During the fall of 2011, the flower garden outside the bunkhouse at Lower Dover Field Station and Jungle Lodge was in full bloom with Zinnias. It was a great time to view all kinds of tropical butterflies and a bird’s nest up close in personal.
I sat one afternoon, on the dormitory porch, knowing that I could get a great photo of what ever bird came back to it’s nest. Luckily I was able to see both mom and dad. I consulted Birds of Belize by H. Lee Jones to find out just what I was photographing. Turns out this was a breeding pair of White-Collard Seedeaters (Sporophila torqueola). Both approximately 10 cm in height.
According to Jones (A bird watching god in Belize), the male is identified two ways. This male had alternative markings, characterized as “boldly patterned black and white with a white throat, black breast band, and white wing-bars and rump.”
The female of the species is identified as being “olive brown, with light brown to whitish wing-bars.”
These two were feasting on the drying flower seeds, an easy picture for even novice birders at Lower Dover Jungle Lodge. The babies grew amazingly fast! I checked them once early in the week only to be attacked by the parents, but not before getting a great shot of these youngsters. Only 3 days later they were gone! Please grow up fast little guys for more exciting Lower Dover birding opportunities in the future…