Day 11. 5 Dec 2022. Birding around Nuevo Chimbote
This is the last day of the scouting trip to Cordillera Blanca and the Huascarán National Park. First, we will be birding around Nuevo Chimbote, on the Pacific coast. Then we will drive north to the city of Trujillo to take our flights back home.
We decided not to start birding too early today, as we took our time enjoying breakfast at the hotel. Afterall, we just had to explore the beach near the city.
Playa El Paraiso
After packing, we left the hotel at around 08:00 AM. On our way to Playa El Paraiso we passed by the Las Gaviotas wetland, just outside Nuevo Chimbote. We were surprised by the huge amount of birds we found there. Chilean Flamingos, Cinnamon Teals and Common Moorhens were the most abundant. There, we also found Black-necked Stilt, Little Blue Heron, Barn Swallow, and Peruvian Meadowlark.
Once we arrived to the beach, the birding become intense. We spent about three hours in the area. First, we explored the rocky area near the sandy beach. Here, we found several American Oystercatchers and Whimbrels. In the area we also found hundreds of Peruvian Boobies and Neotropic Cormorants. Then, we got a little further into the rocky area, looking for the endemic Surf Cinclodes. We found it quite soon, but Steve missed it, so we got deeper into the rocky beach. As we walked we saw the Cinclodes again, along with a lot of other interesting birds. The complete list for this area is here https://ebird.org/checklist/S123497519.
But the most interesting bird we found was a Peruvian Martin. This is a scarce, poorly known bird of the Pacific coast. It is a sand-colored bird, with dark wings. We couldn’t identified it at first, but when we realized it was a Martin, well… Peruvian it is !!!
First, we saw the bird was perched on a rock, making some flyes around the area, probably catching insects. Then it got into a hole between the sand and the rocks. It stayed in the hole for several minutes before fly catching again. We presume the bird was nesting. You can see the habitat in this video: https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=pfbid02crneeQDMya2jPk9waYbn1souydQB1U3Twa6jvBzRurDWbFZa1tm7zPoXgYP71WWdl&id=1045048079&mibextid=Nif5oz
The road to Trujillo
We left Nuevo Chimbote at around noon, planning to get to Trujillo in 2 hours and have lunch there. Before getting to Trujillo we stopped near the town of Cao to look for a place called Puquio Santa Rosa. We found a reference to this place on eBird, but despite our efforts we couldn’t find it. Google Maps took us to the right place, but we only found agricultural fields. It was suposed to be a patch of Mesquite forest, but it seems it is gone forever now. Nevertheless, we added a couple of birds to the trip list: Groove-billed Ani and Chestnut-throated Seedeater.
We arrived to Trujillo at around 03:00 PM. Along the road we mostly had agricultural fields and desert, with any new birds to add to the list. We went straight to the town of Huanchaco, for a Ceviche and drinks. Also, the airport is very close to Huanchaco, which is very convenient.
It’s been eleven days of intense birding, and hotels and restaurants inspections. The Cordillera Blanca has two things that any other place in the world can offer: unique birds and magnificent landscapes all together. The hotel’s services are more than excellent, without being luxurious. restaurants are also very good and, when in the field, we can take a packed lunch or we can even cook.
After selecting the best places to bird and to stay, we ended up with an 11-day itinerary, starting in Lima and ending in Trujillo. We will soon publish the itinerary, with dates and pricing. The tour will be run in partnership with Paradise Birding. If you are interested in taking this tour, please contact Steve Shunk for more information.
If you want to read this trip report from the begining, please visit https://greentours.com.pe/birding-huascaran-national-park-scouting-trip-report-day-1/
Also, you can download the full pdf trip report here: Birding Huascaran National Park scouting trip – Trip report