican Parrots was recently released in Mari- cao—now the third population on the island. Other productive locations include Laguna Cartagena National Wildlife Refuge (West Indian Whistling-Duck, Masked Duck, White-cheeked Pintail), Reserva Natural de Humacao (Green- throated Carib, Antillean Crested Hum- mingbird, Black-faced Grassquit), and Bosque Estatal de Cambalache (Ruddy Quail-Dove, Mangrove Cuckoo, Puerto Rican Lizard-Cuckoo, Antillean Mango, Puerto Rican Vireo). These locations are all on the island of Puerto Rico, but the islands of Vieques and Culebra also have good birding. Large parts of both islands were owned by the U.S. military but have been transferred to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

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