Birding Bolivia – Bolivia Highlands Extension

Cloud Forests, the High Andes, Lake Titicaca and Flightless Grebe.

birdPhotographer: Fabrice Schmitt
Day 1:We'll say goodbye to folks not taking this section of the trip and we'll drive to the high windswept town of Oruro. We'll take all day birding the route. Our first stop will be for Bolivian Blackbird in the arid canyons west of Cochabamba should we have missed it up until now. Brown-backed Mockingbird is here too. The rest of the day's journey is through high Puna grasslands and we'll bird particular areas for high altitude species such as Puna Hawk, Andean Flicker, Bright-rumped Yellow-Finch Cordilleran Canastero, Puna Canastero, Slender-billed and Common Miners, Mountain Parakeet and Plain-mantled Tit-spinetail. We may be lucky and see an Ornate Tinamou and Golden-spotted Ground-Dove. In the afternoon we'll bird in the vicinity of Lake Uru-Uru. Much depends on the water level of the lake but we may see large numbers of three species of Flamingo - Puna, Andean and Chilean. Other specialties include Andean Avocet, Puna Plover, Puna Ibis, White-tufted Grebe, and a variety of high Andean Waterfowl. Reed beds should hold Many-colored Rush-tyrant and Wren-like Rushbird. Night in Oruro. B:L:D
Day 2:Very early start and a long drive to-day on the road to Iquisivi. Our breakfast stop will be in a bushy canyon where we'll look for the endemic Black-hooded Sunbeam. Puna Tapaculo and D'Orbigny's Chat-Tyrant is here too as well as the endemic Iquico Canstero which is common. Moving on we'll drive beyond Inquisivi and look for the endemic and recently described Bolivian Spinetail. Continuing on, we have a long drive to the town of Chullumani and the comfortable Hotel San Bartolome. B:L:D
Day 3:Dawn will see us in a very pretty patch of Cloud Forest close to the Apa Apa private reserve. Our target bird will be the little known Scimitar-winged Piha, which we have seen with great success at this locality. Birding is good with Chestnut-crested Cotinga, Crested Quetzal, Hazel-fronted Pygmy-tyrant, White-eared Solitaire and Three-striped Warbler and a host of other cloud forest birds. We'll spend the morning here with a picnic lunch. In the afternoon we'll head for Coroico and the Rio Selva Resort Hotel. B:L:D
Day 4:We'll bird the road above Chairo to-day in the Cotapata National Park. This mid-elevation forest holds birds such as Cock of the Rock, Upland Antshrike, Bolivian Tyrannulet, Swallow-Tanager, Yungas Manakin, Yungas-Tody-tyrant (near endemic), Blue-banded Toucanet, Black-streaked Puffbird, Andean Solitaire and Streamcreeper. We plan on returning early this afternoon to enjoy the resort and some birding in the grounds. Another night at the comfortable Rio Selva Resort. B:L:D
Day 5:Early start for Chuspipata. This track is spectacular and good for birds. We'll concentrate on the upper temperate forest in the morning. exploring trails and side roads we expect to see some of the following species : Golden-collared Tanager, Citrine Warbler, Three-striped Hemispingus, Ochraceous-breasted Flycatcher, Black-throated Thistletail (endemic), Yungas Manakin, Black-hooded Sunbeam, Moustached Flowerpiercer, Three-striped and Supercilliaried Hemispingus Plush-cap, Orange-browed Hemispingus, Hooded and Scarlet-bellied Mountain Tanagers Rufous-faced Antpitta, Sword-billed Hummingbird and a wide variety of Mountain-tanagers. In the afternoon we'll bird the higher elevations of the Coroico road. We'll bird the upper temperate forest and La Cumbre area on the way back to La Paz and should see some high altitude species such as Short-tailed Finch, Andean Tapaculo and Scribble-tailed Canastero as well as a variety for sierra finches. Night at our Hotel in La Paz. B:L:D
Day 6:Early start for the Sorata area. We'll take a picnic breakfast and with the towering snow peak of Illampu at our backs, scan a small Andean lake for Giant Coot, Andean Coot, a variety of waterfowl and Puna Ibis. As we approach the dry Sorata valley we will begin to see the large stick nests of the Berlepsche's Canastero an endemic restricted to this valley only, one of our target birds to-day. We'll also search the gardens of a small village for the spectacular Black-hooded Sunbeam (endemic). Other possibilities include Peruvian Sierra -finch, Green-tailed Trainbearer, Puna Hawk, Black-throated Flowerpiercer. Returning to the shores of Lake Titicaca for lunch we'll make the near endemic flightless Short-winged Grebe our priority and look for Plumbeous Rail, Wren-like Rushbird and Many-colored Rush-tyrant in the reed beds. We plan to arrive in La Paz early this afternoon for shopping or relaxing. Night hotel in La Paz. B:L:D
Day 7:To El Alto airport and connect with international flights B

Does not include air Santa Cruz/La Paz - Cochabamba but we will purchase these on request – the price depends on when we get your full name, deposit and passport numbers

Customer Testimonials

Riley Atkins - USA

We also want to acknowledge the guides, Huw, Silverio, and Percy. Each reflects the high professional standards we expected from Manu Expeditions. What was an added bonus was the personal touch each contributed to make our trip enjoyable and a success. Huw’s discussions about his efforts to protect polylepis forests throughout the Andes was encouraging.

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Comments

We also want to acknowledge the guides, Huw, Silverio, and Percy. Each reflects the high professional standards we expected from Manu Expeditions. What was an added bonus was the personal touch each contributed to make our trip enjoyable and a success. Huw’s discussions about his efforts to protect polylepis forests throughout the Andes was encouraging.

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