Sometimes you meet someone that you really mesh with. Sometimes you marry someone that just can’t get excited about the same things as you. Dave and I love each other, but I just can’t get so excited over kiteboarding (I have yet to try it) and he finds no excitement in sitting for hours watching birds, dragonflies, turtles, lizards, and basically anything that moves. Fortunately, Dave has Steve and Bruce to kite with and Jayne from Delphinus and I discovered we have a mutual love for birdwatching. Jayne was up at the crack of dawn every morning and started her day by taking Sky for a walk on shore. I joined her a couple mornings to see what we could spot.
There are benefits to getting up early. Sunrises are under appreciated. As the sky lightened, the reflections in the water were amazing.
Color came to the world with the sunrise and the clouds reflected cream, peach, pink, and dark purple in the water.
As I waited for Jayne to pick me up, I looked at the top of the hill behind us and saw the Virgin Mary juxtaposed with cannons. An odd combination, but religion was/is always at the heart of the bloodiest wars, I suppose.
It was breeding season on the island and right away I spotted this white-winged dove nest sitting.
Others were still acting frisky, making a strange whining sound in their mating rituals.
The land crabs came out bright and early. They were very skittish and quickly ducked into their muddy holes if our shadow fell on them or we made sudden movements.
I’d never seen the purple and white ones before, but the red ones are very common all throughout the Caribbean.
Bananaquits are also common throughout the Caribbean. The first time I noticed them I was with Jan from Wild Cat in Marigot, St Lucia. We were having cocktails at the resort bar when one flew in and sipped the sweet dribbles on the liqueur and simple syrup bottles. They are brazen and have adapted well to our humanized world.
Not a great picture, but I love the color contrast. These little birds are so fast and twitchy. It is really challenging trying to photograph them without sitting in a blind for hours on end.
Jane and I were just strolling along the paved walkway. Not to mention we had some rambunctious company. Sky acquired a local boyfriend on the island. They played so well together. Here, Sky was picking up a stick, which she held out to Black Mouth to share. So cute and so like children.
Jayne may need to correct some of my species labels. I think this was an emerald green hummingbird. It shimmered with iridescence in the sun and looked nearly black in the shade.
The mangroves attract passerines and shorebirds alike. We knew this was a heron, but had to look it up to verify what kind. Juvenile birds look very different from adults.
This, however, was easily recognizable as a green heron. What a beauty!
Along the shore walk, these stairs to nowhere boggled the mind. Someone must have had something in mind when they built them.
Peeking through the mangrove trees, we saw the anchorage and the water was still very calm. This meant no wind, hot and humid weather, and lots of bugs. Insect repellent is your best friend on days like these.
The current turned our boats to face the opposite way and lined us up. I thought it was a cool shot.
I probably have this one wrong, but this beautiful little bird loved posing for the camera.
If only they would all hold still for me like this!
This one reminded me of the Thompson’s warbler that landed on our charter boat when we sailed to Catalina Island. Such striking coloring and markings.
This tiny crab is another common species in the Caribbean. They are easily recognized by their single over-sized claw that is nearly as large as all the rest of the crab.
Here’s another purple and white land crab. Looks like it was doing some house cleaning. Now it needed a bath!
When we were in the British Virgin Islands, we saw huge rays. I mean huge — nearly as wide as I am tall. I thought those were spotted eagle rays, but all the spotted eagle rays we have seen in the Western Caribbean have been small. They are striking nonetheless.
I wonder if the shape of the head is where it got its name. It did look bird-like. This one was in only about a foot of water right near the shore.
Commonly seen in and near mangroves are upside-down jellyfish. They come in various colors mostly leaning towards brown, yellow, and orange. However, Providencia had a lot of blue ones.
The walkway passed right by this adorable house. I love how islanders are not afraid of using bright colors to paint their homes. They give the island so much character.
This one also had several of the tire art critters and used them as planters. I love it!
The walkway ended at a cannon — of course! No Caribbean island is complete without their cannons.
The sun was now high in the sky, but the reflections still looked wonderful on the water. Livin’ Life looked so serene.
So did Slow Flight and Vidorra. The hill behind them was the one with the Virgin Mary and her cannons. Having little to no wind our entire stay, we were praying for wind to offer some relief from the heat. Well, we would be heading north to Grand Cayman soon. Maybe we would have more wind and cooler temperatures there. And, the guys hoped, some good kiteboarding.