(Coereba flaveola)
By far the most common bird, the ubiquitous bird of the Centre is the very well known Bananaquit. Also known as the Sugar Bird or Sucrier (locally pronounced see-ki-yay), it is possibly the most recognisable bird in the country, being seen across varied habitat types, backyards, in groups and alone. A close relative of Tanagers and Wood Warblers, reminiscent in appearance and behaviour, it is often classified into its own family Coerebibae. As any bird watcher would admit, there is no guaranteed bird sighting, however in the case of the Bananaquit it is almost a certainty that this active, vocal and widespread species would be seen on every attempt. Nowhere better than off the Centre’s main Verandah feeding in mixed flocks, competing for fruit, nectar, sugar solution and insects. An insatiable omnivore, it can almost always be found actively foraging and is recognised by its small but compact size (4 inches), smooth sunny yellow underside and rump, black crown, nape, wings and tail. Most distinguishing is its pronounced white superciliary (white eyebrow) which helps differentiate it in the field from other close relatives like Warblers, Yellowthroats and Parulas. Although not considered a “mustsee” bird by most visitors partly due to its widespread range and abundance, it remains a reliable fun bird to observe, especially as scores of them can be seen competing on the feeders, pushing each other while generating the noisiest raucous sounds. To witness their very entertaining exhibition, come pay us a visit.