SE BRAZIL ALBUM
We have just completed another successful trip to SE Brazil, visiting Cipo, Caraca, Canastra and the Atlantic Forest at Serra dos Tucanos Lodge. As well as seeing the critically endangered Brazilian Merganser (three trips out of three with customers here) we saw masses of other birds such as Black-and-gold Cotinga, Brassy-breasted Tanager and Giant Antshrike. The Maned Wolves were pretty good too. Here we showcase a few photographs sent by customer Paul Kingsnorth, as well as some of leader Paul Willoughby's efforts.
Our first base was Cipo, where we saw the endemic Cipo Canastero, as well as this Grey-backed Tachuri.
This Hyacinth Visorbearer was bird of the day. See how its throat colour changed with angle.
The Tawny-headed Swallow is a scarce bird at Cipo and Canastra, whilst the Southern Beardless Tyrannulet is common and widespread.
Fork-tailed Flycatchers are common and conspicuous through Brazil, and were one of the first spectacular birds we saw as we left the airport.
This pair of Burrowing Owls where in the lower section of Cipo National Park.
Our afternoon in the lower section of the park ended with nice sightings of Wedge-tailed Grass Finch ....
.... and Streamer-tailed Tyrant
On our second morning at Cipo we birdwatched at Serra Morena and saw this White-eared Puffbird, a typical cerrado species.
We then moved on to Caraca, staying at the famous monastery there. The Dusky-legged Guans are protected in the national park here, and are therefore rather confiding.
The endemic Velvety Black-tyrant is common at Caraca.
The Pale-throated Serra finch is both scarce and local, and has a very small world range.
We found this Imperial Moth during the daytime at Caraca. It had probably only recently immerged.
Our next destination was Canastra, where we saw many great birds, despite some unseasonal weather. This Chestnut-headed Blackbird was seen whilst the sun was still shining!
A pair of Plumbeous Kites fed on emerging winged termites following a rain shower.
In the gallery forest at the bottom of Casca d'Anta waterfall, a pair of Rufous Casiornis showed well.
These Great Dusky Swifts were nesting and roosting under the waterfall. A true Attenborough 'Life of Birds' moment.
Whilst waiting for Brazilian Merganser, there were lots of other birds to watch. This Crested Black-tyrant posed beautifully.
Every trip has its record shots, and here is this one. A family of ultra rare Brazilian Mergansers.
Common Thornbird is easy to find. Just look for the large stick nests.
We entered the upper section of the national park, but found the weather to be a challenge. Note that all the birds are photographed in the rain.
This Cock-tailed Tyrant had no way of escaping the weather, but was still a beautiful bird to see.
A Campo Flicker had the same problem, and chose to sit it out on top of a termite mound.
When we revisited the lower section it was raining too. This Great Antshrike looks rather wet!
At last, it has stopped raining and the birds show their true colour again. Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Yellow-browed Tyrant and Band-tailed Hornero
Our final destination was the Atlantic Forest, just inland of Rio. This is Orgoas National Park, with Rio Bay in the distant background.
Our base was the lovely Serra dos Tucanos Lodge, owned by British birder Andy Foster. In the gardens there are flowering trees and feeders, and birds abound.
There are some great birds attracted to the bird tables. Even this Slaty-breasted Wood-rail.
and Chestnut-bellied Euphonia
On an excursion we visited the Theodoro trail. We walked this 'old road' which has been reclaimed by the forest. The last vehicle travelled this road some 25 years ago.
A Horned Frog was found on the path
The scenery was wonderful.
Two mating Giant Land Snails. Any product placement is purely accidental!
and a frog...
a moth that was imitating a spider. Just look at those fury front legs!
The very localised Three-toed Jacamar is very reliable.
Sheltering from an afternoon shower.
an eighty eight butterfly
A male Suracua Trogon
the delicate fruiting body of a phallus fungus. The smell was not so delicate!
Violet-capped Woodnymph male
The stunning Red-necked Tanager.
Endemic Black Jacobin
This Black-cheeked Gnateater was seen on the lodge trail
The beautiful Black-and-Gold Cotinga gave great views, but photographing it was almost impossible. It is an iconic bird of the Atlantic Forest, and has a haunting song.
This Red-legged Seriema surprised us at lunch time.
This female Plovercrest was nice, but the males are amazing. One day we'll get a photograph...
Here are our photographs from previous years.
Brazilian Merganser is one of the rarest ducks in the world. This pair were seen displaying, before they took their family fishing.
Phil and Sue Jones visited Brazil with us in October 2009. The trip was a great success, with Maned Wolf and Giant Anteater amongst the mammalian highlights, plus birds such as Black-and-Gold Cotinga, Bare-throated Bellbird, Hooded Berryeater, Grey-winged Cotinga, Red-ruffed Fruitcrow and Brazilian Merganser. Here is a selection of the photographs they kindly sent us...
Yellow-billed Blue Finch, Cipo
A pair of White Woodpeckers
Swallow-tailed Cotinga at Caraca
click here for details of our next tour to this destination