Republic of Ecuador

Banded Ground Cuckoo Neomorphus radiolosus ©Dr Jorge Cruz Website
Birding Ecuador

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

This page is sponsored by Bellavista Cloud Forest Reserve

This page is sponsored by Septimo Paraiso

This page is sponsored by Las Terrazas de Dana

Contributors
Number of Species
  • Number of bird species: 1665

    As at November 2016
Endemics
  • Number of endemics: 6

    4 Non-passerines El Oro Parakeet Pyrrhura orcesi Black-breasted Puffleg Eriocnemis nigrivestis Violet-throated Metaltail Metallura baroni Esmeraldas Woodstar Acestrura berlepschi
    2 Passerines Ecuadorian Tapaculo Scytalopus robbinsi 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

  • Bird Sounds of Ecuador

    | (A Comprehensive Collection) | By CJohn V Moore, Niels Krabbe & Olaf Jahn | John Moore | (2017) | MP3 DVD | 11501 bird species, 9670 Recordings || ISBN: #208311 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Birding Ecuador

    | (Hummers, Howlers and Hissing Hoatzin)| By Malcolm Rymer | DVD | Running Time 120 Mins | (2004) | All Region | ISBN: #151164 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Birding Northeast Ecuador

    | By Steven L Herrmann | Steven Herrmann | (2016) | Paperback | 307 pages, b/w maps | ISBN: 9781539089261 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Birding Northwest Ecuador

    | By Steven L Herrmann | Steven Herrmann | (2016) | Paperback | 300 pages, b/w maps | ISBN: 9781534600058 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Birds of Ecuador

    | By Juan F Freile & Robin L Restall | Christopher Helm | (2018) | Paperback | 656 pages, 291 plates with colour illustrations; colour photos, colour distribution maps | ISBN: 9781408105337 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Birds of Western Ecuador

    | By Nick Athanas & Paul J Greenfield | Princeton University Press | (2016) | Paperback | 448 pages, 1500 colour photos, 946 colour distribution maps | ISBN: 9780691157801 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Ecuador: Birds / Aves

    | By Robert Dean| Rainforest Publications | (2018) | Unbound | 13 pages, colour illustrations | ISBN: 9781888538021 Buy this book from NHBS.com
  • Pocket Photo Guide to the Birds of Ecuador and Galapagos

    | By Clive Byers | Bloomsbury Publishing | (2017) | Paperback | 144 pages, colour photos | ISBN: 9781472937902 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
Birding Aps
  • All Birds Ecuador

    Apple iOS |
    | (A complete field guide to identify all bird species recorded in Ecuador - incl. songs + calls!) | Mullen & Pohland GbR | 2.3 GB | Requires iOS 11.0 or later. |

    Planning to go bird watching in Ecuador? Then this is the app for you. This app fills a gap in the region and is the only app available for Ecuador! It is based on renowned reference work of the Helm Guide Series "Birds of Northern South America" by Robin Restall, Clemencia Rodner, and Miguel Lentino. The creation of apps from the book is a co-production between Bloomsbury Plc and Sunbird Images. The app contains 5,000 illustrations and more than 3,000 bird songs and calls in total.
Useful Information
  • National Bird

    Andean Condor Vultur gryphus
Museums & Universities
  • 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…
  • Guandera Biological Station

    Information
    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.
Organisations
  • Aves & Conservacion

    Website
    Our mission is to contribute to the conservation of birds, their habitats and the biodiversity of Ecuador, for the benefit of the people and with their active participation.
  • BirdLife Partner

    Website
    Aves y Conservación - Calle Mariana de Jesús E7-69 y La Pradera (2do piso), Quito, Ecuador - Tel: (593 2) 3237002 - direccion@avesconservacion.org
  • Fundacion Jatun Sacha

    Website
    Welcome to the Jatun Sacha Foundation - Research and teaching for the conservation of Ecuador’s Biodiversity
  • Fundacion Jocotoco

    Website
    World Land Trust’s work in Ecuador spans the country from rainforests of the Amazon basin, dry forests towards the Pacific coast, to cloud forest and Paramo of the Andes. Despite its small size (not much bigger than the UK), the diversity of its habitats makes it one of the most biodiverse countries in the world. With 1,600 bird species, it has 17% of the world’s total bird species and 16,000 species of plants (25% of which are endemic).
  • Fundacion Natura

    Website
    Natura Foundation is dedicated to activities of conservation of the biological diversity of Ecuador. The main actions carried out are aimed at supporting the management of protected natural areas (national parks, ecological reserves and others) where most of the country's biological diversity is located.
  • Rainforest Concern

    Website
    https://www.rainforestconcern.org/projects?cat=ecuador
  • 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
Reserves

Abbreviations Key

  • BiR Kinde Sacha

    WebsiteSatellite 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…
  • BiR San Jorge De Milpe

    WebpageSatellite 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.
  • BiR Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary

    WebsiteSatellite View
    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.
  • NP Machalilla

    WebsiteSatellite 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…
  • NP Podocarpus

    InformationSatellite 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.
  • NP Sangay

    WebpageSatellite 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…
  • NP Sumaco Galeras

    WebsiteSatellite 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…
  • NR Antisana Ecological Reserve

    WebpageSatellite 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…
  • NR Los Cedros

    WebsiteSatellite 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…
  • NR Paraíso

    WebsiteSatellite 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.
  • NR Rio Guaycuyacu

    WebsiteSatellite 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.
  • NR Sachatamia

    WebsiteSatellite 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.
  • NR Tinalandia

    WebsiteSatellite 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.
  • NR Yanahurco

    WebsiteSatellite 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.
  • NR de la Montaña - Río Chuchuví

    Observatory WebsiteSatellite 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…
  • San Jorge de Quito Botanical Reserve

    InformationSatellite View
    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.
  • WR Yanayacu

    WebpageSatellite 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.
  • WRs Cuyabeno

    InformationSatellite 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…
Guides & Tour Operators


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

  • 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
  • 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…
  • 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!
  • 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 Gal
  • Rockjumper Birding Tours

    Tour Operator
    Ecuador
  • 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 Choc
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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
Trip Reports


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

  • 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 [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…
  • 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…
  • 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 [09 September] - Forrest Rowland

    PDF 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.
  • 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…
  • 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….
  • 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…
  • 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 [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] - 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] - 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

    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] - 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] - Janos Olah

    PDF Report
    ... It would be rather long to name allthe special birds we managed to see but certainly highlights included such birds as Wattled Guan, DarkbackedWood-Quail, Zigzag Heron, Bicoloured Hawk, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, Dusky Pigeon, ScarletshoulderedParrotlet, ‘San Isidro’ Owl, Rufous-, Andean and Long-tailed Potoos, Short-tailed-, Rufous-belliedand Sand-coloured Nighthawks, Swallow-tailed- and Lyre-tailed Nightjars, White-chested Swift, Fiery Topaz,White-tipped Sicklebill, Ecuadorian Piedtail, Emerald-bellied Puffleg....
  • 2014 [11 November] - Jose Illanes - Northwest

    PDF Report
    ...The owl stop also yielded a good sighting of AshcoloredTapaculo (a scarce species on this tour in general), Red-crestedCotinga 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] - 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!...
  • 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 [12 December] - Andres Vasquez - Ades

    PDF Report
    ...The first stops along these farmsproduced Golden-bellied Grosbeak, Paramo Pipit, Black-tailed Trainbearer, Variable Hawk, and Tawny-rumpedTyrannulet. After a few more kilometers on a patch of forest still within the disturbed area, we stopped for noisy BlackcrestedWarblers which required some tape to bring in but while trying for it we found a perched Red-crested Cotingaand 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 abreathless 4200m/13,800ft. With the unpredictable weather there on our side for once we set about finding not only thearea’s star bird, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, but were also gifted extraordinary views of Andean Snipe there too...
  • 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 [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 [03 March] - Forrest Rowland - Southern Ecuador Endemics

    Report PDF
    ...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] - Jose Illanes - Eastern Ecuador

    Report PDF
    ...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] - 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 [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.
  • 2015 [12 December] - Jose Illanes - Eastern Ecuador

    PDF Report
    ...The tour started in the high Andes, and AntisanaNational 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] - Andres Vasquez - Andes

    PDF Report
    ... above average birding wise and INCREDIBLE for mammals; in one day of the extension we got 7 AndeanCondors, 2 cooperative Rufous-belied Seedsnipes, Andean Ibis, a Black-breasted Buzzard-Eagle (among 5 species ofraptors that day) plus 2 species of deer, the local subspecies of White-tailed Deer and the rare and secretive NORTHERNPUDU, just after finding a SPECTACLED BEAR...
  • 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] - 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...
  • 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...
  • 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 [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....
  • 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 [08 August] - Jose Illanes - Andes

    PDF Report
    ...The lodge fruit feeders were also active at the time, with Crimson-rumpedToucanet, White-winged Brushfinch and Red-headed Barbet all visiting. We also spent some time at theupper 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 [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....
  • 2016 [11 November] - Peregrine Rowse

    PDF Report
    ...We stopped for a well earned lunch at 12:20 at 3385m justbelow the park entrance. Six species of hummingbird including the wonderful Shining Sunbeam and Giant Hummingbirdwere frequenting the feeders so concentrating on the food was difficult....
  • 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] - 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....
  • 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] - 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....
  • 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] - Pete Morris - Southern Ecuador

    PDF Report
    .... the magnifcent displaying Long-wattled Umbrellabirds;the sensational Jocotoco Antpittas; an unbelievably obliging Crescent-faced Antpitta; a breathtakingmale Ecuadorian Hillstar and some stunning Orange-throated Tanagers. Perhaps less expected highlightswere some sensational White-breasted Parakeets at their clay-lick, the rarely seen Red-faced Parrot posingin full view....
  • 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 [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-crestedSpadebill, 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; superlooks at a male Fiery Topaz from our canoe, several of the unique White-plumed Antbird, and a male Lunulated Antbird....
  • 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 [10 October] - Paul Greenfield

    PDF Report
    The following morning we departed via the Paseo del Quinde Ecoroute towards Quito. A spectacular Plate-billed Mountain-Toucan was among the first species we encountered, this time with clear skies and in full vibrant color…Wow! We searched for a flock of Red-billed Parrots that we watched fly into the canopy of a nearby tree only to remain hidden as they called and perched; Green-and-black Fruiteater, Glossy-black Thrush, more Blue-winged Mountain-Tanagers, a stunning Beryl-spangled Tanager, and Capped Conebills also were encountered.
  • 2017 [11 November] - Paul Varney

    PDF Report
    After breakfast, we headed up the road adding more of the specialities of this area as we walked slowly up the hill: Cinereous Conebill, Streaked Tuftedcheek, White-banded Tyrannulet – beautiful bird, Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant, Rufous Wren, Red-crested Cotinga, Spectacled Whitestart, Supercilliaried Hemispingus, Blue Backed Conebill and Glossy and Black Flowerpiercers. Our first tanagers also obliged – Black-chested Mountain Tanager and the stunning Scarlet-Bellied Mountain Tanager
  • 2018 [02 February] - Juan Carlos Calvachi

    PDF Report
    we recorded a highly impressive 631 species (including the heard only ones). And with that certainly most of the standout species that compose this brilliant tour… the magnificent Long-wattled Umbrellabirds; the peculiar White-tipped Sicklebill and the uncommon Scaled Fruiteater; the 2 BirdQuest Tour Report: Southern Ecuador 2018 www.birdquest-tours.com sensational Jocotoco Antpitta, a breathtaking male Ecuadorian Hillstar, stunning White-capped and Orangethroated Tanagers.
  • 2018 [02 February] - Kim Fleming

    PDF Report
    Most impressive was a dispersed flock of perhaps some 300 Carunculated Caracaras, both adults and juveniles, feeding on a mass emergence of some kind of large flying beetle – perhaps chafers. Swooping amongst the caracaras at high speed were powerful White-collared Swifts, seeming huge at close range.
  • 2018 [03 March] - Dodie Logue

    PDF Report
    Annotated list
  • 2018 [03 March] - Willy Perez

    Report
    It was another fantastic Southern Ecuador Specialties tour! The name describes the main point of this tour, which is to find very restricted species, especially from the Tumbesian zone. We also looked for some Choco endemics that occur in Buenaventura, and even some Ecuadorian endemics. We were very busy on this tour, starting in the city of Guayaquil where we birded the edges of the western part of the city. We then went on to the super comfortable Jocotoco lodges and reserves.
  • 2018 [07 July] -

    PDF Report
    Ecuadorian Rail responded but would not show. We tried a quieter spot close to the water and this time we had 2 out in the open after 15-20 minutes of trying different patches of reeds. We took a 30 minute boat ride on the lake for $2 and got some nice views of water birds at the lake’s edge.
  • 2018 [07 July] -

    PDF Report
    We had 60 species of Hummingbird including highlights like Sword-billed and Giant Hummingbird, Tourmaline Sunangel and Lazuline Sabrewing and 53 species of Tanager.
  • 2018 [11 November] - Marie Kedward

    PDF Report
    The sun was out and the temperature warm, which unfortunately meant the birds of the forest were mostly inactive, although a range of hummingbirds, tanagers and a couple of toucans were seen around the feeding stations. A short drive down the road provided similar results and under the circumstances we decided to return to the hotel.
  • 2018 [12 December] - Bob Behrstock

    PDF Report
    Birding around Puembo provided arriving participants with some high elevation garden birds, including Sparkling Violetear, Western Emerald, Black-tailed Trainbearer, Vermilion Flycatcher, Golden Grosbeak, Scrub and Blue-and-yellow tanagers, Saffron Finch, Shiny Cowbird, the first of many Great Thrushes, and Rufous-collared Sparrows.
Places to Stay


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

  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Casa del Suizo

    Accommodation
    La Casa del Suizo is a tranquil Amazonian refuge located on the shore of Ecuador
  • 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.
  • 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
  • El Nido B&B

    Accommodation
    El Nido Bed & Breakfast is located in Cumbay
  • 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.
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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
  • 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...
  • 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!
  • 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…
  • Mindo Hotels

    Accommodation
  • 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…
  • 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
  • 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.
  • Sachatamia Lodge

    Accommodation
    The Lodge is located in a private reserve next to the Protected Forest of Mindo-Nambillo
  • San Jorge Eco Lodges

    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.
  • San Jorge Lodges

    Accommodation
    A number of especially designed birding Lodges in Ecuador's prime birding areas
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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).
  • Yarina Lodge

    Accommodation
    YARINA, the enchantment of the forest
  • Yuturi Lodge

    Accommodation
    Yuturi a true paradise
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
Blogs
  • Derek Kverno - Birding Ecuador

    BLOG
    Reports, reflections and resources of an independent birder [Derek Kverno] in Ecuador
Photographers & Artists
  • Photographer - Adrian Hopkins

    Gallery
    A gallery of images from Ecuador by this Welsh photographer
  • Photographer - Dušan Brinkhuizen

    Gallery
    Sapayoa Nature Photography - Ecuador Bird Photo Galleries & more!
  • Photographer - Glen Bartley

    Gallery
    Large gallery of excellent photographs..
  • Photographer - Sam Woods

    Gallery
    I have been based in Quito since 2005 as a base for my guiding job with Tropical Birding. These photos have been taken during many Ecuador tours and trips in that time. With around 1600 species in this small Andean country, Ecuador is one of the most diverse and exciting places to bird on Earth.

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