October 2017 emailing
October 27th, 2017 by Field Guides· Add a Comment
The holidays are almost upon us…hard to believe! It’s been a busy fall to date, and there’s a whole lot more coming in the final months of 2017 before we launch into our schedule of 150 tours for 2018. In this emailing you can catch up on a couple of schedule updates (Sacha and Rio Tapajos), learn about the mystery of Red Crossbills, and of course check out our October Recent Photos gallery for more than 80 fresh images from recent trips and scouting, including California, Arizona, Brazil, Ecuador, France, Morocco, and a sneak peak at pics for our new 2018 Oregon route. And speaking of new tours, scroll down for a slideshow of teaser photos for New Mexico, a new 2019 itinerary. Linked below we also bring you 10 recent illustrated triplists (lots of pics, videos, and anecdotes), 12 fresh itineraries for 2018, and spaces available during the November to March period. The photo below from one of our two September France: Camargue & Pyrenees trips is a sample from the Recent Photos. Enjoy reading and viewing, and good birding to all!
Added Sacha II departure and Remote Rio Tapajos date change
You probably thought we were crazy to offer only one tour in 2018 to a very comfortable lodge in Amazonian Ecuador with an extensive network of canopy walkways and platforms. Well, don’t worry, we have come to our senses and are happy to announce a second departure to Amazonian Ecuador: Sacha Lodge with guide Mitch Lysinger, Jun 29-Jul 8, 2018. Our most recent trip to Sacha produced highlights such as Great Tinamou, Ornate Hawk-Eagle, White-browed Purpletuft, Paradise Tanager, Crested Owls on a day roost, Short-billed Leaftosser, and Cream-colored Woodpecker, to name a few. You can see the entire list and a summary of our adventure at this link.
Guide Bret Whitney reports a wonderfully successful first run of our new Brazil’s Remote Rio Tapajos tour. Exploring the upper reaches of a major tributary of the Amazon based out of a luxurious floating hotel was truly thrilling. Bret learned from this first run that slightly higher water levels in the river would be advantageous, so with that seasonality in mind he is shifting next year’s dates earlier, to Aug 4-15, 2018.
Birding news: Unraveling the mystery of Red Crossbills
Are you as confused as the next birder when it comes to deciphering the various “call types” of those confounding Red Crossbills across North America? Well, Matt Young and Tim Spahr from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology have put together a very comprehensive article: Crossbills of North America: Species and Red Crossbill Call Types. We highly recommend this piece — just tackle it in small doses!
Small groups and singular spaces
Willy Perez and Marcelo Padua fans (who isn’t?), here’s a heads up. Both Willy and Marcelo have something rare in their schedules: tours in the first half of 2018 with space open! Not only that, but considering the short lead time these may well remain fabulous small-group experiences! Willy’s Jewels of Ecuador trip, Jan 20-Feb 6, has two currently booked and needs just a few more to be a go…then it’s you, Willy, and a few others seeing 60+ hummingbirds, a plethora of fabulous tanagers, not to mention some 450+ species. (And in case those dates don’t work, we have a second tour with Mitch Lysinger, Mar 17-Apr 3. Also, be sure to check out a cool slideshow all about the Jewels tour.) Marcelo’s Brazil Nutshell: Intervales, Iguazu Falls & the Pantanal trip has three currently and just needs two more to be a go to these three premier birding sites (not to mention the thunderously spectacular falls); dates are Mar 3-17.
Now, about those singular (“referring to one person” or “exceptionally good or great” — both definitions work!) spaces: Megan Edwards Crewe has one each on Guyana II (Jan 27-Feb 7), Bhutan (where she’s joining Richard Webster, Apr 7-26) and Classical Greece (May 5-19); Dave Stejskal‘s got one on Borneo (Feb 27-Mar 16); Jay VanderGaast one on Costa Rica (Mar 10-25); and Jesse Fagan one on Western Panama (Mar 18-27). If you’d like to share with a roommate, check with our office to see if they can pair you up with another participant.
Holiday spaces: Just a few left
- Colombia: Cali Escape, Nov 18-27 with Richard Webster, for the cloudforests of two Colombian cordilleras and their rich assortment of hummingbirds and tanagers (3 spaces)
- Holiday Mexico: Yucatan & Cozumel, Nov 18-27 with Chris Benesh & Cory Gregory, for the most interesting birds of the Yucatan peninsula amidst attractive Mayan archaeology (4 spaces)
- Arizona Winter Specialties, Dec 27-Jan 2 with Tom Johnson, for exceptional winter birding with numerous specialties and potential rarities (1 space)
Triplists from recent tours
Click on any image or link below to see our annotated and illustrated online triplist. (And be sure also to see our October Recent Photos gallery for other great images.)
Comments from our travelers
Your post-tour comments on our evaluation form help us ensure that we offer the best possible tour experience and service, in the field and from our office.
“I’ve traveled with Field Guides on three other trips. I like the people-centered philosophy of your company. The trips are beautifully organized and thought out, and the guides are superb. I chose this trip because I was looking for more western bird species for my ABA list. Guide Tom Johnson was super in every way. The office staff is a big reason I like Field Guides. Again, it goes back to the people-centered aspect of the company. They are very responsive, patient, and no question is too trivial.” A.H., SLICE OF CALIFORNIA 2017
“The group experience was extremely good; better than I had anticipated. Guide Megan Crewe’s knowledge and enthusiasm really make a difference; on some days we interfaced with other tour groups and guides, and the difference was exponentially better.” M.L., CAPE MAY MEGAN’S WAY 2017
“An incredible, fantastic, wonderful, great experience!! I had a truly fine time throughout the whole trip. Not only is guide Willy Perez an outstanding guide, he also has great people skills and engages the entire group in conversations. He has a great sense of humor and many interesting stories. Office service was great. It was a pleasure working with Tour Manager Mandy Mantzel.” W.K., ECUADOR: RAINFOREST & ANDES 2017
Private tours: plan your own
Tour openings: November to March
Guide Richard Webster captured the scaly iridescence on the gorget of this Crowned Woodnymph beautifully during our Colombia: Santa Marta Escape tour this year, which he led with Cory Gregory. Richard and Cory are teaming up again next March. If you’d like to hold a space, contact our office.
- Vietnam, Nov 3-23 with Dave Stejskal (2 spaces)
- Colombia: Cali Escape, Nov 18-27 with Richard Webster (3 spaces)
- Holiday Mexico: Yucatan & Cozumel, Nov 18-27 with Chris Benesh & Cory Gregory (4 spaces)
- Holiday Costa Rica: Rancho Naturalista I, Dec 19-27 with Jay VanderGaast & local guide (2 spaces)
- Arizona Winter Specialties, Dec 27-Jan 2 with Tom Johnson (1 space)
- Costa Rica: Birding the Edges (Part I), Jan 6-15 with Tom Johnson & Cory Gregory (spaces open)
- Thailand, Jan 13-Feb 3 with Jay VanderGaast & Uthai Treesucon (2 spaces)
- Costa Rica: Birding the Edges (Part II), Jan 14-23 with Tom Johnson & Cory Gregory (spaces open)
- Jewels of Ecuador I, Jan 20-Feb 6 with Willy Perez (spaces open)
- Colombia: Medellin Escape, Feb 3-12 with Richard Webster & local guide (3 spaces)
- Panama’s Canopy Tower, Feb 4-10 with Chris Benesh & local guide (2 spaces)
- Cambodia: Angkor Temples & Vanishing Birds, Feb 10-24 with Phil Gregory & Doug Gochfeld (3 spaces)
- Owlberta: Alberta’s Owls & More, Feb 17-23 with Jay VanderGaast & John Coons (2 spaces)
- Colombia: Santa Marta Escape, Feb 24-Mar 4 with Richard Webster & Cory Gregory (spaces open)
- Borneo I, Feb 27-Mar 16 with Dave Stejskal & local guide (1 space)
- Brazil Nutshell: Intervales, Iguazu Falls & the Pantanal, Mar 3-17 with Marcelo Padua & Marcelo Barreiros (spaces open)
- Southwest Ecuador Specialties: Jocotoco Foundation Reserves, Mar 4-18 with Willy Perez (3 spaces)
- Costa Rica, Mar 10-25 with Jay VanderGaast & local guide (1 space)
- Jewels of Ecuador: Hummers, Tanagers & Antpittas II, Mar 17-Apr 3 with Mitch Lysinger (spaces open)
- Western Panama: Chiriqui & Bocas del Toro, Mar 18-27 with Jesse Fagan (1 space)
- Bahamas: Endemics & Kirtland’s Warbler, Mar 31-Apr 4 with Jesse Fagan (spaces open)
Teaser Pics for the new 2019 New Mexico tour
Stick your lobed toes in the air (like this Western Grebe photographed by guide Doug Gochfeld) if you are excited about a new short North American tour: New Mexico: Wintering Specialties. Guides Doug Gochfeld and Cory Gregory will be headed there Jan 26-Feb 1, 2019. To get a sense of the special birds we hope to encounter, have a look at this slideshow Doug just put together.
Recently posted 2018 itineraries
- Florida, Apr 28-May 6, 2018 with Doug Gochfeld & Mitch Lysinger
- Arizona Nightbirds & More I, May 3-7, 2018 with Tom Johnson
- Arizona Nightbirds & More II, May 10-14, 2018 with Dave Stejskal
- Pennsylvania’s Warblers & More, May 22-27, 2018 with Tom Johnson & Micah Riegner
- Mongolia: The Gobi Desert, Steppe & Taiga, May 31-Jun 17, 2018 with Phil Gregory
- Machu Picchu & Abra Malaga, Peru I, Jun 15-24, 2018 with Jesse Fagan
- The Norwegian Arctic: Spitsbergen & the Svalbard Archipelago Jun 20-30, 2018 with John Coons
- Peru’s Magnetic North: Spatuletails & More, Jun 23-Jul 5, 2018 with Dan Lane & Jesse Fagan
- Newfoundland & Nova Scotia, Jul 1-11, 2018 with Chris Benesh & Cory Gregory
- Iceland, Jul 6-15, 2018 with Godfried Schreur
- Galapagos: An Intimate Look at Darwin’s Islands, Jul 7-17, 2018 with Willy Perez
- Cloudforests of Ecuador, Jul 16-26, 2018 with Willy Perez
- Mountains of Manu, Peru, Jul 29-Aug 7, 2018 with Dan Lane
- Machu Picchu & Abra Malaga, Peru II, Oct 5-14, 2018 with Jesse Fagan