Hidden amongst the vines of the forest on plains, Riverside Wrens announce their presence by a melodious whistle. The latter call of the Black Hooded Antshrike invades the background, in an experience that is only possible to witness in the South Pacific Lowlands of Costa Rica. These endemic birds are part of the more than 390 species than can be observed in a birdwatching experience in Playa Cativo Lodge, northern region of Golfo Dulce. This number also includes 70 marine and coastal birds, from which 48 are migratory, a fact that makes Golfo Dulce a hotspot for the conservation of aquatic migratory birds.



Blessed by a diversity of habitats, Playa Cativo Lodge can easily be added to the wish list of any birdwatcher. The reason? Pristine vegetation of primary forest, secondary growth, mangroves, swamps, rocky and sandy beaches in a small extension, where “lifers” are waiting to be discovered by the lens of your binoculars.



Where and how? Some of the lifers will require more search investment, nevertheless, this will add up adventure to your birdwatching experience. The Mangrove Hummingbird (Amazilia boucardi) can be spotted in the middle of the lush vegetation in Esquinas river Mangroves, thus, requiring a three-hour kayaking adventure to explore its fragile habitat. The more tenacious birdwatchers, interested in observing the endemic and endangered Black Cheeked Ant-tanager (Habia atrimaxillaris) will require to embrace one of the longest and more adventurous hikes: San Josecito Trail, in Piedras Blancas National Park. This 6-hour hike alongside streams, forest edges and primary vegetation in the protected area will reveal the habitat of this bird, found only in this part of the world: Osa Peninsula and Golfo Dulce region.



Costa Rica is world famous for birdwatching, an activity that is not just a hobby, but a particular way to understand the environment and its treats. Birds, as biological indicators, can tell us a lot about the ecosystem´s health. Be part of this adventure at Playa Cativo Lodge, an unspoiled destination in one of the most pristine areas of southern Costa Rica.


Blog by: Alejandra Rojas-Barrantes
Nature Guide & Bilogist
Playa Cativo Lodge