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Brazil: North-East

This special tour visits the endemic Caatinga biome, together with the best remnant sites of rich Atlantic Forest, plus bit of Cerrado and Campo Rupestre from the Tepui-like Chapada Diamantina. Offering a chance for 100+ endemics (more than any other region in Brazil) from what is certainly one of the most threatened avifaunas in the world, this incredible tour targets many superb species such as Lear’s Macaw, Giant Snipe, Araripe Manakin, Hooded Visorbearer, Great Xenops, Slender Antbird, Fringe-backed Fire-eye, Banded Cotinga, and more.

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Price: $

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Single Room Supplement: $

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6

Deposit: $

TBD

Add a Title

Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

Add a Title

Single Room Supplement: $

TBD

Group Size Limit:

Deposit: $

TBD

Add a Title

Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

Add a Title

Single Room Supplement: $

TBD

Group Size Limit:

6

Deposit: $

TBD

Add a Title

Price: $

TBD

Leaders:

Add a Title

Single Room Supplement: $

TBD

Group Size Limit:

Deposit: $

TBD

Accommodation:

Comfortable hotels throughout.

Walking difficulty:

Mostly easy roadside birding with short forays onto forest trails.

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: Arrivals into Fortaleza International Airport (FOR) in the northern state of Ceará. We will transfer to Sobral for an evening hotel check-in and overnight.


Day 2: Early morning in Sobral, we will be visiting lowland Caatinga (Carnaubal forest habitat), mainly in search of the rare endemic Moustached Woodcreeper. Other likely birds include Caatinga Parakeet, Caatinga Puffbird, Caatinga Cacholote, Pale Baywing, Ochraceous Piculet, Ochre-backed Woodpecker, Planalto Woodcreeper, Stripe-necked Tody-Tyrant, Campo Troupial, White-naped Jay, and Red-cowled Cardinal. The rest of the day will be spent exploring the interesting Serra da Meruoca, with deciduous forest on foothills and tropical forest at higher elevations. This is the last remaining habitat for a major endemic target: the smart Hooded Gnateater. These forests are birdy, usually offering several other Brazilian endemics like Ceara Woodcreeper, Planalto Slaty Antshrike, Grey-headed Spinetail, and Ash-throated Casiornis. Additional species might include Planalto Hermit, Ochre-cheeked Spinetail, Black-bellied Antwren, and Black-capped Antwren. The scarce Buff-fronted Owl occurs in Meruoca, and we will try for it at a few known sites in the evening, although it has become much less reliable here in recent years. Night in Sobral.


Day 3: Early morning at an incredible site for Yellow-breasted Crake, Grey-breasted Crake, and Rufous-sided Crake. Spotted Rail and Least Bittern should be seen too, before our drive to the Atlantic Forest of Guaramiranga, on the hills of Serra do Baturité. The rest of our day will include good sites in which to look for the endemic Grey-breasted Parakeet, Ceara Leaftosser, Ceara Gnateater, and Buff-breasted Tody-Tyrant. Several other nice species are available in this area, like Gould’s Toucanet, Yellow-chevroned Parakeet, Red-necked Tanager, and cearensis Variable Antshrike. There is a small chance to see the very rare Yellow-faced Siskin. Night in Guaramiranga.


Day 4: Following some morning birding in the area, we’ll drive to Juatama (more precisely, to the nice Hotel Pedra dos Ventos), which usually welcomes birders with amazing views of endemic Pygmy Nightjars roosting right by their porch! White-naped Jay is common here, while other endemic targets could include Long-billed Wren, White-throated Seedeater, and the erratic Scarlet-throated Tanager. By the end of the day, we will hope to have seen White-browed Guans coming to the feeder, and maybe come across White-bellied Nothura or Small-billed Tinamou. Night in Juatama.


Day 5: Transferring early to Crato, we will arrive at Arajara Park with plenty of time to enjoy time the fascinating and Critically Endangered endemic Araripe Manakin, one of the most wanted birds of the tour. We may also see “Tawny” Ochraceous Piculet here before moving to the edge of Araripe National Forest in search of Pale-bellied Tyrant-Manakin, plus our first chances for the endemic White-browed Antpitta, Silvery-cheeked Antshrike, Caatinga Antwren, Stripe-backed Antbird, and others. At dusk, we will continue on to Potengi for a two-night stay.


Day 6: Full day around Potengi and Sítio Pau Preto, looking for any missing Caatinga endemics like Broad-tipped Hermit, Great Xenops, Red-shouldered Spinetail, Scarlet-throated Tanager, and Copper Seedeater. Other species could include Masked Duck, Pinnated Bittern, Ruby-topaz Hummingbird, the isolated Bahia forms of both Greater and Lesser Wagtail Tyrants, White-naped Xenopsaris, and Grey-eyed Greenlet. Dusk at Pau Preto usually comes with several Least Nighthawks flying around at close range! Night in Potengi.


Day 7: We will depart early towards Canudos, stopping near Bendegó at a Blue-winged Macaw nesting site where we should also find Suiriri Flycatcher and Southern Scrub Flycatcher. After check-in at our guest house, we will bird along the entrance road of Canudos Biological Station to look for the endemic Stripe-breasted Starthroat and other Caatinga species mentioned in previous days (this area is particularly good for Ruby-topaz Hummingbird and Red-shouldered Spinetail), plus Blue-crowned Parakeet, Caatinga Parakeet, Little Nightjar, and the stunning Scissor-tailed Nightjar. Night at Canudos.


Day 8: Early morning at Canudos Biological Station for the spectacular sunrise show: dozens of Lear’s Macaw preparing for the coming day at their nesting site. Seeing this spectacular Critically Endangered species at close range as the dawn light hits the red cliffs is for sure one of the best birding experiences of the tour, and indeed the world! The middle of the day will see us transferring southeast to the coastal Atlantic Forest of Bahia, with a brief stop for the endemic Pectoral Antwren near Jeremoabo. We should arrive at our lodge for a late afternoon attempt at Fringe-backed Fire-eye, another Endangered and localised endemic of this region. Night in Bahia.


Day 9: Early morning birding to find Rusty-margined Guan, “Ariel” Channel-billed Toucan, Golden-capped Parakeet, Kinglet Manakin, Sooretama Slaty Anthsrike, Bahia Antwren, “Southern” White-fringed Antwren, “White-bellied” Turquoise Tanager, “Silver-breasted” Opal-rumped Tanager, and perhaps the rare Golden-tailed Parrotlet or Pernambuco Foliage-gleaner if we are lucky. More widespread birds include Black-necked Araçari, and Red-headed and Blue-backed Manakins (the latter sometimes split here as Turquoise Manakin). This afternoon, we will drive to the lovely Lençois, in Chapada Diamantina, for a two-night stay.


Day 10: Full day of birding in the stunning landscape of Chapada Diamantina - another exciting day! The main star here certainly is the fantastic endemic Hooded Visorbearer, while the fascinating campo rupestre habitat holds other endemics like Sincora Antwren, Spotted Piculet, Grey-backed Tachuri, Serra Finch, and Gilt-edged Tanager. Other species include Rufous-winged Antshrike, Collared Crescentchest, Small-headed Elaenia, White-bellied Seedeater, and Cinnamon Tanager. The afternoon in some nearby forest will hopefully yield the stunning Helmeted Manakin, plus aurantius Surucua Trogon, White-shouldered Fire-eye, Grey-headed Elaenia, and Sibilant Sirystes. Our guesthouse in Lençois will offer a few hummers at the feeders, with a chance for the rare, disjunct Chapada population of Brown Violetear. Around dusk, we will search the area for the endemic East Brazilian Chachalaca, plus Rufous Nightjar. Night in Lençois.


Day 11: Transfer to the southern Chapada Diamantina, with lots of birding stops along the way! Early on, some more Caatinga habitat should provide the uncommon endemic Sao Francisco Sparrow and more chances for Broad-tipped Hermit and other Caatinga endemics, if necessary. Later, we will look for the mind-blowing Horned Sungem, along with many dry-zone Brazilian specialties like White-vented Violetear, Red-legged Seriema, White-eared Puffbird, Rusty-backed Antwren, Rufous-sided Scrub Tyrant, Shrike-like and White-rumped Tanagers, and Black-throated Saltator. Arriving in the breathtaking landscape of Mucugê in the afternoon, we will try for the endemic Diamantina Tapaculo and Narrow-billed Antwren, plus have more chances for Great Xenops, Ceara Gnateater, Caatinga Antwren, and Ash-throated Casiornis. Night in Mucugê.


Day 12: Early morning around Mucugê to try again for Yellow-faced Siskin and visit a site for Sharp-tailed Grass Tyrant. We then drive to Boa Nova, hopefully arriving in time for a late afternoon session in mata de cipó (transitional forest) to look for the endemic Slender Antbird. There will be an evening attempt for Tawny-browed Owl. Night in Boa Nova.


Day 13: Full day of birding in Boa Nova. We will search the rich Atlantic Forest slope at dawn for uncommon endemics like Rio de Janeiro Antbird, Bahia Spinetail, Striated Softtail, Bahia Tyrannulet, and an amazing new array of Atlantic Forest specialties that we will be seeing for the first time here. These might include Crescent-chested Puffbird, Spot-billed Toucanet, East Brazilian Pygmy Owl, Maroon-bellied Parakeet, White-collared and White-eyed Foliage-gleaners, Orange-eyed Thornbird, Black-billed Scythebill, Tufted Antshrike, Scaled, Ferruginous, and White-bibbed Antbirds, Spot-breasted Antvireo, Rufous Gnateater, Grey-hooded Attila, Fork-tailed Tody-Tyrant, Cinnamon-vented Piha, Pin-tailed and Blue Manakins, Red-ruffed Fruitcrow, Rufous-brown Solitaire, Yellow-green Grosbeak, and many others. An afternoon at Lajedo in some dry outcrop habitat often provides excellent encounters with Ruby-topaz Hummingbird, Sapphire-spangled Emerald, Swallow-tailed Hummingbird, and Stripe-breasted Starthroat. At dusk, we will hopefully be able to find the impressive Giant Snipe! Night in Boa Nova.


Day 14: A day trip to the neighbouring towns of Poções and Itororó. Early morning in Poções will see us searching for Wied’s Tyrant Manakin, Reiser’s Tyrannulet, Buff-throated Purpletuft, Hangnest Tody-Tyrant, Greenish Schiffornis, and Southern Antpipit at Serra do Arrepio. After a nice meal and coconut juices at lunch, we will target the rare Scalloped Antbird in a forest fragment before a last stop at Serra do Amolar should provide the endemic Three-toed Jacamar. Night in Boa Nova.


Day 15: First up this morning, we will visit Reserva Sapucaia, where we will try for the rare Bahia Tapaculo. On the way, we might make our first stop to look for the tricky endemic Pink-legged Graveteiro. Reserva Sapucaia has good birding, and we should expect to find here other endemics like Band-tailed Antwren, Black-cheeked Gnateater, and Kinglet Manakin, plus White-crowned Manakin, White-fronted Nunbird, Cinereous Mourner, Smoky-fronted Tody-Flycatcher, Brazilian Tanager, and others. On the way to Itacaré, there will be a quick roadside stop for Cinereous-breasted Spinetail, before lunch and a quick visit to some fruit feeders where we hope for close views of “White-bellied” Turquoise Tanager, “Silver-breasted” Opal-rumped Tanager, Red-legged Honeycreeper, and East Brazilian Chachalaca. This is also a very good area for the rare Golden-tailed Parrotlet. The afternoon will be spent visiting mussununga habitat near Pontal, where we can look for Black-faced Tanager, Bare-throated Bellbird, Russet-crowned Crake, and have more chances for several previously mentioned species. There is a good site for the endemic Black-capped Screech Owl here too, which we will try after dinner. Night at Itacaré.


Day 16: An early morning visit to Conduru State Park to look for endemics like “Margaretta’s” Great-billed Hermit, Bahia Antwren, Black-headed Berryeater, and White-winged Cotinga. Later, we can make a stop near Ilhéus for more chances of Pink-legged Graveteiro and also the magnificent Golden-headed Lion Tamarin. There will be