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What bird species can be found in Costa Rica?

Costa Rica boasts an impressive 894 bird species, surpassing the combined count of the United States and Canada. Its strategic location, climate, and geological origin contribute to its remarkable biodiversity and make it an ideal destination for birdwatching.

This small but diverse country is well known for being a biological connecting bridge between North and South America. Migratory species find optimal conditions in its tropical climate, featuring stable temperatures year-round and vast evergreen forests teeming with abundant food. It's no surprise that Costa Rica harbors 4% of the world's estimated total species.

Unquestionably, Costa Rica stands out as the top choice for exotic and exceptionally rare birds found nowhere else on Earth. So, what bird species call Costa Rica home?

Endemic Birds:

Unique species exclusive to this region, including the Coppery-headed Emerald, Mangrove Hummingbird, Black-cheeked Ant-Tanager, Cocos Cuckoo, Cocos Flycatcher, and Cocos Finch.

Resident Birds:

Over 800 bird species inhabit the territory year-round, forming a crucial part of the ecosystem. Explore the official list of resident birds in Costa Rica.

Endangered Birds:

Unfortunately, 14 bird species in Costa Rica are on the brink of extinction, including the majestic Quetzal, Scarlet Macaws, delightful Toucans, and the nearly extinct Great Green Macaw.

Migratory Birds:

Acting as a natural bridge between North and South, Costa Rica attracts migratory birds seeking refuge from cold weather, staying in the tropics before returning for the breeding season. Notable migratory visitors include the American Wigeon, Cattle Egret, Red-billed Tropicbird, and the Blue-footed Booby.

To learn more about the birds of Costa Rica, consult the comprehensive guide to the birds of Costa Rica, featuring English Common Names, Scientific Names, and their Status (Resident, Endemic, Migrant, Breeding Residents, etc.) and start planning your birdwatching trip.

For optimal birdwatching, mornings or just before sunset are prime times when birds are most active, enjoying comfortable temperatures.

Ready to embark on your birdwatching journey in Costa Rica? Consider these tips and explore the best destinations we’d love to share with you:

  • Bring a rain jacket. Even though the seasons in Costa Rica are very steady, expect rain at any time of the year, especially in the cloud forest.

  • Opt for an experienced guide who knows the nuances of bird vocalization and where to find specific bird species.

  • Stick to marked trails to avoid getting lost in the extensive protected lands covering 25% of Costa Rica, which means extensive and dense national parks. You don’t want to get lost!

  • Bring insect repellent, particularly for the period just before sunset.

For more information on birdwatching tours in Costa Rica, reach out to DCR Destination Costa Rica. We offer birdwatching holiday packages, seasoned birding guides, and life-changing experiences.

Join us in the wild this upcoming birding season in Costa Rica!

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