The Agami Heron (agamia agami, Garza Agami)
My Top of the list for beautiful birds in Belize.
The Agami is an American Indian name for Forest bird. They hunt for fish with long dagger-shaped bills.
The plethora of bird books use objective words to describe birds. It’s the nature of scientific description. For instance a particular Parrot described in the popular ‘Guide book to Birds of Central America’ by Howell and Webb, is said to have pale flesh zygodactyl feet, short wings, a blue rump, gray orbital eye ring and hooked bill. The romance is just not there.
Oddly, every bird book in my library described the Agami Heron as ‘Beautiful’, a subjective description. These books are written by ornithologists and they must have a love for particular birds. Something about this bird swept them off their feet. In Carolyn Millers book, ‘100 Birds of Belize, she said, “The Agami is surely one of the most beautiful Herons in the world”.
In Belize, The Looters Trench Bar at the Chan Chich Lodge near Gallon Jug is a famous gathering place for Birders from around the world. My first exposure to the Agami was oddly there on a stroll to the men’s room. I was first struck by this beauty in a lithograph hanging on the wall. My impression was that’s a Japanese brush artist’s rendition of some exotic Asian bird. On returning to the bar I quizzed Norman about it and discovered it was an Agami of the Chan Chich Laguna Seca. I spoke with Carol Miller in the Looters Trench that evening, she said the Lake was a breeding ground for the Agami and they could almost always be found on its east shore.
It's not on this list probably because of it's rare status and your average birder hasn't seen one.