Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Search for the Orange Winged Amazona

On the weekend of November 29 my search for Orange Winged Parrots (Amazona amazonica) took me to the horse racing tracks of The Garrison Savannah, which is part of historic Bridgetown and its Garrison, a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. (To find out more about this UNESCO World Heritage Site Click this Link).  This Parrot and  Yellow Crowned Parrots (Amazona ochrocephala) are the only two species of Amazona with established breeding colonies in the wild here on the island.  I saw and recorded both of them last year, but this year I was only able to record the Yellow Crowned in August.  I usually would not go through so much trouble trying to track this bird when I am not doing a big year (refer to earlier post), but with just casual birding this year, I have  already surpassed my last year species count and was just two species away from my first three digit year count.  Seeing all the birds I could, became a must in order to reach the 100 species mark, in this year.  This made the Orange Winged Parrot a very important bird to see.  I put out an APB on my Facebook page which brought me to the Garrison Savannah early that Saturday morning.

There were a lot of persons around, horses were training on the track, joggers and walkers were exercising.  Horse racing fans, jockeys and horse owners were sitting under the trees socializing.  My first stop was to the western end of the track.  I saw two parrots flying from west to east at the northern end of the track but they were too far to identify.  I then moved to the northern end, where I saw the birds.   

I was there for 11/2 hours and recorded nine species, they all were local common birds but none were the Orange winged Amazona.  The most numerous amounts of birds seen at the Garrison were Rock Pigeons (feral).   

The search continues for #99.

Update: Bird #99 was recorded the very next day.  It was not the Orange Winged Amazona, but that story will be told in another post.

Race Horse and Jockey on the Track at the Garrison

Carib Grackle

Barbados Bull Finch

Rock Pigeon

Cattle Egret