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Bolivia

Carefully-crafted itinerary covering the plethora of Bolivian endemics and near-endemics, including the much-wanted Blue-throated Macaw, Wedge-tailed Hillstar, Black-hooded Sunbeam, and Masked Antpitta. Other stunners like Titicaca Grebe, Grey-breasted Seedsnipe, Red-tailed Comet, and Hooded Mountain Toucan are sure to highlight, while those participating in the extension can search for the newly-described Inti Tanager, and scarce Palkachupa Cotinga.

Next Dates

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Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

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Single Room Supplement: $

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Group Size Limit:

7

Deposit: $

TBD

Apolo and Palkachupa Cotinga Extension

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Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

Add a Title

Single Room Supplement: $

TBD

Group Size Limit:

7

Deposit: $

TBD

Add a Title

Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

Add a Title

Single Room Supplement: $

TBD

Group Size Limit:

7

Deposit: $

TBD

Apolo and Palkachupa Cotinga Extension

Add a Title

Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

Add a Title

Single Room Supplement: $

TBD

Group Size Limit:

7

Deposit: $

TBD

Accommodation:

Mostly good, occasionally medium standard hotels throughout our stay.

Walking difficulty:

Mostly easy, with only a couple of moderate effort walks, mostly due to the altitude.

Tour cost includes:

All accommodation, main meals, drinking water, internal flights (as stated in itinerary), overland transport, tips to local drivers and guides, travel permits, entrance fees, and guide fees.

Tour cost excludes:

Flights before and after the tour start/end, visa, travel insurance, tips to tour leaders, laundry, drinks, and other items of a personal nature.

Day 1: The tour starts this evening with arrivals into Santa Cruz International Airport (VVI), where we will overnight.


Day 2: We will spend our first morning birding at nearby Lomas de Arena, located on the southeast side of Santa Cruz. This regional park is part of the northern border of the Chaco bioregion and protects some spectacular sand dunes and grassy savannas. Good birds include Red-winged Tinamou (more often heard than seen), White-bellied Nothura, and range-restricted Bolivian Slaty Antshrike, as well as more widespread species such as Chaco Puffbird, Blue-crowned and Yellow-chevroned Parakeets, Plain Tyrannulet, Chotoy Spinetail, White-banded Mockingbird, and sometimes Red-legged Seriema just to name a few. We will then take a midday flight to Riberalta, where we will stay for the next two nights. We may have some time in the late afternoon for some first explorations in the area. Night in Riberalta.


Day 3: Our primary reason for visiting this remote corner of the country is to look for the highly localised Masked Antpitta, an endemic species restricted to typical gallery forests and riverine habitats around Riberalta. Interestingly, the Riberalta area has a wide range of habitats ranging from dry Cerrado habitats to more humid Amazonian forests. Time permitting, we will explore some of these habitats, and there will certainly be a lot of new birds to be seen. There is a nice list of key birds, with regular sightings in the area of species such as Pheasant Cuckoo, Purus Jacamar, Ocellated Crake, Flammulated Pygmy-Tyrant, and White-bellied Seedeater. Night in Riberalta.


Day 4: We will spend the morning birding some dry Cerrado habitats, where typical birds like White-eared Puffbird, Rufous-sided Scrub Tyrant, and White-rumped Tanager among many others are expected to be found. We will then take an afternoon flight to Trinidad, where we will spend the next two nights.


Day 5-6: We will have a full day and most of the next day to explore the bird-rich plains of the Lianos de los Moxos in the province of Beni. We will start our birding in Loreto to look for another very rare species, the critically endangered Blue-throated Macaw, once thought to be extinct in the wild and rediscovered a few years ago in this area. Endemic to the lowland of the Beni region in Bolivia, there could be fewer than 100 individuals remaining in the wild, and here we have a good chance of seeing this incredible bird. We might find other species of parrots, including Blue-and-yellow, Red-and-green, Golden-collared and Chestnut-fronted Macaws, Turquoise-fronted Amazon, Yellow-chevroned, Peach-fronted and Dusky-headed Parakeets. In the nearby gallery forests, we will also look for some other key species, including the endemic and tricky Unicoloured Thrush, restricted to a small range of the floodplain forest of the Río Mamoré, as well as the near-endemic Fawn-breasted Wren, the local form of Plain Softtail (potentially a future split), the local race of Velvet-fronted Grackle, Spix’s Guan, Plumbeous Ibis, the range-restricted Orinoco Goose, Hudson’s Black Tyrant, Long-tailed Reed Finch, Sulphur-bellied Tyrant-Manakin, Buff-bellied Hermit, Pale-crested Woodpecker, Plain Inezia, Screaming Cowbird, and with luck, Razor-billed Curassow. This department of Bolivia is one of South America’s most bird-rich areas, and the wide, watery plains should allow us to amass a great list of more widespread species during our short visit here. On day 6, we will fly back to Santa Cruz, where we will overnight.


Day 7: Today, we will head early to Los Volcanes and spend the full day birding the foothill forests adjacent to the Amboro National Park. Our base will be at the famous Los Volcanes Refugio, surrounded by impressive red cliffs and certainly one of the most spectacularly located birding lodges in the Andes. We will focus on a several key species here, including Slaty Gnateater, the near-endemic Bolivian Recurvebill (sometimes hard to find), Bolivian (or Bolivian White-crowned) Tapaculo, as well as Yungas Manakin, Yungas Dove, Yungas Manakin, Black-banded Woodcreeper, Rufous-breasted Wood Quail, Grey-throated Leaftosser, Short-tailed Anthrush, Military Macaw, Western Fire-eye, Chestnut-backed Antshrike, Scalter’s and Buff-barred Tyrannulets, Ochre-cheeked Spinetail, White-bellied Pygmy-Tyrant, Grey (more often heard than seen), Brown and Black-capped Tinamou, and White-throated Piping Guan. We will keep an eye out for Blue-browed Tanager, a species that is hard to see anywhere but is regularly sighted here. If we are lucky, we will also have a first chance to locate the range-restricted Yungas Pygmy Owl, and at night, we will go out and look for Cloud-forest Screech Owl, Rufescent Screech Owl, and Band-bellied Owl. Night at Los Volcanes.


Day 8: We will spend the full morning birding the area of Los Volcanes looking for key species we might have missed the day before. After midday, we will head towards Samaipata, where we will overnight. We will explore different sections of the region, crossing typical Andean picturesque valleys where we should amass several new birds of limited distribution such as Ochre-cheeked Spinetail, Black-and-chestnut and Black-capped Warbling Finches, Ocellated Piculet, and Moss-backed Sparrow. We will keep an eye out for other good birds like Giant Antshrike and the uncommon Dull-coloured Grassquit. Hummingbirds will also be plentiful in the area - Great-billed and Planato Hermits, White-vented, Sparkling and Lesser Violetears, Slender-tailed Woodstar, Glittering-bellied Emerald, Fork-tailed Woodnymph, White-bellied Hummingbird, Black-throated Mango, Red-tailed Comet, and the range-restricted Slender-billed Woodstar can all be seen. Other more widespread species include Short-tailed Hawk, Green-cheeked and Blue-crowned Parakeets, Buff-browed Foliage-gleaner, Sooty-fronted Spinetail, Variable Antshrike, the Andean form of the Rufous-capped Antshrike (sometimes split as Marcapata Antshrike), "White-bellied" White-crested Tyrannulet, Ochre-faced Tody-Flycatcher, Rufous Casiornis, Rufous-bellied Thrush, Hooded Siskin, Blue-and-yellow Tanager, Saffron-billed Sparrow, Golden-billed Saltator, and more. Night in Samaipata.


Day 9: Early this morning, we will leave Samaipata and make our way to the Red-fronted Macaw Reserve along the Río Misque, our base for the next night. We will make a stop at Quirusillas and bird around Laguna Esmeralda (plus more stops along the road, time permitting), in search of Tucuman Amazon and Red-faced Guan, both restricted to this region and to northwest Argentina. There will also be a chance for the range-restricted Straw-backed Tanager, Slender-tailed Woodstar, Huayco Tinamou, Yungas Guan (usually more often seen further along the road), White-throated Antpitta, the tricky Dot-fronted Woodpecker, Pale-legged Warbler, White-browed Brushfinch, Spot-breasted Thornbird, Stripe-crowned Spinetail, and Bolivian Tyrannulet. We will arrive at our lodge just in time to get to the cliff and look for Red-fronted Macaw, our main bird here. Other species of parrots may also join the fest, including Cliff, Mitred and Grey-hooded Parakeets, while other good species such as White-tipped Plantcutter, Andean Condor (often seen here up close), Grey-crested Finch, Bolivian Blackbird, Chaco Puffbird, Andean Swift, Southern Martin, Ultramarine Grosbeak, and Greater Wagtail Tyrant can also be found. In the evening, we will go out in search of Scissor-tailed Nightjar. Night near Red-fronted Macaw Reserve.


Day 10: Today, we will spend the morning birding around the Red-fronted Macaw Reserve and then drive to Comarapa, where we will stay for the next two nights. We will make an important stop on the way to look for the rare Bolivian Earthcreeper, or if needed, for anything else we might have missed so far. We will make another birding stop at the dry zone near Comapara and look for more key birds such as Olive-crowned Crescentchest, Black-and-chestnut, Rufous-sided, Ringed and Bolivian Warbling Finches, Light-crowned Spinetail, Great Pampa Finch, and Spot-breasted Thornbird. Night in Comarapa.


Day 11: With a predawn departure, we will start climbing up to the Siberia cloud forests. In contrast to the arid Comarapa and Tambo areas, we will quickly see the change in habitat to humid rainforests typically covered with epiphytes! Our main targets here include the endemic Rufous-faced Antpitta, Trilling Tapaculo, near endemic Light-crowned Spinetail (here of the buff-crowned race), Bolivian Brushfinch, Blue-capped Puffleg, the near-endemic Buff-banded Tyrannulet, and local races of Common Bush Tanager, Blue-winged Mountain Tanager, and Black-throated Thistletail. Other good birds may include Maroon-belted Chat-Tyrant, Rufous-bellied Bush Tyrant, Plumbeous Tyrant, Andean Slaty Thrush, White-eared Solitaire, Violet-throated Starfrontlet, Brown-capped and Spectacled Whitestarts, Barred Becard, and more. Later, during our descent to Comarapa, we will also search for the near-endemic Grey-bellied Flowerpi