25 October 2015

July 19, 2015

I can't think of a better way to start the day birding than to add a a lifer before breakfast, especially when that lifer is an owl...a Peruvian Screech-Owl.

Breakfast was served at 6:00am, but by 6:30am we were all intently focused on the feeders waiting for some lodge highlights. I didn't have to wait long for the my next lifer to appear, as small flock of White-tailed Jays came to the feeders in the dimmest of light. Also near the feeders were Fasciated Wren, Ecuadorian Thrush, and Plumbeous-backed Thrush, and at the lone hummingbird feeder was an Amazilia Humminbird (lifer). Patiently, as we had waited nearly half-an-hour, our prize bird appeared under the feeders...Pale-browed Tinamou.

Pale-browed Tinamou at Jorupe Lodge

Following breakfast we began walking the local trails, starting with those located near the cabins. Shortly after commencing I got my second-ever Red-billed Scythebill, a gorgeous-looking bird, but frustratingly difficult to see. This was quickly followed by next lifer, Pacific Elaenia, and then by another lifer, Speckle-breasted Wren. Birding around the cabins was rather muted, so we then walked down to the main road in search of other specialities. Here we found several 'regular' birds, such as Tropical Parula, Red-eyed Vireo, Mouse-colored Tyrannulet, Yellow-olive Flatbill, and Plain Antvireo, but also a three lifers: Ecuadorian Piculet, Gray-breasted Flycatcher, and the super-skulking, difficult to see, Henna-hooded Foliage-Gleaner. We wrapped up our birding on the main road with Collared Antshrike, Southern Beardless Tyrannulet, and Harris's Hawk, and then headed to another birding location a little after 10:00am.

At our next location, located only one valley away, we spent 30 minutes looking for our target bird, Sooty-crowned Flycatcher, but we dipped. To add insult to injury, Simon, upon getting out of the car when we arrived, spotted a Crimson-breasted Finch that disappeared before either myself or Howard could get a glimpse. A double-dip...it still hurts even today.

We spent the remainder of the morning looking for birds along the road back to the lodge, but added very little. Back at the lodge, from noon to 1:15pm, our Tropical Birding guide was switched, as Andreas needed to head back to Quito. In the meantime, I spent some time photographing birds near the feeders. Below are a couple of photos.

Plumbeous-backed Thrush 

White-tailed Jay

The afternoon was spent birding the trails around the main lodge. It was very slow going for lifers, but the overall birding was pretty good. All of the typical birds were seen, but some highlights in particular included Olivaceous Woodcreeper, Hepatic Tanager, Whooping Motmot, Short-tailed Hawk, Peruvian Pygmy-Owl, Rufous-browed Peppershrike, Black-and-White Becard, One-colored Becard, Scarlet-backed Woodpecker, and Bran-colored Flycatcher. Just two lifers were added this afternoon...one was Sooty-crowned Flycatcher that we had dipped on earlier, and the other was Rufous-headed Chachalaca. We arrived back at the loge shortly after 5:30pm, and had dinner at 7:00pm. It had been a long day, and one of the slowest with only 55 species.