Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa)

Another of the Motmot species, this one is pretty similar to the Lesson´s Motmot, but has rufous on the back and a great portion of the tail is bare shft, while other Motmot species have a tail that is bare only in the tip; its song is quite different as well. This is the National Bird of El Salvador and Nicaragua. In Costa Rica, it can be found in Guanacaste and the Central Pacific, and ocassionally in the western central valley. Like most other Motmots, they construct their nests as cavities in mud walls, hence their local name in El Salvador: “Barranquero”. A trio of these birds perched very close to the road towards Barra Honda National Park, Guanacaste.

Lesson´s Motmot (Momotus lessoni)

This bird feels exotic in every way. The long tail ends in two small buds; when perched it sometimes moves the tail in a pendulum fashion. The bird call is a deep, guttural “Hoop-Hoop”, which repeats itself at infinitum, though some birds will variate the sound. It will stay motionless on its perch, either in complete silence, or performing its call. When there are various individuals in the area, it seems like one bird’s call is responded by another’s, resembling a conversation between birds at a distance. The bird is nervous, but can be approached to a distance of 3 meters or less; I have successfully taken pictures of it at such a close distance, even using the flash, and the bird does not fly away.