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I recently returned from Costa Rica and will be posting numerous photos of flora and fauna I spotted on the way. This first post is of a crake (I think) I saw in a swamp near Brasilito in Guanacaste province. If you know the specific species, please let me know in the comments!

I first spotted this bird partially submerged in water. As I tiptoed closer, I was surprised at how still it stayed. Most other birds I encountered were wary of me, while this one was like a statue.


It turned out that it was fishing and had to be as still as possible to not spook the fish. Eventually it attacked but came up empty-billed. After a moment, it stood up and moved to a new location, flapping its wings along the way.


Here you can see the difference when it’s standing up straight.


This is a shot of the crake “drying” itself by shaking and flapping vigorously. I noticed a lot of birds doing variations of this to dry themselves, the best being some vultures, which I’ll post separately.


Here’s a final shot with the crake’s neck fully extended. This is my first foray into bird identification, and I’m finding it rather challenging. One of the reasons is that bird shapes change so much depending on what they are doing!


If you can confirm that this is a crake, please let me know in the comments. Thanks!