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Republic of Ecuador

Banded Ground Cuckoo Neomorphus radiolosus ©Dr Jorge Cruz Website

Located in the heart of the Tropics, crossed by the equator, yet Ecuador has virtually all the climate types because it ranges from the Andes to the sea covering almost all the climate steps vertically so it is considered a mega-biodiverse country.

The Ecuadorian mountains allow you to travel after breakfast from the high snowcaps, across the Andean valleys, through the highland rain forest and stop in the middle of a steep subtropical forest for lunch. During the afternoon, going down to the tropical forest, one crosses humid and dense green areas while observing enormous rivers. After arriving in the Amazon basin, you can drive east or west and lay down on the beach while waiting for dinner.

All this in one day!

It is impossible to get bored on any birdwatching trip. Ecuador has an inventory of 1600 bird species in an area no bigger than Colorado State. Spanning 4 natural regions, Ecuador offers a range of experiences.

During the last 7 years, the country has developed a great paved and concrete road system all around the three mainland areas. Now the coast region, the highland range and eastern Amazonian lands are all connected by excellent roads that provide a fast, safe and totally enjoyable trip from region to region. There is a huge variety of lodges suiting every pocket, many are luxurious and specialise in birdwatching. Tour operators will help with all the details of your trip to Ecuador’s world-class bird sanctuaries.

On the Galapagos Islands, made famous by Charles Darwin, 25 amazing endemic birds are present. The Galapagos Hawk, the Blue, Red and Nazca Boobies, the Huge Black Broad Albatross and a nice selection of Darwin finches, are commonly found on specific islands. There are less expensive land tours to some of the nearby islands. Or, take a special cruise that sails around the islands looking for the special fauna on each island. See the offshoot page for links and information.

Beginning just behind the Guagua Pichincha Volcano, west of the city of Quito, is the Choco Corridor area. It was once a forest that survided the ice age, and is now a marvellous birding hot spot and wildlife refuge. The area is geographically diverse with hundreds of bird species depending on the different climate zones. The area offers an easy birding experience. Enjoy the steep slopes of the subtropics, the canyon structure of the upper tropics and the humid lush tropical forests. In this area you will have the best bird photography opportunities and a chance to see ground, canopy, and water birds. Specialized lodges offer excellent birding opportunities for everyone from the novice to hard cores birders.

The Eastern area, which includes the Paramo, the Andean Cloud Forest, the Upper Tropical Forest and the Amazon Basin provides a good selection of affordable hostels and deluxe lodges. The area covers several National Parks located in different climate zones. These areas protect the Andean Condor, the high barren plains birds, and hundreds of passerines and no-passerines birds. The mountainous geography allows observation of birds almost directly at eye-level, making for easy to moderate birding.

In the Amazon basin, birding is different. The sides of the rivers offer open viewing, moderate viewing is offered in the open areas and a more difficult viewing opportunity is experienced in the swamps. The use of recording and the skills of a top professional guides are almost a necessity for a successful day in some places.

Fresh, extremely diverse and delicious food is offered in Ecuador. All types of native fruits and vegetables are grown as well as all types of meats and seafood. Every place you go, you will find different tastes and many freshly harvested ingredients. Ecuadorians expect fresh products in their diet not freezing products for future use.

A new Ecuadorian environmental policy has imposed strict rules to protect nature. A two-year prison sentence can be imposed if you are arrested for removing timber or destroying natural resources in protected areas. The creation of Socio-bosque partnership, between owners and the state, offers protection for thousands of pristine forests. The State conservation program gives a certain amount of money to the owner of a forest, and in return, the owner cannot disturb the natural forest for 20 years. This land protection is monitored by satellite. Currently 20% of the total country is protected in this way. By 2015, the protection project will cover 33% of the paradise of Ecuador!

The State is developing a scheme of low tax loans to small and medium land owners and local communities to create eco-tourist businesses and improve the safe and clean standard of living to all Ecuadorians. Ecuadorian people are generally very friendly to foreigners. Their natural happiness is contagious!

What is more health care in Ecuador is provided free for everybody by law, including international visitors, and there are dozens of new hospitals with modern equipment.

So, welcome to Ecuador, a top world-birding Eden!

Birding Northern Ecuador

The Magic Birding Circuit

Contributor

Dr Jorge Cruz

General Manager

The Magic Birding & Hiking Circuit

info@hosteriasanjorge.com

The Magic Birding Circuit

Number of Species

Number of bird species: 1665

As at November 2016

Endemics

Number of endemics: 11 [8 Non-passerines & 3 Passerines]

Non-passerines Dark-backed Wood-Quail Odontophorus melanonotus Pale-mandibled Aracari Pteroglossus erythropygius El Oro Parakeet Pyrrhura orcesi White-necked Parakeet Pyrrhura albipectus Ecuadorian Hillstar Oreotrochilus chimborazo Black-breasted Puffleg Eriocnemis nigrivestis Violet-throated Metaltail Metallura baroni Esmeraldas Woodstar Acestrura berlepschi
Passerines Cocha Antshrike Thamnophilus praecox Saffron Siskin Carduelis siemiradzkii Pale-headed Brush-Finch Atlapetes pallidiceps

Checklist

Checklist

iGoTerra Checklist

Fatbirder Associate iGoTerra offers the most comprehensive and up to date birds lists on the web

Useful Reading

The Ecotravellers Wildlife Guide to Ecuador & the Galapagos islands

Pearson & Beletsky Academic Press (2000)

ISBN: 0120848139

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Ecuador : A Field Guide

by Robert S. Ridgley March 2001 Cornell University Press Hardcover
See Fatbirder Review

ISBN: 0713661178

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Where to Watch Birds in South America

Nigel Wheatley Paperback - 336 pages (27 October, 1994) Christopher Helm

ISBN: 0713639091

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Ecuador : Status, Distribution and Taxonomy

by Robert S. Ridgley March 2001 Cornell University Press Hardcover

ISBN: 071366116X

Buy this book from NHBS.com

DVD - Birding Ecuador - Hummers, Howlers and Hissing Hoatzin

Running Time 120 Mins. Malcolm Rymer 2004 ISBN: 151164 Buy direct from the filmmaker:
http://www.wildlifevideos.net/ecuador_new.html

Birds of Ecuador DVD-ROM

Aves de Ecuador: DVD-ROM Niels Krabbe and Jonas Nilsson Bird Songs International BV 2003

ISBN: 9075838069

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birding Ecuador 1998-99

Bruce C Forrester 109 pages, illus, tabs. 2000

ISBN: 110170

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Western Ecuador

By Nick Athanas (Author), Paul J Greenfield (Author), Iain Campbell (Contributor), Pablo Cervantes Daza (Contributor), Sam Woods (Contributor), Andrew Spencer (Contributor) | Princeton University Press | Paperback | May 2016 | 448 Pages | 1500 colour photos, 946 colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780956987655

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Birds of Western Ecuador

By Nick Athanas (Author), Paul J Greenfield (Author), Iain Campbell (Contributor), Pablo Cervantes Daza (Contributor), Sam Woods (Contributor), Andrew Spencer (Contributor) | Princeton University Press | Paperback | May 2016 | 448 Pages | 1500 colour photos, 946 colour distribution maps |

ISBN: 9780956987655

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Wildlife of Ecuador

A Photographic Field Guide to Birds, Mammals, Reptiles, and Amphibians By Andrés Vásquez Noboa, illustrated by Pablo Cervantes Daza | Princeton University Press | Paperback | April 2017 | 286 Pages | 341 Distribution Maps | 411 Colour Photographs |
See Fatbirder Review

ISBN: 9780691161365

Buy this book from NHBS.com

Useful Information

National Bird

Andean Condor Vultur gryphus

Guides & Tour Operators

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

Mindo Bird Tours

Tour Operator

Mindo Bird Tours is a legally-constituted Ecuadorian birding tour company founded in 1999. We are a full service tourism company, and while the Mindo area and northwest Ecuador remain our special area of expertise, our business has grown to include birding tours throughout Ecuador and elsewhere in South America. We currently arrange 70+ custom and set departure tours every year just in Ecuador!

Avestravel

Tour Operator

AVESTRAVEL is based in Ecuador and managed by a resident Swedish family. We specialize in customized bird and natural history tours for individuals and small groups and our emphasis is on professionalism, reliability and personal attention. AVESTRAVEL`s program is available throughout the year and is flexible to accommodate your special needs. Whether you are a beginner or an expert birder, we at AVESTRAVEL will do our utmost to provide you with the necessary services to make your holiday a supreme birding/nature experience.

Galapagos Adventure Tours

Tour Operator

Small group escorted tours to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, tailor made cruises and jungle lodges. We run quality small group tours, and tailor-made itineraries for the discerning traveller. Of interest to nature lovers, bird watchers and photographers or anyone who enjoys travel to remote places with all the organisation meticulously taken care of.

Neblina Forest

Tour Operator

Neblina Forest is an ECUADORIAN company established in 1994 to promote Ecuador's avifauna and its wilderness. However, after six years of running nature and birding trips to Ecuador and the Galápagos Islands, we have decided to expand our range of operations by opening an office in Santa Cruz, Bolivia and by operating cultural tours to PERU. We have the firm CONVICTION that these countries and the set of packages we offer will fullfill the needs of nature lovers in general, and birdwatchers specifically.

Tandayapa Bird Tours

Tour Operator

Over 600 bird species occur within a two hour drive of Tandayapa Bird Lodge. Experienced guides will take you to the best sites in Northwest Ecuador and help you find the specialities of the Chocó Endemic Bird Area. Our tours are completely customizable based on the time you have available, the sites you want to visit and your level of experience.

Tropic Ecological Adventures

Tour Operator

Tropic is a unique travel company offering superb nature-based trips with a genuine environmental and social commitment in Ecuador, one of the world`s richest natural destinations. We run programmes to all regions of Ecuador, but specialise in the Amazon and the Galapagos.

Birding Pal

Information

Local birders willing to show visiting birders around their area…

Middle World Touring

Facebook Page

[Flash] New company offering birding and eco-tourism…

The Magic Birding Circuit

Tour Operator

The Magic Birding Circuit, the first of its kind in Latin America, owns five nature reserves , three birding lodges plus birding van fleet. Enjoy all-inclusive birdwatching , photography & natural history tours in eight eco-systems within a two hour radius of Quito. Experience our birdwatching tours and eco-adventures at their best as you visit the High Barren Plains, Highland Rainforest, Paramo, Cloud Forest and Tropical Rainforest. We also own three Eco-Lodges which are located inside the reserves! San Jorge Eco-Lodges are beautiful, rustic, comfortable and environmentally friendly, providing quality services. Exclusive trips offer 1,300 species, 60 Hummingbirds, 45 Tumbesian and Choco endemic birds , orchids, butterflies, flora-fauna, waterfalls……Galapagos Islands extensions…

Andean Birding

Tour Operator

Andean Birding is a birdwatching tour company providing top bird guides, customized itineraries and logistics for your visit to the Andes, Amazon and Galapagos in Ecuador, as well as Peru, Bolivia, Argentina and Mexico. In addition, we conduct bird conservation and ornithological research…

Wild About Travel – Ecuador

Tour Operator

Wild About Travel specialises in wildlife holidays, bird watching tours and culture tours to the countries that we and our local partners know best – India, Ecuador, Panama, Sri Lanka and Spain.

Real Nature Travel

Tour Operator

RealNature is an International Tour Operator and Travel Agency based on the East Slope of the Andes in Macas, Morona-Santiago, footsteps from the Ecuadorian Amazon Basin. What makes us stand out, is that our philosophy is simple, organize trips and tours to meet our expectations. Living in Ecuador gives us the edge to know about current hot spots and destinations that may not be on the typical tourists paths. RealNature Travel Company wants your visit to Ecuador and your birding in Ecuador to be a wonderful memory not a painful experience. Let us work out all the details and allow you to concentrate on the important things…your trip, your birds, your vacation!

Think Birding Ecuador

Tour Operator

Specialists in tailor made birding holidays and expert led small group birding tours in Ecuador and the Galapagos. Counting some of Ecuador’s top birding guides amoungst their team, they are a collaboration between Amazanga Expeditions, an arm of the Napo Wildlife Centre, one of the most successful indigenous sustainable living eco-tourism projects in Ecuador and Think Galapagos, UK-based Ecuador and Galapagos specialists. As well as creating exceptional birding holidays for guests, their goal is to generate income that will help conserve the wildlife and wildernesses you will be visiting, by being reinvested in projects such as environmental education…

Rockjumper Birding Tours

http://www.rockjumperbirding.com/tours/destinations/ecuador?crumb=South+America

Ecuador’s small size, good infrastructure, spectacular scenery and friendly people make for one of the world’s most productive and enjoyable birding experiences, and our tour from the Andes to the Amazon offers the very best birding that this remarkable country has to offer.

Think Birding

Tour Operator

Bird watching South America doesn’t come much better than Ecuador, home to some of the best and easiest birding in the world. Less than twice the size of England, it has over 15% of the world’s bird species with over 1600 species recorded to date….

Birding Ecotours

Tour Operator

Ecuador lies both on the equator and over the spine of the Andes, affording it some spectacular birding. The western slope holds some staggering birding, especially hummingbirds — from the amazingly long-billed Sword-billed Hummingbird to the visual candy of Velvet-purple Coronet. Antpittas, owls, tanagers, and the many Choco specialties make the western slope so appealing…

ecoTOURS

Tour Operator

Nowhere else on earth can you find such a high biodiversity in such a small place like Ecuador. Although it is the second smallest country in South America it boasts of an extraordinary richness of birds, well over 1600 species. Birding is easy and relaxed thanks to short distances, comfortable lodges and an incredible abundance of species….

NEST Birding Tours

Website

Conservation, Bird Watching & Photography - Birding tours in Ecuador, India and Panama & community based conservation

Trip Reports

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

CloudBirders

Trip Report Repository

CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.

2007 [03 March] - Denise Doekes

Report

The Hosteria San Jorge was built as a traditional 18th Century Spanish Hosteria. It consists of 200 acres in the Pichincha Foothills. San Jorge is the only reserve within minutes of the Capital of Quito and it offers the incredible Magic Birding Circuit, this consists of 5 nature and bird watching reserves with the possibility of seeing over 800 species of birds; it covers almost all of the altitudes in Ecuador from the Paramo to the Sub tropical Rainforests…

2007 [03 March] - Gerry & Denise Doekes - The 'Magic' Birding Circuit

Report

My husband and I travelled to Ecuador in March 2007. We hiked and bird watched the reserves belonging to Dr George Cruz known as the San Jorge Ecuador Eco Lodges and "The Magic Birding Circuit" which consists of 4 nature and bird watching reserves covering almost all of the altitudes in Ecuador from the Paramo to the Sub tropical Rainforests, where there is the possibility of seeing over 800 species of birds. Staying here offers more than just bird watching; there are Inca historical trails and shaman healers and you can enjoy wild life watching as birds, orchids and flowers abound. During our 3-week visit we transversed almost all of Ecuador's eco-systems and habitats…

2007 [08 August] - Xavier

Report

This was my first trip in South America (2nd in the neotropics). I built my 23-day itinerary with the help of online trip reports, the “guide to birdwatching in Ecuador and the Galapagos islands” & the Lonely Planet. I preferred doing it that way, using local guides from times to times, than using the services of birding tour operators (more expensive for 2 weeks than what it cost me for 23 days – a bit less than 2000$). Everything went really well, this was one of my favourite birding trips.

2008 [01 January] - David & Amanda Mason

Report

A trip to Ecuador or Costa Rica had been on the horizon for several years and in the end we decided to take the plunge after numerous discussions with tour operators at the Bird Fair over the last two years…

2008 [10 October] - Anthony Gucciardi

Report

The reason I decided venture to Ecuador was because of the immense number of bird species the country is home to. With Mindo setting the world record in December of 2007, and with a long history of world class birding, Ecuador was the next place to for me to migrate. Although the birds of Ecuador were my main motivation, I also wanted to experience the biodiversity throughout the country; I wanted ample opportunity to see the Amazon, the Rainforest, the high peaks of resident mountains, and also a chance to mingle with the culture. My only problem is that I didn’t know where to begin. My research prior to leaving for Ecuador brought me to a privately owned Hacienda turned Eco-Lodge called San Jorge Eco-Lodges & Botanical Reserves. I was told it was owned by a man named Dr. Jorge Cruz, a veterinarian who was now an avid bird watcher, and also very knowledgeable with Ecuadorian culture and history. I’ve listed a detailed itinerary below, with the bird list to follow. ..

2008 [04 April] - Gordon Ellis

Report

fter an early breakfast we set off through the outskirts of Quito towards Papallacta. Our first stop was in Pifo where a photo stop for Cotopaxi volcano gave us Cinereous Conebill, Blue & Yellow Tanager, Tufted Tit-Tyrant, Great Thrush, Golden-rumped Euphonia and our first Blue & White Swallows. We took the old road up to Papallacta Pass picking up Shining Sunbeam, Andean Gull, Tyrian Metaltail, Andean Tit-Spinetail, White-chinned Thistletail and Brown-Backed Chat-Tyrant along here before climbing up to the radio antennae above the pass. Plumbeous Sierra-Finch, Stout-Billed and Bar-Winged Cinclodes…

2008 [11 November] - Scott Olmstead

Report

…Walking the trails we found the temperate cloud forest to be a bit quiet, as often happens on sunny mornings, as if the avian inhabitants feel exposed without the usual shrouds of mist that envelop the forest. Still, the views across the surrounding valleys were spectacular and in a few mixed species flocks we found a great many of our target species, including Superciliaried Hemispingus, Blue-backed Conebill, and Scarlet-bellied and Black-chested Mountain-Tanagers. We found good hummingbird activity, with eight species visiting the feeders…

2008 [05 May] - Remco Hofland

Report

…Highlights incl Andean Condor, Crested Owl, Oilbird, Rufous Potoo, Lyre-tailed Nightjar, 64 hummers incl. Spangled Cocquette, Wire-crested and Green Thorntail, Black-throated Brilliant, Sword-billed and Giant Hummingbird, Ecuadorian Hillstar, Violet-throated Metaltail…

2009 [01 January] - Dave Ferguson

Report

This is an account of Naturetrek’s Ecuador Cock of the Rock tour of 13 - 21 January 2009, one of their budget tours. It was the first time three of us had been on an organised bird tour but the value for money provided by this tour tempted us…

2008 [02 February] - Jose Illanes

Report

…After our breakfast we headed to Cerro Blanco Reserve, which is located juat 30 minutes driving from our hotel. This private reserve holds some great Tumbesian endemics. We birded in the area all morning and saw White-tailed Jay, Saffron Siskin, Ecuadorian Piculet, Gray-cheeked Parakeet, Red-lored Amazon, Plain Antvireo, Greenish Elaenia, great scope views of the shy Gray-capped Cuckoo, Gray-and-gold Warbler, Red-billed Scythebill showing nicely right in the open, and a flock of Pacific Parrotlets…

2009 [02 February] - Sam Woods

Report

This fantastic tour of the south began in Guayas province, starting in Cerro Blanco, just outside Ecuador's largest city Guayaquil, before heading into the foothills in El Oro province. The home of Long-wattled Umrellabirds and El Oro Parakeets. From there we headed south to close to the border with Peru and the dry deciduous woodlands of Jorupe and El Empalme. From our base near Peru we also explored the southwestern highlands of Utuana and Sozoranga for a discreet set of localized species, before we ascended into the temperate zone around Tapichalaca, (the home of the fabled Jocotoco Anpitta), and Cerro Toledo…

2010 [02 February] - Sam Woods

Report

We started in Cerro Blanco reserve, just a short 16km drive from our Guayaquil hotel. The reserve protects an area of deciduous woodland in the Chongon hills just outside Ecuador’s most populous city…

2009 [07 July] - Sam Woods

Report

The tour began at the highest point, in the rich temperate forests and scrub of Yanacocha. The weather was splendid allowing for great views of the snow-capped Cayambe volcano as we walked the “Inca Trail” within this superb Fundacion Jocotoco reserve, a short drive from Ecuador’s capital, Quito…

2009 [11 November] -Sam Woods

Report

This tour focuses on the endemic-rich Chocó region of northwest Ecuador, home of some of the most spectacular and highly desired birds in South America, the “bird continent”. We came across many of these, from the well-named Beautiful Jay seen late in the afternoon on our very first day, to the shocking red Andean Cock-of-the-rocks displaying near Mindo on our second day, a number of multicolored Toucan Barbets on multiple occasions, to northwest Ecuador’s flagship “cover” bird: the stunning Plate-billed Mountain-Toucan…

2009 [03 March] - Jose Illanes

Report

We started with some introductions after our early breakfast in the hotel. We were all hoping to see wonderful birds on the trip and were not disappointed. The tour started as we headed up to Antisana Ecological Reserve, which is located above the tree line from about 3200 m. to 4000 m. elevation…

2009 [08 August] - José Illánes

Report

The Tropical Birding Eastern Ecuador Tour was a great success. This area is hugely biodiverse with over 1000 species of birds. The variety of habitats and elevations from the high Andes down to lowland Amazonian rainforest gave us some great birding experiences…

2010 [03 March] - José Illánes

Report

We all met up early at the Hotel Sebastian in Quito, and I introduced myself and our driver Nico, before heading up to the Antisana Reserve, all excited to visit this new and beautiful place. Even for me, I never get tired of it. We started looking for some of the target species, and it was great to see at least four Giant Hummingbirds, Black-tailed Trainbearer, Shining Sunbeam, Plain- breasted Hawk, Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle, Variable Hawk, Red- crested Cotinga, Southern Yellow- Grosbeak, Yellow-breasted Brush- Finch, Tufted Tit-Tyrant, and a Brown- backed Chat-Tyrant…

2009 [08 August] - Sam Woods

Report

This may be a short tour, but it packs a lot in to a small space of time. In doing so, the whole group got a great feel of some of the spectacular birding on offer in northwest Ecuador…

2009 [12 December] - Sam Woods

Report

This short tour is popular with people from all walks of birding life: offering beginners the opportunity to familiarize themselves with many neotropical families, and more experienced “listers” a shot at some of the most spectacular endemic species of the extremely diverse Chocó bioregion…

2010 [02 February] - Andres Vasquez

Report

The Andes Introtour has always been the perfect trip to get hooked to Ecuadorian birds for people who have not been in the country before. This particular trip, with all the variety of birds seen and habitats visited certainly will make several of the participants come back to visit other areas of Ecuador in search for more…

2010 [09 September] - Henk Hendriks - Northern Ecuador

Report

This was our third visit to Ecuador (we birded in Ecuador in 1987 and 2002) and still I managed to observe 115 lifers during this trip. We spent some 8 days in the Mindo area (It is unbelievable how this area has changed since 1987), 3 full days at Rio Canandé, 2 days at Cerro Mongus and 1 day at Otavalo, before we moved to the east side of the Andes. Here we spent 3 full days at Wild Sumaco and 2 days at the San Isidro Lodge. Short stops were also made at Yanacocha, Papallacta pass and Guango Lodge….

2011 [11 November] - Robert & Angela Page - Tandayapa Lodge & Cabanas San Isidro

Report

This report describes an eleven day visit my wife and I made to the Western and Eastern slopes the Andes just North of Quito. We stayed for the first eight nights at Tandayapa Lodge and then at Cabanas San Isidro for two nights. Both lodges are well described in previous trip reports. We can only add the food and most of the rooms at Tandayapa lodge were excellent. The trails at Tandayapa Lodge were difficult with the exception of the Tanager Trail compared to the trails in the Upper Tandayapa Valley and at San Isidro, Guango and Paz de las Aves…

2011 [09 September] - Forrest Rowland

Report

Ecuador is quite simply incredible! In the past 15 years, this humble country has become the most traversed and well-known of all South American nations by birders, and for good reason…. The following is an account of our birding travels in this enchanting land whilst simultaneously enjoying its wondrous scenery, warm hospitality, and mind-boggling diversity.

2012 [10 October] - Gran Yasuni

Report

…Our destination was the center of the Gran Yasuni Important Birding Area (IBA). In fact, it is the largest IBA in all of Ecuador with more than 1.6 million ha. It holds the Yasuni Biosphere Reserve (Yasuni National Park, The Waorani Ethic Reserve), and The Limoncocha Wildlife Refuge. These reserves harbor an impressive number of bird species…

2012 [09 September] - JP Wade

Report

…First of all, September is not a good month in Ecuador for birding if you want to add species to your list. The birds aren't very vocal (We observed a lot of nesting activity.), and the weather is probably too good. What we found out after visiting several reserves is that you want it to be somewhat rainy so the birds stay pretty busy feeding themselves during the day in order to survive at that altitude. More flocks can be seen throughout the day when the weather is wet at higher altitudes. October through February were said to be the best months at the reserves we visited….

2013 [04 April] - Forrest Rowland

Report PDF

…Pacific Pygmy Owl, Henna-hooded Foliage-gleaner, Grey-and-gold Warbler, Grey-cheeked Parakeet, Pacific Elaenia, and Black- capped Sparrow were but a few of the good birds we scored during our short visit to Cerro Blanco…

2013 [08 August] - Mitch Lysinger

Report

…including Chestnut-crowned, White-bellied, and Tawny, but that pair of Rufous Antpittas on our first day without the aid of worms deserves honorable mention; a cooperative pair of Red-rumped Bush-Tyrants up in the high paramo; the male Scaled Fruiteater that put in an appearance at Tandayapa; crippling scope views of Andean Cock-of-the-Rock on our first afternoon; male Golden-winged Manakins at a fruiting tree at Milpe; a pair of Beautiful Jays at Tandayapa's birding deck; spry White-capped Dippers; and some incredibly gaudy tanagers, with names like Blue-browed, Paradise, Golden-eared, and Black-chested Mountain-Tanager…

2013 [09 September] - Willy Perez

Report

Although I had guided trips to all of these sites numerous times before, officially this was my first "Rainforest and Andes" tour as a first leader….

2013 [10 October] - Mitch Lysinger & William Perez - Shiripuno

Report

…Favorites are always a personal choice, but here are some that I think stood out: those three awesome Salvin's Curassows along the Shiripuno River one afternoon; Sungrebe in beautiful light at a picturesque oxbow lake; a Tawny-bellied Screech-Owl out on a stump right in the yard around the lodge; that pair of Black-banded Owls that came zipping across the river at dusk….

2013 [10 October] - Paul Greenfield - Tandayapa

PDF Report

…A brief coffee break was taken at Bellavista Cloud Forest Lodge, with its wonderful nectar feeders, which treated us to, among several species, Buff-tailed Coronet, Gorgeted Sunangel, Blue-winged Mountain-Tanager, and Masked Flowerpiercer…

2013 [11 November] - David & Vicki Bryant

PDF Report

We took a second trip to Ecuador in October 2013 to cover some ground we had not seen on our first visit in 2011. We stayed in the north of the country and included (in date sequence) the Highlands, Eastern Slope, Amazon Basin, North-west Lowlands, Western Slope and Quito regions in our itinerary…

2013 [11 November] - Paul Greenfield - Northwest Andean Slopes

PDF Report

Río Silanche Bird Sanctuary was the lowest elevation site visited, where its canopy tower and roadside and edges were quite birdy; the forest interior was mysteriously quiet though! To mention some of our finds: Swallow-tailed, Hook-billed and Double-toothed kites; Dusky Pigeon; Cinnamon Woodpecker; Collared Forest-Falcon; Blue-headed Parrot; Red-lored Amazon, Pacific, Slaty and Dot-winged antwrens; Streak-headed and Black-striped woodcreepers; Brown-capped, Yellow-crowned, Sooty-headed and Golden-faced tyrannulets; White-bearded Manakin; Slate-throated Gnatcatcher (really cute!); Olive-crowned Yellowthroat; White-shouldered, Tawny-crested, Gray-and-gold, Rufous-winged and Scarlet- browed tanagers; Blue Dacnis; and Scarlet-rumped Cacique…

2013 [11 November] - Paul Greenfield - Tinlandia

PDF Report

…spectacular tanagers, most memorably Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager, Blue-and-black and Beryl-spangled tanagers, and our first Glossy, Black, and Masked flower piercers….

2013 [12 December] - Mitch Lysinger - San Isidro

Report

…whether for rarity, beauty, or just sheer enjoyment: Torrent Duck; Black-and-chestnut Eagle; Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe; San Isidro's "Black-banded" Owl type; Andean Potoo; Mountain Avocetbill; Sword-billed Hummingbird; males of both quetzal species ….

2013 [12 December] - Sam Woods - Andes

PDF Report

This tour is one of my favorite tours that I am privileged to lead; Ecuador has become my home now, and we visit some of the birdiest areas in the region; from the endemic-rich Tandayapa region in the northwest to the scenic high Andean paramos of the east on the extension, which come complete with dramatic views of volcanoes as well as a discreet set of high altitude birds like Andean Condor, Giant Conebill, and Ecuadorian Hillstar…

2014 [01 January] - David Wolf - Napo

PDF Report

…Here, in the early morning hours, birds were active everywhere that we looked, from noisy oropendolas to colorful cotingas, Gilded Barbets, and tanagers sitting up…

2014 [01 January] - David Wolf - Andes Eastern Slopes

PDF Report

…Here a whole new set of birds awaited us, those of the highest elevations, like Andean Tit-Spinetail, Many-striped Canastero, Tawny Antpitta, and Plumbeous Sierra-Finch. All of them appeared right on cue and the weather was still nice, so up to “the towers” we headed. At almost 13,500 ft., we had to be careful not to over-exert, so while the group compared the two cinclodes present, and discovered an Ecuadorian Hillstar…

2014 [01 January] - Noëlle & Hervé Jacob - Bigal River Reserve

PDF Report

…We had great sightings of Salvin's Currassows, enjoyed the Pavonine Quetzal; the Blackish Nightjar was along the track, the Oilbirds were seen by night eating in the trees…

2014 [01 January] - Roger Ahlman - Southern Ecuador

PDF Report

…to try for the endemic El Oro Parakeet and Tapaculo. While walking down the track to a stake-out for the Tapaculo we recorded Rufous-winged Tyrannulet and Pale-vented Thrush..

2014 [02 February] - Jon King - Southern Ecuador

PDF Report

… stakeout for the localized Pacific Royal Flycatcher. We were not disappointed with stunning views of three, including one preening that showed its full crest to some. Half-an-hour spent watching royal flycatchers happened to be near a fruiting tree which also attracted White-bearded Manakin, Swainson’s Thrush, Yellow-tufted Dacnis, Thick-billed Euphonia and several tanagers…

2014 [02 February] - Willy Perez

Report

…the full morning at Angel's reserve with a range of magical events, from the display of the Cocks-of-the-rock, to a roosting Lyre-tailed Nightjar, the fruit-feeding station with Blue-winged Mountain-Tanagers, Toucan Barbet, Crimson-rumped Toucanet, and three species of ant pitta….

2014 [02 February] - Paul Greenfield

PDF Report

…We visited a variety of locations at varying altitudes, all of which have gained fame as hummingbird hot-spots and great birding sites as well. It wasn’t just the fact that we identified 63 hummingbird species in a week..

2014 [02 February] - Willy Perez - Sacha Lodge

Report

…On this tour we proved that this is indeed true. We managed to visit the two towers (metal and wooden), explore the flooded forest, canoe along the creeks, as well as visit river islands and terra firme forest on the south bank of the Napo river to look for every possible of birds in those habitats….

2014 [03 March] - Willy Perez - Wildsumaco

Report

…our first morning in the San Isidro car park and garden, where there were so many birds that we found it difficult to absorb all of them: warblers, spinetails, tanagers, woodcreepers, and on and on to trogons, caciques, and more…

2014 [04 April] - Dušan M. Brinkhuizen - Playa de Oro

PDF Report

…Playa de Oro in remote northwest Ecuador. Since we (Mindo Bird Tours) have done over a dozen of trips to this site in recent years, our guide Dušan Brinkhuizen, who has build up a good knowledge of the local avifauna…

2014 [11 November] - Michael Hurben

Report

My wife and I recently completed a week-long birding trip to north-central Ecuador over the Thanksgiving holiday. We recorded a total of 219 species, visiting a number of hotspots including the Yanacocha Preserve, Tandayapa Valley, the Mindo/Milpe areas, Rio Silanche, and Refugio Paz. In this report I will focus on what I consider the highlights of the birding and some general observations. The species list is at the end. If I were to include the additional species that our guide picked out but which we did not get good enough looks at for identification, the total count would probably be closer to 240. There were many times when waves of mixed flocks would come through and it was simply impossible to keep up with the sightings being called out. This is, of course, a good problem to have!...

2015 [01 January] - David Wolf - Napo

PDF Report

...Here Jorge’s incredible eyes spotted a Citron-bellied Attila perched motionless high overhead, a rare good sighting of this range-restricted species. On our final canoe cruise late that afternoon we said goodbye to old friends like the Hoatzins and Donacobius…and all too soon our week in this amazing place came to an end, though the memories will linger forever. Our special thanks go to Jorge and all of the members of the Anyangu community who have protected their forest and wildlife so well and made this visit possible....

2014 [12 December] - Andres Vasquez - Ades

PDF Report

...The first stops along these farms produced Golden-bellied Grosbeak, Paramo Pipit, Black-tailed Trainbearer, Variable Hawk, and Tawny-rumped Tyrannulet. After a few more kilometers on a patch of forest still within the disturbed area, we stopped for noisy Blackcrested Warblers which required some tape to bring in but while trying for it we found a perched Red-crested Cotinga and an active Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant...

2014 [12 December] - Jose Illanes - High Andes to Vast Amazon

PDF Report

...After scooping up Andean Condor, Black-faced Ibis, and a gorgeous male Ecuadorian Hillstar; the tour set off for the highest elevation of the tour, above Papallacta Pass, at a breathless 4200m/13,800ft. With the unpredictable weather there on our side for once we set about finding not only the area’s star bird, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, but were also gifted extraordinary views of Andean Snipe there too...

2014 [11 November] - Jose Illanes - Northwest

PDF Report

...The owl stop also yielded a good sighting of Ashcolored Tapaculo (a scarce species on this tour in general), Red-crested Cotinga and our first Yellow-breasted (Rufous-naped) BrushFinches. Between this stop and the reserve itself we had a perched Sharpshinned Hawk (formerly split off as Plain-backed Hawk), and also scored a Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant....

2014 [11 November] - Sam Woods - Southern Ecuador

PDF Report

...The tour started out just east of Guayaquil, with a boat trip and photo session in this mangrove and wetland reserve. The reserve’s main attraction, the Horned Screamer, graced our compact flash cards, among other more widespread species like Cocoi Heron, Roseate Spoonbill, and Snail Kite as well as Peruvian Pygmy-Owl, (the latter a regional endemic). Unfortunately, a sloth in the reserve was curled up sleeping, and therefore did not make for great shots....

2014 [11 November] - Paul Greenfield - NW Andes

PDF Report

... after having enjoyed some fine highland birds: Andean Guan; Tyrian Metaltail; Sapphire-vented and Goldenbreasted pufflegs; Buff-winged Starfrontlet; the “crazy-looking” Sword-billed Hummingbird; the huge Great Sapphirewing; Blackish Tapaculo; Tufted Tit-Tyrant; Rufous Wren; Spectacled Whitestart; Hooded, Black-chested, and Scarlet-bellied mountain-tanagers; Glossy and Masked flowerpiercers....

2014 [11 November] - Janos Olah

PDF Report

... It would be rather long to name all the special birds we managed to see but certainly highlights included such birds as Wattled Guan, Darkbacked Wood-Quail, Zigzag Heron, Bicoloured Hawk, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, Dusky Pigeon, Scarletshouldered Parrotlet, ‘San Isidro’ Owl, Rufous-, Andean and Long-tailed Potoos, Short-tailed-, Rufous-bellied and Sand-coloured Nighthawks, Swallow-tailed- and Lyre-tailed Nightjars, White-chested Swift, Fiery Topaz, White-tipped Sicklebill, Ecuadorian Piedtail, Emerald-bellied Puffleg....

2015 [02 February] - Willy Perez

Report

...The Catamayo valley typically dry most of the year, was green and wet, and many birds of the Tumbesian region were very active. Areas of Podocarpus National Park (Cajanuma and Bombuscaro) with very easy access were full of the most colorful tanagers. Cajas National Park in Cuenca is the most distinctive birding spot for paramo in Ecuador, and this time was fantastic yet again. And in the north, Silanche was the most active place for birds in the all trip (even with a bit of rain). The birding was great during the whole tour.

2015 [02 February] - Paul Greenfield

Report PDF

...Our story began as we departed Quito and worked our way to the renowned Yanacocha Reserve, perched high-up on the northwestern shoulder of the still active Pichincha Volcano. I think that this, our first brief half-day visit before we headed downslope, may have already started spinning some heads. How could it not, with Tyrian Metaltail, Sapphire-vented and Golden-breasted pufflegs, Buff-winged Starfrontlet, an elusive Mountain Velvetbreast, the unconscionable Sword-billed Hummingbird, and the robust Great Sapphirewing (the world’s second largest hummer)?

2015 [02 February] - Jon Hornbuckle

Report

...The trip was very successful as we all had a good number of ticks and great views of 13 species of antpitta, 14 for Richard, including Ochre-striped, White-lored, Crescent-faced, Giant and White-bellied. We also saw Barred Ant-thrush, Cloud-forest Pygmy-Owl, Crested Owl and rare hummingbirds such as Mountain Avocetbill and Pink-throated Brilliant.

2015 [03 March] - Jose Illanes - Eastern Ecuador

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...Moving further downslope we then dipped into the fragments of rich foothill forest around the wonderful WildSumaco Lodge, where we witnessed Plain-backed and Ochrebreasted Antpittas visiting a worm feeder in the forest, enjoyed plentiful hummers at their hummingbird feeders, including Wire-crested Thorntail, and eyeballed Buckley’s Forest-Falcon, Blue-rumped Manakin, and Coppery-chested Jacamar in the surrounding forest, while also sampling arguably some of the best food of the tour.

2015 [03 March] - Forrest Rowland - Southern Ecuador Endemics

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...At the end of the road (the turnaround is obvious, as no one travels the road farther due to land mines being placed along the border) we had our first big score of the day with two responsive Bar-winged Wood Wrens. Shortly thereafter we came across a mixed flock that distracted us from a singing Grey-tailed Piha. Buff-browed Foliage-gleaner and Spectacled Prickletail were two of the prize birds present in the flock, both of which are extremely rare in Ecuador!

2015 [03 March] - Willy Perez - Rainforest & Andes

Report

...Owls can be hard to spot, even the diurnal ones, but I like the little pygmy-owls, and we had great looks at the 3 species possible on our route: Andean along the Old Nono Mindo road, Cloud Forest at Angel's reserve, and Ferruginous at Sacha. And I am sure that you won't forget the Crested we saw at Sacha or the Black-banded at San Isidro!

2015 [07 July] - Willy Perez - Sacha Lodge

Report

...This time we managed to go to the towers twice, and the wooden one was spectacular the first day. There was a fantastic combination of colorful birds--it was overwhelming. These included Black-faced, Yellow-bellied and Blue dacnises together; Opal-rumped, Opal-crowned, Turquoise, Paradise, and Green-and-gold tanagers all over the place; Plum-throated and Spangled cotingas (males and females) also close by to complete the color palette; two really high-quality canopy birds in Black-bellied Cuckoo and the small Dugand's Antwren that we managed to scope for good views; and a male Purple-throated Fruitcrow that did a fantastic display for us and stole the show.

2015 [07 July] - Paul Greenfield - Tandayapa Lodge

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...We reveled in the presence of White-necked Jacobin; Wedge-billed Hummingbird; Brown, Green, and Sparkling violetears; Speckled Hummingbird; Green-tailed Trainbearer; Brown and Collared incas; Buff-tailed Coronet; Booted Racket-tail; Purplebibbed Whitetip; Fawn-breasted Brilliant; Purple-throated Woodstar; Andean Emerald; and Rufous-tailed Hummingbird…not bad for one garden! This show was seconded by views of White-throated Hawk; Band-tailed Pigeon; White-tipped Dove; White-tipped Swift; Redheaded Barbet; Red-billed Parrot; Montane Woodcreeper; Streak-capped Treehunter; Streaknecked, Flavescent, and Golden-crowned flycatchers; Blue-winged Mountain-Tanager; Bluecapped, Golden-naped, Metallic-green, and Golden tanagers; White-sided Flowerpiercer; and Orange-bellied Euphonia.

2016 [03 March] - Paul Greenfield

PDF Report

...After some light pre-breakfast birding and a post-breakfast drive to the foothill-zone Milpe Bird Sanctuary, we began our hummer-quest with yet another hummingbird subset, including close studies of White-necked Jacobin, White-whiskered Hermit, Green Thorntail (tons!), Green-crowned Brilliant, Crowned Woodnymph (the male is an eyeopener!), and Rufous-tailed Hummingbird....

2016 [02 February] - Dan Lane - Sacha Lodge

Report

Sacha Lodge offers a great way to gain experience with the Amazon: to be able to visit a forest that had been the realm of only the most intrepid explorers for several centuries, but now in remarkable comfort, is pretty amazing! In addition, the setting is unique, as it is in one of the most biodiverse parts of the Amazon basin—its far western edge—where the numbers of bird species is mind-boggling. This year’s tour was a lot of fun; with a great group and Oscar, our wonderful local guide, heading our outings, we couldn’t expect anything less...

2016 [02 February] - Eustace Barnes - Southern Ecuador

PDF Report

This year’s tour to some of the best reserves in Southern Ecuador gave us yet another record breaking tour. The stars of the show all surpassed expectations with unbeatable performances from a Crescent-faced Antpitta, a male Long-wattled Umbrellabird, Jocotoco Antpittas and Orange-throated Tanagers....

2016 [02 February] - Willy Perez

Report

...Here are some of the favorites: the Pacific Pygmy-Owl that perched for a few minutes at Catamayo Valley, allowing nice photographs, and the very unusual-looking Short-tailed Field-Tyrant at the same location; the curious Elegant Crescentchest that came out in the open to see what was going on in its territory; the stock-still Lanceolated Monklet; the male and female Collared Antshrikes we saw so well, quickly followed by the Chapman's Antshrike; the "San Isidro Owls" -- three feeding this time, instead of the regular two; the Golden-winged Manakin that flashed his gold as he flew up and down in a tree; the three mountain-toucans (which are all so cool), but especially the Plate-billed Mountain-Toucan, which is so distinctive; the bewildering variety of hummingbirds, especially (for shape and design) the Booted Racket-tail and the Wire-crested Thorntail. And what about the colors of the Rainbow Starfrontlet that we saw on the way to Loja? For me, the Wattled Guan was the best; we could even see its yellow wattle hanging down...

2016 [01 January] - Frank Clayton - Budget Birding in S, NE & NW Ecuador

PDF Report

We had drooled about doing the circuit of Jocotoco lodges in S Ecuador for years and finally decided to do it. We knew our birding budget wouldn't handle staying and eating full price at Jocotoco lodges, so we emailed their office in Quito, asking about camping or other budget options, and verifying that just doing day visits with their guides was an option....

2016 [01 January] - Andres Vasquez - Andes

PDF Report

... above average birding wise and INCREDIBLE for mammals; in one day of the extension we got 7 Andean Condors, 2 cooperative Rufous-belied Seedsnipes, Andean Ibis, a Black-breasted Buzzard-Eagle (among 5 species of raptors that day) plus 2 species of deer, the local subspecies of White-tailed Deer and the rare and secretive NORTHERN PUDU, just after finding a SPECTACLED BEAR...

2016 [01 January] - Willy Perez - Wildsumaco Lodge

Report

...We stayed at the Wildsumaco lodge for six days, and every day was different -- and, of course, wild. There were so many incredible birds to see and this time -- despite it being at the upper end of its altitude range -- we even saw a rare monkey; the Common Woolly Monkeys that we found a couple of times along the nice trails at the lodge were fantastic. They were throwing branches at us; I think we've confirmed that they don't like humans nearby...

2015 [12 December] - Jose Illanes - Eastern Ecuador

PDF Report

...The tour started in the high Andes, and Antisana National Park, where we were able to see Andean Condor, Ecuadorian Hillstar, Carunculated Caracara, Black-faced Ibis, Silvery Grebe and Giant Hummingbird. Next up was Papallacta Pass that was also very productive, with Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, Tawny Antpitta, the rare Red-rumped Bush-Tyrant and Giant Conebill....

2016 [01 January] - Paul Greenfield - Napo Wildlife Centre

PDF Report

...during our various outings, including Spix’s Guan; Zigzag Heron (initially spotted by Jorge at night without a flashlight!); Least Bittern; Boat-billed Heron; Little Cuckoo; Black-banded Owl; Blackish Nightjar; Great and Common potoos; Rufous-breasted and Whitebearded hermits; Green-backed Trogon; Cream-colored Woodpecker; Bat Falcon; Red-bellied Macaw; Amazonian Streaked-Antwren; Plumbeous Antbird; Long-billed, Striped, and Straightbilled woodcreepers; Swainson’s (first record for NWC!) and Sulphur-bellied flycatchers; Orangecrowned Manakin; Hauxwell’s Thrush; Red-capped Cardinal; and Masked Crimson-Tanager...

2016 [01 January] - Paul Greenfield - Andes East Slope

PDF Report

...The Andean habitat around Wildsumaco is rich with birdlife overall, but we immediately noticed that the famous nectar feeders here were fairly void of hummers. We were told by the administrator that it had been like that for a few weeks—strange for this humid foothill site. Over the next two days we worked roadside habitat, a couple of forest trails, and the areas surrounding the lodge’s two nectar feeder stations...

2016 [01 January] - Roger Ahlman - Southern Ecuador

PDF Report

...We recorded a total of 685 species (IOC 6.1 taxonomy) out of which 43 were heard only. Among the seen species were no less than 63 species of hummingbirds and 90 species of tyrant flycatchers...

2015 [11 November] - Charles Harper - North-east Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands

Report

The Galapagos Islands were on my bucket list, and I asked by old college roomie to join me. We hadn't seen each other for more than thirty years. We had been biology students together, and I really wanted at least one more grand field trip together. Since Bob is a professional entomologist, I spent some time looking at other than avian species for a change.

2016 [06 June] - Jose Illanes - Andes

PDF Report

...The tour starts at Yanacocha, a high elevation, temperate reserve, where we kicked off with Barred Fruiteater, Andean Pygmy-Owl, Hooded, Black-chested and Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanagers, as well as Andean Guan, Rufous Antpitta and the incredible Sword-billed Hummingbird. Later the same day, our journey to Tandayapa was interrupted by White-capped Dipper...

2016 [07 July] - David Wolf

PDF Report

... Quite a number of them are endemic to these mid-elevation forests, and several, including the spectacular Velvet-purple Coronet and Empress Brilliant, were rarely seen before we had feeders to attract them....

2016 [08 August] - Jose Illanes - Andes

PDF Report

...The lodge fruit feeders were also active at the time, with Crimson-rumped Toucanet, White-winged Brushfinch and Red-headed Barbet all visiting. We also spent some time at the upper end of the Tandayapa Valley, where a different species mix occurs, and found the must-see Plate-billed Mountain-Toucan, in addition to Grass-green Tanager, Gorgeted Sunangel, and the striking Pearled Treerunner. The shock find was not a bird though, but a cat, as a Margay, was seen standing alongside the road! We also searched the lower end of the valley too, where highlights included Flame-faced Tanager and Goldenheaded Quetzal, in addition to a male Lyre-tailed Nightjar at dusk....

2016 [03 March] - Dušan M. Brinkhuizen - South Ecuador Endemics

PDF Report

...We played a pygmy-owl tape and several species came in quickly, including: Yellow-olive Flatbill; Golden Grosbeak (Southern Yellow); Tropical Gnatcatcher; Fasciated Wren; Southern Beardless Tyrannulet; Red-eyed Vireo; Saffron Finch; Pacific Hornero, and several Ecuadorian Thrushes. An actual Pacific Pygmy-owl also responded to our tape and was soon followed by another, which was really nice....

2017 [04 April] - Willy Perez

Report

...Copalinga with the lovely gardens was as birdy as usual, but the male Wire-crested Thorntail and Masked Tanager were impressive to watch. The highlights in the Bombuscaro area were Amazonian Umbrellabird, Lanceolated Monklet, and Blackish Rail...

2017 [03 March] - Sam Woods - Remote Amazon

PDF Report

... we had some significant highlights, which made the trip to the lodge very special indeed, namely a daytime Rufous Potoo, a flyby from a Harpy Eagle, the rare White-crested Spadebill, a stunning Black-necked Red Cotinga (a species only regularly seen at one other Amazon lodge in Ecuador), Black Bushbird, Spotted and Collared Puffbirds, nice views of the ordinarily super-elusive Salvin’s Curassow; super looks at a male Fiery Topaz from our canoe, several of the unique White-plumed Antbird, and a male Lunulated Antbird....

2017 [02 February] - Mitch Lysinger - Sacha Lodge

Report

...Black-and-white Antbird as they sneaked about in the river-island cane stands and brush, but still offering up some fine views; that male Lunulated Antbird through the scope; Striated Antthrush that ran across the trail; a pair of Long-billed Woodcreepers out along the edges of Pilchecocha; a picture-perfect Cinnamon Attila that perched right over the Anaconda stream; some stunning cotingas from the canopy towers, like Spangled, Plum- throated, and the tough-to-find Purple-throated; a male Orange-crowned Manakin flashing its brilliant crown....

2017 [02 February] - Willy Perez

Report

... We each had different favorites and different memories of what we saw, but it is difficult to forget the excitement we had at finding White-necked Parakeets -- we had to stop watching the superb Paradise Tanagers....

2017 [02 February] - Pete Morris - Southern Ecuador

PDF Report

.... the magnifcent displaying Long-wattled Umbrellabirds; the sensational Jocotoco Antpittas; an unbelievably obliging Crescent-faced Antpitta; a breathtaking male Ecuadorian Hillstar and some stunning Orange-throated Tanagers. Perhaps less expected highlights were some sensational White-breasted Parakeets at their clay-lick, the rarely seen Red-faced Parrot posing in full view....

2017 [01 January] - Andres Vasquez

PDF Report

...like Andean Cock-of-the-rock, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Toucan Barbet and Plate-billed Mountain-Toucan, (all of which are possible on the first birding day of the tour); plus many of the most colorful Choco endemic bird species like, Velvetpurple Coronet, Violet-tailed Sylph, Yellow-collared Chlorophonia, Glistening-green and Moss-backed Tanagers, and other highly sought after species, such as White-capped Dipper, Golden-headed Quetzal, SEVEN species of Antpittas (5 of which in a single morning at Refugio Paz de la Aves), and around 40 species of hummingbird....

2017 [01 January] - Willy Perez - Sacha Lodge

Report

...The multiple Amazonian Umbrellabirds in a single tree was a great sight, as was a Blue-throated Piping-Guan. The iridescent turquoise colors of the Plum-throated and Spangled cotingas made choosing the best a real challenge. The patient Wire-tailed Manakin male provided us with an incredible view. The funky, strange-looking Hoatzins were out of this world. The excitement of Oscar when he found the Great Potoo along the river was contagious....

2017 [01 January] - Pablo Cervantes Daza

PDF Report

...We visited lowland rainforest, lush cloudforest, and even scenic paramo at over 4000 meters (13000 feet) above sea level. This ten day tour featured a variety of colorful targets including tanagers, barbets, motmots, Andean Cock-of-the-rock, as well as several days largely devoted to multiflash hummingbird photography....

2016 [11 November] - Peregrine Rowse

PDF Report

...We stopped for a well earned lunch at 12:20 at 3385m just below the park entrance. Six species of hummingbird including the wonderful Shining Sunbeam and Giant Hummingbird were frequenting the feeders so concentrating on the food was difficult....

2016 [11 November] - Simon Boyes

PDF Report

...Other highlights included two Umbrellabird species, 36 hummingbird species (many at arm’s length), three Tinamou species, four other photographable antpitta species, and much more....

2016 [10 October] - Janos Olah

PDF Report

... this year included birds like Salvin’s Curassow, Wattled Guan, Agami Heron, Zigzag Heron, Ecuadorian Rail, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, San Isidro and Crested Owls, Oilbird, Rufous and Andean Potoos, Swallow-tailed and Lyre-tailed Nightjars, Choco Poorwill, Buff-tailed and White-tipped Sicklebills, Tooth-billed Hummingbird, Fiery Topaz, Blue-headed Sapphire, Hoary Puffleg....

2016 [10 October] - Seedyrom

PDF Report

.... I was particularly pleased with the Peregrine falcon and the Swallow-tailed kite – one of my favourite birds. The Long-tailed tyrant was a bit good, too, as was the Gorgeted woodstar. Juan Carlos et al had arrived while we were out and immediately took off again. We learnt later that they had gone to look for Nightjars....

2017 [01 January] - Willy Perez - Wildsumaco Lodge

Report

...In terms of colors, the Paradise Tanagers and the Military Macaws must be tops. Possibly competing with them were the Red-headed Barbet, Spotted Nightingale-Thrush, and Golden-collared Toucanet. We witnessed that brown birds seen really well are beautiful too. The Short-tailed Antthrush eating the rice was one of them... what an elegant bird. The cryptic Plain-backed Antpitta and the dance of the Ochre-breasted Antpitta were a joy to watch. One of the more interesting species was the Speckled Chachalaca....

Places to Stay

Click on WAND for tours, guides, lodges and more…

Cabanas San Isidro

Accommodation

Cabañas San Isidro was first founded as a typical Ecuadorian Hacienda-style cattle ranch over forty years ago by the Bustamante Family of Quito, Ecuador. Always with a deep concern for proper natural resource management as well as for the urgent need to protect the unique flora and fauna of the zone, Simón Bustamante left the majority of his vast property untouched and forested.

Yuturi Lodge

Accommodation

Yuturi a true paradise … Welcome to the fantastic world of the Ecuadorian Amazon Jungle and the YUTURI LODGE, Biological Reserve, a true paradise located 180 Kms, east of Coca in Ecuador (South America). Your adventure begins with a 45 minute flight from Quito crossing the Andes and flying out over the jungle to Coca. From there you will travel by motor boat along the Napo River, one of the main tributaries of the Amazon River, to the Yuturi River.

Yarina Lodge

Accommodation

YARINA, the enchantment of the forest… Come and enjoy the beautiful world of the Ecuadorian Amazon Jungle at YARINA LODGE, an Ecologial Reserve located one hour aprox. of navigation from Coca and 30 minutes from Limoncocha Biological Reserve. The journey begins with a 45-minute flight from Quito crossing the Andes enjoying the view of the Ecuadorian forest then you will navigate along the Napo River all the way to the confluence with Manduro river.

Yacuma Lodge

Accommodation

Yacuma Lodge has 2 areas: 1 bigger complex of typical quechua bungalows built with traditional materials. All bungalows accomodate 2 guest each with beds, mattresses and mosquito nets. Kitchen and dining areas and a toilet/shower area are located nearby. A smaller area has 3 bungalows with private facilities (toilet/shower).

Yachana Amazon Lodge

Accommodation

We offer relaxed, comfortable accommodations and a kaleidoscopic range of activities for the ecology minded traveler. Bird watch, bug watch, and frog watch on more than 20 kilometers (7.5 miles) of rain forest trails. Harvest your own dinner from our organic Permaculture Farm and drink lemonade made from wild forest fruit and crystal clear spring water. After a stimulating day, relax in your deck side hammock and watch as the spectacular sunset fades into an amazing chorus of rain forest sounds.

Sacha Lodge

Accommodation

Imagine yourself drifting down a narrow, winding creek surrounded on all sides by a lush, endless sea of tropical greenery. All that separates you from the deep black Amazon waters is a canoe hand-carved out of a single tree trunk. As you manoeuvre around a bend something unidentified crashes off into the underbrush, and you catch a glimpse of two magnificent, colourful macaws startled into flight. Suddenly, the forest erupts with a roar so loud that all you can imagine is some giant, fierce predator on the prowl. But as you turn to face your destiny, the menace is revealed as a family of furry red howler monkeys huddled together in a treetop. With a sigh of relief you continue onward, deeper into the unknown.

Panacocha Lodge

Accommodation

The Panacocha Lodge is a 50 hectare inholding, an operating eco-tourist resort strategically located within the reserve on the shore of the lagoon. The Lodge features a 40 metre gigantic Ceiba tree tower with spectacular panorama views of the region, 9 thatched cabins, motorboat and canoes. Eco-tourists can embark on exciting jungle walks accompanied by the howls of the howler monkeys.

Hacienda Manteles

Accommodation

Located in the heart of the Ecuadorian Andes rests the luxurious first class Hacienda Manteles. Surrounded by nature, located in the heart of the Ecuadorian Andes rests the luxurious first class Hacienda Manteles. Surrounded by nature, the entire atmosphere is energized with peace and flowers of many kinds including orchids, make of the Hacienda a hummingbird haven.

Mindo Garden Lodge

Accommodation

Mindo Garden is a deluxe hotel for the naturalist who wants something extra. Excellent local and international cuisine; only a few steps from the reserve. Our private forest and sub-tropical vegetation includes orchids, bromeliads, anturios, giant ferns, a variety of old trees, hummingbird feeders and much more…

Maquipucuna Lodge

Accommodation

Maquipucuna Lodge has been carefully designed to fit into the wonderful landscape of the cloud forests that surround it. Entirely made of natural materials with a thatched palm roof, the dining and reception areas are open sided so that it is possible to make the most of the wonderful views and serious bird watching is even possible whilst relaxing in your hammock!

La Selva Jungle Lodge

Accommodation

At LA SELVA Jungle Lodge, situated high on Lake Garzacocha, deep in the Ecuadorian Amazon region, we offer you the ultimate in luxury jungle experience. Ours is a very special way to visit the Amazon rainforest, and we hope that this web page will answer many of your questions about how to visit us. We have many exciting excursions that will give you a genuine feeling for this important, beautiful and richly biodiverse region of the world. It is our hope that your stay with us will give you an experience of, and a relationship with our jungle which you will never in your life forget.

Kapawi Ecolodge

Accommodation

Kapawi is a great place for birding. In ten days you can get a list of almost 400 species. The river islands often have Horned Screamers and Orinici Geese. Muscovy Ducks are more prevalent than at any other place and they are even in the Kapawi Lake. Pavonine Quetzals are nesting on the Kapawi-Montalvo trail as the Rofous Potoo, and there are also black necked, red cotingas, pearly antshrikes and pheasant cuckoo.

Hosteria San Jorge

Accommodation

Spectacular legendary mountainside ranch in the foothills surrounding Quito, Ecuador. Only 10 minutes away from city center but a natural and comfortable world apart. San Jorge is an ecologycal way to enjoy nature and countryside, still being close to everything you need about the city. View Quito from above, instead of being down in it.

Hotel Bambu

Accommodation

This newly-built hostal run by a friendly Dutch- Ecuadorian couple provides the best in seaside R&R, while the surrounding area offers plenty of opportunities to quench your thirst for adventure…

El Monte Lodge

Accommodation

Is an ecotourism operation that consists of three wooden cabins and a central lodge for dining and socializing. We have designed El Monte with sustainability in mind and use Permaculture as a general guideline while organically producing many of our own fruits and vegetables…

Cuyabeno Lodge

Accommodation

When Cuyabeno Lodge started operating in 1986, Neotropic Turis believed that the rainforest traveler should be hosted in conditions, which would be both in harmony with the surrounding environment and attuned with the needs of the modern visitor. Operating as an ethical eco-lodge, we work with local indigenous guides together with bilingual naturalist guides and have a close relationship with the local community, power our dining hall with solar panels and practice environmentally sensitive tourism in all aspects of our programs.

Casa Mojanda

Accommodation

Supports minimal impact ecological tourism and promotes cultural, social, and ecological awareness. In addition to being only minutes from Otavalo and its world renown indigenous market, Casa Mojando also offers great hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, Ecuadorian cooking classes, organic gardening and/or Spanish or Quechua lessons.

Casa del Suizo

Accommodation

La Casa del Suizo is a tranquil Amazonian refuge located on the shore of Ecuador’s majestic Napo River and a stone’s throw away from the eastern slopes of the Andes Mountains. Perched comfortably above the riverbank and the small Quichua Indian village of Ahuano, La Casa del Suizo overlooks vast expanses of the surrounding tropical rainforest.

Bellavista Cloud Forest Reserve

Accommodation

Visit Bellavista, a cloud forest lodge and 700 hectare reserve 1 hour 40 minutes northwest of Quito - look for the 330 plus bird species seen within the reserve and in the surrounding Tandayapa Valley. Specialities include Tanager-Finch, Plate-billed Mountain-Toucan, White-faced Nunbird, Toucan Barbet, Dark-backed Wood-Quail, Ocellated Tapaculo, Giant Antpitta and many more. Bellavista is right in the middle of the Hummingbird Capital of the World and many visit our feeders daily, including Gorgeted Sunangel, Collared Inca, Brown Inca, Violet-tailed Sylph, Booted Racket-tail, Purple-bibbed Whitetip, and Buff-tailed Coronet. 10km of trails, unique and comfortable lodging in the Geodesic Dome, Bamboo House, Trailhead House or Cabin in the Woods. Camping or hostelling options for the budget-minded - electricity, hot showers, private bath, full bar service, hammocks, and library; Spanish, English, French and German spoken. Specialist bird guide available.

Guango Lodge

Accommodation

Guango Lodge lies at a higher elevation on the eastern slope on the way to San Isidro, not far from the town of Papallacta, at about 2,700 meters elevation. This area is centered in a zone classified as humid temperate forest, a habitat distinctly different from San Isidro and characterized by its more stunted trees (and thicker canopy); cooler climate, and different bird and plant species…

Tandayapa Bird Lodge

Accommodation

Over 300 bird species have been recorded in the Tandayapa Valley. For the new birder to the Neotropics, Tandayapa Bird Lodge is an excellent place to first experience the marvel of the Andean mixed species feeding flocks. From the Lodge Patio you can see Blue-winged Mountain, Golden, Golden-naped, Beryl-spangled, White-winged, Yellow-rumped, Black-capped, and Metallic Green Tanagers, feeding with Fruiteaters, Becards, Whitestarts, Flower-piercers, Saltators and a myriad of flycatchers. When you walk quietly along one of our trails you will enter the realm of the Sub-oscine Passerines with whole new families such as Woodcreepers, Antbirds, Antthrushes, Antpittas, Tapaculos, Manakins and Cotingas. Luckily there will always be staff and guides available to help with identification.

Café Cultura

Accommodation

Café Cultura is a delightful mix of English tradition and contemporary trend. We consider ourselves an inner city retreat, with lots of personality and wonderful food. The hotel was actually the former home of one of Quitos older families that lived here sixty years ago and subsequently became the French Cultural Centre. The building has been carefully restored over a period of four years, with special detail given to maintaining the unique characteristics of the original interior. The house, a post colonial two-storey building with whitewashed walls and a traditional terracotta tiled roof, barely seems like a hotel from the outside and certainly does not feel like one from the inside. It is surrounded by a beautiful lush garden, with secluded seating areas for relaxing or watching our resident hummingbirds do their thing.

Misahualli Hostería Jungle Lodge

Accommodation

The Misahualli Hostería Jungle Lodge sits amidst 145 hectares of pristine, 650-year old primary Ecuadorian rainforest. The hostería is located at the juncture of the Napo river and the Misahuallí river, on a unique parcel of land similar to an island. This special location has helped to conserve this important natural area for generations…

Tinalandia Lodge

Accommodation

Tinalandia, a unique ecolodge in the Cloud Forest of Ecuador, rests on the Western slope of the the Ecuadorian Andes Mountains at the southern end of the Choco Bioregion which stretches from Columbia to Ecuador. The late ornithologist Ted Parker and botanist Al Gentry proclaimed this area to be the most biodiverse region in the world, and at the ideal location of 2,000 feet above sea level, Tinalandia takes advantage of all this region has to offer…

Black Sheep Inn

Accommodation

The Black Sheep Inn is an inexpensive ecologically friendly hotel high in the Andes Mountains of Ecuador. Perched on a hillside our rural lodge is a perfect place to discover centuries-old culture and diverse ecosystems. Our comfortable hostel offers affordable accommodation and provides you with a great base…

Las Palmeras Inn

Accommodation

Las Palmeras Inn is located in Quichinche, Ecuador, a short walk to Otavalo and less than two hours north of Quito, the capital of Ecuador. The inn is a beautiful garden oasis in the green valley between towering Imbabura and Cotacachi Volcanoes. Las Palmeras Inn offers a perfect combination of peaceful seclusion, adventurous activities, and an intimate connection with the active small-city life of Otavalo…

Quito Apartment

Accommodation

Short stay flat located in the village of Guapulo on the edge of Quito. A perfect base to start a birdwatching trip in Ecuador, and perhaps spend a few days acclimatising, and maybe doing an intensive Spanish course before setting of into the cloud forest, jungle or Galapagos. Views out over the Cayambe valley and just a few yards from the well known Mirador de Guapulo bar…

Uruc Puyujunda Cloudforest Lodge - Mindo

Accommodation

Cloud Forest Lodge in Ecuador, Uruc Puyujunda Cloudforest lodge is located in Mindo, providing an incredible experience with the cloudforest nature….

Septimo Paraiso Resort

Accommodation

Septimo Paraiso Resort offers you a way of escaping from every day problems, lose yourself among nature, let the song of a rare bird relax you or take a dip in our warm spring water pool…

Sachatamia Lodge

Accommodation

The Lodge is located in a private reserve next to the Protected Forest of Mindo-Nambillo…

Sani Lodge

Accommodation

Sani Isla is located between 2 of the most diverse ecological reserves in the world, The Yasuni National Park and the Cuyabeno reserve. Our territory represents a natural corridor for an amazing variety of bird species, so we are proud to say that coming to our lodge is like going to birdwatcher's heaven. In our short history as a lodge, there have been more than 500 species of birds seen on our land and we are constantly finding new species to add to our list…

Wildsumaco Lodge

Accommodation

New in Ecuador's eastern foothills, Wildsumaco Lodge offers comfortable accommodation in a spectacular setting, near Sumaco National Park. Our 10 double rooms feature private bathrooms with hot water showers. Wildsumaco's still-growing bird list contains nearly 400 species, including Coppery-chested Jacamar, Gray-tailed Piha, Yellow-throated Spadebill, Chestnut-crowned Gnateater and Foothill Elaenia. Many-spotted Hummingbird, Ecuadorian Piedtail and Gould's Jewelfront are among the hummingbirds that frequent our feeders…

El Nido B&B

Accommodation

El Nido Bed & Breakfast is located in Cumbayá, Urbanización La Católica, calle De Los Cóndores Nº 43 y De Los Cardenales, a short drive from Quito Airport (ask for Carrillo Salvador Family). The spacious Spanish Colonial-style house contains four suites: two furnished with double beds, and two with two single beds. All four units have walk-in closets and private bathrooms. The breakfast, special of the house, complete with fruit and juice, is included in the rates…

Shiripuno Lodge

Accommodation

At Shiripuno Amazon Lodge is where birding takes a different dimensions: the core of the Amazonian avifauna in Ecuador is right here. Rare birds, abundance numbers of mixed flock everywhere, typical antbirds, woodcreepers, curassaws, 6 species of manakins in a single trail, our trails are flat in most of the cases…

Alambi

Accommodation

The guesthouse itself can sleep six guests, so the emphasis is on exclusivity and peace. It is set in its own mature gardens on the banks of the river Alambi. Many fruits including lemons, mandarins and oranges, bananas, avocado, coffee, papaya and guava grow in the gardens alongside native orchids while, on the river, Torrent Ducks and White-capped Dipper live in the currents and Andean Cock-of-the-Rock nests under the bridge annually. At 1480 metres above sea level the average temperature is about 21° C (70° F) year round…

Hacienda Zuleta

Accommodation

Dating from the late XVI century, Hacienda Zuleta lies in the spectacular Andean mountain range of Ecuador at 9,600 feet (2,800 meters) above the sea level, and only two hours north of Quito, the capital of Ecuador…

Huasquila Amazon Lodge

Accessible Accommodation

Huasquila Amazon Lodge is the best way to discover the magic of the Amazon with all senses for nature lovers in an exclusive, accessible and responsible way. Located at 2750 feet above sea level, Huasquila’s climate is surprisingly temperate. During the day it gets really hot, but it gets cooler in the afternoon. You can enjoy our beautiful hikes and waterfalls with sun during the day and finish it with a hot cup of Amazon cocoa in the afternoon. At night it gets cooler, so sleeping becomes no problem with a light and warm comfortable blanket, something other people in the rest of the Amazon will miss, since it is usually very hot and humid at night…

San Jorge Lodges

Accommodation

A number of especially designed birding Lodges in Ecuador's prime birding areas…

Mindo Ecuador

Accommodation

…In the area there are over 500 species of birds and 40 species of butterflies. This diversity in such a small area is unique in South America. This eco-paradise is located just 1 hour and 30 minutes from the city of Quito, located in a large subtropical valley….

Las Terrazas de Dana - Mindo

Website

Ecuador currently accounts for 0.03 percent of the planet’s surface and despite its small territory contains one of the largest concentrations of birds in the world, with about 1,600 species. Ecuador belongs to biodiversity hotspot regions of the world, in which is a large number of endemic plant and animal species and their nature is particularly vulnerable and attractive. Conservation biologists have found that viewed globally, such regions with a high density of endemic species are generally near the equator, like it’s the case of Mindo and Ecuador too...

Organisations

Fundacion Ornitologica del Ecuador

La Tierra 203 y Av. de los Shyris, Casilla 17-17-906, Quito. +5932 464359; cecia@uio.satnet.net
The Ornithological Foundation of Ecuador - CECIA is a non-profit organization that it was funded in 1986 and it is dedicated to the conservation and investigation of the birds and its habitats, environmental education and natural resources management in Ecuador…

Rainforest Concern

Website

Since 1993 Rainforest Concern has been protecting threatened natural habitats and the vast diversity of life they contain. With particular emphasis on conservation of rainforests, the organisation has 19 projects in 13 countries run in partnership with local partners. Rainforest Concern, a registered charity in England (charity number 1028947), also works with indigenous communities to gain legal recognition of their ancestral forests…

Fundacion Natura

Website

Es misión de Fundación Natura la protección del medio ambiente, la preservación de la biodiversidad y el manejo sustentable de los recursos naturales para mejorar la calidad de vida de las presentes y futuras generaciones, mediante la transformación de hábitos y comportamientos, la formación de una conciencia ambiental en la población y el establecimiento de una nueva ética social…

Fundacion Jatun Sacha

Website

Jatun Sacha is an Ecuadorian non-profit making ecological organization. It was founded in 1985, when the three naturalists (Alejandro Suarez, an orchid grower and botanical illustrator, Michael McColm, an American living in Ecuador, and Dr David Neill, a curator from the Missouri Botanical Gardens on secondment to the National Herbarium in Quito) combined their properties on the Rio Napo in Ecuador's Amazonian province of Oriente to form a reserve of 200 hectares…

Corporacion Ornitologica Del Ecuador - Birdlife International Quito

Website

La Corporación Ornitológica del Ecuador, CECIA, es una organización sin fines de lucro fundada en Quito (Ecuador) en 1986, cuya misión se define como: Aportar a la Conservación de las Aves, sus Hábitats y la Biodiversidad del Ecuador, en Beneficio de la Gente y con su Participación Activa.

Fundación Jocotoco

Website

Fundación Jocotoco is an Ecuadorian organisation established to protect land of critical importance to the conservation of Ecuador`s avifauna and associated biodiveristy. The Fundación achieves this by purchasing lands and managing them as private ecological reserves.

Rio Pucuno Foundation

Website

The Rio Pucuno Foundation has been approved by the appropriate government agencies and is chartered under the laws of Ecuador. It will work with us to help advance our primary goal of saving rainforest in perpetuity…

Aves & Conservacion

Website

En el marco del Festival Mundial de las Aves 2008, el Ministerio del Ambiente de Ecuador con el apoyo de Aves & Conservación - BirdLife en Ecuador y la Fundación Numashir, y el auspicio de BirdLife International, Conservación Internacional – Ecuador, Neblina Forest, Fundación Arcoiris y Fundación Jatun Sacha, convocaron a la primera reunión para la generación participativa de la Estrategia Nacional de Conservación de las Aves. La Estrategia es un documento fundamental para orientar la gestión de quienes estamos vinculados a este objetivo y por ende su generación debería contar con el aporte de todas las instituciones y personas que han venido trabajando a favor de la avifauna del Ecuador, así como de otros actores vinculados al tema ambiental más amplio…

Museums

Guandera Biological Station

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guandera_Biological_Station

The volunteer program at Guandera offers a unique oppportunity to live and work in the only extensive primary inter-Andean cloud forest in Ecuador. The forest is awe-inspiringly beautiful. Giant ancient trees, twisted and gnarled, coated with mosses and orchids, extend into a thick green canopy that hangs in the mists overhead. The expansive Andean grasslands above are equally impressive with their panomaric vistas of snow-capped volcanoes and their lush gardens of soft-leaved Frailejon plants.

Tiputini Biodiversity Station

http://www.ceiba.org/tiputini.htm

The location of the Tiputini Biodiversity Station (TBS) adjacent to the Yasuní Biosphere Reserve in equatorial western Amazonia means direct contact with the greatest concentration of species diversity on Earth. This project has been developed by the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in collaboration with Boston University principally for research, education and conservation. The Station with its 650 hectares (1500 acres) is situated about 300km (200 mi) ESE of Quito on the north bank of the Tiputini River (a tributary of the Napo River) in eastern Ecuador. The region has enjoyed exceptional protection due to its history as part of the traditional territory of the Waorani people and total isolation from development. David Pearson, Ph.D. in The New Key to Ecuador and the Galapagos, 2nd Edition unabashedly recommends TBS as the best place in all of Ecuador to see wildlife.

Andes and Amazon Field School

Website

Experience the Amazon while completing an internship, fulfilling requirements for the undergraduate degree, carrying out graduate projects, studying Quichua, teaching, or researching. Open to adventurous students and alumni from any college or university…

Reserves

Reserva Los Cedros

Website

Satellite View

There can be few experiences as wildly enchanting as waking up that first morning in the cloud forest. First the low guttural moan of the howler monkey draws you out of your sleep, the jungle alarm clock! And then your ears and imagination are overwhelmed by the morning crescendo of hundreds of delightfully different and new bird calls…

Parque Nacional Machalilla

Website

Satellite View

The Machalilla National Park, is the unique protected area in the country where you can find three ecological zones: Continental zone, Islands and Marine zone. Located south of the Manabí Province, this National Park is one of the best alternatives to know and enjoy these important eco-systems as well as learn about the different cultures dwelling these region…

Parque Nacional Podocarpus

Information

Satellite View

Ecuador's southernmost national park is a hidden gem. Large tracts of virgin forest shelter a bewildering array of climates and residents; some of the most spectacular scenery lies within easy access of Loja and Vilcabamba. Even as poaching, illegal colonizing, and especially mining take their toll on Podocarpus, the relative few tourists that visit come away knowing they've seen something special - whether it's the fairy-tale high-altitude forest or one of the flashier of the park's hundreds of bird species.

Reserva Tinalandia

Satellite View

Tinalandia rests on the Western slope of the the Ecuadorian Andes at the southern end of the Choco Bioregion which stretches from Columbia to Ecuador. The late ornithologist Ted Parker and botanist Al Gentry proclaimed this area to be the most bio-diverse region in the world, and the ideal location of Tinalandia at 2000 feet takes advantage of most of what this region has to offer. Located about 2 hours from Quito, Tinalandia is one of the most accessible wildlife areas from the Ecuadorian capital. Tinalandia is perhaps best known for its exceptional birdwatching opportunities. Over 350 species, have been recorded by some of the world`s most renowned birding experts.

Yanahurco

Website

Satellite View

Yanahurco is a private, ecological reserve; Which allows access to only a limited number of visitors. This also guarantees the protection of the animals living here as well as the privacy of the guests. It is a place that offers its visitors everything they need to know the way of life of the Andes.

Cuyabeno Reserve

Information

Satellite View

The bird life is particularly spectacular: over 515 species have been recorded such as the prehistoric-looking hoatzin, umbrella bird, blue-headed parrots, white-eared jacamar, scarlet macaw and the awesome harpy-eagle with its eight-foot wing-span…

Reserva Rio Guaycuyacu

Website

Satellite View

Resident animals include monkey, ocelot, jaguarundi, kinkajou, tayra, agouti; spiders and snakes, butterflies and beetles. 170 species of birds are on our list of sightings, among them four species of toucans. Characteristic plants include copal, rubber, pambil palm, tree fern, passion flowers and bromeliads.

Parque Nacional Sangay

Webpage

Satellite View

Some 400-500 bird species may be present, although comprehensive inventories have not been compiled. The park contains two Endemic Bird Areas, the Central Andean páramo, home to ten bird species of restricted range, and the Eastern Andes of Ecuador and northern Peru, home to 15 restricted-range species…

Antisana Ecological Reserve

Webpage

Satellite View

Above an altitude of 4800 meters very little vegetation exists, as this area is covered with snow year-round. Between 3600 & 4800 meters, however, we entered a habitat called the paramo, in which the plant and animal life are both highly adapted to the extreme conditions which are the norm here. Due to the high winds that regularly sweep this habitat, nothing taller than the grass and low lying succulents are found in the open…

Reserva de la Montaña - Río Chuchuví

Satellite View

The last extensive, unbroken lowland and montane rainforest in western Ecuador occurs in the far north of the country, in the provinces of Esmeraldas, Carchi and Imbabura. Recently made more accessible by the completion of the paved road between the highland town of Ibarra and coastal town of San Lorenzo, this area is a mecca for those wanting to see or study wildlife that is rare or non-existent elsewhere in Ecuador…

Reserva Ecológica Sachatamia

Website

Satellite View

A private reserve which sports an Umbrellabird lek… Sachatamia is a marvelous, private, ecological reserve exceeding 120 hectares of cloud-rain forest. Other areas include recuperated forest, as well as, forest undergoing processes of reforestation. Sachatamia has the privilege of being located next to the Protected Forest of Mindo-Nambillo. The zone is renowed as one of the foremost in terms of the wealth of biodiversity that is rich in flora and fauna. it has attained first place in the annual count of bird species on a global level.

Reserva Ecológica Séptímo Paraíso

Website

Satellite View

Septimo Paraiso Cloud Forest Reserve is a private protected area, created in 2001, with the aim of saving and preserving the forest and the diverse ecosystems that are contained within it. It is managed by the Green Mindo Foundation, which is in charge of the conservation and the study of its 420 hectares of pre-montane and montane cloud forest. The Reserve has one of the largest bird counts of the north-western area of Pichincha, with 328 species of birds. Several species of mammal have been found; such as puma, spectacled bear, black howler monkey, capuchin monkey, Andean coati, armadillos, white tailed and brocket deer, two toed sloth to name just a few. Also an incredible number of reptile and amphibian species had been spotted, plus an overwhelming number of plant species. The altitude within the reserve drastically changes from 950 meters to 1650 meters above sea level. In addition, the isolation of the region has created one of the most delicate, but rich and complex ecosystems known in the Mindo region.

Parque Nacional Sumaco Galeras

Website

Satellite View

Wildsumaco Wildlife Sanctuary S.A., a small private company dedicated to conservation, is determined to save what we can of this fine forest and its wildlife before it disappears. Our land is a choice, sustainable and bird-rich piece of rainforest, and as an important part of our conservation plan we are building a comfortable and convenient lodge for 20 guests on land that was previously cleared for farming. Wildsumaco Lodge should be completed and ready for guests in late 2007…

San Jorge De Milpe Bird & Orchid Reserve - Mindo

Webpage

Satellite View

Positively bursting with life, with an abundance of butterflies, moths, plants, reptiles, mammals, including 300 species of orchids, and over 450 species of birds. This private pristine natural reserve is connected to 15,000 hectares Mashpi Canyon Protected Forest. Located at 1,000 meters o.s.l., this transition area (Upper Tropical Forest) provides excellent opportunities to observe birds and natural untouched environments, less than 2 hours from Quito. The Tropical Rainforest features well-kept birding trails, 11 waterfalls, and a hilltop birding area with a 360º view of the surrounding valley forests and fields. It is the perfect place to go birding and watch mixed flocks come through - with the possibility of up to 70 species before breakfast! Milpe is in the vicinity of Mindo, one of the world's most famous birding areas, and a major birdwatching destination in the world.

Birds to see: Banded-ground Cuckoo, Glistening-green Tanager, Esmeraldas Antbird, Blue-fronted Parrotlet, Red-masked Parakeet, Tiny Hawk, Double-toothed Kite, Osprey, Plumbeous Forest Falcon, Long Wattled Umbrella Bird, Dark-backed Wood Quail, Gray and Gold Tanager, Olive finch.

San Jorge De Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary

Website

San Jorge de Tandayapa Hummingbird Reserve (1500m) is part of the Choco Bird Area of northwest Ecuador where many as 500 species endemic birds live. Here nature lovers and birders have the opportunity to take in spectacular panoramic views and spot a wide variety of Cloud Forest birds. Twenty-four varieties of hummingbirds are found here throughout the year along with numerous species of tanagers. Common Birds include: Grass-green Tanager, Blue-winged Mountain Tanager, Andean Cock of the Rock, Smoke-colored Pewee, Tropical Kingbird, Social Flycatcher, White-capped Dipper, Roadside Hawk, Cinamon Becard, Ecuadorian Thrush and Great Thrush.

Kinde Sacha Birding Reserve

Website

Satellite View

Formarse como un Centro de Observación de aves liderando en el manejo ambiental y la conservación de la especies para ser reconocidos por brindar un servicio de calidad…

San Jorge de Quito Botanical Reserve

Information

San Jorge de Quito Botanical Reserve is located 10 minutes from the main avenue of Quito city. Its part of the 10.000 hectares Pichincha Protected Forest that surrounds the western area of the capital. San Jorge is the only private reserve speciaised in birdwatching in Quito. Actually it is the only reserve that has trails and feeders for birds and touristic birdwatching service in all the city. Cover 3 climate zones, Andean valley, Highland Rain Forest and Paramo. There are around 30km of trails and a 110 bird species inventory. Hummingbird feeders, tanagers and finches feeders are observable in the gardens of the historical colonial hacienda. The perfect place to birdwatch in pristine nature without leaving the city.

San Jorge de Cosanga - Yanayacu Wildlife Reserve

Webpage

Satellite View

San Jorge de Cosanga - Yanayacu Wildlife Reserve, located at 2400m and joined to the Antizana National Park holds the world record Christmas Bird Count for 2011 with 460 bird species. Surrounded by several National Parks such as Cayambe-Coca, Sumaco, Napo Galeras, Antizana is one of the most remote and pristine areas in the country . 60 miles from Quito.

Blogs

Lost in Birding

Blog

Sam Woods, UK - I've been birding since I was 11, which was a long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away. Since 2005 I have been living in Ecuador, for my job as a guide for Tropical Birding and Tandayapa Bird Lodge. This has taken me to many corners of the planet in my unwavering pursuit of birds. Birds and birding, that's what I'm all about, and what this site is all about. Nothing more, nothing less…

Birding Ecuador

Blog

Reports, reflections and resources of an independent birder [Derek Kverno] in Ecuador…

Into the Wilderness of Yasuni

BLOG

Exploring the Wilderness of the Yasuni and sharing it to community for its conservation. The Yasuni is settle in a unique biographical position at the crossroads of the Andes (Andean foothills), the Western Amazon, and the Equator….

Other Links

Ecuador Forest Birds

Website

Two years previously I`d volunteered on the same project, and had thoroughly enjoyed the untangling, but I was a little concerned that I would have to relearn the technique. My fears were groundless and as soon as I touched my first bird, it all came back to me…

Birds in Ecuador

Website

Already 10 years have passed since the last guidelines to look for birds in Ecuador were published, some of these books were my permanent companions during the long and continuous learning process of the Ecuadorian avifauna; since the publication of the latter works much has changed for the good of birds in Ecuador…

Photographers & Artists

Photographer - Adrian Hopkins

Gallery

A gallery of images from Ecuador by this Welsh photographer…

Photographer - Glen Bartley

Gallery

Large gallery of excellent photographs..

Photographer - Dušan Brinkhuizen - Sapayoa Nature Photography

Gallery

Sapayoa Nature Photography - Ecuador Bird Photo Galleries & more!