san-pancho-San Pancho-Bird-Estuary-01

Thursday,25 Apr 2013


Justin Henderson is responsible for most of the the text on this site. Justin is an established writer, having published six novels as well as many non-fictions and travel guides. When he’s not writing, he’s usually riding waves on a surfboard or a paddleboard in Sayulita or Punta de Mita.


You don’t have to be a “serious” birding enthusiast to appreciate the avian richness of San Pancho’s estuary. Where the water flows through the jungle to meet the sea, less than five minutes down the beach from “downtown” San Pancho, even the most casual observer will discover an amazing number and variety of birds.

For example, on an evening last week we drove up to San Pancho, parked the car near the beach, and walked down to have a look at the estuary (unlike Sayulita’s seasonal stream, the San Pancho waterway flows year-round). Although we failed to spot any crocodiles (rumored to dwell therein), we did see plenty of birds. As is evident in these photographs, the estuary is a lovely, enchanting place, and any visitor to Sayulita should plan on at least taking one day trip up to San Pancho to enjoy the town streets, shops, restaurants, and bars, as well as the beach and estuary.

As we strolled the edge of the estuary, we saw numerous birds perched in the trees as well as flocks and individual birds in the water. At some point we intend to go back and do an official birding tour of San Pancho with Luis Morales, the superb guide who runs Birding San Pancho, but for the moment, we offer this small sample.

In these photos are flocks of coots on the waters, a great egret alone in the trees, a willet strolling the shore, and neotropical cormorants in the trees.

Thanks to John and Michele Gillett for help with bird identification.