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Bird Buzz

Macaws, mud, and minerals...

Birds of many types gather regularly in large roost, to nest, to feed. Perhaps the most curious type of such gatherings is one we observe closely on several of our tours to Amazonia, but in particular on our Peruvian Rainforests of the Tambopata: Macaw Lick Extraordinaire tour. The name gives you a clue, of course...that macaw lick, or what's know locally as a ccollpa. As we note in our itinerary for the tour, "the Ccollpa de Guacamayos is a clay bank along the Rio Tambopata about eight hours by boat upriver from Puerto Maldonado. Here, almost daily and depending on the season of the year, dozens of big macaws and hundreds of other colorful parrots gather to a vertical section of the riverbank carved out of the foothills to consume a beak full or two of mineral-rich clay, a vital but rather mysterious part of their diet, now thought to protect them against toxic chemicals ingested in various fruits they eat or to supplement their diet with sodium."

One of the tour highlights is of course watching up to 6 species of macaws and myriad smaller parrots and parakeets visiting the lick in a frenzy of activity. But our 11-day itinerary also features another 300 or so bird species and a dozen mammals...we'll be, after all, in southeastern Peru, one of the most biodiverse and bird-species-rich parts of the entire planet. Guide Jesse Fagan will be guiding our group this summer, Aug 6-16. If you'd like to join us to experience this wonderful phenomenon and a huge dose of Neotropical birds, there are spaces still available as of this writing.

Don't forget also to view our 2017 illustrated triplist at the link below. It will give you a great taste of last year's tour.


 Other Bird Buzz Topics

Variations on a grand theme...

California's Yellow-billed Magpie...

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