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BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY TOUR TO NORTHERN PERU

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An intense 12-days Bird photography tour to North Peru.

North Peru has the perfect conditions for a bird photography tour:

  1. The eastern slopes of the Andes are among the most biodiverse places in the neo-tropics; and,
  2. In recent years, several private reserves had been established in north Peru, specially in the Alto Mayo and Huallaga valleys, providing feeders and hides for bird photography.

Our tour begins visiting the Cordillera Escalera reserve, near the city of Tarapoto. Here, we expect to photograph birds like like Ivory- billed Aracari, Paradise Tanager, and lots of other colorfoul tanagers.

After that, the Bird photography tour moves to the Alto Mayo valley, where we will spend some time in the city of Moyobamba. First, we will visit the Waqanki hummingbird feeders, that offer opportunities to photograph special birds like Rufous-crested Coquette, Violet-headed Hummingbird, and another 17 species of hummingbirds. Also, the Tahuishco tower is good for bird photograpy, with colorfoul birds like Blue-headed Parrot, Lettered Aracari, Blue-necked Tanager, and more.

After spending some time in Moyobamba, the tour goes to the famous Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge, where a myriad of hummingbirds attends the feeders, offering great opportunities for bird photography. The gardens and trails are also good to look for flycatchers, tanagers, woodpeckers, and more. Here, we will also try to photograph some owls like Long-whiskered Owlet, Cinnamon Screech-Owl, and White-throated Screech-Owl. In the same area, we also visit the Fundo Alto Nieva Private Reserve, for chances to get pictures of the famous Royal Sunangel hummingbird. We also do some easy hikings trying to photograph birds like Johnson’s Tody-Flycatcher, or Yellow-Scarfed Tanager.

Finally, the jewel in the crown of the bird photography tour: the visit to the Huembo reserve to photograph the fantastic Marvelous Spatuletail hummingbird.

Birding and conservation: Cheqa Peru SRL, owner of Green Tours, will donate 50 US$ of its benefits per participant to “Asociación Green Tours” to support local conservation initiatives.

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DAY 12
Bird photography tour to Northern Peru
12 Days Tour Program
DAY 1: Lima

Arrival in Lima and transfer to the hotel at the airport.
Overnight at Wyndham Airport Hotel****.

Meals: None.

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DAY 2: Lima - Tarapoto

Wel take a morning flight to the city of Tarapoto.
After having lunch at the hotel, we visit the Cordillera Escalera Reserve, the goal is to photograph colourful birds like Dotted Tanager, Paradise Tanager, Ivory-billed Aracari, Bay-headed Tanager, and Golden Tanager.
Overnight at hotel La Patarashca***.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 3: Tarapoto

Today we go birding at the Koepcke’s Hermit Conservation Center (ACONABIKH). This is a private nature reserve established for the protection the endemic Koepcke’s Hermit. A walk on the trails near the hummingbird feeders can produce Golden-headed Manakin, White-plumed Antbird, and probably we can get lucky enough to see a Long-tailed Potoo.
After having visited ACONABIKH, we go back on the road to look for unique birds like Scarlet-crowned Barbet, Lemon-throated Barbet, and Plumbeous Euphonia.
Overnight at hotel La Patarashca***.

Meals: Breakfast, picnic lunch, dinner.

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DAY 4: Tarapoto - Moyobamba

Today we move northwards to the city of Moyobamba.
We will stay at the famous Waqanki lodge, where their hummingbird feeders are usually visited by White-chinned Sapphire, Black-throated Hermit, Rufous-crested Coquette, and some other twenty species of hummingbirds. A short walk in the forest nearby the feeders can be good for flocks of tanagers and different species of flycatchers.
After lunch we go to anoher nearby reserve to look for a lek of Band-tailed Manakin.
Overnight at Waqanki Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 5: Moyobamba

After an early breakfast we go to Punta de Tahuishco, some ten minutes' drive from the lodge. This viewpoint above the Mayo river is a great place to photograph Lettered Aracari, Pale-breasted Thrush, Yellow-browed Tody-flycatcher, Blue-headed Parrot, Blue-necked Tanager, and others.
After a couple of hours in Tahuishco we move to the Morro de Calzada reserve. This reserve is a good place to look for Swallow Tanager, Chestnut-eared Aracari, Lafresnaye’s Piculet, or Fiery-capped Manakin.
In the afternoon we will explore the agricultural lands of the Mayo valley looking for birds like Point-tailed Palmcreeper, Pale-eyed Blackbird, Chestnut-bellied Seedfinch, Rufous-fronted Thornbird, Paint-billed Crake, and more.
Overnight at Waqanki lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

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DAY 6: Moyobamba - Arena Blanca - Abra Patricia

We leave the lodge before dawn to get into the mountains of Abra Patricia.
First stop today is at the “Arena Blanca Reserve”, where they have excellent hummingbird, tinamou, and tanager feeders. The hummingbord feeders are famous for Blue-fronted Lancebill, Rufous-crested Coquette, and Wire-crested Thorntail; another 15 species of hummingbirds usually come to the feeders. The Tinamou feeders are generally visited by Little Tinamou and Cinereous Tinamou. Nevertheless, the most interesting visitor to this feeder is the Rufous-breasted Woodquail. Other interesting birds in the area are Cinereous-breasted Spinetail, Northern Chestnut-tailed Antbird, Huallaga Tanager, and different flocks of tanagers.
Not far from Arena Blanca is La Llanteria hummingbird feeding station. A this place we have chances to photograph Ecuadorian Piedtail, Booted Racket-tail, or Green Hermit. Andean Cock-of-the Rock have been seen in the nearby area.
We will get to the Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge in the late afternoon.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.

Meals: Picnic-breakfast, picnic-lunch, dinner.

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DAY 7: Abra Patricia

We will spend the full morning seating comfortably and photographing the myriad of hummingbirds showing in the feeders: White-bellied Woodstar, Long-tailed Sylph, Emerald-bellied Puffleg, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Collared Inca, and more.
In the afternoon we will walk a bit, searching for Yellow-Scarfed Tanager, Johnson’s Tody-Flycatcher, Grass-green Tanager, Rufous Spinetail, Black-throated Tody-tyrant, and more.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 8: Abra Patricia

After breakfast we will make a walk on the “Grallaria trail”. The trail begins at the lodge's gardens, and goes downwards for some 1200 meters. While walking we will go through humid mountain forest with great chances to see Chestnut-crested Cotinga, Golden-headed Quetzal, Bicolored Antvireo, Sharpe’s Wren, and maybe the endemic Chestnut Antpitta.
After lunch we go back on the road for more chances to photograph the Andean Cock-of-the-Rock.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 9: Abra Patricia: Fundo Alto Nieva

Today we visit another private reserve: Fundo Alto Nieva. They have hummingbird feeders with Royal Sunangel, Amethyst-throated Sunangel, Buff-thighed Puffleg, Booted Racket-tail, and others. One of the trails near the visitors center is good to look for Yellow-throated Tanager, Rufous-vented Tapaculo, Cinnamon-breasted Tody-tyrant, and Bar-winged Wood-wren.
We will spend the first hours of the afternoon down the road looking for mixed species flocks with Metallic-green Tanager, Beryl-spangled Tanager, Flame-faced Tanager, Blue-browed Tanager, and more. White-capped Tanagers are also a possibility, but away from the mixed species flocks.
By mid-afternoon we go back to Fundo Alto Nieva, this time we will visit the Ochre-fronted Antpitta feeder. After that, when it gets dark, we will look for the mythical Long-whiskered Owlet.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 10: Abra Patricia

This morning we will make a leisurable hike on the “Tino trail”. The trail is almost flat, and we will be looking for Variable Antshrike, White-backed Fire-eye, Yungas Pygmy-Owl, Masked Trogon. We could find flocks of tanagers with usually Saffron-crowned Tanager, Golden-naped Tanager, Flame-faced Tanager and others. If we get lucky we could find some mammals, there are reports of Andean Night-Monkey and Yellow-tailed Wooly-Monkey having been seen on this trail.
Afternoon at leisure.
Overnight at Abra Patricia Owlet Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner.

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DAY 11: Abra Patricia - Huembo

Today we leave Abra Patricia and move to our last birding site of the tour: the Huembo reserve. Huembo is famous for its Marvelous Spatuletail feeders. Here we have great chances to get good photographs of this hummingbird.
Besides the Spatuletail, other hummingbirds that can be photographed at the feeders are White-bellied Hummingbird, Andean Emerald, Green and Sparkling Violetears. The gardens around the lodge are good for Purple-throated Woodstar, White-bellied Woodstar, and little Woodstar.
We spend the afternoon at the Rio Chido road (about 10 minutes from the lodge). Here we will be looking for Sickled-winged Guan, Black-crested Warbler, Pale-eyed Thrush, Lacrimose-mountain Tanager, and many more.
Overnight at Huembo Lodge.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch., dinner.

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DAY 12: Huembo - Jaén

The first hours of the morning will be spend at the hummingbird feeders for more opportunities to get the perfect picture of the Marvelous Spatuletail.
By mid-morning you will be transferred to the city of Jaén for your flight to Lima. We will have a farewell lunch in Jaén.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch.

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PRICES INCLUDE:
  • Lodging as described above (some lodges, hotels, might changed depending on room's availabilty).
  • Ground transportation and driver throughout the tour.
  • English speaking guide, with local guides at some private reserves.
  • Meals as described above.
  • Entrance fees to all nature reserves and use of hides and bird feeding stations.
  • Applicable taxes, fees, and licenses.
PRICES DOES NOT INCLUDE:
  • International or domestic flights, reconfirmation of flights, visa fees, airport taxes, excess luggage charges, additional nights during the trip due reasons beyond our control, bottled water, alcoholic beverages, snacks, laundry, phone calls or messages, any kind insurance, and items of personal nature.
If you want us to include the internal flights within Peru just let us know.
All itineraries are given as a guide only. Actual holiday content may vary according to the judgement of your guide, and elements beyond our control (eg weather).
Some hotels and lodges might change depending on their room’s availability.

See our Bookings Terms and Conditions
PRICES
Per pax based
on double occupancy:
$ 3,801oo
Single Suppl.:
$ 390.oo
ABOUT THE TRIP
Duration: 12 Days
Fixed Departure:
August 16th, 2022
--
Bookings close 90 days prior to departure
Group Size: 4 to 8 pax

Private departures under request, ask for a quotation. We have a special discount if you travel between January and June 2021

Do you have any question?
TRAVEL TIPS & RECOMMENDATIONS
Weather: In the Abra Patricia area conditions are humid and warm during the day, and slightly cold at night. The Tarapoto and Moyobamba areas are warm and humid.
Time Zone: Peru is 5 hours behind GMT. Also, it is in the same time zone as US Eastern Standard Time Zone and does not observe daylight-savings time.
Immunizations: Having a Yellow Fever vaccine at least 10 days before your trip is recommended but not mandatory
Electricity: 220 volts in all cities. All lodges do have electricity.
Physical effort: People should be in good physical condition to do short hikes on moderate rough, steep terrain in the mountains at elevations up to 2,200 meters (about 7,200 feet)