Colombia: Andes and Santa Marta 2019 Tour Report

 Friday 23rd August – Tues 10th Sept 2019

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

Either for rarity value, excellent views or simply a group favourite:

  • Chestnut-winged Chachalaca
  • Colombian Chachalaca
  • Rufous-vented Chachalaca
  • Cauca Guan
  • Chestnut Wood Quail
  • Black-and-chestnut Eagle
  • Bogota Rail
  • Lined Quail-Dove
  • Santa Marta Screech-Owl
  • Colombia Screech-Owl
  • Andean Pygmy-Owl
  • Stygian Owl
  • Santa Marta Blossomcrown
  • Black Inca
  • Golden-bellied Starfrontlet
  • Blue-throated Starfrontlet
  • Sword-billed Hummingbird
  • Golden-breasted Puffleg
  • White-chinned Sapphire
  • Buffy Helmetcrest
  • Rainbow-bearded Thornbill
  • Santa Marta Woodstar
  • White-tipped Quetzal
  • American Pygmy Kingfisher
  • Russet-throated Puffbird
  • Moustached Puffbird
  • Lanceolated Monklet
  • Santa Marta Toucanet
  • Grey-breasted Mountain Toucan
  • Chestnut Piculet
  • Powerful Woodpecker
  • Green-rumped Parrotlet
  • Santa Marta Parakeet
  • Yellow-eared Parrot
  • Black-banded Woodcreeper
  • Ruddy Foliage-Gleaner
  • Fulvous-dotted Treerunner
  • White-whiskered Spinetail

 

  • Santa Marta Antbird
  • Undulated Antpitta
  • Santa Marta Antpitta
  • Bicolored Antpitta
  • Brown-banded Antpitta
  • Hooded Antpitta
  • Rusty-breasted Antpitta
  • Slaty-crowned Antpitta
  • Crescent-faced Antpitta
  • Santa Marta Tapaculo
  • Rufous-crowned Tody-Tyrant
  • Smoky Bush-Tyrant
  • Apical Flycatcher
  • Chestnut-crested Cotinga
  • Golden-breasted Fruiteater
  • Orange-breasted Fruiteater
  • Andean Cock-of-the-Rock
  • Red-ruffed Fruitcrow
  • Choco Vireo
  • Antioquia Wren
  • Chestnut-breasted Wren
  • Black Solitaire
  • Sierra Nevada Brushfinch
  • Choco Brushfinch
  • Santa Marta Warbler
  • Yellow-crowned Whitestart
  • Crested Ant-Tanager
  • Black-and-Gold Tanager
  • Gold-ringed Tanager
  • Purplish-mantled Tanager
  • Multicolored Tanager
  • Glistening-green Tanager
  • Rufous-throated Tanager
  • Capped Conebill
  • Chestnut-breasted Chlorophonia
  • Chestnut-bellied Flowerpiercer
  • Plushcap
  •  

Our Colombia - Andes & Santa Marta tour has just finished with over 550 species seen including 12 antpittas and 70 hummingbirds amongst a mouth-watering selection of other iconic South American birds. Our tour followed a special route across the majestic Andes beginning with a number of sites around Bogota seeing Bogota Rail, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Blue-throated and Golden-bellied Starfrontlet, Coppery-bellied Puffleg, Rufous-browed Conebill, Silvery-throated Spinetail, White-chinned Thistletail, Spillmann's Tapaculo, Plushcap, and more! Moving on to Otun-Quimbaya we were treated to Colombian Screech-Owl, Hooded & Moustached Antpittas, and Multicoloured Tanager for some. Montezuma and the fabled forests of Tatama National Park held numerous flocks with such iconic birds as Orange-breasted Fruiteater, Gold-ringed, Purplish-Mantled, Rufous-throated & Black-and-gold Tanagers, Chestnut-bellied Flowerpiercer, Munchique Wood Wren, Olive Finch, Crested Ant-Tanager etc. The hummer feeders at the lodge were mind-boggling with Rufous-gaped Hillstar, Green Thorntail and Empress Brilliant being stand-out birds. Rio Blanco was next up and lived up to all of our expectations with Bicoloured, Brown-banded, Chestnut-crowned, Slate-crowned, and a major surprise in an awesome Undulated Antpitta all being seen at incredibly close range. The endemic Buffy Helmetcrest at Nevado del Ruiz followed, and then we visited yet more antpitta feeding stations where Rufous and the super-scarce Crescent-faced Antpitta showed incredibly well. We also birded Jardin for Yellow-eared Parrot, explored Barranquilla and the Guijara Peninsula for a suite of very localised birds before reaching the fabled Santa Marta Mountains. It just doesn't get much better than cracking views of Rusty-breasted Antpitta and Santa Marta Antpitta here although there's so much more to see here and Santa Marta Woodstar & Santa Marta Blossomcrown were also seen well. What a tour!