Tuesday, February 15, 2011

On Bardsey it is the birds, and sometimes the Grey Seals, which provide the soundtrack to our birding. In Costa Rica it was rather different. The constant buzz of Cicadas (see Leaf-cutter Ant video below), provided the background noise but this was regularly interrupted, particularly in the morning and evening, by a piercing chorus of roars. As with most first-time visitors to Central America we were at first puzzled by the source. They turned out to be from the endangered, CITES I listed, Mantled Howler Monkeys.

Adult Mantled Howler Monkey with baby (c) Richard Brown

Leaves provide the majority of the diet and are supplemented with flowers and fruit. Because they use leaves it means that their territories can be relatively small and troops of up to about 20 individuals were encountered relatively often. The calls can be heard at over 3km through the forest, and across water (this troop was photographed from a boat) can be heard at up to 5km.

Central American Spider Monkeys take a much higher percentage of fruit in their diet. Thus they generally move further and faster in order to find enough food. They were usually hard to observe, right up in the canopy of the jungle (c) Richard Brown

No comments:

Post a Comment