Author Archives: Kevin

New Field Guide to Northern Central America

New Peterson Field Guide to the Birds of Northern Central America

NEW Peterson Field Guide to the Birds of Northern Central America


A new Peterson Field Guide to the Birds of Northern Central America has arrived! Available this month, the new field-carry-sized guide covers the birds of Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.

At first glance, the design is what we expect for today’s guides… maps and vital info on the page opposite the illustrations. Just the way we need for quick field reference. Even more important for quick, easy studying before we even go into the field! Jesse Fagan and Oliver Komar did a great job.

Illustrations by Robert Dean and Peter Burke are small on most pages… but there are a lot of birds to fit into a small package, so no surprise. Illustrations are generally good, though It is easy to pick out the different artistic styles of the two illustrators. Some birds appear ‘stiff’ as they were most likely drawn from collection skins. Others are certainly darker or less vivid than ‘real life.’

Overall, however, this guide fits a need — one, carry-sized book to cover 4 countries. Though most of the birds birds will also be found in Mexico, Nicaragua or Costa Rica, these countries are not included in the text. To do so would require adding many more species!

I will certainly be recommended this guide to our Wildside clients heading joining us in Belize, Guatemala and Honduras!

–Kevin Loughlin

Bobcats and Bison and Bears… oh my!

2016 marks the 100th Anniversary of our US National Park Service!   The official date is not until August 25, the day Congress passed the “National Park Service Organic Act” in 1916, but we, along with all the National Parks and Monuments plan to celebrate all year long! If you watched the Tournament of RosesContinue Reading

Leader Spotlight: Scott Weidensaul

Born in 1959, Scott Weidensaul (pronounced “Why-densaul”) has lived almost all of his life among the long ridges and endless valleys of eastern Pennsylvania, in the heart of the central Appalachians, a landscape that has defined much of his work. His writing career began in 1978 with a weekly natural history column in the localContinue Reading

Species Spotlight: Galapagos Petrel

  Recognizing the buoyant flight of the Galapagos Petrel (Pterodroma phaeopygia) is the best way to ID this large, long-winged ‘gadfly petrel’ as it floats effortlessly over the Pacific in search of food. Squid, fish and crustaceans make up their diet. Once considered a subspecies of the Dark-rumped Petrel (Pterodroma phaeopygia phaeopygia) it was splitContinue Reading

Species Spotlight: Black-collared Hawk

  One of my favorite raptors, the Black-collared Hawk (Busarellus nigricollis) is found in wetlands from southern Mexico south through the Amazon and all the way to the Pantanal of Brazil. Though widespread, populations can be very local throughout the Amazon and its tributaries.     A lazy fisherman, Black-collared Hawks perch low over shallowContinue Reading

Safety First… for more fun later!

  It doesn’t happen often, fortunately, but tours can be interrupted by unexpected circumstances. Last week out group had barely begun a week-long photo workshop in Glacier National Park, in northwestern Montana, when a forest fire broke out.   After the group arrival on Sunday we had a wonderful, jam-packed day of photography on MondayContinue Reading

Festivals and a Rarity

Edison and Kevin just returned from a great road-trip cross country. Kevin was teaching a photo workshop in the Grand Tetons and Edison, Wildside’s top South American birding guide, stayed in the USA to join him to learn a bit more about photography and to enjoy seeing more of the USA’s scenic wonders, wildlife andContinue Reading

SPOTLIGHT: Blue-crowned Motmot by any other name…

  During my first visit to Central America, in 1993, I was introduced to the Blue-crowned Motmot (Momotus momota). WOW! What an fascinating bird… it’s long, racquet-like tail twitching from side to side like a clock, the bright, iridescent blue crown (hence the name), the serrated edge of the upper bill, the black mask andContinue Reading

ALASKA 2014 Trip Report (Part 3 of 3)

  The following morning we spent some time photographing the waterfalls that tumbled into the bay. It was low tide, so we had lots of rocks in the foreground to work with, offering some fun compositions. Sadly it began to rain, so we pulled up our tripods and headed back to the boat to beginContinue Reading

ALASKA 2014 Trip Report (Part 2 of 3)

  A pair of Red-throated Loons called as they drifted in the calm waters, while several Bald Eagles fished for herring. The perfect place to enjoy dinner and rest for the night. We looked forward to our morning photo session ashore! Morning came and with it a heavy mist that sat low over the shoreline.Continue Reading