Day One: Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Meet the 2005 Team
We are here!
Trip itinerary and map
2005 Q & A
We left RDU at 6:15 a.m. and arrived in Miami around 8.
After grabbing lunches we left for Belize at 11:15. We arrived at 11:08 – no, we did not
travel back in time, rather we had a two hour time change!
Bill Hasse, Nathan Forbes, Elsa Ochoa and Germaine Cal were waiting for us after
we cleared immigration and customs. We set off for the Community Baboon Sanctuary and used our
time in the van to identify Cecropia trees, Social Flycatchers, Heliconias and Kiskadees. A
highlight was spotting a Hooded Oriole.
At the Baboon Sanctuary we learned about medicinal plants from two local guides. It is amazing to
discover the "pharmacy" right in the forest. We caught a quick glimpse of an Agouti
(or Bush Rabbit) as it bounded through an opening. We found a troop of six Howler Monkeys,
including one female carrying a baby on her back. We were treated to an acrobatic display of
all six of them crossing one of the "monkey bridges" that had been constructed in
the forest. The dominant male crossed first, followed by each individual. They were headed
towards a fig tree where they will spend the night.
We headed towards Warrie Head Lodge, thinking we would get there "early" only to have a flat
tire. While Nathan changed the tire, we used the opportunity to dip net in the small vernal ponds
along the roadside. Not only did we catch and release a couple of colorful small fish, we found
multiple Apple Snail shells.
After the tire was repaired, we stopped yet again to pick up a turtle that
had been crossing the road. We watched Jan race the turtle to the bush where she picked it up
and brought it back for all to see.
It turned out to be an endemic species (which means it is only found in a given range). It is called a
Narrowbridge Musk Turtle, Claudius angustatus, and one of its identifying behaviors was being
pugnacious when picked up. This one certainly was!
It was wonderful to arrive and see Miss Lydia, Blanca and Isabelle again. We met as a
group before dinner. As usual the meal was excellent! We headed out afterwards to look for tarantulas
and other nocturnal critters before turning in for the evening.
2005 Daily Journals | Next >>