Birding Costa Rica for Nicaraguan Grackle
Birding in Costa Rica is not complete if you do not have the Nicaraguan Grackle in your check list with a big check.
The Nicaraguan grackle (Quiscalus nicaraguensis) is a species of passerine bird belonging to the genus Quiscalus, a genus of grackles in the New World blackbird family, Icteridae. Is a Long-tailed blackbird, very similar to Great-tailed Grackle but much smaller. Male is shiny black with some bluish-violet glossiness. The female is very similar to female Great-tailed but smaller and paler below.
The bill and legs are black and the eye is pale yellow. The male is few cm biggest than the female, about 31 cm long vs 25 cm. The tail of the male is V-shaped, rising from the centre to the outer feathers. Immature males are duller and less glossy than the adults with a brown belly and thighs. The female is brown above with a pale supercilium (stripe over the eye), made more obvious by the dark lores and ear-coverts. The thighs, flanks and undertail-coverts are dark brown while the rest of the underparts are buff, darkest on the upper breast and paler on the throat and belly.
Nicaraguan grackle is present all year around, but they like to change location based on the water level of the lagoon. You normally see them on the shore of the river specially in dry season, and on low tree inside of a lagoon during the rainy season.
The sound is very characteristic, and you can distinguish faraway.
Nicaraguan Grackle, or Quiscalus nicaraguensis, is the bird that all serieus birdwatcher come to see in Caño Negro Wetlands.
When you organize your birding vacation in Costa Rica, be sure the Nicaraguan Grackle is on you list, and the write destination in Caño Negro Wetlands.