THE ULTIMATE AMAZONIAN BIRDING
Amazon birding tour without doubt is a unique experience, especially if you are thinking to visit Iquitos area, many people think that because the Amazon is in the lowland everything is flat and uniform and therefore everything is the same and this is not true.
Presence of Amazon river makes Iquitos a special birding destination. northern Amazon river side has different selection of birds in comparison with southern side, so river is natural limit for many species, at the same time we have islands formations, these have two types well know like young and old islands, in each kind of island, vegetation is different and of course bird species are specialized and restricted to this kind of habitat, so bird watching tours in amazon has more variety than usual, we have to add another extra and special habitat, which is White sand forest, this is poor soil nutrients forest, where the vegetation has evolved through time, giving as a result special and unique habitat, where some species have adapted to become specialist species of white sand forest.
All those habitats together it can be find around Iquitos, offering a true birding experience, in our amazon birding tour.
So, we´ll visit different lodged in northern and southern side of Amazon river to cover all habitats that we mentioned just like the white sand forests nearby Iquitos town.
Join for 2 weeks of the ultimate Amazonian birding.
Day 1: To Apayacu Lodge.
We leave Iquitos after breakfast, we start sailing on the mighty Amazon river for 4 – 5 hours about to Apayacu River Lodge, this is located in the Ampiyacu Apayacu Regional Conservation Area, 147 kilometers (91 miles) from the city of Iquitos. The Ampiyacu Apayacu Regional Conservation Area has an area of 434,130 hectares (1,676 square miles). The area includes the forests of the Amazon lowland north of the Amazon River, we arrive after midday, late in the day we are going to have our first walking the trail system that lodge have, along the river we’ll see several species like Yellow-billed and large billed tern, Green, Ringed and Amazon kingfishers, white-winged, White-banded, Southern-rough swallows and depending of the season Purple martins and some other migrants species, on the way we’ll stop looking for some rare and localized species like Bay Hornero or Pale-billed Hornero and Pearly-breasted Conebill. and some common species.
Night: Apayacu River Lodge. L:D.
Day 2 – 3: Apayacu Lodge around.
We have 2 full days birding in this fabulous birding spot, there are many birds to see will be focus in some targets like: Gray-winged Trumpeter, Salvin´s Curassow, Black-Headed Antbird, Reddish-winged Bare-Eye, Rusty-breasted Nunlet, Variegated Antpitta, Ochre-Striped Antpitta, Chestnut-Belted Gnateater, Brownish Twistwing, Black-Necked Red-Cotinga, Yellow-Shouldered Grosbeak, Green Oropendola, Band-tailed Oropendola, night birding can give us a good reward; Nocturnal Curassow, will be our main target, of course night birding activity is great so Short-Tailed Nighthawk, tropical Screech-Owl, Tawny Screech-Owl, Crested Owl, Spectacled Owl, Mottled Owl, Black-Banded Owl, including the rare and nomadic Rufous Potoo, beside there are many species here some of them: Marbled Wood-Quail, Tiny Hawk, Slate-Colored Hawk, White Hawk, Barred Forest-Falcon, Lined Forest-Falcon, with extremely luck Harpy Eagle, Black hawk Eagle and Ornate Hawk-Eagle.
Chestnut-Headed Crake, Maroon-Tailed Parakeet, Sapphire-Rumped parrotlet, Black-Headed Parrot, Short-Tailed Parrot, Black-Bellied Cuckoo, Pheasant Cuckoo, Pavonine Cuckoo, Common Pauraque, Gray-Rumped Swift, Short-Tailed Swift, Fork-Tailed Palm-swift, Lesser Swallow-Tailed-Swift, Rufous-Breasted Hermit, Pale-Tailed Barbthroat, Long-Tailed Hermit, Rufous-Throated Sapphire, Black-Throated Brilliant, Fiery Topaz, Black-Eared Fairy, Long-Billed Starthroat, Green-Backed Trogon, Blue-Crowned Trogon, Violaceus Trogon, Collared Trogon, Black-Throated Trogon, Black-Tailed Trogon, Pavonine Quetzal, Green-and-Rufous Kingfisher, American Pygmy Kingfisher, Rufous Motmot, Blue-Crowned Motmot, Yellow-Billed jacamar, Paradise jacamar, Great jacamar, White-Necked Puffbird, Chestnut-Capped Puffbird, Collared Puffbird, White-chested Puffbird, Rufous-Necked Puffbird, Yellow-Billed Nunbird, Scarlet-Crowned Barbet, Lemon-Throated Barbet, Lettered Aracari, Ivory-Billed Aracari, Chestnut-Eared Aracari, Many-Banded Aracari, Golden-Collared Toucanet, Yellow-Throated Woodpecker, Golden-Green Woodpecker, Spot-Breasted Woodpecker, Scale-Breasted Woodpecker, Chestnut Woodpecker, Cream-Colored Woodpecker, Ringed Woodpecker, Lineated Woodpecker, Red-Necked Woodpecker, Crimson-Crested Woodpecker, Plain-Brown Woodpecker, White-Chinned Woodpecker, Long-Tailed Woodcreeper, Spot-Throated Woodcreeper, Strong-Billed Woodcreeper, Amazonian Barred-Woodcreeper, Striped Woodcreeper, Ocellated Woodcreeper, Elegant Woodcreeper, Lineated Woodcreeper, Ruddy Spinetail, Plain-Crowned Spinetail (different race compare with southern Peru), Speckled Spinetail, Point-tailed Palmcreeper, Striped Woothhaunter, Rufous-Tailed Foliage-Gleaner, Rufous-Rumped Foliage-Gleaner, Chestnut-Winged Hookbill, Cinnamon-Rumped Foliage-Gleaner, Olive-Backed Foliage-Gleaner, Ruddy Foliage-Gleaner, Tawny-Throated Leaftosser, Short-Billed Leaftosser, Black-Tailed Leaftosser, Rufous-Tailed xenops, Fasciated Antshrike, Undulated Antshrike, Pearly Antshrike, Cinereous Antshrike, Spot-Winged Antshrike, Stipple-Throated Antwren, Ornate Antwren, Rufous-Tailed Antwren, Moustached Antwren, Banded Antbird, Dugand´s Antwren, Ash-winged Antwren, Yellow-Browed Antbird, Slate-Colored Antbird, Spot-Winged Antbird, White-Shouldered Antbird, some ant follower that we can find are: Sooty Antbird, White-Plumed Antbird, Bicolored-Antbird, Hairy-Crested Antbird, Scale-Backed Antbird, bird list its keep growing: Spot-Backed Antbird, Dot-Backed Antbird, , Rufous-Capped Antthrush, Black-Faced Antthrush, Striated Antthrush, Thrush-Like Antpitta, Rusty-Belted Tapaculo, White-Lored Tyrannulet, Red-Billed Tyrannulet, Double-Banded Pygmy-Tyran, Helmeted Pygmy-Tyrant, Olivaceous Flatbill, Golden-Crowned Spadebill, Royal Flycatcher, Sulphur-Rumped Flycatcher, Ruddy-Tailed Flycatcher, Sulphury Flycatcher, Short-Tailed Pygmy-Tyrant , Grayish Mourner, Rufous-Tailed Flatbill, Citron-Bellied Attila, Varzea Schiffornnis, Thrush-Like Schiffornis, Cinereous Mourner, White-Browed Purpletuft, Chestnut-Crowned Becard, Black-Capped Becard, Pink-Throated Becard, Striped Manakin, Blue-Crowned Manakin, White-Crowned Manakin, Wire-Tailed Manakin, Golden-Headed Manakin, Blue-Backed Manakin, Wing-Barred Manakin, Slaty-Capped Shrike-Vireo, Lemon-Chested Greenlet, Dusky-Capped Greenlet, Tawny-Crowned Greenlet, Buff-Breasted Wren, Musician Wren, Collared Gnatwren, Long-Billed Gnatwren, Gray-Cheeked Thrush, Lawrence´s Thrush, White-Necked Thrush, Flame-Crested Tanager, Fulvous-Crested Tanager, Fulvous Shrike-Tanager, Masked Tanager, Opal-Rumped Tanager, Opal-Crowned Tanager, Short-Billed Honeycreeper, Purple Honeycreeper, Green Honeycreeper, Yellow-Backed Tanager, Red-Crowned Ant-Tanager, Golden-Bellied Euphonia, White-vented Euphonia, Orange-Bellied Euphonia, Rufous-Bellied Euphonia, Solitary Black Cacique, Casqued Oropendola. and many more are possible for sure we’ll find a surprise.
Night: Apayacu River Lodge. B:L:D.
Day 4: To Otorongo Lodge.
Our last morning we´ll spend birding in the trail system and after midday we leave the lodge, continuing our excursion, we’ll go to another destination, this time we go back toward Iquitos, arriving late in day from the boat we have chance to add widespread species, night birding can be productive, Long-tailed Potoo is one of the main target.
Night: Otorongo Lodge. B:L:D.
Day 5: Otorongo to Iquitos.
We have just a morning birding, so we are birding against the clock, there are many birds but will be concentrate in few but localized species Orange-eyed flycatcher and black-headed Antbird will be our main target, during our birding will meet with understory, mid story and canopy flocks, options are plenty, at the end of the day we’ll see what we can get.
Late in day day we take a boat to go ack to Iquitos, where we’ll spend a night.
Night: Iquitos. B:L:D.
Day 6: White sand forest to Tahuayo Lodge.
We’ll begin our day by heading southeast from Iquitos to the Allpahuayo-Mishana Reserve, famous for its unique bird species but also notorious for rather low overall activity, due to the nutrient-poor environment. On this morning’s brief visit, we’ll especially look for a few of local specialties, including Allpahuayo and Zimmer’s Antbirds, Mishana Tyrannulet, Saffron-crested Tyrant-Manakin, Zimmer’s Tody-Tyrant, Citron bellied Attila, but main focus we’ll be Iquitos Gnatcatcher, some other goodies are Gray-legged Tinamou, Barred Tinamou (couple records), Straight-billed Hermit, Black-banded Crake, Gray-breasted Crake, Black-faced Hawk, Brown-banded Puffbird, White-chested Puffbird, Brown Nunlet, Buckley’s Forest-Falcon, Mouse-colored Antshrike, Pearly Antshrike, Ancient Antwren, Dugand’s Antwren, Slate-colored Antbird, White-plumed Antbird, Lunulated Antbird, Reddish-winged Bare-eye, (last 3 ant followers) Ash-throated Gnateater, Striated Antthrush, Short-billed Leaftosser, White-rumped Sirystes, Plum-throated Cotinga, Purple-throated Cotinga, Pompadour Cotinga, Cinnamon-crested Spadebill, Orange-crowned Manakin, Cinnamon Manakin-Tyrant, Striolated Manakin, Band-tailed Cacique, White-bellied Dacnis. Later in the day we’ll make a boat trip up the Amazon River to Tahuayo Lodge, our base for the next few days of south bank birding.
Night. Tahuayo lodge. B:L:D.
Day 7 & 8: Tahuayo Lodge.
We’ll have two whole days around Tahuayo Lodge. Targets here are many, but include Red-headed and Orange-crowned Manakins, Amazonian Black-Tyrant, and with luck White-bellied Dacnis. One of rare and local birds is Red-winged Wood-rail, here is one of the few locations where it can be seen, Of course there are lots of antbirds and many other species to look for here too, such as Dot-backed Antbird and Saturnine Antshrike. Needle-billed Hermit, Straight-billed Hermit, Black-banded Crake, White-eared Jacamar, Plain-breasted Piculet, Black-tailed Antbird, Slate-colored Antbird, Bar-bellied Woodcreeper, Pale-billed Hornero, Cinnamon Manakin-Tyrant, Orange-crowned Manakin, Striolated Manakin, Purple-throated Cotinga, White-rumped Sirystes, Velvet-fronted Grackle……etc.
On at least one afternoon we’ll do some boat birding and hope to find Varzea Schiffornis, Band-tailed Antbird, Sulphur-bellied Tyrant-Manakin, and others.
Night Tahuayo Lodge. B:L:D.
Day 9: To Muyuna lodge.
In the morning we’ll look around Tahuayo for the near-endemic Black-tailed Antbird as well as Varzea Thrush, White-shouldered Antbird, Black Bushbird, and Yellow Tyrannulet, and some missing species In the afternoon we’ll make a boat trip to Muyuna Lodge, looking for Yellow-hooded Black, oriole, blackbird, black-collared Hawk, Sungrebe and others en route. A night boat trip here could produce Great and Common Potoos as well as Boat-billed Heron.
Night: Muyuna Lodge. B:L:D.
Day 10 & 11: Muyuna lodge.
Muyuna Lodge is located in a privileged place, our 2 full days will not be enough on the first morning we’ll make a search for one of the trip’s most spectacular birds: the endangered Wattled Curassow. And Rufous-necked Puffbird, specialized in varzea forest, Other species we might find include Rufous-capped Nunlet, Festive Parrot, and Horned Screamer. Needle-billed Hermit, Straight-billed Hermit, Azure Gallinule, Black-banded Crake, Gray-breasted Crake, Zigzag Heron, Brown-banded Puffbird, Chestnut-shouldered Antwren, Mouse-colored Antshrike, Rufous-backed Antwren, Black-tailed Antbird, Pale-billed Hornero, Orange-crowned Manakin, Striolated Manakin, Citron-bellied Attila, Purple-throated Cotinga, Velvet-fronted Grackle.
On the second day well be focus on river island specialties here it the best place to look for Pale-billed hornero, Brownish elaenia, Pearly-breasted Conebill, Parker’s Spinetail, River tyrannulet, Riverside Tyrant, red-and-white Spinetail, Yellow-chinned Spinetail, White-bellied Spinetail, Lesser Wagtail-tyrant, olive-spotted Hummingbird, Castelnau’s Antshrike, Ash-breasted Antbird, Black-and-white Antbird, Plain-breasted Piculet, Zimmer’s Woodcreeper, orange-fronted Plushcrown, in the evening we’ll have a boat trip looking for the mystery Zigzag heron.
Night: Muyuna Lodge. B:L:D.
Day 12: Muyuna Lodge back to Iquitos.
We have a final morning, we’ll be concentrate looking for missing species, Scarlet-crowned Barbet, Point-tailed Palmcreeper, Amazonian Antshrike, Varzea Schiffornis, Wire-tailed Manakin, and other can be our targets. After midday we take a boat to go back to Iquitos, our arriving we visit a black water zone in Nanay river, here our main targets are Black-crested Antshrike and Band-tailed Nighthawks.
Night: Iquitos. B:L:D.
Day 13: White Sand Forest.
Today we’ll spend the day at Allpahuayo-Mishana again, this time searching for canopy flocks in the best area for the extremely rare Iquitos Gnatcatcher. In the same flocks where we hope to find this recently-discovered gem, we’ll also look for Ancient Antwren, Yellow-throated Flycatcher, Yellow-throated Woodpecker, Pompadour Cotinga and others. We also have a good chance of encountering Paradise Jacamar and Brown Nunlet and Pavonive Quetzal.
Night: Iquitos B:L:D.
Day 14: White Sand Forest late in the day Flight to Lima.
Seeing all the specialties at Allpahuayo-Mishana is nearly impossible, even with multiple or prolonged visits. Today we’ll be back there again looking for anything we’re still missing, perhaps including Pompadour Cotinga or Brown-banded Puffbird, or if we’ve had enough of white sand we can try some “normal” forest birding where Short-billed Leaftosser, Ash-throated Gnateater, and others are among the possibilities. Later we’ll catch afternoon or evening flights back to Lima.