Once more around the Pipeline Road (pt. 2) - Featured Species: Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana)

On our tour around the Pipeline Road we also explored nearby open areas where we spent a lot of time making portraits of a group of Wattled Jacanas (Jacana jacana).

Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana)

The Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana) is a wader which is a resident breeder from western Panama (with rare reports from southern Costa Rica) and Trinidad south through most of South America east of the Andes. It is polytypic, with six recognized subspecies differing in the amount of black and chestnut in their plumage. Panama and northern Colombia subspecies has all the chestnut plumage replaced by black with some individuals having some chestnut on wings.  In Panama it's common elsewhere from northern Cocl√© and western Veraguas eastward, meeting northern jacana's range in western Panama and southern Costa Rica. Found on ponds and slow-moving streams with abundant floating vegetation but also grassy areas near them.

Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana)

The Wattled Jacana's food is insects, other invertebrates and seeds picked from the floating vegetation, the water’s surface, or grass.

Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana)

The yellow bill extends up as a red head shield and wattles.

Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana) - juvenile

Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana) - juvenile

Juveniles are brown above and white below, with a buff-white stripe above the eye and a dark stripe behind it. 

Wattled Jacana (Jacana jacana)

The legs and very long toes are dull blue-grey.

 
Wattled Jacana’s eggs

The wattled jacana lays four black-marked brown eggs in a floating nest. The male takes responsibility for incubation, with two eggs held between each wing and the breast.