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Field Guides Tour Report
Southern Argentina 2014
Nov 1, 2014 to Nov 18, 2014
Dave Stejskal

The snow-covered southern Andes behind the turquoise waters of Lago Argentino in El Clafate (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

This year's Southern Argentina tour started off pretty soggy. Rain all day upon arrival in Buenos Aires, and then most of the following day, kept us from enjoying the birding opportunities within the city (Costanera Sur Reserve, in particular) and just to the south of the city (the Magdalena area). The resulting widespread flooding in northern Buenos Aires Province was something that I'd never seen the likes of before! We did our best to catch up with a few of the missed birds on our return to the city from the San Clemente area, but we just couldn't put the time into looking for all that we wanted to see, darn it!

Despite the bad weather at the start, we still did remarkably well in the pampas. A half day of strong winds after the rains had stopped didn't help, but we were able to get out and do some birding under clear skies. We spent a lot of time in the lee of the big trees that we could find on that first morning, very happy to get the birds that we did. Then, after lunch, the winds diminished and we got down to business. We ended up having a marvelous afternoon along the highway out of town and at the beautiful Estancia El Palenque down the road. The weather was even better the following day, and we were able to enjoy most of the targets that we were searching for before we headed back into the capital.

Northern Patagonia was our next stop, and we had to contend with some more wind here, which is pretty typical of the area. In Chubut, a visit to the lovely Punta Tombo area produced memorable encounters with the Magellanic Penguins breeding there, as well as prizes like Lesser Rhea, White-headed (Chubut) Steamer-Duck, Brown Skua, Band-tailed Earthcreeper, and Patagonian Canastero. On the incredible Peninsula Valdes, after a fantastic encounter with multiple Southern Right Whales with calves, this unique wild area sticking out into the cold southern Atlantic gave us dozens of Elegant Crested-Tinamous, our only Darwin's Nothuras of the trip, a migrant flock of extraordinary Tawny-throated Dotterels, the strange Patagonian Cavy or Mara, dozens of giant Southern Elephant Seals lounging on the beaches at the eastern end, distant Orcas feeding in a protected lagoon, close flyby giant-petrels -- both Northern and Southern -- riding the onshore winds, endemic Rusty-backed Monjitas, local Patagonian Yellow-Finches, and so much more. A little farther north, in southern Rio Negro Province near the small seaside town of Las Grutas, our efforts there over a couple of days produced some rarely seen birds, namely White-throated Cacholote, Sandy Gallito, Straneck's Tyrannulet, Hudson's Black-Tyrant, Black-crowned Monjita, White-banded Mockingbird, Carbonated Sierra-Finch, and Cinnamon Warbling-Finch.

It was then time for a change of scenery. We left the flat pampas and coastal plains of northern Patagonia for more southern points, where the Patagonian steppe meets the towering southern Andes (El Calafate) and where dark forests of Southern Beech (Nothofagus) cloak the rugged Cordillera de Darwin above the cold waters of the Beagle Channel (Ushuaia). There was a lot to see in both places, and we did quite well. It was tough to beat that day at Los Glaciares NP with the looming backdrop of Perito Moreno Glacier! And this hike up above Ushuaia to the Le Martial Glacier was followed by a thrilling boat ride in the Beagle Channel that produced King Penguin, Black-browed Albatross, Snowy Sheathbill -- and a surprise Leopard Seal! It was a fantastic way to wind up this great tour!

Thanks to all of you for joining me for the two-and-a-half weeks we spent in beautiful Southern Argentina. You were a fantastic group to travel with, and I appreciate all of your camaraderie and support (especially at the end of the tour). Thanks also must be extended to our very able set of co-leaders and local guides throughout -- Germán Pugnali in Buenos Aires and in northern Patagonia, Mabel Carmona in Chubut, Martina McNamara in El Calafate, and Marcelo de Cruz in Ushuaia. Thanks to all of them! I hope to see all of you, my wonderful fellow travelers on this tour, again in another great birding locale soon!


One of the following keys may be shown in brackets for individual species as appropriate: * = heard only, I = introduced, E = endemic, N = nesting, a = austral migrant, b = boreal migrant

Rheidae (Rheas)

As it is with all of the ratites around the world, dad takes care of the kids. This Lesser Rhea on the Peninsula Valdes had another dozen or so chicks in tow. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

GREATER RHEA (Rhea americana) – We had several groups of these huge, flightless birds in the pampas.
LESSER RHEA (DARWIN'S) (Rhea pennata pennata) – Including a couple of sightings of adult males with numerous chicks in his care in Chubut. [N]
Tinamidae (Tinamous)
DARWIN'S NOTHURA (Nothura darwinii) – Our driver said he had a spot for it, and sure enough, we found a pair right there on our way back!
SPOTTED NOTHURA (Nothura maculosa) [*]
ELEGANT CRESTED-TINAMOU (Eudromia elegans) – Loads of these, mostly in Chubut, including a chick and several unhatched eggs in n. Patagonia. The easiest tinamou to see on this tour, by far! [N]
Anhimidae (Screamers)
SOUTHERN SCREAMER (Chauna torquata) – Not very numerous in the pampas, but not difficult to find, either. A distant relative of the waterfowl.
Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)
WHITE-FACED WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna viduata) – This one is usually the most numerous whistling-duck on this tour.
FULVOUS WHISTLING-DUCK (Dendrocygna bicolor)
BLACK-NECKED SWAN (Cygnus melancoryphus) – Numerous great views, but my favorite was seeing a couple of tiny all-white chicks riding on the back of one of the parents at Est. Alice. Pretty cute! [N]
COSCOROBA SWAN (Coscoroba coscoroba) – The chicks that we saw at the Costanera Reserve in Buenos Aires were getting pretty big, compared to how they looked at the start of the extension to Rincon del Socorro about a month earlier! [N]
UPLAND GOOSE (Chloephaga picta) – Most of the male birds on the mainland (Santa Cruz Prov.) appeared to be white-chested, while birds on Tierra del Fuego appeared to have barred breasts. [N]
KELP GOOSE (Chloephaga hybrida) – There were always a few pairs of these right in front of our hotel in Ushuaia. This species is much more common on the Argentine side of Tierra del Fuego.
ASHY-HEADED GOOSE (Chloephaga poliocephala) – On my last tour here, we had some real trouble finding this species at all on the tour (I think we had a small group in El Calafate, and that's it), but we sure found them this year without any problems in both Santa Cruz Prov. and in Tierra del Fuego.
FLYING STEAMER-DUCK (Tachyeres patachonicus) – It's often a little tricky to separate this from the next species, but the bill on the male of this species is never all bright orange like the Flightless. It's always got some yellowish-green on the upper mandible and the head never appears to be as pale as the Flightless.
FLIGHTLESS STEAMER-DUCK (Tachyeres pteneres) – Several pairs of this big, flightless duck at Ushuaia and in the Beagle Channel.
WHITE-HEADED STEAMER-DUCK (Tachyeres leucocephalus) – There's not much that separates this one from the Flightless, except the head on the male averages whiter than the Flightless, and the ranges do appear to be allopatric. [E]
CRESTED DUCK (Lophonetta specularioides) – If you're lucky enough to see this one fly in good light, that purple speculum is really eye-catching! [N]
SPECTACLED DUCK (Speculanas specularis) – We got lucky and found several of these hanging out in the roadside pond in the national park. They don't nest here every year, so I always cross my fingers that we'll be able to find them somewhere! [N]

It doesn't get much cuter than this, does it? This family of Black-necked Swans made their home on the lagoons at Estancia Alice near El Calafate. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

RINGED TEAL (Callonetta leucophrys) – Three adult males on our first afternoon in B.A. - in the rain - was a nice start to this trip!
CHILOE WIGEON (Anas sibilatrix) – Quite widespread on this tour, being found from just south of B.A. down to Tierra del Fuego.
CINNAMON TEAL (Anas cyanoptera) – Just one small group in Trelew.
RED SHOVELER (Anas platalea) – Not as numerous as they often are on this tour.
WHITE-CHEEKED PINTAIL (Anas bahamensis) – Seeing these in beautiful late afternoon light at Est. El Palenque was a real treat!
YELLOW-BILLED PINTAIL (Anas georgica) – Easy to confuse with the nominate race of Yellow-billed Teal.
SILVER TEAL (Anas versicolor) – Mostly in Buenos Aires Province.
YELLOW-BILLED TEAL (FLAVIROSTRIS) (Anas flavirostris flavirostris) – Perhaps a bit more numerous and widespread than the very similar Yellow-billed Pintail.
ROSY-BILLED POCHARD (Netta peposaca) – Lots of stunning males on the first part of this tour.
RUDDY DUCK (ANDEAN) (Oxyura jamaicensis ferruginea) – Several birds at Laguna Nimez in El Calafate. Formerly split out as a good species (Andean Duck).
LAKE DUCK (Oxyura vittata) – Several in Trelew gave us some good looks.
Podicipedidae (Grebes)
WHITE-TUFTED GREBE (Rollandia rolland) – Very few at all this year, and only in B.A. Province. Some years, especially when there's more water in the Costanera Reserve, we see a few hundred of these striking grebes.
PIED-BILLED GREBE (Podilymbus podiceps)
GREAT GREBE (Podiceps major) – A few pairs here and there, and always a wonderful bird to see well. The largest grebe in the world.

This southern race of Silvery Grebe (here at the lagoon at Estancia Alice) might someday be split from the much drabber race to the north in the Andes. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

SILVERY GREBE (PATAGONIAN) (Podiceps occipitalis occipitalis) – All of our Silvery Grebes were this southern 'race' with the gray throat and golden occipital plumes. Very different looking than the more northerly juninensis 'race', which is likely a different species altogether.
Phoenicopteridae (Flamingos)
CHILEAN FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus chilensis) – We saw loads of these beautiful birds, but I was amazed that we didn't see one bird at the 'lagunas ornitologicas' in Trelew (where there are often hundreds!).
Spheniscidae (Penguins)
KING PENGUIN (Aptenodytes patagonicus) – What a wonderful surprise! Judging from the crew's photos of this one from earlier in the year, it looks like there may be two birds and they may be paired (ours may have been incubating). I'm anxious to see how many there are when I come back!
GENTOO PENGUIN (Pygoscelis papua) – This one is still going strong on the little island near Harberton, but I did count 36 pairs there in 2012, compared to only (!) 28 pairs this year.
MAGELLANIC PENGUIN (Spheniscus magellanicus) – Punta Tombo is a great place to get your lifer Magellanic Penguin! It sounds like the numbers breeding here have rebounded a bit from their lows in the late 90's.
Diomedeidae (Albatrosses)
BLACK-BROWED ALBATROSS (Thalassarche melanophris) – Super views of this huge tubenose from the boat on the Beagle Channel. To date, this is the only albatross that I've seen in the Channel (and I've been doing this trip since 1991).
Procellariidae (Shearwaters and Petrels)
SOUTHERN GIANT-PETREL (Macronectes giganteus) – By far, the most common giant-petrel on this tour everywhere we visit the coast.
NORTHERN GIANT-PETREL (Macronectes halli) – A few birds with rosy-red bill tips were spotted from the cliffs on the far east end of the Peninsula Valdes.

No, this Southern Giant-Petrel isn't flying through some desert canyon somewhere; the southern Atlantic Ocean is to the right. The onshore winds hitting the coastal cliffs here on the east end of the Peninsula Valdes make excellent flying conditions for this huge tubenose, bringing birds face-to-face with patient observers. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

SOUTHERN FULMAR (Fulmarus glacialoides) – Not all that common this year, but we did get some nice views from the boat off Ushuaia.
WHITE-CHINNED PETREL (Procellaria aequinoctialis) – A quick look at one bird early on during our Beagle Channel boat trip.
SOOTY SHEARWATER (Puffinus griseus) – Seeing a few of these in the Beagle Channel was a bit of a surprise this year. We don't normally get them and their presence is a testament to just how strong those West winds were during the preceding days!
MANX SHEARWATER (Puffinus puffinus) – Art & Dave R. got us on this impressive movement just offshore from our hotel in Las Grutas. It had been many years since I had seen this species off the coast of Patagonia!
Pelecanoididae (Diving-Petrels)
MAGELLANIC DIVING-PETREL (Pelecanoides magellani) – Art and Doug may have be the only lucky ones to see these tiny tubenoses during our Beagle Channel boat trip. The numbers of this species have plummeted in recent years here.
Hydrobatidae (Storm-Petrels)
WILSON'S STORM-PETREL (Oceanites oceanicus) – A few folks got on a couple of these in the Beagle Channel.
Ciconiidae (Storks)
MAGUARI STORK (Ciconia maguari) – A characteristic bird of the wet pampas south of Buenos Aires.
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)
NEOTROPIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax brasilianus)
MAGELLANIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax magellanicus) – Formerly known as the Rock Shag. [N]

These two squabbling male Upland Geese hardly got the attention of the nesting Gentoo Penguins behind them on one of the many islets in the Beagle Channel. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

IMPERIAL CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax atriceps atriceps) – The birds that we saw on the Peninsula Valdes were this form, formerly called Blue-eyed Shag (Cormorant). This race has more white in the cheek and has an elongated white rump patch. [N]
IMPERIAL CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax atriceps albiventer) – This one, with the black cheeks and lacking the white rump patch, is what we used to call the King Cormorant. It's the form that predominated in the far south. Both this one and the above form breed on the small islets in the Beagle Channel and were once considered to be separate species. There's considerable interbreeding between the two forms and they don't differ in their breeding behavior. [N]
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
COCOI HERON (Ardea cocoi) – Formerly called the White-necked Heron and a close relative of our familiar Great Blue Heron.
GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba)
SNOWY EGRET (Egretta thula)
CATTLE EGRET (Bubulcus ibis)
WHISTLING HERON (Syrigma sibilatrix) – This beautiful, unique heron species was seen very well in the pampas at the start of the tour.
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax)
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)
WHITE-FACED IBIS (Plegadis chihi) – 1000's in the pampas this year - more than I've ever seen there!
BARE-FACED IBIS (Phimosus infuscatus) – Most were seen along the roadside as we headed south into the pampas from Buenos Aires.
BLACK-FACED IBIS (Theristicus melanopis) – A fairly recent split from the very similar Buff-necked Ibis of the tropics. [N]
ROSEATE SPOONBILL (Platalea ajaja)
Cathartidae (New World Vultures)

One of the many Andean Condors we enjoyed seeing in the El Calafate area this year. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

TURKEY VULTURE (Cathartes aura) – We saw a couple of different races of this one, with C.a. ruficollis in the north, and C.a. jota in the far south. The latter is a long-distance migrant that winters as far north as the Amazon Basin.
ANDEAN CONDOR (Vultur gryphus) – The Calafate area is an absolutely great place to view this majestic bird! I think that our high count on any day there was sixteen individuals.
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
WHITE-TAILED KITE (Elanus leucurus)
SWALLOW-TAILED KITE (Elanoides forficatus) – Jack spotted this unmistakable species at the little patch of woods near Punta Rasa. This was far to the south of where this species is normally seen in Argentina and probably represents one of the southernmost records in all of South America!
SNAIL KITE (Rostrhamus sociabilis) – There were just arriving in the pampas south of Buenos Aires.
LONG-WINGED HARRIER (Circus buffoni) – We did have some super views of this big harrier, and it was particularly interesting to see some apparent migrants flying to the east high over the pampas one day near San Clemente.
CINEREOUS HARRIER (Circus cinereus) – These elegant harriers were actively nesting at Laguna Nimez in Calafate again this year. [N]
ROADSIDE HAWK (Rupornis magnirostris)
HARRIS'S HAWK (Parabuteo unicinctus) – By German and maybe a few others on that first rainy afternoon in B.A.
VARIABLE HAWK (VARIABLE) (Geranoaetus polyosoma polyosoma) – Before this was lumped with the Puna Hawk in the high Andes, this one was known as Red-backed Hawk. Note that this one was removed from Buteo and placed in the same genus as the next species. [N]
BLACK-CHESTED BUZZARD-EAGLE (Geranoaetus melanoleucus) – Unmistakable, given that highly distinctive shape in flight.
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
GIANT WOOD-RAIL (Aramides ypecaha) – German spotted a couple of these huge rails on our way back to Buenos Aires from the pampas.
GRAY-NECKED WOOD-RAIL (Aramides cajaneus) – This one just about landed on my head as we walked through the shrubbery near Punta Rasa on our windy morning there.
DOT-WINGED CRAKE (Porzana spiloptera) [*]
PLUMBEOUS RAIL (Pardirallus sanguinolentus) – Sheila and Ron saw this one well at Est. Alice, but the rest of us had to be happy with a 'heard only'.
COMMON GALLINULE (Gallinula galeata) – Now a separate species from the Common Moorhen of the Old World. [N]
RED-GARTERED COOT (Fulica armillata) – Our most widespread coot on this tour.
RED-FRONTED COOT (Fulica rufifrons) – Very gallinule-like in both appearance and behavior.
WHITE-WINGED COOT (Fulica leucoptera) – This one never has any red or maroon on the bill or on the frontal shield.
Aramidae (Limpkin)

The wind was ferocious, but we were able to pick out one of these strange Magellanic Plovers among the more common Baird's Sandpipers along the shoreline. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

LIMPKIN (Aramus guarauna)
Chionidae (Sheathbills)
SNOWY SHEATHBILL (Chionis albus) – We all got great looks on our second pass by the little islet in the Beagle Channel, thanks to our accommodating boat crew!
Pluvianellidae (Magellanic Plover)
MAGELLANIC PLOVER (Pluvianellus socialis) – We had to brave one heck of a wind while trying to find this rare and unique shorebird. Thanks goodness it was so close to where we parked the bus! If you're a family ticker, this one's a great one to tick!
Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)
BLACK-NECKED STILT (WHITE-BACKED) (Himantopus mexicanus melanurus) – This distinctive race was split from our familiar Black-necked Stilt not too long ago.
Haematopodidae (Oystercatchers)
AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus palliatus) – Of the three oystercatchers on this tour, this one occurs the farthest north.
BLACKISH OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus ater) – Very similar to our Black Oystercatcher on the west coast of North America.
MAGELLANIC OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus leucopodus) – It was pretty weird to see this on so far inland near El Calafate. The only other oystercatcher in the world that breeds inland is the Eurasian Oystercatcher.
Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER (Pluvialis squatarola) [b]

It looked like this Tawny-throated Dotterel, and about 16 of his buddies, had just arrived from the wintering grounds here on the grasslands of the Peninsula Valdes. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVER (Pluvialis dominica) – Many in the San Clemente area. Now you know where they winter! [b]
TAWNY-THROATED DOTTEREL (Oreopholus ruficollis) – We finally ran into this one on our drive out to the eastern end of the Peninsula Valdes. One of the most beautiful of all the shorebirds, in my opinion.
SOUTHERN LAPWING (NORTHERN) (Vanellus chilensis cayennensis) – Everything north of Santa Cruz Province on this tour was this subspecies. [N]
SOUTHERN LAPWING (SOUTHERN SOUTH AMERICA) (Vanellus chilensis chilensis) – Slightly different in both appearance and in calls from the above subspecies.
TWO-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius falklandicus) – We saw most of ours on the Peninsula Valdes. A very close relative of the Puna Plover.
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER (Charadrius semipalmatus) [b]
Thinocoridae (Seedsnipes)
LEAST SEEDSNIPE (Thinocorus rumicivorus) – Our best were in the grassy area near our hotel in Puerto Piramides. I usually see more of these out on the peninsula, but they didn't seem to be around in numbers of any kind this year. [N]
Jacanidae (Jacanas)
WATTLED JACANA (Jacana jacana) – Only in the pampas on this tour.
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
SPOTTED SANDPIPER (Actitis macularius) – A couple of birds in Lavalle on our way to San Clemente were fairly unusual there and they're quite scarce this far south in S. America. [b]
GREATER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa melanoleuca) [b]
LESSER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa flavipes) [b]
HUDSONIAN GODWIT (Limosa haemastica) – Decent numbers in the San Clemente area. [b]
RUDDY TURNSTONE (Arenaria interpres) [b]
BAIRD'S SANDPIPER (Calidris bairdii) – This was pretty much the only 'peep' in the southern reaches of Patagonia, while White-rumped was common in the pampas. [b]
WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER (Calidris fuscicollis) [b]
BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER (Calidris subruficollis) – We usually get just a few of these on the wintering grounds near San Clemente. [b]
SOUTH AMERICAN SNIPE (MAGELLANIC) (Gallinago paraguaiae magellanica) – Outstanding looks at a couple of perched birds at Laguna Nimez in Calafate.
WILSON'S PHALAROPE (Phalaropus tricolor) – Our only encounter with this one was at Est. El Palenque near San Clemente. [b]
Stercorariidae (Skuas and Jaegers)

This beautiful Dolphin Gull gave us a nice show late in the afternoon on our return to port at Ushuaia. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

CHILEAN SKUA (Stercorarius chilensis) – Usually the only skua that we see in the Beagle Channel, we had some terrific looks at this one from the boat.
BROWN SKUA (FALKLAND) (Stercorarius antarcticus antarcticus) – Wonderful studies at the Magellanic Penguin colony at Punta Tombo.
Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
BROWN-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus maculipennis) – The most common and widespread of the smaller gulls on this tour.
GRAY-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus) – We had our best looks at this one at Lavalle on our way to San Clemente. This one also occurs in southern Africa.
DOLPHIN GULL (Leucophaeus scoresbii) – We didn't run into numbers of this beautiful gull until we got to Ushuaia.
OLROG'S GULL (Larus atlanticus) – Nice views in the scopes of a couple of immature birds at San Clemente. This is the plumage that we usually see on this tour at this season (all of the adults are out on the breeding islands now).
KELP GULL (Larus dominicanus) – It's a bit of a relief to have only one 'big' gull to consider on this tour, unlike North America! [N]
COMMON TERN (Sterna hirundo) [b]
SOUTH AMERICAN TERN (Sterna hirundinacea) – Lots of fabulous looks from the boat on the day we navigated the Beagle Channel.
SNOWY-CROWNED TERN (Sterna trudeaui) – Not many in the pampas this year, but our looks were fantastic! This one used to be called Trudeau's Tern.
ROYAL TERN (Thalasseus maximus)
SANDWICH TERN (CAYENNE) (Thalasseus sandvicensis eurygnathus) – These were mostly the yellow-billed South American race formerly split out and called Cayenne Tern. A couple of you reported a dark-billed bird at Las Grutas - a bird that I wish I had seen!
BLACK SKIMMER (INTERCEDENS) (Rynchops niger intercedens)
Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)

It's hard to find an owl, especially when it's not calling! This Austral Pygmy-Owl sat above us silently while our group looked on. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) [I]
PICAZURO PIGEON (Patagioenas picazuro) – We lost this big pigeon after we left the pampas.
SPOT-WINGED PIGEON (Patagioenas maculosa) – A couple of big flocks flying north at Punta Rasa were intriguing. Where the heck were they coming from/going?
PICUI GROUND-DOVE (Columbina picui) – Just a few on this tour. We were at the southern limit of their widespread range.
EARED DOVE (Zenaida auriculata) – Almost daily - we finally lost them in Ushuaia.
Cuculidae (Cuckoos)
DARK-BILLED CUCKOO (Coccyzus melacoryphus) – One of these newly-arrived migrants posed nicely for us at Punta Rasa on our final morning there.
GUIRA CUCKOO (Guira guira) – Just in the pampas. Nothing more than an ornate ani!
Strigidae (Owls)
AUSTRAL PYGMY-OWL (Glaucidium nana) – Howard spotted our only pygmy-owl of the trip when one came in silently to investigate us in the park. Formerly lumped with Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl.
BURROWING OWL (Athene cunicularia) – Great looks!
RUFOUS-LEGGED OWL (Strix rufipes) – Most of us heard this scarce owl, but Doug was the only lucky one to catch a glimpse of this bird as it glided silently overhead.
Trochilidae (Hummingbirds)

This stunning male Magellanic Woodpecker, one of three individuals present, was found while your guide was preparing a picnic lunch for the group. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

GLITTERING-BELLIED EMERALD (Chlorostilbon lucidus) – We had a wonderful three hummingbird morning on our final morning at Punta Rasa. This is usually the most common and widespread of the three.
WHITE-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD (Leucochloris albicollis) – Finally!! Fantastic looks once the wind died down on our final morning in the pampas.
GILDED HUMMINGBIRD (Hylocharis chrysura) – Also called the Gilded Sapphire.
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
RINGED KINGFISHER (Megaceryle torquata)
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
CHECKERED WOODPECKER (Veniliornis mixtus) – A couple of birds near Las Grutas were a little bit surprising there. We usually get this one in Buenos Aires Province.
GREEN-BARRED WOODPECKER (Colaptes melanochloros melanolaimus) – This form was once split out as Golden-breasted Woodpecker, but it's since been lumped with the more widespread Green-barred. Still, it's a smashing woodpecker!
CHILEAN FLICKER (Colaptes pitius) – A couple of fine looks at the southernmost flicker in Los Glaciares NP.
CAMPO FLICKER (Colaptes campestris) – Another classy woodpecker!
MAGELLANIC WOODPECKER (Campephilus magellanicus) – I was busy cookin' when you all found this fancy beast, the largest extant woodpecker in the New World! It's always a bit of a challenge to find this one on our tour, but this spot has proven itself now for a few years in a row.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
WHITE-THROATED CARACARA (Phalcoboenus albogularis) – Lots of these in the swarm of birds at the Ushuaia dump on our final morning of the tour. These birds are always a lot more yellow below than they show in the illustrations in the field guides.
SOUTHERN CARACARA (Caracara plancus) – A recent split from the more northerly Crested Caracara north of the Amazon (and ranging into the southern U.S. [N]
CHIMANGO CARACARA (Milvago chimango) – The 'crow' of southern S. America.
AMERICAN KESTREL (Falco sparverius)
PEREGRINE FALCON (Falco peregrinus) – A single adult hunting on our way to Los Glaciares NP.
Psittacidae (New World and African Parrots)
MONK PARAKEET (Myiopsitta monachus) – We never saw it again after we left the pampas.
AUSTRAL PARAKEET (Enicognathus ferrugineus) – We had some particularly fine looks at several of these feeding right over the road on the afternoon that we visited Tierra del Fuego NP.

One of the scenic highlights of a trip to the far south of Argentina is the stupendous Perito Moreno Glacier near the town of El Calafate. It's one of very few glaciers in the world that is still advancing. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

BURROWING PARAKEET (Cyanoliseus patagonus) – Very easy to see in the Las Grutas area, where they nest. This Patagonian race is much more colorful than what some of us saw to the north in the Andes of Tucuman and Salta provinces.
NANDAY PARAKEET (Aratinga nenday) – The birds that we saw on that first rainy afternoon in B.A. are part of a feral population there. They normally occur in much warmer and humid habitats to the north. [I]
WHITE-EYED PARAKEET (Psittacara leucophthalmus) – Like the above Nandays, these birds in B. A. are part of a growing feral population there. [I]
Thamnophilidae (Typical Antbirds)
RUFOUS-CAPPED ANTSHRIKE (Thamnophilus ruficapillus) – This one came out nicely on our hurried late afternoon visit to La Balandra on our way back to B.A. from the pampas. The southernmost antbird in the world.
Rhinocryptidae (Tapaculos)
SANDY GALLITO (Teledromas fuscus) – This bird hardly put up a fight near Las Grutas, unlike his normally shy tapaculo brethren elsewhere. This is about as far south as this endemic gets in the country. [E]
MAGELLANIC TAPACULO (Scytalopus magellanicus) – We found a very responsive bird at the first spot that we tried at the glacier. It was much more tapaculo-like in its behavior - much more so than the above Gallito!
Furnariidae (Ovenbirds and Woodcreepers)
COMMON MINER (PATAGONIAN) (Geositta cunicularia cunicularia) – With a number of disjunct races, all sounding a little different from one another, it's a good idea to keep track of where you see these since there might be some splitting going on later.
NARROW-BILLED WOODCREEPER (Lepidocolaptes angustirostris) – Another one of those birds that we scored during our short visit to La Balandra.

Doraditos always garner a lot of attention wherever they're found, and this Warbling Doradito was no different. The pampas of Argentina are a terrific place to see this confiding species. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

WHITE-THROATED TREERUNNER (Pygarrhichas albogularis) – Fantastic looks at this unique furnariid along the boardwalk at Los Glaciares NP.
BAND-TAILED EARTHCREEPER (Ochetorhynchus phoenicurus) – Mabel sure knew the spot for this near-endemic! Great views! [E]
RUFOUS HORNERO (Furnarius rufus) – We lost this widespread species after we ventured south of Chubut. The national bird of Argentina!
WREN-LIKE RUSHBIRD (Phleocryptes melanops) – It took a couple of tries, but we all eventually saw this Marsh Wren-like species near San Clemente.
SCALE-THROATED EARTHCREEPER (Upucerthia dumetaria) – Very thrasher-like in its appearance. This is usually the only Upucerthia that we see on the Southern Argentina tour.
BUFF-WINGED CINCLODES (Cinclodes fuscus) – Bar-winged Cinclodes was recently split into a few species. Ours is the southernmost form, which is highly migratory.
DARK-BELLIED CINCLODES (Cinclodes patagonicus) – Busily attending an unseen nest in one of the park buildings in Tierra del Fuego NP. [N]
THORN-TAILED RAYADITO (Aphrastura spinicauda) – A common inhabitant of the dense Nothofagus forests of the far south. Very cute!
TUFTED TIT-SPINETAIL (Leptasthenura platensis) – Nicely late in the afternoon at Est. El Palenque.
PLAIN-MANTLED TIT-SPINETAIL (PALLIDA) (Leptasthenura aegithaloides pallida) – All who had missed it earlier in the tour caught up with it one morning before breakfast at Puerto Piramides.
FRECKLE-BREASTED THORNBIRD (Phacellodomus striaticollis) – This is the only thornbird found in the coastal marsh habitat in Argentina.
SHORT-BILLED CANASTERO (Asthenes baeri) – Only mildly cooperative for us in the thorny scrub near Las Grutas.
HUDSON'S CANASTERO (Asthenes hudsoni) – It gets tougher and tougher each year to find this one, but we did eventually find it. I have no idea why they seem to be retreating from this area near San Clemente.
CORDILLERAN CANASTERO (Asthenes modesta) – We found this widespread species in the dry foothill scrub on the way to Los Glaciares NP.

We drove through -- and walked through -- a lot of great habitat for this Darwin's Nothura, but we only ever detected the one pair found by our driver. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

SHARP-BILLED CANASTERO (Asthenes pyrrholeuca) – Also called the Lesser Canastero, it was the most common canastero in the Patagonian steppe scrub near Trelew.
SULPHUR-THROATED SPINETAIL (Cranioleuca sulphurifera) – We finally found a cooperative bird near San Clemente on our way back to B.A. Also called the Sulphur-chinned Spinetail.
STRIPE-CROWNED SPINETAIL (Cranioleuca pyrrhophia) – This attractive species gets as far south as that southernmost chaqueño habitat that we saw in the Las Grutas area.
PATAGONIAN CANASTERO (Pseudasthenes patagonica) – Fabulous looks at this endemic hot on the heels of our Band-tailed Earthcreeper near Trelew! [E]
BAY-CAPPED WREN-SPINETAIL (Spartonoica maluroides) – The very strong winds during our visit to San Clemente really made it difficult to see this one well in its marsh grass habitat.
WHITE-THROATED CACHOLOTE (Pseudoseisura gutturalis) – We had a couple of good encounters with this endemic furnariid in the Las Grutas area, where it seems to be rather easy to see - relative to other places where I try for it! [E]
SPIX'S SPINETAIL (Synallaxis spixi) – One of the last birds that we saw in our hasty visit to La Balandra on our return to B.A. from San Clemente. Also called the Chicli Spinetail.
Tyrannidae (Tyrant Flycatchers)
YELLOW-BILLED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes flavirostris) – Tall creosote seems to be what this one needs at the southern end of its range.
TUFTED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes parulus) – A family group of these at our Puerto Piramides hotel was our best encounter with this widespread species.
WARBLING DORADITO (Pseudocolopteryx flaviventris) – This one bordered on 'trash bird' status at our picnic lunch spot on our last day in the pampas as we headed north to B.A.

One of the biggest "finds" on the tour was seeing this Leopard Seal lounging on the beach at the Magellanic/Gentoo Penguin colony in the Beagle Channel. These seals are fierce predators, and you could certainly see that the Magellanic Penguins knew what he was all about! (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

WHITE-CRESTED ELAENIA (Elaenia albiceps) – Absolutely everywhere in the Nothofagus forests of the far south.
SMALL-BILLED ELAENIA (Elaenia parvirostris) – Small numbers in the pampas only.
SOOTY TYRANNULET (Serpophaga nigricans) – This was one of the prizes for those who ventured down the muddy ranch road to the little marsh at Est. El Palenque near San Clemente.
WHITE-CRESTED TYRANNULET (Serpophaga subcristata) – A couple of pairs were visible in the patch of woods near Punta Rasa.
STRANECK'S TYRANNULET (Serpophaga griseicapilla) – This newly-described species looks quite a bit like the above species, but its voice is different, and it favors very dry chaqueño-type habitats. Great views at Las Grutas.
MANY-COLORED RUSH TYRANT (Tachuris rubrigastra) – This little piece of eye candy was a common bird at our picnic lunch spot near San Clemente.
GREATER WAGTAIL-TYRANT (Stigmatura budytoides) – A regular in the chaqueño habitat near Las Grutas. It actually occurs as far south as Trelew, but it's much easier to see near Las Grutas.
VERMILION FLYCATCHER (Pyrocephalus rubinus)
AUSTRAL NEGRITO (Lessonia rufa) – This tiny terrestrial flycatcher is a very close relative of the Andean Negrito farther north.
WHITE-WINGED BLACK-TYRANT (Knipolegus aterrimus) – We had a lot of fun watching a male display from the top of a tree in the little quebrada near our hotel in Las Grutas.
HUDSON'S BLACK-TYRANT (Knipolegus hudsoni) – An endemic breeder in s.c. Argentina, this uncommon and rarely seen species was studied very well in the chaqueño habitats near Las Grutas.
SPECTACLED TYRANT (Hymenops perspicillatus) – The taller spikes of pampas grass near San Clemente usually had one of these distinctive flycatchers perched on it. Called the Pico de Plata by the locals.
YELLOW-BROWED TYRANT (Satrapa icterophrys) – This handsome flycatcher is never common anywhere.

Northern Patagonia was home to most of the Argentine endemics (or near-endemics, like this one) that we saw on this tour, including a cooperative Band-tailed Earthcreeper near Trelew. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

DARK-FACED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola maclovianus) – Seeing this one on the rocks along the shore at Lago Argentino near the Moreno Glacier was a bit surprising since I'd never seen it there before!
WHITE-BROWED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola albilora) – This is the species that I expect to see along the shores of Lago Argentino. This one winters as far north as the Colombian Andes.
CINNAMON-BELLIED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola capistratus) – It took a couple of tries, but we all eventually got great views of a trio of these elegant flycatchers near El Calafate.
GREAT SHRIKE-TYRANT (Agriornis lividus) – A flyby look for some in the group as we made our way to Los Glaciares NP.
GRAY-BELLIED SHRIKE-TYRANT (Agriornis micropterus) – Great views in the scopes overlooking the bay near Puerto Piramides.
LESSER SHRIKE-TYRANT (Agriornis murinus) – A smaller version of the above species, with a much thinner bill.
FIRE-EYED DIUCON (Xolmis pyrope) – We had a couple of great close encounters with this striking species at Los Glaciares NP. This one was recently lumped into the monjita genus of Xolmis, which makes some sense.
BLACK-CROWNED MONJITA (Xolmis coronatus) – This was our second-best monjita of the tour, taking a back seat only to the local and endemic Rusty-backed Monjita. Still, this one's a very fancy bird that is rarely seen by birding groups - unless you go where we went on this tour.
WHITE MONJITA (Xolmis irupero) – You'd think that a bright white bird sitting in the open on an exposed perch would be an evolutionary dead-end, but this one seems to be doing just fine!
RUSTY-BACKED MONJITA (Xolmis rubetra) – One grassy field near Puerto Piramides had SIX of these scarce and local endemic flycatchers. This beautiful little bird is a very close relative of the Salinas Monjita to the north of here, which some of us saw on the Northwestern Argentina tour that preceded this one. [E]
CHOCOLATE-VENTED TYRANT (Neoxolmis rufiventris) – Excellent studies on the ground and in flight of this striking flycatcher - one of my all-time favorite S. American birds.
GREAT KISKADEE (Pitangus sulphuratus)
TROPICAL KINGBIRD (Tyrannus melancholicus)
FORK-TAILED FLYCATCHER (Tyrannus savana) – Always nice to see!
Cotingidae (Cotingas)
WHITE-TIPPED PLANTCUTTER (Phytotoma rutila) – We called one in from a long way off near Las Grutas for some great views.
RUFOUS-TAILED PLANTCUTTER (Phytotoma rara) – I don't know how we ever saw this one in that wind, but I'm sure glad we did!
Vireonidae (Vireos, Shrike-Babblers, and Erpornis)
RED-EYED VIREO (Vireo olivaceus)
Hirundinidae (Swallows)
BLUE-AND-WHITE SWALLOW (PATAGONICA) (Pygochelidon cyanoleuca patagonica)
GRAY-BREASTED MARTIN (Progne chalybea)
SOUTHERN MARTIN (Progne elegans) – Including some birds nesting under the roof at the entrance buildings for the Peninsula Valdes. [N]
BROWN-CHESTED MARTIN (FUSCA) (Progne tapera fusca) – All of our birds were the highly migratory race with the big Bank Swallow-like chest band.

Another one of the many Argentina endemics that we found in northern Patagonia was this territorial male Carbonated Sierra-Finch. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

WHITE-RUMPED SWALLOW (Tachycineta leucorrhoa) – All of ours were in Buenos Aires Province. Very similar to the next species.
CHILEAN SWALLOW (Tachycineta meyeni) – We never could get one perched near Trelew, but we had plenty of them afterward in Santa Cruz and Tierra del Fuego.
BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica) – Now nesting in the Punta Rasa area. [N]
Troglodytidae (Wrens)
HOUSE WREN (SOUTHERN) (Troglodytes aedon musculus)
SEDGE WREN (PLATENSIS GROUP) (Cistothorus platensis platensis) – A paper in the Wilson Journal of Ornithology, authored by Robbins and Nyari, just came out revising the taxonomy of Sedge Wren. If the rest of the world follows their suggestions, then the birds that we saw in the pampas are now called Pampas Wren (C. platensis). The bird that we heard at El Calafate would be another species called Austral Wren (C. hornensis). As an aside, the birds that we saw on the Northwestern Argentina tour, including the birds we saw in Cordoba, are yet another species, the Tucuman Wren (C. tucumanus). Our N. American birds keep the common name of Sedge Wren, but are now Cistothorus stellaris.
SEDGE WREN (PLATENSIS GROUP) (Cistothorus platensis hornensis) – Heard only at Laguna Nimez. If taxonomists adopt the findings in the latest paper studying this complex, then this will be known as Austral Wren (C. hornensis). [*]
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
AUSTRAL THRUSH (Turdus falcklandii) – I've had this species at our hotel in Las Grutas for a few trips in a row now, so it makes me think that they're breeding locally here now. It's still easy to see this one on a daily basis down in the far south.
RUFOUS-BELLIED THRUSH (Turdus rufiventris) – A few birds only in Buenos Aires Province. We would have seen quite a few more if we hadn't had the rain that we did.
CREAMY-BELLIED THRUSH (Turdus amaurochalinus) – One of these was even seen far to the south in Sierra Grande in Rio Negro Province. This species usually occurs in drier habitats than the above species.
CHIGUANCO THRUSH (Turdus chiguanco) – This Andean species has recently invaded the coastal habitats of northern Patagonia. We had more of these on this tour than I've ever had in the past, so they seem to be doing well.
Mimidae (Mockingbirds and Thrashers)
PATAGONIAN MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus patagonicus) – This was our most widespread and the most common of the three mockingbird species on this tour. [N]
CHALK-BROWED MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus saturninus) – Mostly in Buenos Aires Province. Similar to the above species, but that white eyebrow is always broader and more evident than it is on Patagonian.
WHITE-BANDED MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus triurus) – Very good numbers in the Las Grutas area this year. Central Argentina is the center of abundance for this species.
Sturnidae (Starlings)
EUROPEAN STARLING (Sturnus vulgaris) [I]
Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)
SHORT-BILLED PIPIT (Anthus furcatus) – By far, this is the most expected pipit species in the dry habitats of the Peninsula Valdes.

I think Fire-eyed Diucon is a very appropriate name for this one, no? (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

CORRENDERA PIPIT (Anthus correndera) – We got our best look at this strongly marked species along the roadside on our ay to Los Glaciares NP. This species inhabits much wetter habitats than Short-billed, but it does overlap with Hellmayr's.
HELLMAYR'S PIPIT (Anthus hellmayri brasilianus) – Distant looks of a dispalying bird in the pampas near San Clemente.
Parulidae (New World Warblers)
MASKED YELLOWTHROAT (Geothlypis aequinoctialis) – It's hard to imagine that we would have to work to see this one, but the heavy rains in B.A. forced our hand with this one. We did eventually get superb views of this beautiful species at La Balandra on our way back from San Clemente.
TROPICAL PARULA (Setophaga pitiayumi) – There are always a couple of pairs of this widespread warbler in the grove of trees near Punta Rasa, but I wasn't expecting to hear this one singing at the harbor in San Clemente while we enjoyed our views of Olrog's Gull!
Thraupidae (Tanagers and Allies)
RED-CRESTED CARDINAL (Paroaria coronata) – We had our best looks in the rain in B.A. on our first afternoon of the tour.
BLUE-AND-YELLOW TANAGER (Pipraeidea bonariensis) – A couple of beautiful males in far southern Rio Negro Province near the southern limit of this species' range.
GRAY-HOODED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus gayi) – Very similar to the next species, but found in much drier habitats. That confiding pair at the overlook on our drive up the hill south of Calafate was really something!
PATAGONIAN SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus patagonicus) – Our best looks were on the hike from the glacier back to the bus at Los Glaciares NP. Although this one does occur in more humid habitats that the Gray-hooded, there are some hybrids floating around out there in the transition zone between these two habitat types.
MOURNING SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus fruticeti) – A larger version of the following species and much more widespread than that one. The voices of the two are strikingly different!
CARBONATED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus carbonarius) – Our driver knew where to stop for this local endemic on our drive north to Las Grutas and we came away with fabulous views of a responsive male. [E]
COMMON DIUCA-FINCH (Diuca diuca) – We didn't see this one in the numbers that I'm used to seeing on this tour.
YELLOW-BRIDLED FINCH (Melanodera xanthogramma) – We had to hike through some snow and wind to get up to where this one hangs out, but we came away with looks at a couple of pairs, with each male representing a different color morph!
LONG-TAILED REED FINCH (Donacospiza albifrons) – That confiding bird along the roadside near San Clemente really put on a show for us!
CINNAMON WARBLING-FINCH (Poospiza ornata) – This tiny endemic warbling-finch was definitely 'in' during our visit to Las Grutas this year and we came away with a number of fine looks at singing territorial males. [E]
BLACK-AND-RUFOUS WARBLING-FINCH (Poospiza nigrorufa) – Easily seen in the wet, grassy habitats near San Clemente.
RINGED WARBLING-FINCH (Poospiza torquata) – Good looks at this attractive warbling-finch near Las Grutas on our final afternoon there.
PATAGONIAN YELLOW-FINCH (Sicalis lebruni) – That little puddle of water in the road near Puerto Piramides proved to be quite the attraction for this local yellow-finch.
SAFFRON FINCH (Sicalis flaveola)
GRASSLAND YELLOW-FINCH (GRASSLAND) (Sicalis luteola luteiventris) – This southern race of this species was once split out and was called the Misto Yellow-Finch. It ended up being our most widespread yellow-finch of the tour.
GREAT PAMPA-FINCH (EASTERN) (Embernagra platensis platensis) – Pretty common in the pampas grass in the San Clemente area. This race and the western olivascens subspecies are certainly different enough in morphology and ecology to split as separate species (which they were originally!).
DOUBLE-COLLARED SEEDEATER (Sporophila caerulescens) – A couple of dueling males at our picnic lunch spot near San Clemente was all that we could find this year.

This beautiful Black-and-rufous Warbling-Finch was the first of three species of lovely warbling-finches seen on this tour. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

GOLDEN-BILLED SALTATOR (Saltator aurantiirostris) – This one doesn't get much farther south than the Las Grutas area.
Emberizidae (Buntings and New World Sparrows)
RUFOUS-COLLARED SPARROW (Zonotrichia capensis) – Every single day of the trip!
Icteridae (Troupials and Allies)
LONG-TAILED MEADOWLARK (Sturnella loyca) – We had a daily dose of this beauty once we got south of Buenos Aires Province. The locals call this one the Loyca.
AUSTRAL BLACKBIRD (Curaeus curaeus) – We had a single responsive birds just before we entered the Los Glaciares NP. This one is now in its own genus (Forbes's Blackbird of Brazil is now separated out into its own genus, Anumara).
SCARLET-HEADED BLACKBIRD (Amblyramphus holosericeus) – We looked and looked for this one on the side of the road and finally found a single imm. male sitting out in the open near Est. El Palenque. Whew!
YELLOW-WINGED BLACKBIRD (Agelasticus thilius) – You don't see the yellow on the wing until this one happens to fly.
BROWN-AND-YELLOW MARSHBIRD (Pseudoleistes virescens) – Common and conspicuous in the pampas marshes.
BAY-WINGED COWBIRD (Agelaioides badius) – Not really even a cowbird at all, since this one is the primary HOST of the Screaming Cowbird! It's actually much closer to the Bolivian Blackbird than it is to the cowbirds.
SCREAMING COWBIRD (Molothrus rufoaxillaris) – Unlike the very similar Shiny Cowbird, the sexes look alike on this one (the two species sound very different, too.).
SHINY COWBIRD (Molothrus bonariensis)
VARIABLE ORIOLE (Icterus pyrrhopterus) – There was a taxonomic revision of the Moriche/Epaulet Oriole complex recently, and it turns out that these southern birds with chestnut shoulders are an entirely different species from the Epaulet. We had one quick flyby at La Balandra.
Fringillidae (Finches, Euphonias, and Allies)

Our group on the hunt for the uncharacteristically elusive Cinnamon-bellied Ground-Tyrant. (Photo by participant Dominic Sherony)

HOODED SISKIN (Spinus magellanicus) – Our only birds were a few individuals at our picnic lunch spot near San Clemente as we headed north to B.A.
BLACK-CHINNED SISKIN (Spinus barbatus) – Plenty in the Nothofagus forests of the far south. This one ranges north, at least, to Sierra Grande.
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus) [I]

PICHI (Zaedyus pichiy) – This short-eared Armadillo crossed the road in front of our bus as we headed east to the tip of the Peninsula Valdes.
OLD WORLD RABBIT (Oryctolagus cuniculus) – In the Ushuaia area only. [I]
CAPE HARE (Lepus capensis) – All of the other 'rabbits' that we saw on the tour north of Tierra Del Fuego were this introduced species. [I]
SOUTHERN CAVY (Microcavia australis) – Great looks at these tiny tailless rodents at the Magellanic Penguin colony at Punta Tombo.
PATAGONIAN CAVY (Dolichotis patagonum) – Also called the Mara, we enjoyed many encounters with this strange rodent on the grassy plains of Chubut. [E]
NUTRIA (Myocastor coypus) – A few in the pampas; also called the Coipo.
ORCA (Orcinus orca) – It had been many years since I'd seen these on the Peninsula Valdes, and I sure wish they had been closer, but it was a wonderful sight to behold at the eastern end of the peninsula.
SOUTHERN RIGHT WHALE (Eubalaena australis) – One of the hallmark encounters on a trip to the Peninsula Valdes is a boat trip to get you up close and personal with the rare Southern Right Whale. It looked like the high winds would dash our hopes of going out on the water, but the wind abated and we all thrilled at close looks at multiple females with young calves.

The Southern Argentina tour is a great trip for mammals, and a high percentage of the total individuals you see are various forms of "guinea pigs" or cavies. This Southern Cavy was using the old nesting burrows at the Magellanic Penguin Colony in Punta Tombo. (Photo by guide Dave Stejskal)

CULPEO FOX (Pseudalopex culpaeus) – The rusty face and legs of this one make it pretty easy to i.d.
SOUTHERN SEA LION (Otaria byronia) – There were more of these around than I usually see at this season on the Peninsula Valdes. Also very evident on the Beagle Channel boat ride.
LEOPARD SEAL (Hydrurga leptonyx) – This was the biggest surprise on the Beagle Channel boat trip - more so than the King Penguin! In almost 25 years of doing this boat trip here, that was the first Leopard Seal that I've ever seen!
SOUTHERN ELEPHANT SEAL (Mirounga leonina) – Including a couple of gigantic males hauled out on the beach at the eastern end of the Peninsula Valdes.
GUANACO (Lama guanicoe) – We found our first Guanacos at Punta Tombo while visiting the Magellanic Penguin colony there and they continued to grace the landscape south to the El Calafate region.


Totals for the tour: 261 bird taxa and 13 mammal taxa