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Camera Trap Project Part 3

June 18, 2013

Hello! Yes we are still alive and apologies for not blogging sooner – I hope you feel that this is worth the wait!


So here’s update 3 of the Las Tangaras Camera Trap Project. The camera has been positioned in the same location for a while now, on a trail at top of the ridge that forms part of the southern edge of the reserve boundary. We started by baiting the trap, which worked very well, but we only succeeded in fattening up another Oppossum (they really love tuna). So the trap was not re-baited and we ended up with this little lot. We’ll start with this beauty, recorded in May.



We feel very lucky to have caught this Dark-backed Wood Quail. It is an endemic species to Ecuador, meaning it’s not found in other countries and it’s a very tricky bird to see in the flesh, more often heard. You can see the clear distinction between the lighter front and the characteristic dark back.


The next video has been puzzling us slightly. We’ve filed it in the ‘Mystery Bird’ section on the laptop and we just can’t work it out. Any help would be greatly appreciated in identifying this medium-sized, forest floor species. Looks a bit like a chicken.



Last, but not least is something we’ve got very excited about. Take a look at this!



People coming to the reserve very often ask if we’ve actually seen evidence of cats around the place and the answer from us, and we expect from all other managers, is a resounding ‘no’. Until now! We can now definitely say there are cats here and can actually point to the spot where they’ve been.


Again we’re not 100% sure what we’re looking at here, but we’ve discounted Margay for two reasons; a) the tail is a little too short and, b) Margay are a very arboreal species only rarely coming to the ground. A male Ocelot has been discounted too, as the cat caught here is a little small. That leaves us a couple of remaining options, either a juvenile or female Ocelot or an Oncilla, its smaller, rarely-mentioned cousin.


Personally, I’d go for Oncilla, given its markings, small size and long legs – but I’d be happy to take advice on that!


Hope you liked the videos and keep watching for more updates on life at Reserva Las Tangaras.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Katy permalink
    June 18, 2013 4:30 pm

    Where’s the lesser spotted nosey?? Xxx


  2. June 19, 2013 4:34 pm

    Wow! Great videos guys, Katie and I managed the reserve from March to June of 2012. My guess for the second video is White-throated Quail Dove, they are a large bird and I saw them quite frequently up on the ridge.

    I am not sure what the cat is but it really is amazing footage. Also while we were at Las Tangaras we had a mountain lion (Puma concolor) frequenting the backyard, just behind the house on Sendero de Amor. We never were fortunate enough to see it, but it left fresh tracks in the mud for a coulpe weeks.

    Thanks for the great posts!


  3. June 25, 2013 8:11 pm

    Hey Guys,
    Niki and I will be taking over the reserve next February and we cant wait. Niki is a bit of a Feline enthusiast so we were really excited about the possibility of an Oncilla occurring within the reserve. As this species is Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List it would be amazing to confirm its presence.
    I have forwarded a link of the video to a Wild Cat specialist that I know of from Chile so hopefully we can get a definitive answer for you soon.
    Keep the posts coming.


  4. Corey Callahan permalink
    June 27, 2013 7:23 pm

    I have had the video evidence reviewed and it has been confirmed that this is in fact an Oncilla. Good ID.


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