December 2006
Eileen Schwinn


Our 5th visit to Aruba was 1-15 Dec 2006. My husband is not a birder, so most observations were "on the sly". My binoculars are always packed, and at my side - even while in my beach chair at the Marriott Surf Club! I was able find the two local field guides you
recommend - Reuter's "Birds of Aruba" and DeBoer's "Our Birds", and did find them most helpful.

Highlights of the trip - the Troupial
(singing, late afternoon between Surf and Ocean Club), Magnificent Frigatebird, full breeding throat pouch (daybreak, on a sailboat mast), Peregrine Falcon (daily, all day, resting on the top floor of the Surf Club, leaving during "Happy Hour"!! This may have been the same bird I saw two years ago, same spot, same time of year) and a
banded Ruddy Turnstone.

I did have a List of 25 birds, all casually
sighted. We arrived after a rainy spell (and had 2-3 rain days while in Aruba), so everything was lush and overgrown. The mosquitos were out in full force, so we didn't get to visit the known birding spots on this trip (as I said, my husband, tho' a great guy, is not as
enthusiastic as I, especially about the mosquitos).

I was known as the bird lady while standing on the hotel palapa line each morning.
The joke was the Tropical mockingbird showed up each morning the same
time I did! I am pretty active in the Eastern Long Island Audubon Society (New
York), and bird 4-6 days a week along the shoreline of the Atlantic
coast. We look forward to our next trip to Aruba. It really is a wonderful place. I've attached a photo my husband took of the Troupial we both enjoyed listening to!

Eileen Schwinn