As part of our Round the World trip we visited Puerto Rico for 3,5 days in between the Dominican Republic and North Carolina (US). All Puerto Rican endemics are easily found within 2 days (with a very tight schedule you even might see all of them in a single day). With plenty of time during our stay we also visited the east side of the island for the 2 Lesser Antilles Hummingbirds (Crested Hummingbird and Green-throated Carib). The devastation of the hurricane is still clearly visible but only the 2 Hummingbirds on the east side seem to have suffered severely. All Puerto Rican endemics are still easily found. Overall traveling is easy and location are within a short drive from each other making Puerto Rico a very nice and easy trip.
In December Helen had to spend a week in Denver due to work obligations. This gave the opportunity to spend the weekend in the Rocky Mountains to search for some new birds.
We had planned a 2 week trip to Cuba late February 2014. While making the itinerary it turned out we had some days left and decided to spend these on an extra trip to Jamaica. A Birdwatchers guide to Cuba, Jamaica etc. mentioned that all 29 endemics should be possible to see in just a couple of days so we booked a long weekend from Cuba arriving Friday afternoon and leaving Monday afternoon.
We decided Cuba would be a nice escape of European winter with a good number of endemics, beaches and snorkeling. And of course to experience the unique culture that still exists in present day Cuba; colorful houses and empty roads with a nice selection of ancient cars and horse carts. While making the itinerary it turned out we had some days left and decided to spend these on an extra trip to Jamaica.
While visiting a friend in Colorado Springs Helen had the opportunity to do some birding on the side. Most birding time was spent in Garden of the Gods, a big public park close to Colorado Springs. Highlight there were Prairie Falcon, Canyon Wren and Juniper Titmouse.
And by missing her flight connection in Houston some additional birds were added near the airport.
This was our final stop on our around the world ticket (New Zealand, Fiji, California). July is not the best time of the year for California, but this short stop was a great addition to our time in NZ and Fiji. We drove from Los Angeles to San Francisco along Highway 1 and made some birding stops in between.