Costa Rica is a country that boasts more varieties of birds than Mexico, Canada and the U.S. combined. All manner of brilliantly colored tropical birds call Costa Rica home. But for my money, the Scarlet Macaw wins the bird pageant. It is so very pretty with its red, blue and yellow plumage. But more than that, it is an intelligent animal that rivals a dog as far as smarts. Further, studies have shown that the Scarlet Macaw mates for life.
The macaws are very cognizant of human interlopers in their territories. But rather than put up a fuss as a redwing blackbird or a crow might, the Scarlet Macaw puts on a show. When our plane landed in Corcovado the first thing we saw was a pair of macaws making a flyover the airfield. I am firmly convinced that the Scarlet Macaw knows exactly how beautiful a bird that it is and he (or she) is perfectly willing to announce to any stranger that he (or she) has entered the land of the brilliant Macaws.
Unfortunately, human activity has encroached too much on the natural territories of the Scarlet Macaws and they are endangered. They once were plentiful on all Costa Rican coasts. But know they have pretty much been limited to the Osa Peninsula. Just one more reason to include Corcovado on the Costa Rican itinerary.
There are more birds than people in Corcovado and that is a good thing. We settled into our tent, opened the flaps and immediately sighted a bluegray tanager chirping a welcome to us from the palm tree in our front yard. We chirped a hello back at him. Always a good idea to get off on the right foot with the locals.