The Northern Waterthrush is a member of the Warbler family with a body plan more similar to that of a thrush, albeit smaller. It is brown in the upperside, with brown streaks on a white belly. It has a white superciliary and flecking on the throat. The very similar Louisiana Waterthrush has a wider superciliary, with a white throat. Both species are terrestrial, with the Northern preferring slower moving streams and edges of ponds. Both species teeter their body as they move around. They are both migrants that occur in Costa Rica mainly from mid August to mid May, with the Northern being the most widespread and commonly seen in the territory.
The Streaked Xenops is part of the woodcreeper family, better known for their characteristic behavior: Their perch on vertical branches or tree trunks, holding themselves tight with their claws, and then start to climb while going in circles around the branch, probing with their bill for worms and insects that may hide in their crevices. It has very dull coloration, showing dark brown upperparts and light brown underparts with buffy streaking in the chest and belly. The bill is short and slightly curved up, with the lower mandible being pale from the base to half its length.
Just like the Red-legged Honeycreeper, which I soon learnt to love too much, the Shining Honeycreeper is a gorgeous species. It seems that all birds bearing the Honeycreeper name are incredibly colorful, with the Green Honeycreeper sharing an space with these beauties. In all three species, dymorphism marks great differences between genders, with the males having the most conspicuous colors for attracting females. The female has a green back, light blue chest with streaking and yellowish legs, although not as bright as the male’s. The female seems to be fluffier than the male, which is more streamlined than the corresponding male of the Red-legged species. They can get quite aggressive against Red-legged Honeycreepers when they coincide at the same site.
From what I have observed, the Green Heron shares some traits with the bigger Bare-throated Tiger Heron. Both maintain their necks coiled most of the time, and elongate them up to twice the size of their body when they are ready to attack. Both walk in a stealthy manner, not making a single sound, as they approach to unsuspecting prey. Both are startled easily and fly far away when you are too close. The differences are that the Green Heron is more likely to be found perching high up in the trees, and the obvious size difference; the Green Heron is pretty small, the size of a duck, while the Tiger Heron is bigger than a turkey. They stalk prey while wading in shallow waters using their long feet and toes or from the water edge, sometimes standing motionless for minutes until they launch their attach and grab their prey.