Return to Ujarrás

A return excursion with friends John and Milena Beer to the little town of Ujarrás, with its ruined church – destroyed by English pirates it seems -allowed John to get some nice photos that I think should be shared.


Ruins of Church (1580) at Ujarrás, said to be the oldest in Costa Rica.

We also found again an Orchard Oriole (Icterus spurius) at the exact same location as last time, though this one was a juvenile male. Its black bib leads me to believe that I have had several of this species in past years at my house in San Antonio de Santa Cruz. I assumed back then that they were Baltimore Orioles, a very common migrant. Here’s John’s picture of this juvenile male:


Juvenile male Orchard Oriole at Ujarrás

The most common dove at Ujarrás is now the White-winged Dove (Zenaida asiatica), though it was not always so. This northern invader and lover of wide-open spaces is expanding rapidly eastwards and southwards as forests disappear. It is a favourite target of hunters in Texas and northern Mexico. John took this excellent photo of one of perhaps 30 doves that now live near the church ruins:


White-winged Dove, now at home in our area


A final photograph that I can’t resist showing is of the commonest Costa Rican hummingbird, the Rufous-tailed Hummingbird (Amazilia tzacatl):


Often taken for granted, the Rufous-tailed Hummingbird is still a real beauty. The red bill tells you that this is the male of the species.

You can find our species list for the day at:

One thought on “Return to Ujarrás

  1. The Rufous-tailed Hummingbirds are the defenders of the sweetest food sources here at Rio Cinto (Ecuador.) They are so greedy, and chase much-larger hummers away throughout the day.

    The church reminds me a bit of the one in Nicoya, which I often noted but never stopped to visit until years went by…. it was a very hot day, and the walls were very thick… I felt an amazing comfort the minute I stepped into the interior….

    You’ve been busy and I’ve enjoyed reading / just little time online to acknowledge your great posts. My camera is not well, so I join you in wishing to have an upgrade ‘in hand.’


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