Birding Saint Lucia with Willow

The Experienced Intermediate Birder

SUNDAY
I trudged up our sideroad in the dark for my 5:30am rendezvous with Willow of Saint Lucia Birding and Wildlife Ambassadors. A friend of mine had birded with Adams Toussaint, the owner, last January and recommended him highly. Adams wasn’t free for Sunday or Monday so he placed me in the capable hands of Willow. Willow is in his mid-thirties. He’s passionate about birds and was excellent company.

We drove from the central west side of the island (Caribbean) to the opposing central east coast (Atlantic). Enroute, Willow pulled into a small roadside bakery and emerged with dahls (my spelling), a pastry stuffed with split peas, and saltfish sandwiches. Delicious! Our first stop was outside the village of Mon Repos and our goal was to see the critically endangered White-Breasted Thrasher. This species is endemic to Saint Lucia and neighbouring Martinique. It’s greatest threat is habitat loss. Willow…

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Birding Saint Lucia with Vision (and a few butterflies, too)!

The Experienced Intermediate Birder

MONDAY
Aleda joined me on our flashlit stroll at 5:30am to meet our guide, Vision, of Saint Lucia Birding and Wildlife Ambassadors. Vision is in his mid-forties and is very warm and personable as well as very knowledgeable about the birds and Saint Lucia in general. I was disappointed to hear that we’d be picking up another couple as I’d booked a private outing and wasn’t informed of the change prior to pickup. However, Dave and Helen from the UK proved to be excellent company and the price was adjusted somewhat at the end of the day.

Vision told us about the island as we drove into the northeast/north central interior, climbing constantly. We stopped at a typical lookout with steep slopes above and below. To date, I’d seen all of the Saint Lucia endemics well with the exception of the Saint Lucia Oriole. Apparently, it’s seen readily by…

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