Brazil - Serra dos Tucanos


Sunday 22nd July – Wednesday 1st August 2012 
Set amidst the Atlantic rainforest of the Tres Picos State Park, Serra dos Tucanos is literally a birdwatcher’s paradise. This wonderful lodge provides the perfect combination of easy, relaxed birding with the guarantee of an exceptionally high species list! Together with large landscaped gardens, there are two rivers winding through the grounds and an array of flowering and fruiting trees and plants that attract a wealth of bird species. As the lodge is surrounded by forest, the flora and fauna in the gardens alone is quite spectacular and combine this with a swimming pool it is a superb place to unwind, but still keeping your binoculars close by! With 190 species already recorded in the grounds (inc 59 endemics!), the numerous bird tables, feeding stations and hummingbird feeders offer a chance to see a number of species close-up and are superb for guests who wish to photograph birds. Stunning surroundings and comfortable accommodation make it the best location from which to explore the bird-filled Atlantic rainforest.
  • Plovercrest
  • Spot-billed Toucanet
  • Three-toed Jacamar
  • Saffron Toucanet
  • Blue Manakin
  • Red-necked Tanager
  • Black-and-gold Cotinga
  • Bare-throated Bellbird
  • Swallow-tailed Cotinga
  • Blond-crested Woodpecker
  • Maroon-bellied Parakeet
  • Crescent-chested Puffbird
  • Sharp-tailed Streamcreeper
  • Black-billed Scythebill
  • Firewood Gatherer
  • Black Jacobin
Day 1   UK - Rio de Janeiro - 22nd July  
International flights from UK/Europe should depart today.

Day 2   Rio de Janeiro – Serra dos Tucanos 
Serra-dos-TucanosAfter a morning arrival in Rio de Janeiro we will transfer to the wonderful Serra dos Tucanos lodge for an 8 night stay. Set amidst lush Atlantic rainforest, the gardens and immediate vicinity support over 450 bird species, plus 117 endemics. Each action-packed day we will take excursions of varying duration from the lodge, as well as allowing time to relax and build up an excellent garden list, which to-date have recorded in excess of 190 species, of which nearly 60 are endemic to the Atlantic rainforest! The various trails provide excellent birding opportunities and some birds we expect to see include Maroon-bellied and Plain Parakeets, Blue-winged Parrotlet, Scaly-headed Parrot, Saw-billed Hermit, Sombre and Swallow-tailed Hummingbirds, Black Jacobin, Violet-capped Woodnymph, Surucua Trogon, Spot-billed Toucanet, Channel-billed Toucan, White-barred Piculet, Yellow-eared and Blond-crested Woodpeckers, Spot-Backed Antshrike, Thrush-Like and Olivaceous Woodcreepers, Spot-breasted and Plain Antvireos, Star-throated and Streak-capped Antwrens, Ferruginous Antbird, Rufous-capped Antthrush, Black-cheeked Gnateater, Blue Manakin, Eye-ringed Tody-Tyrant, Yellow-lored Tody-Flycatcher, White-throated Spadebill, Grey-hooded Attila, Chestnut-crowned Becard, Rufous-headed, Flame-crested, Ruby-crowned, Brazilian, Golden-chevroned, Green-headed, Red necked and Burnished-buff Tanagers, Violaceous, Orange-bellied and Chestnut-bellied Euphonias and Buff-throated Saltator. 
Days 3 – 9   The Atlantic Rainforest
Three-toed JacamarOur first excursion will probably be to the nearby Theodoro Trail, where an altitude of 1,100m offers us our first insight into the superb birding on offer. The entire length of this gradually descending trail runs through both secondary and primary forest making for an easy and relaxed excursion. We will be on the look-out for Brown Tinamou, Mantled Hawk, Maroon-bellied Parakeet, Plain Parakeet, Scale-throated Hermit, Brazilian Ruby, White-throated Hummingbird, Black-throated and Surucua Trogons, Spot-billed Toucanet, White-barred Piculet, Yellow-eared and Yellow-browed Woodpeckers, Rufous-capped Spinetail, Streaked Xenops, White-browed, Black-capped and White-eyed Foliage-gleaners, Variable Antshrike, Sharp-tailed Streamcreeper, White-throated, Lesser and Scaled Woodcreepers, Bare-throated Bellbird, Grey-hooded Atilla, Greenish Schiffornis and Brassy-breasted Tanager. Many birders who visit south-east Brazil go in search of the endemic Three-toed Jacamar, so one day we will visit several sites where this bird is regularly found. Along the way we pass through a variety of habitats, stopping frequently to look for other species such as Whistling and Capped Herons, Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, Plumbeous Kite, Savannah Hawk, White-tailed Hawk, Laughing Falcon, Aplomado and Bat Falcons, Red-legged Seriema, Blue-winged Macaw, White-eyed Parakeet, Striped Cuckoo, Common Barn Owl, Planalto Hermit, Glittering-bellied and Sapphire-spangled Emeralds, Amethyst Woodstar, White-eared and Crescent-chested Puffbirds, Black-necked Aracari, White Woodpecker, Tail-banded Hornero, Red-eyed Thornbird, Narrow-billed Woodcreeper, Ochre-faced Tody-Flycatcher, Gray and White-rumped Monjita, Streamer-tailed Tyrant, Yellow-browed and Long-tailed Tyrants, White-rumped and Tawny-headed Swallows, Black-capped Donacobius, Long-billed Wren, Curl-crested Jay, Orange-headed, Hooded, Hepatic, Brazilian and Gilt-edged Tanagers and Hooded Siskin.
Green-headed TanagerAnother short drive and another new birding trail will provide chances of seeing Yellow-faced Parrot, Saw-billed Hermit, Black-throated and Surucua Trogons, Rufous-capped Motmot, Buff-bellied and Crescent-chested Puffbirds, Saffron and Spot-billed Toucanets, Channel-billed Toucan, White-barred Piculet, Yellow-eared and Yellow-browed Woodpeckers, Rufous-capped Spinetail, Pale-browed Treehunter, White-browed, Black-capped and White-eyed Foliage-gleaners, Lesser and Scaled Woodcreepers, Black-billed Scythebill, Spot-backed Antshrike, Spot-breasted and Plain Antvireos, Star-throated and Streak-capped Antwrens, Ferruginous Antbird, White-shouldered Fire-Eye, Black-cheeked Gnateater, Blue and Pin-tailed Manakins, Grey-hooded Flycatcher, Oustalet’s Tyrannulet, Eared Pygmy-tyrant, Black-tailed Tityra, Sharpbill, Rufous-headed, Yellow-backed, Olive-green, Flame-crested, Ruby-crowned, Black-goggled, Green-headed, Red-necked and Brassy-breasted Tanagers and Black-throated Grosbeak.

We will have a full day excursion to Serra dos Orgaos National Park in Teresopolis. En-route there is a smallCrescent-chested-Puffbird pool to check out which usually holds Whistling and Capped Herons, Limpkin, Brazilian Teal, Purple and Common Gallinules, and Ringed, Amazon and Green Kingfishers. The National Park is split into two sections and we will spend an hour or so at the lower park where White-necked Hawk, Violet-capped Woodnymph, Rufous-capped Motmot, Spot-billed Toucanet, Yellow-fronted, Yellow-eared, Yellow-throated and Yellow-browed Woodpeckers, Pale-browed Treehunter, Buff-fronted Foliage-gleaner, White-throated Woodcreeper, Plain and Spot-breasted Antvireos, Rufous-capped Antthrush, Ochre-bellied Flycatcher, Grey-hooded Atilla, Rufous-headed, Yellow-backed, Olive-green, Flame-crested and Golden-chevroned Tanagers and Red-rumped Cacique can be seen. We then return to the vehicle and drive for a further 20 minutes to the upper section of the park, where depending upon weather conditions we hope to take the higher trail for the remainder of the day. Some of the birds we aim to see include Brown Tinamou, Mantled Hawk, Dusky-legged Guan, Spot-winged Wood-quail, Plumbeous Pigeon, Plovercrest, White-throated Hummingbird, Brazilian Ruby, Black-throated Trogon, Saffron Toucanet, Yellow-eared Woodpecker, Pallid Spinetail, Sharp-billed Treehunter, Lesser and Scaled Woodcreepers, Tawny-throated Leaftosser, Black-billed Scythebill, Giant and Tufted Antshrikes, Rufous-backed Antvireo, Rufous-tailed and Ochre-rumped Antbirds, Brazilian Antthrush, Rufous Gnateater, Mouse-coloured Tapaculo, Swallow-tailed and Black-and-gold Cotinga, Hooded Berryeater, Bare-throated Bellbird, Pin-tailed Manakin, Rufous-crowned Greenlet, White-rimmed Warbler, Chestnut-headed, Azure-shouldered, Diademed, Fawn-breasted and Brassy-breasted Tanagers, Bay-chested Warbling-finch, and Green-winged Saltator.

White-barred-PiculetAnother excellent site is on the way towards Nova Friburgo, where we can look for White-tailed Hawk, Red-legged Seriema, and Hepatic and Cinnamon Tanagers before reaching an altitude of approximately 1600 metres. The remainder of the day will be spent on a trail looking for White-tailed Hawk, Aplomado Falcon, Plumbeous Pigeon, Scaly-headed Parrot, Plovercrest, Glittering-bellied Emerald, White-throated Hummingbird, Brazilian Ruby, Yellow-browed Woodpecker, Rufous-capped Spinetail, Pallid Spinetail, Red-eyed Thornbird, Sharp-billed Treehunter, Black-billed Scythebill, Giant, Large-tailed, Variable and Rufous-capped Antshrikes, Rufous-backed Antvireo, Rufous-tailed and Dusky-tailed Antbirds, White-shouldered Fire-eye, Mouse-coloured Tapaculo, Swallow-tailed and Black-and-gold Cotingas, Serra do Mar Tyrant-manakin, Olivaceous Elaenia, Ochre-faced Tody-flycatcher, Blue-billed and Velvety Black-tyrants, Shear-tailed Grey-tyrant, Yellow-legged Thrush, White-rimmed Warbler, Chestnut-headed, Azure-shouldered, Diademed and Brassy-breasted Tanagers, Bay-chested Warbling-finch and Thick-billed Saltator.

An early start will be necessary in order to get to Guapi Plain-ParakeetsAssu Bird Lodge. Here we can see good numbers of wetland birds and with luck a few specialities that include Masked Duck, Blackish Rail, Rufous-sided and Ash-throated Crakes and with even more good fortune Giant Snipe. In the afternoon we take a short drive to a trail called Macae de Cima, where we will search out even more Atlantic Rainforest endemics. Depending on weather conditions we will either begin this trail with a gentle walk or we will have the minibus slowly follow us for the next few hours. There will be plenty of birds to keep us busy as we scan the tree tops, search the leaf litter and check for hummingbirds feeding on wealth of native flowers. Our guides will endeavour to search for spectacular species such as Brazilian Ruby, Scale-throated Hermit, Yellow-browed Woodpecker, Plumbeous Pigeon, Barred Forest-falcon, Rufous-capped Spinetail, Pallid Spinetail, Red-eyed Thornbill, White-collared Foliage-gleaner, Giant Antshrike, Tufted Antshrike, Bertoni’s and Ochre-rumped Antbird, Rufous Gnatcatcher, Bare-throated Bellbird, Pin-tailed Manakin, Saffron-crested Tyrant-manakin, Drab-breasted Bamboo-tyrant, White-rimmed Warbler, Chestnut-headed and Azure-shouldered Tanagers, plus Green-winged Saltator to name a few. 

Day 10   Serra dos Tucanos - Rio de Janeiro 
After a final morning’s birding we must unfortunately depart this wonderful area and return to Rio de Janeiro for our international flights back home.

Day 11
   End of Tour - 1st August 

Arrival back in Europe/UK and an end to an unforgettable week's birding in the Atlantic Rainforest.

Leader Cirilio Rodrigues Vieira - Serra dos Tucanos expert in-house guide. 
Ground Price:  £1195.00 - Rio de Janeiro/Rio de Janeiro 

Airfare: £650.00 
(approx) - UK/UK

Zoothera tour prices explained 
Single supplement: £130.00     
Deposit: £300.00

Group size: Minimum group size 4 and maximum of 10. Surucua-Trogon
Included in costAccommodation in twin rooms en-suite, all ground transport in an air-conditioned minibus, bottled mineral water, juice drinks and tea & coffee, all entrance fees, tips and services of the leaders.
Not included: International flight, insurance, alcoholic drinks, tips and items of a personal nature.
: Good. We will stay at the comfortable Serra dos Tucanos for the entire tour. 2 Superior Rooms with balconies are available at a supplement of £150 per couple. Single rooms have shared bathroom facilities but there is a single en-suite room available at £220 supplement. 

Tour Code: This is an easy - standard birding tour, designed for the birder who wants to stay in one lodge for a whole week and really get to know the avifauna of one of the world’s most exciting, endemic-rich rainforests. One excursion does involve a steep uphill walk but the rest of the excursions are fairly easy. Expect a typically tropical climate with most days being warm and humid, and a chance of some showers.

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