Chat-Tanager & Owl
Thursday, March 14th: We started early to search for the Ashy-faced Owl near the hotel. We drove up a dirt road, checked a spot, and there it was. All but two of the group got a look at it. I got a brief but good look of my 2500th world bird species. The owl is well-named. We looked for another a bit further on, but could only hear it.
We continued up the road to another birding spot for our morning birding. One car had a flat, which the leaders changed at our breakfast spot. We heard a Ruddy Quail-Dove and saw the Eastern Chat-Tanager. The plan was to drive back to the lodge, get our stuff, and hit the road.
The plan quickly fell apart when Miguel's car developed a transmission problem, it would not stay in the upper gears. Gavin shuttled us back to the lodge as Miguel limped back. The rental company sent a car from Santo Domingo, but that is some distance away. The new plan was to eat lunch at the lodge, and the replacement car would show up at 2:30 or so. This plan worked! The car arrived a little early and we hit the road around 2:30.
Most of the drive to Sabana de la Mar (via Santo Domingo) was uneventful. Miguel had a substantial lead. Our car found a Common Barn-Owl about 5 minutes from the lodge. Then we encountered Miguel's car. Were they owling? No. Another flat, only about a mile from the lodge. They already had the spare on by the time we got there.
We had dinner at the lodge, which is an amazing place. I saw 3 trip birds today (total 125) including 1 lifer (46 total).
Paraiso Cano Hondo, Los Haitises, Sabana de la Mar