Participants: Jon Hornbuckle, Rich Hopf, Graeme Wallace and Norman Williams
I had joined an Ornifolks trip to Colombia in 1997 and spent nearly 4 weeks seeing 724 species (including 5 non-Clements splits), this at a time when a third of the country was controlled by guerrillas. Since then the security situation has improved massively. Furthermore ProAves, http://www.proaves.org/, has been formed and been undertaking excellent conservation work throughout Colombia, including the establishment of a suite of fine reserves for Endangered birds. So it was time to re-visit and I recruited 3 friends to join me.
The trip was a great success as we all had a good number of ticks – 42 for me with highlights Highland Tinamou, Blue-knobbed Curassow, Yellow-eared Parrot, Santa Marta Screech-Owl, Dusky Starfrontlet, White-mantled Barbet, Greyish Piculet, Beautiful Woodpecker, Recurve-billed Bushbird, Fenwick’s, Bicoloured and Brown-banded Antpittas, Chestnut-capped Piha, Black-and-gold and Gold-ringed Tanagers, and Red-bellied Grackle. Good birds I had seen before included Cauca and Wattled Guans, Bogota Rail, Pavonine Cuckoo (displaying!), Bearded Helmetcrest, Santa Marta Antpitta and Bush-Tyrant, Black Solitaire, Golden-winged Sparrow and Masked Saltator.
We only heard Tolima Dove, didn’t get to the coastal site for Chestnut Piculet, and of the birds I thought we should see, I could not find Gorgeted Wood-Quail, Yellow-browed Shrike-Vireo, Crested Ant-Tanager and Mountain Grackle. Our trip list was relatively low for 4 weeks as we were looking for quality rather than quantity and did not go to the coast or to any sites specifically to boost numbers as many tour groups do.
We opted to go with Ecoturs www.ecoturs.org, the commercial arm of Pro Aves, and agreed an itinerary with Robert Giles, their man in the UK, mostly visiting Pro Aves reserves. We decided to do without a full-time guide and just use local guides except in the Santa Martas where we did request a guide. This was largely because friends had done a similar itinerary the previous year and reported that the local guides were excellent throughout.
Robert Giles did a great job in organising the trip and responded magnificently to several issues while we were in Colombia. In the main the arrangements worked well and the itinerary was satisfactory in the time available. We did make a few minor changes during the tour, with Ecoturs help, but the one major change we requested during the trip was refused: to go to El Cairo instead of Las Tangaras, a better staked-out but non-ProAves reserve. There were a few serious issues:-
1. The main driver, who did not understand any English, had never been to any of the sites and had no written instructions or maps on how to get to them, relying on his mobile phone to find out where to go, which sometimes led to delays and frustrations.
2. We were told by a junior member of the Ecoturs Bogota office that we could not go to the Piha Reserve until 11 am on March 2, the day after we were scheduled to go, because the road was blocked by a landslide. This was a cover-up because of their double-booking at the lodge – there was no landslide, as we discovered from the police at Amari, the town where we had to spent the night. Fortunately, this did not lose us much birding time as we ignored their instruction on March 2 and drove early to the Piha reserve. I understand that this staff member has been replaced, partly as a result of this event.
3. We had make do with inexperienced guides at the Yellow-eared Parrot Reserve and at La Suiza, and no guide at all on the last morning below Santa Marta. We were to have had Ecoturs’ reputedly excellent guide Trevor Ellery in the Santa Marta area but he was unavailable – however his replacement Ben Freeman was first class.
There are a surprising number of first class Colombian birders running birding tours throughout the country now, well worthy of consideration, although going with Ecoturs does contribute financially to the very valuable conservation work of ProAves.
My conclusion is that I would go with Ecoturs again if I could afford to take a good guide for most or all of the time. If I couldn’t, I would press Ecoturs to make every effort to ensure the best local guides were available, changing the order of the itinerary if necessary, or hire one of the Colombian guides, such as Diego Calderon, Pablo Florez or Luis Eduardo Urueña to run the trip.
Our itinerary was good for us but changes to consider are:-
Monterredondo instead of, or as well as, Chingaza – basically the same birds plus chance of Cundinamarca Antpitta and Greater Scythebill.
Add an extra day at Cerulea Warbler Reserve
Perhaps go to El Cairo instead of Las Tangaras and add a day. Specialities like the Bangsia tanagers seem to be more numerous here, although the latter site may become as good as it gets better known.
Visit the new Giles-Fuertesi Reserve (3300m) for Indigo-winged (Fuertes’) Parrot and other highland species.
There were rain showers on several days but only prolonged on two, costing us significant birding time at Cerulea and La Victoria. Low cloud and mist were a problem above Jardin and Cerulea. Mostly it was sunny and warm / hot with some clouds.
Many thanks for their help to Robert Giles, Diana Balcazar, Diego Calderon, Shaun Coyle, Pablo Florez, Ben Freeman, Frank Lambert and Ian Tomlinson.
16 Feb JH, GW and NW arrive at Bogota on Air France via Paris. Hotel El Virrey.
17 Feb 05.30-08.00 drive to Chingaza NP (3500m), in the mountains above Bogota, with Diana Balcazar
18 Feb La Florida golf-course a.m. Drive to ProAves El Paujil Reserve (190-800m), near Puerto Pinzon. Overnight at the lodge.
19-20 Feb Hiking up the ridge trail at El Paujil and exploring the lower trails, with help from Forest guard Jose Adan and his two sons at various times.
21 Feb Early a.m. in reserve, then drive to Cerulea Warbler Reserve (1300m) with a few stops. Overnight at the lodge.
22 Feb Joined by RH at Cerulea, a.m. hike up Mountain trail with Forest guard Carlos Julio. Pm in remnant forest patches and coffee plantations below the lodge.
23 Feb A.m. in reserve but washed out by heavy rain; drive to Ocaña to visit the Recurve-billed Bushbird Reserve. Hotel Plaza Real.
24 Feb A.m. in Bushbird Reserve, with Forest guard Jose Carmito. Long drive to El Dorado Lodge (1950m) in the Santa Marta Mountains.
25-27 Feb Birding above and below El Dorado with Ben Freeman. Overnight at El Dorado Lodge.
28 Feb A.m. birded down the hill to Minca. Late pm near the coast at Vale. Overnight at Sierra Sound Hotel, Minca.
1 Mar 6-8 a.m. Birding up to Poso Azul road from Minca, then drive to Vale to bird coastal scrub till 10.30. Drive to Santa Marta airport for 12.30-14.00 Avianca flight to Medellin. Drive to Amari for night in local hotel.
2 Mar 04.45-0700 drive to Chestnut-capped Piha Reserve (1100-1900m) near El Arrierito. Birding along ridge with Forest guard Jose Aicondo.
3 Mar All day at Piha Reserve.
4 Mar 5-11 a.m. at Reserve. Drive to Ciudad Bolivar via Medellin, arriving 18.00, Hotel Los Samanes.
5 Mar 4-6 a.m. drive to Las Tangaras (Bangsia) Reserve, El Carmen (1500m), last 45 mins in jeep. Birding with Forest guard Hubernay till noon in the mid-elevation choco forest at the lookout and back along the 1.5km track. Drive to Urrao via Medellin, arriving 18.00.
6 Mar 04.30-05.30 drive to Chuscal. Hike up to Colibri del Sol reserve lodge with Forest guard Luis Rubelio, then watch antpitta feeding. Continue up on horse to paramo, arriving 09.30. Walk down to lodge, arriving 4 pm.
7 Mar Birding near lodge till 09.30, 90 min walk down to Chuscal, drive to Jardin, arriving at 4. Hotel Valdivia Plaza.
8 Mar Jeep up to Yellow-eared Parrot (Loro Orejiamrillo) Reserve (2500-2900m) at 04.30 with local guide, NOT the knowledgeable Jose Castaño. Back to Jardin in low cloud, drive at noon to La Suiza Lodge, Otun Quimbaya Reserve (1800m), P.N. Ucumari, arriving at 18.30. Overnight in the government-owned lodge.
9 Mar 06.00-12.30 La Suiza (1800m) with Jimmy, NOT main guide Harvy. Drive to Manizales, wait an hour for guide and permission to go to Rio Blanco Reserve (2200m). Arrive 16.30, watch antpittas feed. Overnight at the lodge.
10 Mar All day in reserve with guide Sandra, mainly on the ridge track above the lodge; owling at night with Pablo Florez.
11 Mar Early drive to Los Navados NP (3400m) with Pablo and 2 clients. Birding roadside trees and scrub, then paramo at Las Briezas entrance gate. Walk side road for Rufous-fronted Parakeet then main road again. Drive to Hotel San Felipe near Mariquita 15.00-17.15.
12 Mar Drive to Libano (1600m) with Diana Balcazar, then to La Tigrera after picking up Golden-winged Warbler researcher Andrea Borros. Continue to Monte Tauro for Tolima Dove. Pm along river near Hotel San Felipe, Mariquita.
13 Mar Drive to La Victoria (1100m) with Diana, heavy rain 6-8 am then bird Bellavista Reserve till 10. Drive to Bogotá airport, arriving early at 14.30 for 18.30 flight home.
17 Feb We drove to the edge of Chingaza NP in the mountains above Bogota, with Diana Balcazar, but were unable to go into the park as it was closed due to high fire-risk. We visited a patch of forest favoured by Flame-winged Parakeets and eventually saw 8, while a little higher, the paramo held Matorral Tapaculo and Amethyst-throated (Longuemare's) Sunangel but no Bronze-tailed Thornbills, which are found on the other side of the park, too far away if unable to drive through it. Black-and-chestnut Eagle, Blue-throated Starfrontlet, Coppery-bellied and Glowing Pufflegs and Blue-backed Conebill were other notable birds.
18 Feb With an early start, Diana took us to La Florida golf-course on the edge of La Florida marsh. We walked along a small part of the wetland reserve and found all the specialities except Noble Snipe, notably Bogota Rail, Spot-flanked Gallinule, Silvery-throated Spinetail, Subtropical Doradito, Apolinar’s Wren and Rufous-browed Conebill. We left at 10, dropped Diana off and drove to Honda, where we stopped for the driver to eat. We continued at 4 and reached the Pro Aves El Paujil Reserve in the dark at 7.30. Supper and beds in the pleasant lodge there.
19 Feb We hiked up the ridge trail with Forest guard Jose Adan and heard Blue-knobbed Curassow, the star bird of the site, near to the trail. After an agonising few minutes of peering all over for the bird, one flew out of the canopy close to us, quickly followed by another. Not the view we were hoping for but as good as you get of a giant Critically Endangered bird in flight. Rich Hopf, who was to join us at the next site, had already been here and seen a Curassow on the ground further up the trail, after some effort, so we continued up but to no avail, and didn’t see much else of note. I did have a good view of a Wood-Quail, which increased my blood pressure as there were 3 Wood-Quail ticks to be found on our itinerary, but disappointingly this was only the widespread Marbled W-Q. After lunch we explored other parts of the reserve and saw a pair of White-mantled Barbet, another key bird, at flowering trees along with a variety of parrots, from Spectacled Parrotlet tp Blue-and-yellow Macaw. In a nearly dry riverbed I eventually got good views of Sooty Ant-Tanager and a shy Black Antshrike, but there was no sign of the Agami Heron that RH had seen a few days earlier. Colombian (Speckled) Chachalacas were active near the lodge. We drove back into the open farmland to look for Northern Screamer but failed to find it.
21 Feb I heard the calls of a Beautiful Woodpecker early in the morning in the canopy but only saw a Black-mandibled Toucan. We soon left the reserve, with a new and better driver, for our next destination, the Cerulea Warbler Reserve. This took nearly 8 hours to reach, with a few stops, the first of which was for good views of Northern Screamers and a few wetland birds. The new lodge was excellent, with good food, but we were too late for any birding. Here Rich Hopf joined us, having just seen a Recurve-billed Bushbird after considerable patience and effort, as well as Gorgeted Wood-Quail.
22 Feb In the morning we hiked up the quiet Mountain Trail from 1300 to nearly 2000m with Forest guard Carlos Julio. Gorgeted Wood-Quails were not feeding on the grain put out for them, and when we finally reached the highest point to look for Mountain Grackles in the temperate forest, it was rather misty and there was neither sight nor sound of them. On the way we did lure out Parker’s Antbird and Upper Magdalena Tapaculo, and saw Green Hermit and Black Inca at the feeders. Andean Toucanet, Red-browed Tyrannulet, Golden-winged Manakin and Yellow-breasted Brush-Finch of the yariguierum form were also seen. In the afternoon we visited coffee plantations below the lodge, where there were a few remnant patches of forest. The highlight was an endangered Chestnut-bellied Hummingbird that perched in a flowering tree for a long time. We also saw Indigo-capped Hummingbird but only RH had Turquoise Dacnis.
23 Feb We made an early start to the reserve to look for the Wood-Quail but had to retreat because of a heavy downpour and thunder-storm, making the trail vary slippery and awash with water. We walked down to the sports ground below the lodge in the rain and then had to wait a long time for our vehicle’s punctured tyre to be repaired. This should have been a good site for Yellow-browed Shrike-Vireo but there was no response to play-back. There were a few birds including Lesser Eleania and Prothonotary Warbler. We then travelled for 6 hours to the pleasant colonial town of Ocaña, with a few stops, booked in at the hotel, and then drove to the Bushbird reserve for an hour’s birding. Needless to say, at this time it was very quiet, the only bird seen being Moustached Brush-Finch.
24 Feb An early start in Bushbird reserve, with Jose Carmito who knew where the Bushbird territories were but little else. We soon heard one singing near the track but followed Jose’s advice and went higher up for a better chance of seeing the bird. Eventually we saw one pop out of thick bamboo into an open area for a second or two then promptly disappear. Two others sang, one only 2 - 3 metres away but was only seen when it flew. We tried for better views for a long time then heard one higher up the hillside. As we reached that spot, it started banging on a bamboo trunk and we saw it attacking the trunk, mainly where there were clumps of shoots – great views for several minutes. After this success, we walked a few paths looking for Black-fronted Wood-Quail but only heard it distantly. Other birds were rather scarce, probably because it was rather hot by then, with only Long-tailed Antbird of note. The car picked us up at 11, we returned to Ocaña to check out of the hotel, and then drove non-stop for six hours to Santa Marta town and on to Minca. After a further 90 mins on a rough road up the mountain, we reached the ProAves El Dorado Lodge (1950m), at 8.15, an excellent place to stay, and met Ben Freeman, our guide for the next 3 days, and his girlfriend Alexa.
25 Feb We drove up the mountain on a fine morning as far as the stunted moss forest on the San Lorenzo Ridge (2700m) to search for the higher altitude Santa Marta specialities. We were very successful, seeing Santa Marta Parakeet, Toucanet, Bush-Tyrant, Warbler, Mountain-Tanager and Brush-Finch, Rusty-headed and Streak-capped Spinetails, Brown-rumped Tapaculo and Yellow-crowned Whitestart. As I had birded on the mountain in 1997, only the Parakeet was new for me. The only birds missed were Black-backed Thornbill and Rufous Antpitta whose very distinctive call we could hear from the thick undergrowth. Heavy rain struck and the Toyota 4x4 started to smoke so we limped down to the lodge, arriving at 12.30. The rain eased but continued for the rest of the day. We watched a good selection of hummingbirds at the feeders, including White-tailed Starfrontlet and Sooty-capped Hermit, for some time before walking down the road. White-tipped Quetzal was nesting and Golden-breasted Fruiteater and Blue-naped Chlorophonia were seen. Back at the lodge grounds, Santa Marta Antpitta failed to appear at the feeding station, Black-fronted Wood-Quails were not at the compost heap – a good site for them - and the owls were silent, as often the case when its wet.26 Feb Spent most of the day below El Dorado, in rather damp and misty conditions at times. Birding was generally good, with Santa Marta Woodstar, two pairs of Santa Marta Foliage-gleaner, a noisy Grey-throated Leaftosser, Rusty-breasted Antpitta and lots of hummers in the flowering coffee at a finca I was invited to visit by its owner Senor Luis. In late afternoon at the lodge we finally saw two Black-fronted Wood-Quails, along with Band-tailed Guan, the Santa Marta form of Stripe-headed Brush-finch and at 6.10 a Santa Marta Antpitta came to the feeding station. Owling along the road before dinner was disappointing, with a bird heard but not seen, but after dinner we had good views of a rufous Santa Marta Screech-Owl, an as yet undescribed species, along the trail in the lodge grounds.
27 Feb Today was dry apart from a short afternoon shower. We returned early to the San Lorenzo Ridge in a vain attempt to find Stygian Owl and the missing Thornbill and Rufous Antpitta. It was much quieter than before so we returned to the lodge at 10 for coffee and to collect a packed lunch. We drove down to the finca, stopping for White-rumped Hawk and Yellow-billed Toucanet, and soon had better views of 3 or 4 Santa Marta Woodstars amongst the commoner hummers. During a long vigil here, a brief view of a Blossomcrown was had and a few other birds seen such as Red-billed Parrot. A bit lower down the mountain we found a Coppery Emerald feeding on roadside flowers, but that was the last bird of note, the rest of the afternoon being disappointing – even the Antpitta failed to show for his worm-fest.
28 Feb We birded further down the hill, all the way to Minca, and had great views of a nesting pair of Red-billed Parrots, and saw an elusive Rosy Thrush-Tanager. Further down we walked the track to Poso Azul, hoping to find the rare Santa Marta Sabrewing – no luck but we did see Golden-winged Sparrow and a definite Worm-eating Warbler, a rare bird in South America. After lunch in Minca, we were scheduled to go down to the dry xeric scrub and wetlands of the La Guajira Desert but the others thought it too far and elected to go to Ben’s closer site near the coast for Chestnut-winged Chachalaca (which I had seen in ‘97). We drove for 20 mins southwest along the coastal highway towards Cienaga, past a military camp and the Vale coal handling site, to a minor road towards the coast passing through pasture and a patch of xeric scrub. Stopping here we had good views of the Chachalaca, along with Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, Hook-billed Kite and Russet-throated Puffbird, then returned to Minca for the night. I dined on toasted sandwiches and beer at a small café, listening to 70s music including Janis Joplin, favoured by the owner.
1 Mar From 6 till 8 we walked up to the Poso Azul road and along it for a little way, then back to the hotel. No luck with the Sabrewing, the only new birds being Whooping Motmot, a split from Blue-crowned, and several Grey Hawks. Rich had stayed behind and found birding to be good near Minca cemetery. We all drove back to Vale and stopped at the white house on the left 1km down the minor road. I walked along the river behind the house, then along a track towards the main highway, passing through a banana plantation into coastal scrub. This was very birdy, with a close Collared Forest-Falcon, Chachalacas, Buffy Hummingbird, Caribbean Hornero (a proposed split off Pale-legged), White-whiskered Spinetail, Black-crested Antshrike, Venezuelan Flycatcher and Southern Beardless Tyrannulet. I reluctantly had to leave the area at 10.30, without finding Chestnut Piculet which I felt could well have been there. We drove to Santa Marta airport for the 12.30 flight to Medellin. Arriving at 2 pm, we were met by the disquieting news that we could not go to the Piha Reserve that night as scheduled because the road was blocked by an avalanche and would not be open till 11am the next day. The Ecoturs rep wanted us to overnight in Medellin but we insisted on going to Amari, the nearest town to the reserve. We arrived at 6 pm and took some time to find an acceptable hotel, after which we visited the police station to enquire about the avalanche with our driver as interpreter. A long discussion ensued, the police saying there had been a battle en route to the reserve two weeks ago between the army and renegades, with men killed, and it was still dangerous. However, we eventually discovered the driver had enquired about the wrong reserve – he was a good driver but had never been to any of the sites! When he mentioned ProAves, the police said it was safe to go to their reserve and the road was not blocked! After chicken and chips, I went to the internet only to find it was shut, earlier than I had been told, but the evening was saved by a local who generously invited me to his house to use his computer for email.
2 Mar We left at 04.45, back on the road we had come along for 30 mins, then drove to the Piha Reserve at El Arrierito, arriving at 0700 after passing a large group birding along the road near the lodge. It was clear that the lodge had been fully booked, the reason for the fake “avalanche”. We left our bags outside and proceeded up the hill with Forest guard Jose Aicondo, soon hearing Chestnut Wood-Quails calling invisibly. We birded along the length of the ridge, seeing little until a Chestnut-capped Piha popped out only a few meters away before moving to a non-photo position. Then I walked slowly back, seeing a Pale-edged Flycatcher nest-building; the others continued on the circuit to the lodge, seeing little of note. I watched the many hummers at the feeders while the others returned to the forest. RH saw Highland Tinamou and Chestnut Wood-Quail while GW and NW saw Red-bellied Grackle and Ochre-breasted Antpitta, so I was not a happy bunny.
3 Mar After a heavy thunderstorm in the night, it was mainly sunny with clouds all day. We spent the morning in the forest – I saw the Highland Tinamou with Jose, then a female Red-bellied Grackle nest-building. RH found a displaying Pavonine Cuckoo, so I went to his site and soon saw it displaying on the ground near the main stream, calling frequently and shaking its wings and tail for some time. Back on the ridge I found a Black-and-gold Tanager and Golden-breasted Fruiteater but no Piha; Chestnut-crowned Gnateater and Purplish-mantled Tanager were seen by others. The only flock of the day contained Western Woodhaunter, Olive-backed Woodcreeper and Yellow-throated Bush-Tanager. After lunch at the lodge at 2pm, we went out but saw nothing new except for RH who stayed out till dark and saw a Screech-Owl, either Colombian or Cinnamon – we went back with him but it failed to respond to play-back.
4 Mar Early morning owling drew a blank, with only Barred Forest-Falcon calling. I walked up to the start of the ridge and called in a Purplish-mantled Tanager, at last for me, and Sooty-headed Wren. Then I spent a long time watching and photographing the grackles – one sat in the nest for a while while 3 flew around, perching occasionally, before feeding nearby for some time. Back to the lodge at 10.15 for food and last shots of the hummers before leaving at 11 for Ciudad Bolivar via Medellin. We arrived at 6pm and checked in at the pleasant Hotel Los Samanes where we had a good chicken dinner.
5 Mar We took a two hour drive at 4 am to the Bangsia Las Tangaras Reserve (1500m), just beyond El Carmen, with the last 45 mins in a jeep. Birded with Forest guard Hubernay and his trainee assistant till noon in the mid-elevation choco forest on a cloudy but dry day. We walked quickly up to at the lookout, arriving at 7, because Ben had said we needed to be there early to see Gold-ringed Tanager. On arrival, Hubernay said later was better, so we should have birded in the forest on the way up! RH spotted 3 Black Solitaires feeding in an isolated tree on the ridge but they soon flew off. I saw a Gold-ringed Tanager flying away then GW found 2 feeding in the distance, one of which flew towards us giving close views of its very distinctive head. Other birds here were Violet-tailed Sylph, Golden-headed Quetzal, Choco Tapaculo, Handsome Flycatcher and Tricoloured Brush-Finch. I came down after the others and trawled for Munchique Wood-Wren, getting one response to play-back. As the bird had a heavily streaked throat I was convinced it was Munchique so I dashed down to find the others and led them back to see it. They were not convinced, believing it to be Grey-breasted of a stripe-throated race. However, subsequent research revealed that the race here, leucophrys, has a white throat. I went ahead after this and saw a good number of birds including Fulvous-dotted Treerunner, Pacific Tuftedcheek, Olivaceous Piculet, Sharpe’s Wren, Rufous-crested, Rufous-throated and Glistening-green Tanagers, Black-chinned Mountain-Tanager, Indigo Flowerpiercer, Dusky Bush-Tanager and Blue-black Grosbeak. I heard a couple of Tapaculos calling but didn’t try very hard to see one, a mistake because I later learnt this was an undescribed species, now called Alto de Pisiones Tapaculo! The others saw similar birds plus Olivaceous Piha, Black Solitaire and Rufous-rumped Antwren, but no Choco Vireo, which occurs here. A different suite of hummers were active at feeders, as this was our only foray into the Choco, including Velvet-purple Coronet, Empress Brilliant and Western Emerald. We reached the jeep at noon, drove down to the car and then on to Medellin for an ice-cream stop. The final destination was Urrao – there was a short-cut birders normally used, with good sites for Munchique Wood-Wren and Tanager Finch, but the police had strongly advised not to use it, so we didn’t reach Urrao until 18.00 by the safe route.
6 Mar We left at 04.30 for an hour’s drive NE to Chuscal farm, the starting point for a beautiful hike up to Colibri del Sol Reserve lodge (2800m) with Forest guard Luis Rubelio. We were offered horses to ride on up there but only GW accepted. We reached the lodge after 2 hours, seeing a few birds on the way, including White-capped Dipper. After breakfast Luis took us just inside the forest to his antpitta feeding-site. An undescibed species of antpitta duly arrived and put on a good performance; now known as Fenwick’s Antpitta, this forest is its only known site so far. Then we continued on the trail up to the paramo – as it got much steeper and stony, I took to a horse too. The beast was remarkably sure-footed and we reached the hummingbird feeders at 09.30, the biggest problem then being how to get off, which in my case involved more or less falling off the horse. Luis refilled the hummer-feeders and we continued a bit further on foot when GH briefly saw a Dusky Starfrontlet, the key bird to see here. We spent some time looking for it, to no avail, Luis going back to the lodge and NW continuing up to the paramo. We did see Lachrymose Mountain-Tanager and the endangered Chestnut-bellied Flowerpiercer. I also saw a Black-throated Flowerpiercer, from the rare isolated Colombian population, while others had Rainbow-bearded Thornbill. NW returned from the higher paramo, having seen Purple-backed Thornbill and a good flock with Chestnut-crested Cotinga and high elevation funarids, so I walked up there to 3200m. I saw a smaller flock, but neither of the best birds Norman had seen. The scenery was dramatic and a Paramillo Tapaculo popped out of a tussock, another new split, from Paramo. The others had gone down to the feeders and now there was activity with numerous visits by Tourmaline Sunangel and Collared Inca, and an occasional Dusky Starfrontlet. I stayed there a long time to photo the birds and see what turned up. Another star visitor was Sword-billed Hummingbird, the first time I had ever seen it at feeders, along with Mountain Velvetbreast and a few commoner species. Other birds up here included Slaty Brush-Finch, Grey-hooded Bush-Tanager and Golden-fronted Whitestart. It was 4 pm by the time I’d walked down to lodge; the others had just seen the antpitta at the feeder again. White-bellied Woodstar was a frequent visitor to the feeders in the garden, Black-billed Mountain-Toucan fed in a tree near the garden and RH had Slaty-backed Chat-Tyrant along the river. Nick Athanas arrived from El Carmen with 3 birders. It was decidedly cold at night.
7 Mar After breakfast at 05.30, we returned to the antpitta feeding site at 06.30, with two already in waiting. NW also saw a Chestnut-naped Antpitta. We birding near the lodge till 09.30, best for me was a close Andean (Emerald) Toucanet, and a Dipper and Masked Flowerpiercer above the waterfall. The 90 min walk down to Chuscal in sunny conditions was pleasant but disappointing for birds. We drove to Urrao, then took the perpetually winding Medellin road to Jardin, a pleasant colonial town. We made two stops to check patches of dry forest to look for Greyish Piculet but it was very hot. We did have an excellent view of Striped Manakin. We checked in at Hotel Valdivia Plaza, by the main square, at 4pm, and then tried to find the Cock-of-the-Rock lek in a gorge on the edge of town. Unfortunately, we had been given inadequate directions of where to go and so failed to find it, having to make do with lesser birds such as Flame-rumped Tanager and Blue-necked Tanager. Supper consisted of egg, beans and chips in the lively square.
8 Mar 04.30 departure by jeep to Yellow-eared Parrot (RNA Loro Orejiamarillo) Reserve (2500-2900m) with a local guide, NOT the knowledgeable Jose Castaño. It was a long uphill drive on a road, very bad at times, to the higher deforested mountains with a scattering of wax palms, some having parrot nest boxes attached. Visibility was OK at first and we had good scope views of 3 Yellow-eared Parrots feeding together, after seeing them in flight. The cloud came down, obscuring any likelihood of closer views so we started to walk and drive back. Birds were rather thin and our main aims of seeing Munchique Wood-Wren and Mountain Avocetbill were getting nowhere until we reached an area where our driver claimed a group had seen the Wood-Wren two days earlier. There was some response by two birds to play-back but they gave poor views, and there was no sign of the Avocetbill. We went back to Jardin disappointed to have seen so few birds but there seemed little point in returning to the parrot site as the cloud was persistently low. We left Jardin at noon for Rio Blanco and made a couple of stops for the elusive Greyish Piculet, eventually finding a responsive one that gave great views. It became clear there was something wrong with the planned schedule as the driver was having frequent conversations with the office. We were eventually told that we were going to La Suiza first, for two days, leaving only one for Rio Blanco as it was fully booked for the next 2 nights. We did not like this and spent over an hour on the phone to Robert Giles in UK and Angela in Bogota while the driver drove up and down the road not knowing where he was going or how to get to either place! We eventually agreed to go this night to La Suiza and the following two nights to Rio Blanco. Harvy, the main guide at La Suiza, Otun Quimbaya Reserve, met us on the road and escorted us to La Suiza lodge. We arrived at 6.30 pm, only to discover the government-owned lodge was full of 16 year old girls! We were found the last 2 rooms and had a simple meal in the canteen.
9 Mar We birded from 06.00-12.30 in cloudy conditions with Jimmy, because Harvy was not available. He knew the birds but no English and was unsuccessful in finding most of the specialities such as Moustached Antpitta, Multicoloured Tanager and Crested Ant-Tanager. Cauca Guan and Red-ruffed Fruit-Crow were easy, a few Golden-plumed Parakeet flew over, and we saw Andean (Highland) Motmot, with a single Chestnut Wood-Quail for me. We left after a quick lunch at 12.30, and drove to Manizales, being told on the way that we could not go to Rio Blanco till 06.00 tomorrow! We ignored this but had to stop in Manizales for some time before a guide arrived to show the driver the way to Rio Blanco reserve (2200m). We arrived at the lodge at 4.30 pm, having lost a good hour in all the messing about. There was no reason why we couldn’t stay there other than that their regular birdguide was not available. We were soon taken to the antpitta feeding station where the highly desirable Brown-banded and better-known Chestnut-crowned Antpitta performed very well. The hummer feeders at the lodge were well attended but with only a few species such as Tourmaline Sunangel, Speckled Hummingbird, Viridian Metaltail and Buff-tailed Coronet. The lodge was good, with reasonable food and hot showers.
10 Mar We spent all day in the reserve with part-time guide Sandra, in cloudy conditions. At 06.15 we looked for Masked Saltator near the lodge; no luck but when we walked up the road to the antpitta feeding area, we had a good view of a Saltator high in vines. Both antpitta species came in and fed quickly, then we did the main ridge track above the lodge for the rest of the morning. I went ahead to where Sandra said was the best area for Hooded Antpitta, my most-wanted bird here along with Bicoloured Antpitta. No luck so I turned back to meet the others just after they had seen 2 Bicoloured Antpittas well! I only had a glimpse of one in flight. Other birds seen included Slaty Brush-Finch, Blue-winged Mountain-Tanager and Russet-crowned Warbler. We were caught in a heavy shower as we returned to the lodge. NW came later after stopping for a big flock including White-capped Tanager. After lunch I returned to the Hooded Antpitta spot without success but found a good flock with Capped Conebill, Black-eared, Black-capped and Superciliaried Hemispinguses, Grey-hooded Bush-Tanager and Plushcap, and saw a close Bicoloured Antpitta at a stream. We decided to go to the paramo tomorrow but the driver objected, saying it was not in the itinerary. However, Angela agreed, thanks to RH making the case in Spanish, so the driver had to accept it. I found the others back at the antpitta feeder, along with Colombian guide Pablo Florez with an English couple. All had left by 5.10pm but I stayed till dark – feeding activity resumed, the finale being a Brown-banded collecting possibly the last 3 worms in dim light and then hopping up a sappling and disappearing higher up, possibly roosting fairly high in the tree. A Chestnut-crowned Antpitta sang loudly from a horizontal log at dusk. After supper, we went owling at night with Pablo Florez and his two clients. A White-throated Screech-Owl responded to play-back but we just could not see it and there was no reponse from Rufous-banded Owl, also found here.
11 Mar We took an early drive to Los Navados NP (3400m), along with Pablo and clients – cold at first, below a snow-capped mountain. We birded the roadside trees and scrub, seeing little except a few Golden-breasted Pufflegs and one Black-thighed Puffleg. Then up to the paramo at Las Briezas park entrance gate and café/shop. Here we found a fine Bearded Helmetcrest, mainly sheltering in Fraillones plants, Many-striped Canastero, Andean Tit-Spinetail and Stout-billed Cinclodes. Back down the hill, we took a side-road to look for the rare Rufous-fronted Parakeet but saw only Shining Sunbeam and Plain-coloured Seedeater. We returned to the main road where we started but the only notable birds were Golden-crowned Tanager and Black-backed Bush-Tanager. At 3pm we departed for a two hour drive to Hotel San Felipe near the town of Mariquita. It had internet but so slow as be almost useless, so RH and I went into town, only to find that there was a power cut so no internet at all! Back at the hotel, we met up again with Diana Balcazar who was to be our guide for the next two days.
12 Mar An early departure to Libano was foiled by our inability to find the road to La Tigrera until Diana spotted the gorgeous Andrea Borros walking in the town. She is researching into wintering Golden-winged Warblers and came aboard to show us the way to the patch of forest in the nearby foothills at some 1800-2000m. The target here was the rare Yellow-headed Brush-Finch, which took some finding but eventually gave very good views. Not much else was seen here – we heard White-crowned Tapaculo calling close by but could not see it. We tried a nearby area along the river for Crested Ant-Tanager but despite considerable effort, this remained one of the main dips of the trip. Continuing to Monte Tauro to look for Tolima Dove, we found a good hill-side viewpoint with 2 or 3 Doves calling below us but they never seemed to move and getting into the woodland would have been very challenging. We returned to Hotel San Felipe for lunch, having seen only one of the three Ibagué endemics on offer, then spent a pleasant afternoon birding along the shallow river a few km away. We had fair selection of birds, including a good passage of migrant Swainson’s and Broad-winged Hawks heading to North America, but the main target, Apical Flycatcher, was not confirmed despite one strong candidate.
13 Mar We drove to La Victoria (1100m) with Diana but heavy rain, from 6-8 am, stopped play. When it eased we had two hours to bird the Bellavista Reserve, not long enough. At first it was very quiet, probably because the birds were wet, but then we found one of the main targets – a pair of Velvet-fronted Euphonia. This was followed by a Beautiful Woodpecker for GW and me, but no definite Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant. Reluctantly we had to leave at 10 to drive to Bogotá airport for our homeward flight as it was thought this could take 6 hours. We made good time however, arriving early at 14.30 for the 18.30 flight home. We had driven past the renowned site of Laguna Pedro Palo, which was rather galling (although may have required a permit). Nevertheless, it was a fond farewell to Colombia with an excellent haul of new birds, some of which are extremely rare.
We visited the following main sites:-
Chingaza NP (3500m) is one of several good sites in the Andes around Bogota. It holds 3 specialities: Flame-winged/Brown-breasted Parakeet, Bronze-tailed Thornbill and Mattoral Tapaculo. Tawny-breasted Tinamou must occur but is rarely seen and there are a good selection of montane species such as Black-and-chestnut Eagle, Blue-throated Starfrontlet, Coppery-bellied Puffleg and White-chinned Thistletail.
La Florida swamp is close to Bogota airport and is good for Spot‑flanked Gallinule, Bogota Rail, Noble Snipe, Silvery-throated Spinetail, Subtropical Doradito, Apolinar’s Wren and Rufous-browed Conebill.
El Paujil Reserve was was created to protect the critically endangered Blue-billed Curassow, and is situated on a a low ridge lying slightly to the west of the eastern cordillera at the base of the Serranía de las Quinchas in the Magdalena Valley. Several other threatened and near-threatened species occur in the reserve, including, Saffron-headed Parrot, White-mantled Barbet, Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant, Black-billed Flycatcher and Sooty Ant-Tanager. El Paujil has a very hot and humid climate, with an average high temperature of 35ºC and on occasions can seem birdless. Other good birds here are Semicollared Hawk, Dwarf Cuckoo, Stripe-throated Hermit, Pale-bellied Hermit, Rufous-crested Coquette, Shining-green Hummingbird, Black-breasted Puffbird, Vermiculated and Colombian Screech-Owls, Central American Pygmy Owl, Citron-throated and Black-mandibled Toucans, Beautiful Woodpecker, Slaty-winged Foliage-gleaner, Black Antshrike, Dull-mantled Antbird, Bare-crowned Antbird, Streak-chested Antpitta, Black-billed Flycatcher, Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant, (Western) Striped Manakin, White-bibbed Manakin., Sooty-headed Wren, Yellow-browed Shrike-Vireo, Sooty Ant-Tanager, and Northern Screamer occurs nearby.
Cerulea Reserve: RNA Reinita Cielo Azul (1300-1900m). This is in the San Vicente de Chucurí mountains, in the subtropical Andes, and was set up to help the wintering Cerulean Warbler population. It holds Gorgeted Wood-Quail, Black Inca, Parker’s Antbird, White-mantled Barbet, White-bellied Antpitta, Rufous-browed Tyrannulet, and Mountain Grackle immediately above the reserve. The Yariquies Brush-Finch, a newly-described subspecies of the widespread Yellow-breasted Brush-Finch has recently been found here while Chestnut-bellied Hummingbird, Niceforo Wren, Yellow-browed Shrike-Vireo and Turquoise Dacnis-Tanager can be found below the reserve.
Bushbird Reserve: RNA El Hormiguero de Torcoroma This ProAves reserve protects the enigmatic Recurve-billed Bushbird which is relatively common here. It is located only 20 minutes from the pleasant town of Ocaña, where there are good hotels. Several trails have been built through the reserve, passing through the chusquea bamboo thickets that the bushbird favours. Other specialities here are Black-fronted Wood-Quail, Stripe-breasted Spinetail Grey-throated Warbler, Chestnutbellied Thrush, Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush and Moustached, Chestnut-capped and Stripe-headed Brush-Finches.
Santa Marta Mountains: RNA El Dorado (1900 – 2700m). The most accessible route up the Santa Marta Mountains is an isolated ridge, the Cuchilla de San Lorenzo, with a road all the way up to radio masts at nearly 2800m elevation. Almost all of the endemics can be seen in the excellent forest along this road, with the notable exception of Santa Marta Wren. There is a fine ProAves lodge here and the cool climate makes it a pleasure to stay. The road is very poor in places, a high clearance vehicle being essential. The highest elevations along the ridge are good for Santa Marta Parakeet, Rusty-headed Spinetail, Brown-rumped Tapaculo, Santa Marta Bush-Tyrant, Santa Marta Warbler, Yellow-crowned Redstart, Santa Marta Brush-Finch and Santa Marta Mountain-Tanager, and there are endemic races of Rufous Antpitta and Páramo Seedeater. Lower down, White-tailed Starfrontlet, Santa Marta Woodstar, Santa Marta Screech-Owl, Santa Marta Toucanet, Santa Marta Foliage-gleaner, Santa Marta Antpitta, Santa Marta Tapaculo and White-lored Warbler can be seen. Black‑backed Thornbill is also here but very difficult. Apart from the endemics species, there are Black-fronted Wood-Quail, White-tipped Quetzal, Streak-capped Spinetail, and endemic supspecies of Black-capped Tyrannulet, Cinnamon Flycatcher, Blue-naped Chlorophonia, Grey-throated Leaftosser, Stripe-headed Brush-Finch, and even Great Thrush. Some of these are distinctive, but unlike the Ruddy Foliage-gleaner, seem unlikely to be split. Red-billed Parrot, Coppery Emerald, Blossomcrown, Rosy Thrush‑Tanager, Golden-winged Sparrow and the rare Santa Marta Sabrewing occur in the drier, lower elevations, especially near Minca.
Chestnut-capped Piha Reserve: RNA Arrierito Anioqueño This reserve is named after the Chestnut-capped Piha, only described in 2001 from a very restricted area in the northern part of the central Andes, which has suffered tremendous deforestation. Other endangered species, such as Red-bellied Grackle, Black-and-gold Tanager, Parker’s Antbird and Stiles’s Tapaculo also occur, along with Highland Tinamou, Chestnut Wood-Quail, Pavonine Cuckoo, Golden-breasted Fruiteater, Chestnut-crowned Gnateater and Purplish-mantled Tanager. The best area for birding is up and along the good ridge trail.
Colibri del Sol Reserve (2700 - 3200m). This 580 hectare reserve near Urrao, now a quiet, peaceful town – a few years ago it was a hotbed of guerrilla activity - was established to protect two endangered species restricted to the Colombian western Andes: the Dusky Starfrontlet, only rediscovered in 2004, having previously been known only from its type specimen, and the Chestnut-bellied Flowerpiercer. A new antpitta was then discovered here, Fenwick’s Antpitta, and one has been trained to come to a feeder. Other highland species include Rainbow-bearded and Purple-backed Thornbills, Tourmaline Sunangel, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Mountain Velvetbreast, White-bellied Woodstar, Black-billed Mountain-Toucan, Paramillo Tapaculo, Chestnut-crested Cotinga, Slaty-backed Chat-Tyrant and the rare, isolated form of Black-throated Flowerpiercer.
Rio BlancReserve (2200). Protecting an important watershed for the city of Manizales, this reserve holds some of the most difficult to see species in Colombia, notably Rusty-faced Parrot, Maroon-chested Ground-Dove, Brown-banded, Bicoloured and Hooded Antpittas and Masked Saltator. Also present are White-throated Screech-Owl, Rufous-banded Owl, Ocellated and Spillmann’s Tapaculos, Tourmaline Sunangel, Buff-tailed Coronet, Long-tailed Antbird, Dusky Piha, Rufous-crowned Tody-Tyrant, Black-capped Tyrannulet, Pale-edged and Golden-crowned Flycatchers, Citrine and Russet-crowned Warblers, Capped Conebill, White-capped and Grass-green Tanagers, Black-eared, Black-capped and Superciliary Hemispinguses, Plushcap, Grey-hooded Bush-Tanager and Stripe-headed Brush-Finch.
P.N. Los Navados (3400m) is an easily accessible protected area of paramo and montane forest. We mainly birded on the Nevado del Ruiz road. The star birds are Bearded Helmetcrest, Black-thighed Puffleg and the endangered and difficult-to-see Rufous-fronted Parakeet. Other birds here are Viridian Metaltail, Golden-breasted Puffleg, Shining Sunbeam, Rainbow-bearded and Purple-backed Thornbills, Great Sapphirewing, Bar-bellied Woodpecker, Stout-billed Cinclodes, Many-striped Canastero, White-chinned Thistletail, Tawny Antpitta, Paramo Tapaculo, Buff-breasted Mountain-Tanager, Black-backed Bush-Tanager, Golden-crowned Tanager, Pale-naped Brush-Finch, Plumbeous Sierra-Finch, and Paramo and Plain-coloured Seedeaters.
Tolima/ La Victoria This area of forest patches around the towns of Ibague, Libano and Mariquita holds several specialities, notably Tolima Dove, Blossomcrown of a different form to Santa Marta, White‑mantled and Toucan Barbets, Moustached Puffbird, Beautiful Woodpecker, Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant, Apical Flycatcher, Yellow-headed Manakin, Velvet-fronted Euphonia, Sooty and Crested Ant-Tanagers, and Yellow-headed Brush-Finch.
Other good sites near our route that we did not have time to visit are:-
Fulvous-dotted Treerunner, Black Solitaire, Munchique Wood-Wren, Black-and-gold Tanager, Gold-ringed Tanager, Crested Ant-Tanager, Tanager Finch
Tawny-bellied Hermit, Wedge-billed Hummingbird, White-tailed Hillstar, Empress Brilliant, Collared and Brown Incas, Velvet-purple Coronet, Violet-tailed Sylph. Pacific Tuftedcheek, Bicoloured Antvireo, Yellow-breasted Antpitta, Olivaceous Piha, Orange-breasted Fruiteater, Handsome Flycatcher, Glistening-green and Purplish-mantled Tanagers, Dusky-bellied Bush-Tanager, Black-chinned Mountain-Tanager, Tricoloured Brush-Finch, Indigo Flowerpiercer, Yellow-collared and Chestnut- breasted Chlorophonias, and Beautiful Jay.
Soata is a town at 2000m on the west slope of the Eastern Andes 5-6 h drive from Bogota. Nicetero’s Wren and Chestnut-bellied Hummingbird occur close to the town, and Rusty-faced Parrot, Mt Grackle, Bronze-tailed Thornbill and Golden-bellied Starfrontlet above the town on the road to Onzango.
Isla de Salamanca National Park and Guajira - the coastal scrub, mangroves and wetlands here hold Red-billed Emerald, Buffy Hummingbird, Northern White-fringed Antwren, Slender-billed Inezia, Northern Scrub-Flycatcher, Pale-eyed Pygmy-Tyrant, Yellow-breasted Flycatcher, One-coloured Becard, Orinoco Saltator, Glaucous Tanager, Pileated Finch, Tocuyo Sparrow, Vermilion Cardinal, Orinoco Saltator and the rare Sapphire-bellied Hummingbird and Chestnut Piculet.
Laguna de Sonso is a good site on the way from Bogota to La Victoria. Birds include Ruby-Topaz Hummingbird, Greyish Piculet, Streak-headed Woodcreeper, Jet Antbird, Slate-headed Tody-Flycatcher and Apical Flycatcher.
P = photo by JH
Highland Tinamou Nothocercus bonapartei: A calling bird at Chestnut-capped Piha Reserve, where the ridge trail starts to flatten out after the initial steep climb, was first seen by RH and next morning by JH with Jose.
Northern Screamer Chauna chavaria: 6 were feeding in wet grassland beyond the village nearest El Paujil on the way to Cerulea Reserve – classed as Near-Threatened with extinction by BirdLife International. P
Broad-winged and Swainson’s Hawks Buteo platypterus and swainsoni: Several large kettles of hawks, predominantly Broad-winged, soared northwards over the river March 12th pm, several hundred birds in total. The following morning more were seen rising up from forest patches at La Victoria when the sun came out after the rain. P
Black-and-chestnut Eagle Spizaetus isidori: This large eagle was seen soaring high above us at Chingaza - classified as Vulnerable, the total population is thought to be less than 1000.
Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus: One was perched at El Paujil then JH saw an imm. very close in the scrubby trees near Vale – best ever view of this species. P
Chestnut-winged Chachalaca Ortalis garrula: 15 were seen late afternoon from the minor road near Vale and a few in the scub there the following morning. P
Colombian Chachalaca Ortalis columbiana: A few were seen near the lodge at El Paujil and heard at La Victoria. The taxonomy of the Speckled Chachalaca
complex, of which Colombian Chachalaca is part, is somewhat complex and this proposed split has not been accepted by Clements. P
Band-tailed Guan Penelope argyrotis: We had a few sightings in the Santa Marta mountains. P
Cauca Guan Penelope perspicax: we had great views of a few of this Endangered endemic at La Suiza. P
Wattled Guan Aburria aburri: Two were seen at Piha Reserve and one heard calling at La Suiza - classified as Near Threatened.
Sickle-winged Guan Chamaepetes goudotii: A few sightings in the Santa Marta Mountains and at Las Tangaras.
Blue-knobbed Curassow Crax alberti: one of this Critically Endangered species was seen on the ground just over the ridge at El Paujil by RH and 2 were active in trees half way up the ridge trail but only seen when they flew past.
Black-fronted Wood-Quail Odontophorus atrifrons: After hearing it at Bushbird Reserve, we finally saw two covey crossing the road late afternoon at El Dorado Lodge - classified as Vulnerable.
Chestnut Wood-Quail Odontophorus hyperythrus: RH saw it at Piha Reserve in the stream bed and JH saw 1 on the road at La Suiza – classified as Near Threatened.
Gorgeted Wood-Quail Odontophorus strophium: Only seen by RH before the rest of us arrived at Cerulea Reserve, we never even heard it – classed as Endangered.
Bogotá Rail Rallus semiplumbeus: only 1 at La Florida but good views - listed as Endangered.
Spot-finked Gallinule Gallinula melanops: 2 of the isolated population around Bogotá (bogotensis) were at La Florida. P
Tolima Dove Leptotila conoveri: We heard 3 or 4 calling at Monte Tauro inside inaccessible patches of forests but despite watching the area from a hillside, we failed to see any perched or flying - a very difficult species to see, classed as Endangered, known from a only small number of locations.
Yellow-eared Parrot Ognorhynchus icterotis: 3 of these superb birds feeding in the reserve above Jardin. Recently downgraded from Critically Endangered to Endangered as the population is increasing.
Santa Marta Parakeet Pyrrhura viridicata: A flock seen well both mornings we drove to the highest point possible on the San Lorenzo Ridge - classified as Endangered. P
Flame-winged/Brown-breasted Parakeet Pyrrhura calliptera: 8 at Chingaza, a tricky bird to see. Had we gone to the other side of the park, we may have seen more birds but missed this speciality. P
Red-billed Parrot Pionus sordidus: Only seen in the Santa Marta Mountains at a few locations with a pair active for a long time at a nest hole above Minca - the endemic race saturatus. P
Pavonine Cuckoo, Dromococcyx pavoninus: a calling bird near the start of the ridge trail at Piha Reserve responded to play-back by displaying while perched on the bank of the stream. This species was unknown in Colombia until this century but has been regularly seen here, but hardly anywhere else, almost since the reserve opened. P
Cinnamon/Colombian Screech-Owl Megascops colombianus: RH saw a Screech-owl at the Piha Reserve but unfortunately, it did not respond to play-back when we went back there with him. It should be Colombian on range but others, including Jon Fjeldsa, who have heard it think it sounds more like Cinnamon.
Santa Marta Screech-Owl Megascops gilesi: This newly described species, named after Robert Giles because of his major support for Pro Aves, eventually gave superb views at El Dorado. P
Santa Marta Woodstar Chaetocercus astreans: Below El Dorado we all had a good look at a female with – classed as Endangered. P
Coppery Emerald Chlorostilbon russatus: A few seen above Minca – a bird I missed last time. P
Blossomcrown Anthocephala floriceps: One bird of the nominate race seen briefly below El Dorado; the other race berlepschi occurs around Tolima and is also difficult to find - classified as Vulnerable but probably deserves a higher threatened status.
Chestnut-bellied Hummingbird Amazilia castaneiventris: one initially seen visiting flowering tree below Cerulea and then found perched in a big tree nearby for a long time – classed as Endangered. P
Dusky Starfrontlet Coeligena orina: One adult mail and a few in female-type plumage at feeders just below the paramo at Colibri del Sol reserve – Critically Endangered, only known from 2 sites in the Colombian Andes. P
Black-thighed Puffleg Eriocnemis derbyi: We saw one or two at Nevado del Ruiz - classified as Near-Threatened.
Coppery-bellied Puffleg Eriocnemis cupreoventris: One or two at Chingaza - classified as Near-Threatened.
Black Inca Coeligena prunellei: Common at the feeders in the forest at Cerulea, not seen anywhere else – classed as Vulnerable. P
Bearded Helmetcrest Oxypogon guerinii: An excellent encounter with a male at Las Briezas park entrance to Los Navados NP – it spent most of its time perched in one large Fraillones plant, sometimes “sunbathing”. P
White-tipped Quetzal Pharomachrus fulgidus: A pair of the Santa Marta endemic form festatus was nesting just below El Dorado Lodge. P
Russet-throated Puffbird Hypnelus ruficollis: A few showed well on the Caribbean coast. Now that this and Two-banded Puffbird H. bicinctus are treated as separate
species, this species has a very small range in north-eastern Colombia and north-western Venezuela. P
White-mantled Barbet Capito hypoleucus: Great views of a pair of this Nechí endemic at El Paujil including mutual display, bowing heads and bobbing tails up and down - classified as Endangered with a population is estimated at only 2,500. Heard at La Victoria but no time to look for it. P
Yellow-billed and Santa Marta Toucanets Aulacorhynchus calorhynchus: Both species, split from Emerald Toucanet, photo’d along the San Lorenzo ridge road above El Dorado. P
Andean Toucanet Aulacorhynchus albivitta: Seen at Cerulea and Colibri del Sol reserves, also occurs around La Suiza, Rio Blanco and Jardin but we failed to see any there - another Emerald Toucanet split accepted by Clements. P
Black-billed Mountain-Toucan Andigena nigrirostris: Watched feeding on berries in a tree at the Colibri del Sol lodge, also seen at Chingaza and Rio Blanco. P
Greyish Piculet Picumnus granadensis: It took a few stops while travelling between sites on March 7 and 8 to finally locate a responsive bird, often missed on tours - classed as Endangered. P
Beautiful Woodpecker Melanerpes pulcher: GW saw one opposite the lodge at El Paujil; I only heard it calling there, but did have a good view at the edge of the forest at La Victoria. This species is a split from Golden-naped Woodpecker M. chrysauchen and is classed as Endangered.
Caribbean Hornero Furnarius longirostris: Seen with difficulty as rather furtive near Vale. A proposed split from Pale-legged F. leucopus, this form is only found in the xeric scrub on the Caribbean coast.
Silvery-throated Spinetail Synallaxis subpudica: Two at La Florida, Bogotá at the start of the tour.
Rusty-headed Spinetail Synallaxis fuscorufa: A few of this Santa Marta endemic were seen well above El Dorado (as were the near-endemic Streak-capped Spinetail Cranioleuca hellmayri) - classified as Vulnerable. P
Fulvous-dotted Treerunner (Star-chested T) Margarornis stellaris: One or 2 of this localised Choco species were seen at Las Tangaras – classed as Near Threatened.
Santa Marta Foliage-gleaner Automolus rufipectus: A few were seen around El Dorado. Formerly lumped in Ruddy Foliage-gleaner, this vocally distinct bird has recently been described as an endemic species - classed as Endangered.
Grey-throated Leaftosser Sclerurus albigularis: A pair of these ground birds were very responsive and perched up noisily at El Dorado. Here the subspecies propinquus is endemic to the Santa Marta mountains. P
Black Antshrike Thamnophilus nigriceps: one shy bird was lured out at the bridge near the lodge at El Paujil.
Recurve-billed Bushbird Clytoctantes alixii: Fairly common by call at Bushbird Reserve with two seen well, although one rather briefly. RH also saw one at Cerulea after several hours of effort - classed as critically Endangered.
Parker’s Antbird Cercomacra parkeri: A few at Cerulea and a pair at Piha Reserve. P
Dull-mantled Antbird Myrmeciza laemosticta: One at El Paujil.
Santa Marta Antpitta Grallaria bangsi: One appeared on only one out of 3 visits we made to the feeder at El Dorado - listed as Vulnerable.
Fenwick’s Antpitta Grallaria fenwickorum: Two of this newly discovered species performed well at the feeder at Colibri de Sol Reserve – not listed by BirdLife but must be Endangered, probably Critically as I think it is only known from this reserve. P
Bicoloured Antpitta Grallaria rufocinerea: Two were seen together at Rio Blanco by all except me but I saw one later, not far away near a stream - listed as Vulnerable.
Brown-banded Antpitta Grallaria milleri: two or three coming to worms at Rio Blanco, giving amazing views of what was formerly a very difficult bird to see - classified as Endangered with a population estimated at 250 – 999 individuals and decreasing. P
Rusty-breasted Antpitta Grallaricula ferrugineipectus: One seen well at El Dorado.
Slate-crowned Antpitta Grallaricula nana: Only heard at Rio Blanco – this species has recently been split into 3 full species now so I ought to have made more effort to have seen this bird as the only one I’d had before was near the Caribbean coast in Eastern Venezuela, a different species.
Alto de Pisiones Tapaculo Scytalopus sp. Nov.: one heard near the river at Las Tangaras, without realising it was a new species!
Stiles’s Tapaculo Scytalopus stilesi: One was seen at the Piha Reserve and others heard, also heard at La Suiza - classified as Endangered.
Upper Magdalena Scytalopus rodriguezi: One at Cerulea Reserve - classified as Endangered.
Mattoral Tapaculo (Rufous-rumped T) Scytalopus griseicollis: Another endemic skulker that was seen well in the paramo at Chingaza.
Spillmann’s Tapaculo Scytalopus spillmanni: This version of the ‘Brown-rumped Tapaculo’ (seen at El Dorado) was heard only at Rio Blanco and above Jardin.
Choco Tapaculo Scytalopus chocoensis: Seen at the high viewpoint at Las Tangaras - this form was formerly lumped in Nariño Tapaculo S. vicinior.
Paramillo Tapaculo Scytalopus sp.: One in the paramo at Colibri del Sol Reserve – a newly described species.
Paramo Tapaculo Scytalopus canus: One at Los Navados NP.
Olive-striped Flycatcher Mionectes olivaceus: One of the endemic subspecies galbinus was seen well in the Santa Marta Mountains.
Rufous-breasted Flycatcher Leptopogon rufipectus: Seen at La Suiza and Rio Blanco.
Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant Phylloscartes lanyoni: A Nechí endemic only described about two decades ago. Classified as Endangered.
Variegated Bristle-Tyrant Pogonotriccus poecilotis: Only seen at La Suiza.
Santa Marta Bush-Tyrant Myiotheretes pernix: One performed very well on our first day at the high point of the San Lorenzo Ridge - a difficult bird to see well and listed as Endangered. P
Rufous-browed Tyrannulet Phylloscartes superciliaris: one in a small flock on the main trail at Cerulea Reserve.
Pale-edged Flycatcher Myiarchus cephalotes: One was collecting bill-fulls of nesting material off the ridge trail at the Piha Reserve on two days. P
Chestnut-capped Piha Lipaugus weberi: One on the ridge at the Piha Reserve was seen very well but moved further away and could not be relocated - classified as Endangered.
Red-ruffed Fruitcrow Pyroderus scutatus: Five or six of the near-endemic (there are a few records from NW Ecuador) race occidentalis were seen very well along the road at La Suiza. P
White-bibbed Manakin Corapipo leucorrhoa: A female plumaged bird was seen by JH at El Paujil in light forest over the river opposite the lodge. P
Striped Manakin Machaeropterus regulus: A fine male of the endemic race antioquiae was watched feeding on berries at a stop in the dry forest on the way to La Suiza when we were looking for Greyish Piculet. This species was split for a while as Western Striped manakin M. striolatus but has been lumped again now. P
Sooty-headed Wren Thryothorus spadix: One was seen well by JH at Piha Reserve near the same spot as the Highland Tinamou.
Apolinar's Wren Cistothorus apolinari: 3 seen well at La Florida – classed as Critically Endangered. P
Munchique Wood-Wren Henicorhina negreti: sightings of birds at Las Tangaras and Yellow-eared Parrot Reserves left something to be desired – classed as Critically Endangered. P
Black Solitaire Entomodestes coracinus: 3 at the upper viewpoint at Las Tangaras soon flew off and one gave better views lower down the trail.
Purplish-mantled Tanager Iridosornis porphyrocephala: We had a few sightings of one or more at the Piha Reserve when birding separately. I was the last to catch up with it on the last morning when one showed very well - classified as Near Threatened. We should have seen it at Las Tangaras too but didn’t stay there long. P
Black-and-gold Tanager Bangsia melanochlamys: A few sightings of singles on the ridge at the Piha Reserve - Classified as Vulnerable.
Gold-ringed Tanager Bangsia aureocincta: Only 2 were seen for sure from the view point at Las Tangaras - classified as Endangered, it has a very small range (670 km²) and is currently known from just a few localities.
Sooty Ant-Tanager Habia gutturalis: One nice male was found in the nearly dry riverbed near the lodge at El Paujil - classified as Near Threatened.
Rosy Thrush-Tanager Rhodinocichla rosea: An elusive bird was seen with difficulty above Minca.
Dusky(-bellied) Bush-Tanager Chlorospingus semifuscus: At least one of the northern (Western Andes) race livingstoni was seen at Las Tangaras.
Worm-eating Warbler Helmitheros vermivorum: one at the start of Poso Azul on Feb 28th was checked thoroughly. According to Ridgely and Tudor (2009), only known in South America from a few recent records in north Venezuela.
Yellow-crowned Whitestart Myioborus flavivertex: A few of this Santa Marta endemic above El Dorado - classed as Endangered. P
Stripe-headed Brush-Finch Arremon torquatus: One of the basilicus form of this species whose taxonomy is under debate was seen at El Dorado lodge.
Moustached Brush-Finch Atlapetes albofrenatus: Seen well at the Bushbird Reserve, showing little of the moustache - an as-yet undescribed form.
Yellow-(Olive-)headed Brush-Finch Atlapetes flaviceps: This rare and localized endemic was seen very well in the Libano area. Classified as Endangered, the world population is estimated at between 250 and 999 individuals. P
Yariquies Brush-Finch Atlapetes latinuchus yariguierum: Two of the newly-described subspecies of the widespread Yellow-breasted Brush-Finch, recently been found at Cerulea, were seen on the ridge trail near the reserve’s upper boundary. Yellow-breasted is a split from Rufous-naped A. rufinucha, which is also known as Bolivian B-F, so this species complex is rather confusing.
Golden-winged Sparrow Arremon schlegeli: We had a couple of sightings above Minca, along the main road and on Poso Azul. P
Chestnut-bellied Flowerpiercer Diglossa gloriosissima: a pair feeding in flowering tall bushes at the edge of the paramo at Colibri del Sol reserve - classed as Endangered.
Black-throated Flowerpiercer Diglossa brunneiventris vuilleumieri: one made a brief appearance, enough for a poor photo, in the same plants as the above fed. This would not be notable in Peru but this form is very localised and isolated from the nominate form and would surely be classed as Endangered if split. P
Rufous-browed Conebill Conirostrum rufum: Two pairs at La Florida. P
Masked Saltator Saltator cinclus: Good views of this rarely seen species in a tangle of vines near the lodge at Rio Blanco, said to be nesting near here.
Red-bellied Grackle Hypopyrrhus pyrohypogaster: A pair was nesting near the road at Piha Reserve and feeding with 2 others; there were at least 2 others higher up on the ridge – the finest grackle by far, officially Endangered unfortunately. P
Velvet-fronted Euphonia Euphonia concinna: A pair showed well just outside the forest at La Victoria – classed as Endangered. P
NEW SPECIES FOR JH NOT SEEN BY HIM
1. Tawny-breasted Tinamou Mts above Bogota, eg at Chingaza and Cerro la Guadalupe – difficult to see.
2. Gorgeted Wood-Quail Cerulea
3. Semicollared Hawk El Dorado - rare
4. Rufous-fronted Parakeet Los Navados - difficult
5. Santa Marta Sabrewing Poso Azul, Minca - difficult
6. Black-backed Thornbill El Dorado - rare
7. Bronze-tailed Thornbill Chingaza
8. Mountain Avocetbill Los Navados - difficult
9. Colombian Screech-Owl El Paujil, La Suiza, Piha reserve?
10. Chestnut Piculet La Guajira, Isla Salamanca, in or near Camarones 30 min W of Riohacha
11. Slaty-winged Foliage-gleaner El Paujil (& Rio Claro)
12. Slate-crowned Antpitta split Rio Blanco
13. Moustached Antpitta La Suiza and above Jardin
14. Hooded Antpitta Rio Blanco - difficult
15. Niceforo Wren Cerulea, below the reserve
16. Yellow-browed Shrike-Vireo Cerulea (common at Pauxi Pauxi reserve, also good for Saffron-headed Parrot)
17. Crested Ant-Tanager Libano, La Suiza (& El Cairo)
18. Mountain Grackle Cerulea, above the reserve (& near Soata).
9. Crescent-faced Antpitta Puracé NP, Bogota
KEY: CH Chingaza, LF La Florida, EP El Paujil, C Cerulea Reserve, B Bushbird Reserve, SM Santa Marta Mts, M Minca, V Vale (north coast), P Chestnut-capped Piha Reserve, T Las Tangaras, CS Colibri del Sol , J Jardin & Y-e Parrot Reserve, OQ Otun Quimbaya Reserve (La Suiza lodge) , RB Rio Blanco, LN Los Navados NP, LV La Victoria including Libano and Marivales areas.
NW = only seen by Norman Williams, RH only by Rich Hopf, GW only by Graeme Wallace. Species seen while traveling are allocated to the nearest site.
Photos: 1 = OK, 0 = record only.
Photos Great Tinamou Tinamus major heard EP
Little Tinamou Crypturellus soui EP,heard LV
Fulvous Whistling-Duck Dendrocygna bicolor near EP
Andean Duck Oxyura ferruginea LN
Andean Guan Penelope montagnii CH
Crested Bobwhite Colinus cristatus B,V
Marbled Wood-Quail Odontophorus gujanensis EP
Pied-billed Grebe Podilymbus podiceps LF
Brown Booby Sula leucogaster SM airport
1 Brown Pelican Pelecanus occidentalis SM airport
Neotropical Cormorant Phalacrocorax brasilianus LF
Magnificent Frigatebird Fregata magnificens SM airport
1 Rufescent Tiger-Heron Tigrisoma lineatum EP
Striated Heron Butorides striata EP,M,P,LV
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis widespread
Cocoi Heron Ardea cocoi EP
Great Egret Ardea alba LF,EP
1 Snowy Egret Egretta thula LF,SM airport
Bare-faced Ibis Phimosus infuscatus near EP
Wood Stork Mycteria americana near EP
1 Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura widespread
Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture Cathartes burrovianus V
(American) Black Vulture Coragyps atratus widespread
Osprey Pandion haliaetus SM
1 Hook-billed Kite Chondrohierax uncinatus V
Swallow-tailed Kite Elanoides forficatus EP
White-tailed Kite Elanus leucurus LF
Plumbeous Kite Ictinia plumbea near EP&T
Sharp-shinned Hawk Accipiter striatus CH
White Hawk Leucopternis albicollis EP
Savanna Hawk Buteogallus meridionalis V,LV
0 Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle Geranoaetus melanoleucus CH,RB
1 Roadside Hawk Buteo magnirostris widespread
White-rumped Hawk Buteo leucorrhous SM
1 Grey Hawk Buteo nitidus M
Short-tailed Hawk Buteo brachyurus SM
White-tailed Hawk Buteo albicaudatus P,CS
1 Black Hawk-Eagle Spizaetus tyrannus B,SM,M
Barred Forest-Falcon Micrastur ruficollis heard P
1 Collared Forest-Falcon Micrastur semitorquatus EP,V
Crested Caracara Caracara cheriway EP,M,LV
1 Yellow-headed Caracara Milvago chimachima common in transit
American Kestrel Falco sparverius CH,V
Bat Falcon Falco rufigularis SM,M
0 Limpkin Aramus guarauna V
Grey-necked Wood-Rail Aramides cajanea V
Russet-crowned Crake Anurolimnas viridis C
Blackish Rail Pardirallus nigricans V
Purple Gallinule Porphyrio martinica LF
American Coot Fulica americana LF
1 Southern Lapwing Vanellus chilensis V,CS,OQ,LV
1 Spotted Sandpiper Actitis macularius V,LV
Solitary Sandpiper Tringa solitaria LV
Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres SM airport
1 Wattled Jacana Jacana jacana near EP,LV
1 Laughing Gull Leucophaeus atricilla SM airport
Common Ground-Dove Columbina passerina widespread
1 Ruddy Ground-Dove Columbina talpacoti EP,LV
Scaled Dove Columbina squammata M
1 Band-tailed Pigeon Patagioenas fasciata CH,C,SM,CS,J
Pale-vented Pigeon Patagioenas cayennensis EP
Ruddy Pigeon Patagioenas subvinacea P,T
Eared Dove Zenaida auriculata CH,LF,LV
1 White-tipped Dove Leptotila verreauxi EP,C,SM,M
Grey-chested Dove Leptotila cassini EP
Lined Quail-Dove Geotrygon linearis heard SM
1 Blue-and-yellow Macaw Ara ararauna EP
Chestnut-fronted Macaw Ara severus EP
1 Scarlet-fronted Parakeet Aratinga wagleri SM,M
Brown-throated Parakeet Aratinga pertinax V
Golden-plumed Parakeet Leptosittaca branickii OQ
1 Spectacled Parrotlet Forpus conspicillatus EP
1 Orange-chinned Parakeet Brotogeris jugularis EP,C,SM,LV
1 Scaly-naped Parrot Amazona mercenaria SM
Squirrel Cuckoo Piaya cayana C,SM,M,LV
Yellow-billed Cuckoo Coccyzus americanus J
1 Greater Ani Crotophaga major EP
1 Smooth-billed Ani Crotophaga ani LF,EP,C,B
Groove-billed Ani Crotophaga sulcirostris M
Striped Cuckoo Tapera naevia heard EP
1 Pavonine Cuckoo Dromococcyx pavoninus P
1 Tropical Screech-Owl Megascops choliba EP, heard C&P
Colombian/Cinnamon Screech-Owl Megascops colombianus/petersoni P(RH)
Vermiculated Screech-Owl Megascops guatemalae heard EP
1 Santa Marta Screech-Owl Megascops gilesi SM
White-throated Screech-Owl Megascops albogularis heard RB
Mottled Owl Ciccaba virgata SM,P
Common Potoo Nyctibius griseus heard EP
Nacunda Nighthawk Podager nacunda near EP
Common Pauraque Nyctidromus albicollis EP,C
Band-winged Nightjar Caprimulgus longirostris SM
Chestnut-collared Swift Streptoprocne rutila CS
White-collared Swift Streptoprocne zonaris CH,EP,P,J
Grey-rumped Swift Chaetura cinereiventris P
White-tipped Swift Aeronautes montivagus C
1 White-necked Jacobin Florisuga mellivora EP
Rufous-breasted Hermit Glaucis hirsutus EP,SM,P,RB
1 Stripe-throated Hermit Phaethornis striigularis EP,SM,LV
Sooty-capped Hermit Phaethornis augusti SM
Green Hermit Phaethornis guy C
Long-billed Hermit Phaethornis longirostris EP
0 Brown Violetear Colibri delphinae SM,P
1 Green Violetear Colibri thalassinus SM
1 Sparkling Violetear Colibri coruscans SM,CS
1 Amethyst-throated (Longuemare's) Sunangel Heliangelus amethysticollis clarisse CH
1 Tourmaline Sunangel Heliangelus exortis CS,LN
1 Speckled Hummingbird Adelomyia melanogenys C,RB
Long-tailed Sylph Aglaiocercus kingi RB
1 Violet-tailed Sylph Aglaiocercus coelestis T
Rainbow-bearded Thornbill Chalcostigma herrani CS
Purple-backed Thornbill Ramphomicron microrhynchum CS(NW)
1 Tyrian Metaltail Metallura tyrianthina CH,SM
Viridian Metaltail Metallura williami RB
1 Glowing Puffleg Eriocnemis vestita CH
Golden-breasted Puffleg Eriocnemis mosquera LN
Shining Sunbeam Aglaeactis cupripennis LN
Bronzy Inca Coeligena coeligena P
Brown Inca Coeligena wilsoni T
1 Collared Inca Coeligena torquata CS,J,OQ,RB
1 White-tailed Starfrontlet Coeligena phalerata SM
Blue-throated Starfrontlet Coeligena helianthea CH
1 Mountain Velvetbreast Lafresnaya lafresnayi CS,J,RB
1 Sword-billed Hummingbird Ensifera ensifera CS,LN
1 Buff-tailed Coronet Boissonneaua flavescens RB
Velvet-purple Coronet Boissonneaua jardini T
Booted Racket-tail Ocreatus underwoodii P
1 Green-crowned Brilliant Heliodoxa jacula C,P
Empress Brilliant Heliodoxa imperatrix T
Long-billed Starthroat Heliomaster longirostris M
1 White-bellied Woodstar Chaetocercus mulsant CS
Western Emerald Chlorostilbon melanorhynchus P
Red-billed Emerald Chlorostilbon gibsoni M
1 Coppery Emerald Chlorostilbon russatus SM
1 White-vented Plumeleteer Chalybura buffonii EP,SM
1 Violet-crowned Woodnymph Thalurania colombica C,SM,M,P
Green-crowned Woodnymph Thalurania fannyi P
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird Amazilia tzacatl J
1 Andean Emerald Amazilia franciae C,P
1 Blue-chested Hummingbird Amazilia amabilis EP,C
Steely-vented Hummingbird Amazilia saucerrottei SM
1 Indigo-capped Hummingbird Amazilia cyanifrons C
1 Shining-green Hummingbird Lepidopyga goudoti EP
Buffy Hummingbird Leucippus fallax V
0 Golden-headed Quetzal Pharomachrus auriceps T,RB
1 Gartered Trogon Trogon caligatus EP
1 Collared Trogon Trogon collaris EP,P
1 Masked Trogon Trogon personatus C,SM,P,T
1 Ringed Kingfisher Megaceryle torquata EP,near C,LV
Amazon Kingfisher Chloroceryle amazona V
1 American Pygmy Kingfisher Chloroceryle aenea EP
1 Broad-billed Motmot Electron platyrhynchum EP
1 Whooping (Blue-crowned) Motmot Momotus subrufescens M,V,P
1 Andean (Highland) Motmot Momotus aequatorialis OQ
1 Rufous-tailed Jacamar Galbula ruficauda M,V
Moustached Puffbird Malacoptila mystacalis P(RH)
Red-headed Barbet Eubucco bourcierii P
1 Keel-billed Toucan Ramphastos sulfuratus SM,M
1 Black-mandibled Toucan Ramphastos ambiguus CH,EP
Chestnut-mandibled Toucan Ramphastos swainsonii EP
1 Citron-throated (Channel-billed) Toucan Ramphastos vitrellinus citreolaemus EP
0 Collared Araçari Pteroglossus torquatus M
Scaled Piculet Picumnus squamulatus M
1 Olivaceous Piculet Picumnus olivaceus EP
1 Red-crowned Woodpecker Melanerpes rubricapillus C,V,J,LV
Smoky-brown Woodpecker Picoides fumigatus P
1 Golden-olive Woodpecker Colaptes rubiginosus SM
1 Crimson-mantled Woodpecker Colaptes rivolii RB
Spot-breasted Woodpecker Colaptes punctigula near C
Cinnamon Woodpecker Celeus loricatus EP,C
Lineated Woodpecker Dryocopus lineatus EP,SM
Powerful Woodpecker Campephilus pollens heard M
Crimson-crested Woodpecker Campephilus melanoleucos EP,SM
1 Stout-billed Cinclodes Cinclodes excelsior LN
Azara's Spinetail Synallaxis azarae P,heard often
Pale-breasted Spinetail Synallaxis albescens EP
0 Slaty Spinetail Synallaxis brachyura C
White-whiskered Spinetail Synallaxis candei V
1 Streak-capped Spinetail Cranioleuca hellmayri SM
0 Andean Tit-Spinetail Leptasthenura andicola LN
0 Many-striped Canastero Asthenes flammulata LN
Spotted Barbtail Premnoplex brunnescens SM,P
Pearled Treerunner Margarornis squamiger CH,T,CS,J
Pacific Tuftedcheek Pseudocolaptes johnsoni T
1 Montane Foliage-gleaner Anabacerthia striaticollis SM,T,OQ
Lineated Foliage-gleaner Syndactyla subalaris C,OQ
Western (Striped) Woodhaunter Hyloctistes (subulatus) virgatus P
Plain Xenops Xenops minutus EP
0 Streaked Xenops Xenops rutilans RB
Tyrannine Woodcreeper Dendrocincla tyrannina CH,T
Olivaceous Woodcreeper Sittasomus griseicapillus EP,P
1 Straight-billed Woodcreeper Dendroplex picus EP,V
Strong-billed Woodcreeper Xiphocolaptes promeropirhynchus SM
Cocoa Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus susurrans M
Olive-backed Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus triangularis P
Montane Woodcreeper Lepidocolaptes lacrymiger SM,T,CS
0 Black-crested Antshrike Sakesphorus canadensis V
Barred Antshrike Thamnophilus doliatus LV
0 Bar-crested Antshrike Thamnophilus multistriatus C
0 Uniform Antshrike Thamnophilus unicolor grandior P
Western Slaty-Antshrike Thamnophilus atrinucha EP,LV
Black-backed Antshrike Thamnophilus melanonotus M
Plain Antvireo Dysithamnus mentalis P
0 Slaty Antwren Myrmotherula schisticolor C,P
Long-tailed Antbird Drymophila caudata B
Rufous-rumped Antwren Terenura callinota T
Jet Antbird Cercomacra nigricans EP
Chestnut-backed Antbird Myrmeciza exsul EP
1 Chestnut-crowned Antpitta Grallaria ruficapilla RB
Chestnut-naped Antpitta Grallaria nuchalis CS(NW)
Yellow-breasted Antpitta Grallaria flavotincta T
Rufous Antpitta Grallaria rufula spatiator heard CH & SM
Tawny Antpitta Grallaria quitensis LN
Ochre-breasted Antpitta Grallaricula flavirostris P
Chestnut-crowned Gnateater Conopophaga castaneiceps P
Ash-coloured Tapaculo Myornis senilis heard RB
Blackish Tapaculo Scytalopus latrans heard RB
Santa Marta Tapaculo Scytalopus sanctaemartae SM
White-crowned Tapaculo Scytalopus atratus heard LV
Brown-rumped Tapaculo Scytalopus latebricola SM
Ocellated Tapaculo Acropternis orthonyx heard T & J
Black-capped Tyrannulet Phyllomyias nigrocapillus CH
Ashy-headed Tyrannulet Phyllomyias cinereiceps OQ
1 Tawny-rumped Tyrannulet Phyllomyias uropygialis RB
1 Yellow-bellied Elaenia Elaenia flavogaster SM,LV
0 Mountain Elaenia Elaenia frantzii CH,SM,CS,LV
Lesser Elaenia Elaenia chiriquensis C
1 White-banded Tyrannulet Mecocerculus stictopterus CH,CS,LN
White-tailed Tyrannulet Mecocerculus poeciloerus RB
1 White-throated Tyrannulet Mecocerculus leucophrys CH,LF,SM,CS,LN
Subtropical Doradito Psaudocolopteryx acutipennis LF
Rufous-headed Pygmy-Tyrant Pseudotriccus ruficeps P
Golden-faced Tyrannulet Zimmerius chrysops B,T,CS,LV
Marble-faced Bristle-Tyrant Phylloscartes ophthalmicus P,T
Southern Beardless Tyrannulet Camptostoma obsoletum V
Streak-necked Flycatcher Mionectes striaticollis P,CS
Ochre-striped Flycatcher Mionectes olivaceus SM
Ochre-bellied Flycatcher Mionectes oleaginous EP
Rufous-breasted Flycatcher Leptopogon rufipectus OQ,RB
Ornate Flycatcher Myiotriccus ornatus C,P,T
Scale-crested Pygmy-Tyrant Lophotriccus pileatus C,P,LV
Rufous-crowned Tody-Flycatcher Poecilotriccus ruficeps P
Common Tody-Flycatcher Todirostrum cinereum EP,C
Handsome Flycatcher Myiophobus pulcher T
Bran-coloured Flycatcher Myiophobus fasciatus C
1 Cinnamon Flycatcher Pyrrhomyias cinnamomeus SM,T,CS
Acadian Flycatcher Empidonax virescens SM
Olive-sided Flycatcher Contopus cooperi C
1 Smoke-coloured Pewee Contopus fumigatus C,T
1 Tropical Pewee Contopus cinereus EP,C
1 Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans LF,EP,SM,M
1 Vermilion Flycatcher Pyrocephalus rubinus LF,C
0 Streak-throated Bush-Tyrant Myiotheretes striaticollis SM,LN
White-headed Marsh-Tyrant Arundinicola leucocephala near EP
Crowned Chat-Tyrant Ochthoeca frontalis RB
Slaty-backed Chat-Tyrant Ochthoeca cinnamomeiventris CS(RH)
Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant Ochthoeca fumicolor CH,LN
1 Long-tailed Tyrant Colonia colonus near EP
1 Cattle Tyrant Machetornis rixosa near EP,C,J
1 Piratic Flycatcher Legatus leucophaius EP
Rusty-margined Flycatcher Myiozetetes cayanesis EP
1 Social Flycatcher Myiozetetes similis C,M
1 Great Kiskadee Pitangus sulphuratus EP,C,SM,LV
1 Lesser Kiskadee Pitangus lictor LV
Golden-crowned Flycatcher Myiodynastes chrysocephalus T
Streaked Flycatcher Myiodynastes maculatus EP,P,J
1 Boat-billed Flycatcher Megarynchus pitangua LV
1 Tropical Kingbird Tyrannus melancholicus widespread
1 Fork-tailed Flycatcher Tyrannus savana EP
Dusky-capped Flycatcher Myiarchus tuberculifer LV
Venezuelan Flycatcher Myiarchus venezuelensis V
Bright-rumped Attila Attila spadiceus heard EP
Chestnut-crested Cotinga Ampelion rufaxilla CS(NW)
Golden-breasted Fruiteater Pipreola aureopectus SM,P
Olivaceous Piha Snowornis cryptolophus T
Purple-throated Fruitcrow Querula purpurata EP
Golden-winged Manakin Masius chrysopterus C,P,T
White-bearded Manakin Manacus manacus EP,LV
Black-crowned Tityra Tityra inquisitor SM
1 Masked Tityra Tityra semifasciata SM
1 Cinnamon Becard Pachyramphus cinnamomeus EP,C,LV
0 One-coloured Becard Pachyramphus homochrous M
Rufous-browed Peppershrike Cyclarhis gujanensis M
Red-eyed Vireo Vireo olivaceus LF
Golden-fronted Greenlet Hylophilus aurantiifrons LV
Black-collared Jay Cyanolyca armillata RB
1 Black-chested Jay Cyanocorax affinis EP,SM,heard LV
Green Jay Cyanocorax yncas P,CS,OQ
Blue-and-white Swallow Pygochelidon cyanoleuca widespread
Brown-bellied Swallow Orochelidon murina CH,LF,RB
Southern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx ruficollis EP,B,SM,LV
Grey-breasted Martin Progne chalybea V
Scaly-breasted Wren Microcerculus marginatus heard EP
House Wren Troglodytes aedon widespread
Sedge/Grass Wren Cistothorus platensis aequatorialis LN
1 Bicoloured Wren Campylorhynchus griseus near EP,C,M,LV
Whiskered Wren Pheugopedius mystacalis C,B
Rufous Wren Cinnycerthia unirufa CH
Sharpe's Wren Cinnycerthia olivascens T
White-breasted Wood-Wren Henicorhina leucosticta EP,heard LV
Grey-breasted Wood-Wren Henicorhina leucophrys widespread
Chestnut-breasted Wren Cyphorhinus thoracicus heard P & OQ
Long-billed Gnatwren Ramphocaenus melanurus P
0 White-capped Dipper Cinclus leucocephalus CS
Andean Solitaire Myadestes ralloides heard P,T,CS & OQ
Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush Catharus aurantiirostris heard B
Grey-cheeked Thrush Catharus minimus C
Swainson's Thrush Catharus ustulatus SM,OQ,LV
0 Yellow-legged Thrush Turdus flavipes C,SM
1 Clay-coloured Thrush Turdus grayi SM
1 Pale-breasted Thrush Turdus leucomelas SM
1 Black-billed Thrush Turdus ignobilis C,SM,P,J,LV
Black-hooded Thrush Turdus olivater SM
1 Great Thrush Turdus fuscater widespread
1 Glossy-black Thrush Turdus serranus CH,SM,CS
1 Tropical Mockingbird Mimus gilvus C
White-capped Tanager Sericossypha albocristata RB (NW)
Rufous-crested Tanager Creurgops verticalis T
1 Black-capped Hemispingus Hemispingus atropileus RB
Superciliaried Hemispingus Hemispingus superciliaris J,RB
Black-eared Hemispingus Hemispingus melanotis RB
1 Grey-hooded Bush-Tanager Cnemoscopus rubrirostris CS,RB
1 Grey-headed Tanager Eucometis penicillata EP,LV
White-shouldered Tanager Tachyphonus luctuosus M
White-lined Tanager Tachyphonus rufus SM
1 Flame-rumped Tanager Ramphocelus flammigerus C,T,J,LV
Lemon-rumped Tanager Ramphocelus flammigerus icteronotus M
Crimson-backed Tanager Ramphocelus dimidiatus LV
Ochre-breasted Tanager Chlorothraupis stolzmanni T
1 Blue-grey Tanager Thraupis episcopus widespread
Palm Tanager Thraupis palmarum widespread
Hooded Mountain-Tanager Buthraupis montana CH,T
Santa Marta Mountain-Tanager Anisognathus melanogenys SM
1 Lachrymose Mountain-Tanager Anisognathus lacrymosus CS,J,RB
Blue-winged Mountain-Tanager Anisognathus somptuosus P,RB
Black-chinned Mountain-Tanager Anisognathus notabilis T
1 Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager Anisoganthus igniventris CH,LN
Buff-breasted Mountain-Tanager Dubusia taeniata RB
1 Golden-crowned Tanager Iridosornis rufivertex CS,LN
Fawn-breasted Tanager OQ
Glistening-green Tanager Chlorochrysa phoenicotis T
Golden-naped Tanager Tangara ruficervix C
Black-headed Tanager Tangara cyanoptera SM
1 Scrub Tanager Tangara vitriolina C,P,J,LV
1 Blue-necked Tanager Tangara cyanicollis C,J,LV
Speckled Tanager Tangara guttata B,P
0 Blue-and-black Tanager Tangara vassorii CH,CS,LN
Beryl-spangled Tanager Tangara nigroviridis T,LV
Plain-coloured Tanager Tangara inornata EP
Rufous-throated Tanager Tangara rufigula T
1 Bay-headed Tanager Tangara gyrola C,SM,PLV
Saffron-crowned Tanager Tangara xanthocephala C,T
Golden Tanager Tangara arthus P,T,LV
1 Swallow Tanager Tersina viridis SM
Purple Honeycreeper Cyanerpes caeruleus C
Scarlet-browed Tanager Heterospingus xanthopygius EP
Blue-backed Conebill Conirostrum sitticolor CH
1 Capped Conebill Conirostrum albifrons RB
White-eared Conebill Conirostrum leucogenys EP(GW)
0 Rusty Flowerpiercer Diglossa sittoides SM
Glossy Flowerpiercer Diglossa lafresnayi CS,LN
Black Flowerpiercer Diglossa humeralis CH,SM,LN
White-sided Flowerpiercer Diglossa albilatera SM,T
Indigo Flowerpiercer Diglossa indigotica T
Bluish Flowerpiercer Diglossa caerulescens CH,CS
0 Masked Flowerpiercer Diglossa cyanea CH,CS
Plushcap Catamblyrhynchus diadema RB
Slate-coloured Grosbeak Saltator grossus RB
Buff-throated Saltator Saltator maximus SM
Black-winged Saltator Saltator atripennis J
Greyish Saltator Saltator coerulescens C,B,M
Streaked Saltator Saltator striatipectus C,SM
Fulvous Shrike-Tanager Lanio fulvus C
Bananaquit Coereba flaveola EP,C,B,SM,M
Rufous-collared Sparrow Zonotrichia capensis widespread
1 Plumbeous Sierra-Finch Phrygilus unicolor LN
1 Saffron Finch Sicalis flaveola near LF,EP,C,LV
Blue-black Grassquit Volatinia jacarina C,SM,LV
Grey Seedeater Sporophila intermedia LV
Yellow-bellied Seedeater Sporophila nigricollis C,B,LV
1 Ruddy-breasted Seedeater Sporophila minuta LV
Large-billed Seed-Finch Oryzoborus crassirostris EP,SM
Paramo Seedeater Catamenia homochroa SM,LN
0 Plain-coloured Seedeater Catamenia inornata LN
0 Band-tailed Seedeater Catamenia analis LN
Orange-billed Sparrow Arremon aurantiirostris C
1 Golden-winged Sparrow Arremon schlegeli M
Chestnut-capped Brush-Finch Arremon brunneinucha C,P,T,LV
Stripe-headed (Colombian) Brush-Finch Arremon torquatus basilicus SM
Moustached Brush-Finch Atlapetes albofrenatus B
White-naped Brush-Finch Atlapetes albinucha LV
1 Santa Marta Brush-Finch Atlapetes melanocephalus SM
Pale-naped Brush-Finch Atlapetes pallidinucha RB
1 Tricoloured Brush-Finch Atlapetes tricolor T
1 Slaty Brush-Finch Atlapetes schistaceus CS,J,RB
Rose-breasted Grosbeak Pheucticus ludovicianus C,SM
Blue-black Grosbeak Cyanocompsa cyanoides C
Summer Tanager Piranga rubra EP,LV
Common Bush-Tanager Chlorospingus ophthalmicus B,P
Yellow-throated Bush-Tanager Chlorospingus flavigularis P,T
Dusky Bush-Tanager Chlorospingus semifuscus T
1 Black-backed Bush-Tanager Urothraupis stolzmanni LN
1 Tennessee Warbler Vermivora peregrina SM
Yellow Warbler Dendroica petechia M
Bay-breasted Warbler Dendroica castanea EP,C
Blackburnian Warbler Dendroica fusca widespread
American Redstart Setophaga ruticilla SM,M
Black-and-white Warbler Mniotilta varia SM,M,LV
Prothonotary Warbler Protonotaria citrea C,M
Northern Waterthrush Seiurus noveboracensis LV
Connecticut Warbler Oporornis agilis LV(NW)
Mourning Warbler Oporornis philadelphia C
Canada Warbler Wilsonia canadensis C,RB
1 Slate-throated Whitestart Myioborus miniatus widespread
0 Golden-fronted Whitestart Myioborus ornatus CH,C,CS,J,RB,LV
Citrine Warbler Basileuterus luteoviridis RB
White-lored Warbler Basileuterus conspicillatus SM
Russet-crowned Warbler Basileuterus coronatus RB
1 Golden-crowned Warbler Basileuterus culicivorus M
0 Rufous-capped Warbler Basileuterus rufifrons M
0 Three-striped Warbler Basileuterus tristriatus P,T
0 Santa Marta Warbler Basileuterus basilicus SM
Buff-rumped Warbler Phaeothlypis fulvicauda EP,LV
Russet-backed Oropendola Psarocolius angustifrons C,M,LV
Chestnut-headed Oropendola Psarocolius wagleri EP,C
1 Crested Oropendola Psarocolius decumanus SM
Mountain Cacique Cacicus chrysonotus CH,C,
1 Yellow-backed Oriole Icterus chrysater C,SM
Orange-crowned Oriole Icterus auricapillus EP
Baltimore Oriole Icterus galbula SM,M
Yellow-hooded Blackbird Chrysomus icterocephalus LF
Giant Cowbird Molothrus oryzivorus EP,SM
Shiny Cowbird Molothrus bonariensis LF,C,LV
1 Great-tailed Grackle Quiscalus mexicanus SM airport
Red-breasted Blackbird Sturnella militaris near EP
Eastern Meadowlark Sturnella magna CH
1 Andean Siskin Carduelis spinescens LF,LN
Yellow-bellied Siskin Carduelis xanthogastra J
Trinidad Euphonia Euphonia trinitatis M
0 Thick-billed Euphonia Euphonia laniirostris C,M,LV
1 Blue-naped Chlorophonia Chlorophonia cyanea SM