Guiding for a British crew traveling through Ecoturs (July 16 – 27, 2013).

28 - 07 - 2013

From July 16 to 27 (2013), Daniel guided a British crew traveling through Ecoturs (ProAves), visiting wonderful birding sites in the Central & Western Andes, including Otún-Quimbaya Wildlife Sanctuary, Rio Blanco, Los Nevados National Park, three ProAves´s reserves (Las Tangaras at Carmen de Atrato, Yellow-eared Parrot at Ventanas´s Pass above Jardin and Chestnut-capped Piha at Anorí), Morro Amarillo (Jardin), and La Romera ecopark in the outskirts of Medellín. Short birding stops were done along rural roads, at Combia (outside city of Pereira), La Florida (as we drove out of Otún-Quimbaya), Peña Lisa near Bolombolo and water reservoirs at Porce hydroelectric dam (as we drove back to Medellín).

Many nice birds were seen and enjoyed throughout, with a wide array of endemics & near-endemics. At Otún-Quimbaya we saw the Cauca Guan (E), Stile’s Tapaculo (E), Greyish Piculet (E), Multicoloured Tanager (E), Chestnut-breasted Wren, Bar-crested Antshrike (NE) and Rufous-breasted Flycatcher (NE), along with Red-ruffed Fruitcrow, Torrent Duck, White-capped Dipper, Torrent Tyrannulet, Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, Streak-capped Treehunter, Black-billed Peppershrike, Ashy & Plumbeous-crowned Tyrannulets, and a soaring Black-and-chestnut Eagle, among others.

Río Blanco provided nice views of magnificent antpittas, including Brown-banded (E), Chestnut-crowned and Slate-crowned Antpittas, along with flocks of endangered Golden-plumed Parakeet. Also, Golden-headed Quetzal, Black-billed Mountain-Toucan, Crimson-mantled Woodpecker, Streaked Tuftedcheek, Long-tailed Antwren, Dusky Piha and Black-collared Jay.

At Los Nevados we had very close views of a gorgeous male Bearded Helmetcrest (NE) and a feeding flock of Rufous-fronted Parakeet (E), as well as magnificent views of Crowned Chat-Tyrant, Many-striped Canastero, Paramo Tapaculo, Andean Tit-Spinetail, Black-capped Tyrannulet, Golden-crowned Tanager, Black Flowerpiercer and Paramo Seedeater, among others.

Las Tangaras provided many good birding moments, including great views of Mountain Choco specialties such as the Beautiful Jay (E), Crested-Ant Tanager (E), Black-and-gold Tanager (E), Gold-ringed Tanager (E), Choco Vireo (E), Alto de Pisones Tapaculo (E), Nariño Tapaculo (NE), Black-chinned Mountain-Tanager (NE), Purplish-mantled Tanager (NE), Glistening-green Tanager (NE), Rufous-throated Tanager (NE), Indigo Flower-piercer (NE), Fulvous-dotted Treerunner, Buffy Tuftedcheek, Yellow-breasted & Rufous-rumped Antwrens, Yellow-breasted Antpitta (NE), Bronze-olive Pygmy-Tyrant, Handsome & Ornate Flycatchers, Olivaceous Piha, Orange-breasted Fruiteater (NE) and Dusky Bush-Tanager (NE).

Munchique Wood-Wren (E) was well seen at “La M” above Carmen de Atrato, along with nice birds such as the Black-throated Tody-tyrant, White-browed Spinetail, Rufous-headed Pygmy-Tyrant, Blackish & Spillman´s Tapaculo, and Yellow-bellied Chat-Tyrant.

Yellow-eared Parrot flocks were well seen both at Ventana´s Pass and Morro Amarillo near Jardin. Parker´s Antbird (E) and Black-Chested Jay were seen at Morro Amarillo. Besides, Ventana´s Pass provided good views of the Golden-fronted Whitestart (NE), Streak-throated & Smoky Bush-Tyrants, Red-hooded Tanager, Citrine Warbler and Scarlet-rumped Cacique at low elevations.

At Chestnut-capped Piha Reserve we enjoyed close views of a group of seven Chestnut Wood-Quails (E) roosting early in the morning at a giant fern, Chestnut-capped Piha (E), Red-bellied Grackle (E), White-mantled Barbet (E), Colombian Chachalaca (E), Rufous-browed Tyrannulet, Moustached Puffbird, Channel-billed Toucan, White-throated Spadebill, Golden-winged Manakin, Sooty-headed (NE) & Scaly-breasted Wren, and Black-headed Brush-Finch (NE).

At La Romera, Gavin managed to spot a splendorous male of the much desired Yellow-headed Manakin (E) which was well seen by all, along with more Red-bellied Grackles (E) and a pair of Spotted Barbtails.

We saw 39 species of hummingbirds, including the much desired Purple-backed & Rainbow-bearded (NE) Thornbills, Golden-breasted Puffleg (NE), Brown Inca (NE), Mountain Velvetbreast, Velvet-purple Coronet (NE), White-tailed Hillstar, Empress (NE) & Green-crowned Brilliants, Greenish Puffleg, Wedge-billed Hummingbird, Tawny-bellied Hermit, Tourmaline Sunangel, Violet-tailed (NE) & Long-tailed Sylphs, Purple-throated Woodstar (NE) and Western Emerald.

We missed some of the birds in the wish list, including the Masked Saltator & Bicolored Antpitta (Rio Blanco), Black-thighed Puffleg (Los Nevados), Black Solitaire (Las Tangaras), Chestnut-crested Cotinga (Jardin) and Antioquia Wren (Peña Lisa). Chestnut-bellied Flowerpiercer (E) was clearly heard but not seen at “La M”. However, we managed to register a respectable 372 species list with 19 species heard only.

From left to right, taking a break but still looking at the wish list: Francis Peplow, Daniel Uribe, Heather & Melvin Billington, Gavin Peplow.