Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Cloud Forest Reserve Hike

This excursion was totally amazing, it was like  being in paradise. The biodiversity of this jungle with its flora and fauna was incredible. Our guide showed us some hummingbirds at the beginning of the hike. They flutter 80 times a minute,  making it challenging to take a picture. Then, we saw a quetzal  bird within 10 minutes of our  hike, it was  perched high on a branch. The male quetzal was chirping and calling it's spouse. The guide told us that there are approximately 200 quetzals in Monteverde. It seemed to be turquoise and later with the sunlight it appeared to be more green. We were informed that the color can be described as iridescent. We felt rewarded to see a beautiful quetzal so early. It was a magical moment for Lisa and me!

We also saw trees covered with algae growing on it. We learned that it was not a parasitic relationship but a symbiotic one. Later, we got another science lesson when we saw a strangler tree.  The strangler is a parasite that grows from the top of a tree and totally devours it, leaving it hollow. It is a horrific phenomena! At the end of our hike, there was supposedly a  great view of the Inter Continental divide where the Caribbean Sea and Pacific Ocean meet. However, the clouds were covering the view past the mountains. Here are some pictures of our 3.5 hour hike.

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