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Field Guides Tour Report
Chile 2013
Oct 27, 2013 to Nov 16, 2013
Peter Burke & Ricardo Matus

The amazing landscapes across Chile were as memorable as the birds. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

After several years since I had last toured the whole country, it was a real pleasure to return to so many great places with you. This was my first time visiting a couple of the tucked-away sites like Sierra Baguales and Lonquimay Valley as well.

As with other tours I've done to Chile, one never quite knows what to expect with the birds and the weather. I have to say our luck was pretty good though, with the winds and cold that had lashed the Magallanes area in the days previous to our arrival having mostly abated. It wasn't until we made our trip up to the Yeso Valley that the weather gods started to frown upon us. However, it turned out to be a blessing as it drove many high-altitude birds down into the valley. Most of the southern half of Chile experienced a very cold early spring, and unfortunately many of the fruit crops this year will suffer low yields due to the prolonged cold of September. This seemed to have worn off, as many if not all of the expected migrants had returned to their breeding grounds just in time for our tour.

You can't always depend on the birds to show, of course, and we did have put in our time, especially with those furtive tapaculos -- and in the end we did pretty well with them! Our birding luck was pretty good as well, and we found a few winter birds lingering for us in Magallanes -- Kelp Goose and Flightless Steamer-Duck were great examples of birds we often miss because they've left for the inaccessible fjords to breed.

Who can forget those incredible little Black Rails running around beneath the boardwalk at El Peral?! Or the perched White-throated Hawk at Termas de Chillan that we simply walked away from? What about the pair of Austral Rails that walked into view at Torres del Paine, and just as quickly vanished into the vegetation? Think of the Ornate Tinamou that we observed walking off into the high Andean puna vegetation above Putre -- what a thrilling sighting! Of course we can't forget the moment that Celestyn found his own Magellanic Woodpecker at Termas de Chillan and the following half hour we all enjoyed of simply observing that wonderful male working away on a Nothofagus beech in plain view.

Some of our luck came by way of persistence as well -- the good looks at that crazy tail of the DesMurs's Wiretail after wrestling with a few other birds in thick vegetation, and the pair of Chestnut-throated Huet-Huets that foraged under the bus while we watched in awe. I could go on, but I'll let you read through the triplist and re-live your own great memories of the many species and experiences we had on this trip.

What is not on our list is the gorgeous scenery and the good people we met along the way. We saw plenty of volcanoes from the ground, some of them amazingly beautiful such as Llaima and Lonquimay. We saw Torres del Paine, one of the most gorgeous mountains in the world. The north with the twin volcanoes and Lake Chungara was a postcard around every corner. The Chilean coast, the beaches, the foothills, and even the central valley and the city of Santiago make an impact. We also got to enjoy some of the culture, particularly some good local food -- fresh fish such as Corvina and Congrio plus the Paila de Pil-Pil (I'm still feeling full just thinking of it!) in Puerto Varas, barbecued beef, lamb in Patagonia, and the wine of course. And shouldn't I mention the flan?

It was a quick sample, but this is the great thing about birding. You get to see wonderful birds, meet great people, sample some nice food and drink, and see the world. It was a great trip, and you were great travelers to share it with. Take care and we'll see you again!

--Peter and Ricardo

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)

Lesser Rhea punctuates the landscape at Torres del Paine National Park. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

LESSER RHEA (DARWIN'S) (Rhea pennata pennata) – Commonly seen on the mainland while we were driving through the Patagonian steppe. This species is absent from Tierra del Fuego.
Tinamidae (Tinamous)
ORNATE TINAMOU (Nothoprocta ornata) – We came across 5 different birds in the highlands above Putre!
CHILEAN TINAMOU (Nothoprocta perdicaria) – We all got onto a bird that Richard spotted as it walked through the open matorral at Yerba Loca above Santiago. [E]
PUNA TINAMOU (Tinamotis pentlandii) – What a thrill to see a trio of birds calling together in the bofedales below Lauca National Park!
Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)
BLACK-NECKED SWAN (Cygnus melancoryphus) – Common in the steppes of the south, we also saw a few around Concepcion and Santiago in wetlands.
COSCOROBA SWAN (Coscoroba coscoroba) – Another widespread species of the Patagonian wetlands, but also seen in central Chile during the trip.
ANDEAN GOOSE (Chloephaga melanoptera) – We came across this species throughout the day when we visited Lauca. This species is now thought to be most closely allied with Orinoco Goose, not the other Chloephaga geese of the south.
UPLAND GOOSE (Chloephaga picta) – Abundant in the south, we saw both barred and white-breasted forms of the males.
KELP GOOSE (Chloephaga hybrida) – A single young male on the shoreline on Tierra del Fuego was our only sighting.
ASHY-HEADED GOOSE (Chloephaga poliocephala) – Wonderful views of this handsome goose in Torres del Paine; this is a sheldgoose of the forest, not the open steppe.
RUDDY-HEADED GOOSE (Chloephaga rubidiceps) – A quick look at a pair on Tierra del Fuego, this rare goose is suffering population declines in Chile and Argentina.
FLYING STEAMER-DUCK (Tachyeres patachonicus) – We came across a few pairs and singles on the Patagonian steppe.
FLIGHTLESS STEAMER-DUCK (Tachyeres pteneres) – Always a tough bird at this time of year during the tour, we were treated to a nice pair on Tierra del Fuego while Jen and Greg ran into another pair on the mainland during their drive to meet up with the group. Most pairs have moved into the fjords to breed by this time.

We were lucky to still have a pair of Flightless Steamer-Ducks around at this time of year. (Photo by participant George Sims)

CRESTED DUCK (Lophonetta specularioides) – Common in the south and a few seen in the north in Lauca. These are recognized as two different forms but appear almost identical.
SPECTACLED DUCK (Speculanas specularis) – Formerly known as Bronze-winged Duck, we saw a number of pairs of this superb puddle duck in Torres del Paine.
TORRENT DUCK (Merganetta armata armata) – A distant view of a pair in Torres del Paine but much closer looks at the Salta de la Princess of a pair feeding/resting in the river.
CHILOE WIGEON (Anas sibilatrix) – A common duck of the patagonian wetlands.
CINNAMON TEAL (Anas cyanoptera) – The South American form of this species is larger and the females are generally darker and more brightly marked than the NA forms. We saw this species throughout the trip.
RED SHOVELER (Anas platalea) – Often a part of a waterfowl concentration in the Patagonian wetlands, we saw good numbers of this rather drab shoveler.
WHITE-CHEEKED PINTAIL (Anas bahamensis) – This species was quite conspicuous this year, with birds seen in almost every section of the tour. Some years we see few to none.
YELLOW-BILLED PINTAIL (Anas georgica) – Usually the most common puddle duck in wetlands throughout the country south of the Atacama Desert.
SILVER TEAL (Anas versicolor) – A distant pair at the wonderful Boque Quemado wetlands just north of the Primera Angostura ferry in Patagonian Chile.
PUNA TEAL (Anas puna) – An abundant duck on the bird-rich Lago Chungara in Lauca National Park. This is a High Andean species that is found only in the north of the country.
YELLOW-BILLED TEAL (FLAVIROSTRIS) (Anas flavirostris flavirostris) – Common in the wetlands of south and central Chile. This is the darker form of Yellow-billed Teal.
YELLOW-BILLED TEAL (OXYPTERA) (Anas flavirostris oxyptera) – A high Andean form of Yellow-billed Teal which we saw in Lauca. It is much cleaner and brighter on the body compared to flavirostris.
ROSY-BILLED POCHARD (Netta peposaca) – Handsome males and smartly plumaged females were seen in good number in Patagonian wetlands during this trip. This species is unpredictable in occurrance- some years there are many and others there are none. l
RUDDY DUCK (ANDEAN) (Oxyura jamaicensis ferruginea) – We had brief looks in Torres del Paine of a couple males but it wasn't until we got to Lauca that we saw this species well. It is the larger of the two Stifftail ducks that occur in Chile.
LAKE DUCK (Oxyura vittata) – This species was conspicuously absent from some wetlands we visited this year. We only had views at El Peral and Lampa, and here there were only a few present. This is the smaller Stifftail duck that is found only in the lowlands.
Odontophoridae (New World Quail)
CALIFORNIA QUAIL (Callipepla californica) – An introduced bird to Chile, this species is now a common in central Chile as within its native range!
Podicipedidae (Grebes)

Conveniently, this Silvery Grebe built its nest right next to the road in Torres del Paine National Park. (Photo by participant George Sims)

WHITE-TUFTED GREBE (Rollandia rolland) – We saw this smartly plumaged grebe in a few wetlands throughout the trip, almost always singly.
PIED-BILLED GREBE (Podilymbus podiceps) – A singleton at El Peral was our only observation.
GREAT GREBE (Podiceps major) – One of the world's largest grebes. We saw a small number on the lakes of Torres del Paine and El Peral.
SILVERY GREBE (JUNINENSIS) (Podiceps occipitalis juninensis) – This is the northern form of Silvery Grebe, found in the high Andes, often in large colonies like at Lago Chungara where we saw it. It is a less colorful bird than the southern occipitalis.
SILVERY GREBE (OCCIPITALIS) (Podiceps occipitalis occipitalis) – The southern form of Silvery Grebe with colorful golden spangling on the face. Observed on a number of patagonian wetlands including a nesting bird beside the road in Torres del Paine.
Phoenicopteridae (Flamingos)
CHILEAN FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus chilensis) – Flocks of non breeding birds still present in the Patagonian steppes (left over from winter) during the first part of the tour. We also had this species in Lauca with the other two flamingos.
ANDEAN FLAMINGO (Phoenicoparrus andinus) – Although somewhat distant, we saw the relevant field marks of adults and young in Lauca. This is the rarest in terms of population, of the three flamingos found in Chile.
JAMES'S FLAMINGO (Phoenicoparrus jamesi) – A large group of mainly younger birds were seen with Andeans in Lauca. A bit of sorting through them allowed us to see a few nice adults mixed in.
Spheniscidae (Penguins)
KING PENGUIN (Aptenodytes patagonicus patagonicus) – Cha-ching!!! A recent colonizer of Bahia inutil on Tierra del Fuego, we made it all the way down to this colony of 25 or so birds on our day in Tierra del Fuego. This is a major range expansion for this species and we're not sure of the reasons thus far.
HUMBOLDT PENGUIN (Spheniscus humboldti) – A few on the pelagic and a pair on the rocks in Renaca.
MAGELLANIC PENGUIN (Spheniscus magellanicus) – Our first trip of tour was to the colony at Seno Otway. A small gathering was present along the shoreline as well as a some birds heading in to burrows. Larger numbers were seen from the ferry to Porvenir.
Diomedeidae (Albatrosses)
SALVIN'S ALBATROSS (Thalassarche salvini) – Conspicuously absent this year, we saw a small number of young birds on the pelagic out of Valparaiso.
BLACK-BROWED ALBATROSS (Thalassarche melanophris) – We saw a good number of adults on the crossing of the Straits of Magellan but the birds during the pelagic were mainly younger age classes.
Procellariidae (Shearwaters and Petrels)

Participant George Sims caught this Salvin's Albatross taking off during our pelagic trip.

SOUTHERN GIANT-PETREL (Macronectes giganteus) – The more common Giant Petrel of Chile, there were many during the crossing of the Straits of Magellan. Almost all were young birds.
NORTHERN GIANT-PETREL (Macronectes halli) – A singleton during the Porvenir ferry crossing and a bird during the pelagic. This is the rarer of two Giant Petrels despite the name.
SOUTHERN FULMAR (Fulmarus glacialoides) – A good number were seen during the ferry crossing to Porvenir.
MASATIERRA PETREL (Pterodroma defilippiana) – This gadfly petrel is most commonly seen off Valparaiso during the spring. We encountered 4-5 birds during our trip. Also known as DeFillipi's Petrel.
WHITE-CHINNED PETREL (Procellaria aequinoctialis) – Fairly common on both the pelagic and the ferry crossing to Porvenir.
WESTLAND PETREL (Procellaria westlandica) – This species breeds entirely in New Zealand and is a regular visitor to the Chilean coastline, normally in smaller numbers than the preceding species. We had good numbers during the pelagic.
PINK-FOOTED SHEARWATER (Puffinus creatopus) – This species breeds mainly on a few islands off coastal Chile; we saw a lots during the pelagic.
SOOTY SHEARWATER (Puffinus griseus) – Although it breeds by the millions in both southern Chile and New Zealand, we saw just a small sample of this during the pelagic.
Hydrobatidae (Storm-Petrels)
WILSON'S STORM-PETREL (Oceanites oceanicus) – Many of these graceful sea swallows accompanied the boat during the pelagic. This form of the southeastern Pacific, the chilensis subspecies, is rumored to have specific status, in part due to large amounts of white on the underwing and spilling onto the belly. The antarctic breeding subspecies is what typically reaches the northern hemisphere but not this form. Its breeding grounds remain a mystery and there appears to be lots left to learn about it. Stay tuned!
Pelecanoididae (Diving-Petrels)
PERUVIAN DIVING-PETREL (Pelecanoides garnotii) – We put up a small number during the first hour or so of the pelagic.
MAGELLANIC DIVING-PETREL (Pelecanoides magellani) – During the crossing of the Strait of Magellan we saw this small bird whirring off in all directions from the ferry.
Sulidae (Boobies and Gannets)
PERUVIAN BOOBY (Sula variegata) – A bird of the cold Humbolt current, it is common along the chilean coastline.
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)

Pink-footed Shearwater was one of the most numerous species we encountered during the pelagic out of Valparaiso. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

NEOTROPIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax brasilianus) – Observed mainly during the last half of the trip, it is the default cormorant of inland waters but also prefers the coastline.
RED-LEGGED CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax gaimardi) – This smart-looking cormorant was found along the shoreline in rocks overlooking Renaca. It is another Humbolt current specialist.
MAGELLAN CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax magellanicus) – Observed during the ferry crossings of the Strait of Magellan. Also known as Rock Cormorant.
GUANAY CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax bougainvillii) – Only a few birds were seen as we circled the port of Valparaiso. Apparently the food supplies which this and other Humbolt current species rely on had shifted northwards into Peru according to local ornithologists.
IMPERIAL CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax atriceps atriceps) – The form known as Blue-eyed Cormorant, it is found in the fjords of Chile's west coast. We saw this form commonly at Puerto Natales.
IMPERIAL CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax atriceps albiventer) – The form known as King Cormorant. It is found in Chile along the Straits of Magellan and Tierra de Fuego. This is the form most commonly seen at Punta Arenas and during the ferry crossings.
Pelecanidae (Pelicans)
PERUVIAN PELICAN (Pelecanus thagus) – This hulking Pelican is common along the coastline from Puerto Montt northwards. Its numbers were low this year due to poor food supplies onshore.
Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)
COCOI HERON (Ardea cocoi) – Singles in Lonquimay and Lampa. This is not a common Chilean bird.
GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba) – Seen on a number of days in low numbers.
SNOWY EGRET (Egretta thula) – Most common in the north of Chile.
LITTLE BLUE HERON (Egretta caerulea) – An increasing species in the oasis valleys of Arica; it is dispersing from Peruvian nesting areas.
CATTLE EGRET (Bubulcus ibis) – Common in central Chile; some large nesting colonies were seen at a couple of wetlands.
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (AMERICAN) (Nycticorax nycticorax hoactli) – The paler form of the altiplano of the high Andes. We saw them along the shoreline Lago Chungara.
BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (DUSKY) (Nycticorax nycticorax obscurus) – A couple of birds in wetlands of central Chile. This dark form is typical of most of Chile.
Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)
PUNA IBIS (Plegadis ridgwayi) – A highland ibis that we saw in Lauca, but also in the river mouth of the Lluta River north of Arica, where non-breeders tend to congregate.
BLACK-FACED IBIS (Theristicus melanopis) – One of the characteristic species of central Chilean lowlands and Patagonia; this bird foraged in small groups throughout the first half of the trip.
Cathartidae (New World Vultures)

We had great looks at the magnificent Andean Condor in flight. (Photo by participant George Sims)

BLACK VULTURE (Coragyps atratus) – Observed from Puerto Montt north to Chillan and Santiago. At times it is more common than Turkey Vulture.
TURKEY VULTURE (Cathartes aura) – The dark southern cone forms of Turkey Vulture jota are distinctly darker bodied and brighter headed than populations of North America. We saw them mainly in the northern oasis valleys.
ANDEAN CONDOR (Vultur gryphus) – Some wonderful views of these magnificent birds while we drove towards Torres del Paine and into Sierra Baguales. We had a couple at Farallones but our visit to Yeso Valley was hampered by snow so we had little to no chance of seeing them on that day.
Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)
WHITE-TAILED KITE (Elanus leucurus) – Occasional birds seen in agricultural areas in the central zone of the country.
CINEREOUS HARRIER (Circus cinereus) – A small number of males and a single female cruised past us on several occasions.
HARRIS'S HAWK (Parabuteo unicinctus) – Our best views were a couple of soaring birds over the highway in the environs of Santiago. One in Lonquimay was a bit south of the usual range.
VARIABLE HAWK (Geranoaetus polyosoma) – The form most commonly seen was the Red-backed Hawk, widespread in the southern cone of South America. The Puna Hawk, once recognized as a high Andean species, has now been lumped with Red-backed as one species, Variable Hawk. Birds seen above Putre may have belonged to this form by range alone.
BLACK-CHESTED BUZZARD-EAGLE (Geranoaetus melanoleucus) – Wonderful views of this graceful, huge raptor at several locations in the Andes.
WHITE-THROATED HAWK (Buteo albigula) – Wow!! What fabulous views of a seldom seen bird! This shy, retiring raptor of the southern Beech forests is usually seen quietly gliding over, but to have a perched bird which we walked away from after taking in our fill was outstanding.
Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)
BLACK RAIL (SOUTHERN SOUTH AMERICA) (Laterallus jamaicensis salinasi) – This was probably the biggest challenge to see in the entire trip. After Ricardo masterfully picked out the call from the interpretive center, a pair of Black Rails came in very close to us underneath a boardwalk at El Peral and most of us witnessed a black 'mouse' scurrying though the vegetation at one point or another. These birds differ vocally from northern forms of Black Rail and may well be split off as a separate species.
AUSTRAL RAIL (Rallus antarcticus) – Another fabulous bird! After remaining unknown for years, this species is being found regularly in the Patagonian steppe of Argentina and Chile thanks to the fieldwork of Juan Barnett. However, seeing one is still a challenge and our patience paid off with a wonderful pair coming in quite close for all to see.
PLUMBEOUS RAIL (Pardirallus sanguinolentus) – Great looks at a tame, but stunningly colored rail.
PURPLE GALLINULE (Porphyrio martinicus) – A very unexpected bird for the trip, this represents about the 5th record for the country I think! It was a young bird, still with a brownish head at a small reservoir called the Tranque Sobraya in the Azapa Valley near Arica.
COMMON GALLINULE (AMERICAN) (Gallinula galeata pauxilla) – The lowland, smaller form of Common Gallinule which we saw in several spots around Arica.

To have a White-throated Hawk perch in the open and remain cooperative for an extended period of time was a most unusual treat. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

SPOT-FLANKED GALLINULE (Gallinula melanops) – A single bird in a small lake near Santo Domingo was our only look at this small gallinule.
RED-GARTERED COOT (Fulica armillata) – The largest and most common of the three Marsh Coots of Chile.
RED-FRONTED COOT (Fulica rufifrons) – This bird appears more Gallinule-like compared to the other Marsh Coots. We saw them well at the same waterbody with the Spot-flanked Gallinule and at Lampa.
GIANT COOT (Fulica gigantea) – This spectacular coot was abundant on the shores of Lago Chungara in Lauca. Their huge nest mounds adorned the shoreline of the lake everywhere you looked.
SLATE-COLORED COOT (Fulica ardesiaca) – Also abundant on Lago Chungara, but dwarfed by the former species. We saw mainly chestnut-shielded birds but came across three white shields at the Tranque Sabraya in Azapa.
WHITE-WINGED COOT (Fulica leucoptera) – Another Marsh coot, seemingly always the scarcest, but we saw them in the southern patagonian wetlands and in the central zone at Laguna El Peral and Lampa.
Burhinidae (Thick-knees)
PERUVIAN THICK-KNEE (Burhinus superciliaris) – A pair of sleepy looking birds were resting in an open sandy field in the Lluta Valley.
Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)
SOUTHERN LAPWING (SOUTHERN SOUTH AMERICA) (Vanellus chilensis chilensis) – Common and conspicuous in most of Chile south of the Atacama Desert. The southern forms of this species are quite different from northern South American forms (hint hint..)
AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVER (Pluvialis dominica) – Up to eight birds frequented the mouth of the Lluta River during our stay.
COLLARED PLOVER (Charadrius collaris) – Several birds at the mouth of the Maipo River.
TWO-BANDED PLOVER (Charadrius falklandicus) – This handsome plover of the Patagonian steppe was scattered throughout our tour of the area.
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER (Charadrius semipalmatus) – Three birds were found on our last day at the mouth of the Lluta River. This is an uncommon winter visitor to Chile.
KILLDEER (Charadrius vociferus) – A pair of birds at the mouth of the Lluta River. This is part of an isolated Peruvian/Chilean population, separate from the North American population.
RUFOUS-CHESTED DOTTEREL (Charadrius modestus) – This wonderful shorebird was fairly regular along the road past Pali Aike, and our first stop for it resulted in a female sitting on eggs.
DIADEMED SANDPIPER-PLOVER (Phegornis mitchellii) – Not even a moderate snowfall could stop us from reaching the bog in the Yeso Valley where a pair with young was waiting for us. I'll never forget the quiet, tranquil scenery of that day!
TAWNY-THROATED DOTTEREL (Oreopholus ruficollis) – This very smart looking dotterel was found in the open steppe during our drive past Pali Aike. One stop produced at least four birds at once, including wonderful aerial displays.
Pluvianellidae (Magellanic Plover)

The wing structure and tail shape add up to a distinctive silhouette for the Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

MAGELLANIC PLOVER (Pluvianellus socialis) – A relatively long walk was rewarded with a superb pair of these birds feeding along the shoreline of Laguna Verde on Tierra del Fuego.
Haematopodidae (Oystercatchers)
AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus palliatus) – A common coastal bird in the central and northern zones of Chile.
BLACKISH OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus ater) – We encountered a few of these large bulky Oystercatchers along the coastline in central Chile.
MAGELLANIC OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus leucopodus) – A bird of the open grassy steppe in Patagonia, we found them commonly throughout the south. Their finer bills are used to forage for worms in the soil, unlike their cousins.
Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)
BLACK-NECKED STILT (WHITE-BACKED) (Himantopus mexicanus melanurus) – Locally known as Perrito (little dog), we found out why when we got close to a nesting colony at Lampa!
ANDEAN AVOCET (Recurvirostra andina) – A lone individual at Lago Chugara was our only bird; these graceful waders can be hard to find when conditions are not ideal.
Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)
SPOTTED SANDPIPER (Actitis macularius) – Three birds at the mouth of the Lluta River our last day. An uncommon bird this far south.
GREATER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa melanoleuca) – We saw birds as far south as Magallanes and as far north as the Lluta river mouth in Arica, but never in large numbers.
WILLET (Tringa semipalmata) – A couple of birds on the rocks south of Arica, loafing with gulls.
LESSER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa flavipes) – Like the Greater Yellowlegs we saw them all over but were most common at the marsh near Lampa where almost 100 were seen.
WHIMBREL (AMERICAN) (Numenius phaeopus hudsonicus) – Another coastal wintering shorebird that occurs in good numbers in Chile during the austral summer.
HUDSONIAN GODWIT (Limosa haemastica) – A single bird on the last day at the Lluta River mouth; this species winters in large numbers at Chiloe and on Tierra del Fuego but at very specific locations.
RUDDY TURNSTONE (Arenaria interpres) – Small numbers in the area of Vina del Mar and Arica.
SURFBIRD (Aphriza virgata) – Occurred with Ruddy Turnstones in similar areas but larger numbers in the north.
SANDERLING (Calidris alba) – A large flock flying south past the Lluta River mouth the last morning.
SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER (Calidris pusilla) – Several birds at the Lluta river mouth on our last morning; this is a rarity in Chile.
LEAST SANDPIPER (Calidris minutilla) – A rare bird in Chile, but we found one near Lampa and several at the Lluta River mouth.

Thanks, Richard, for spotting this Chilean Tinamou! (Photo by participant George Sims)

WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER (Calidris fuscicollis) – This peep winters in numbers in Magallanes but tends to be found mostly on the shoreline, versus the more terrestrial inhabiting Baird's Sandpiper. We saw several groups in Patagonia.
BAIRD'S SANDPIPER (Calidris bairdii) – This was the most common peep we found throughout the trip, from coastline to high andean wetlands.
STILT SANDPIPER (Calidris himantopus) – One first winter bird at the mouth of the Lluta river; a good bird in Chile!
SOUTH AMERICAN SNIPE (MAGELLANIC) (Gallinago paraguaiae magellanica) – The familiar winnowing of a snipe was this species which is common in the Patagonian steppe.
WILSON'S PHALAROPE (Phalaropus tricolor) – Another shorebird that winters throughout Chile but is most abundant in Magallanes where large flocks occur on shallow lakes. We had our best looks in Arica and Lampa.
RED PHALAROPE (Phalaropus fulicarius) – Good numbers of migrants from the northern hemisphere were seen during the pelagic, skittering off in front of the boat.
Thinocoridae (Seedsnipes)
RUFOUS-BELLIED SEEDSNIPE (Attagis gayi) – Ricardo found a trio of birds on a bofedale just below Lauca, which offered prolonged looks at these high andean shorebirds.
GRAY-BREASTED SEEDSNIPE (Thinocorus orbignyianus) – One of the great bird sounds of the Andean valleys, we saw many of these in Yeso and up in Lauca.
LEAST SEEDSNIPE (Thinocorus rumicivorus) – This species was seen in the steppe of the far south, were we had great looks at both sexes of this tiny seedsnipe.
Rostratulidae (Painted-Snipes)
SOUTH AMERICAN PAINTED-SNIPE (Nycticryphes semicollaris) – Some very quick but very satisfying looks at a secretive shorebird, as we flushed five birds from the shoreline of the marsh in Lampa.
Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)
ANDEAN GULL (Chroicocephalus serranus) – These bold birds were almost always nearby up in Lauca.
BROWN-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus maculipennis) – Very close in appearance to Black-headed Gull of Eurasia, these birds were common in the south and central marshlands of Chile.
DOLPHIN GULL (Leucophaeus scoresbii) – A southern species confined to the deep south of Chile during the nesting season. We saw them well along the shoreline of the Straits of Magallanes.
GRAY GULL (Leucophaeus modestus) – Confined to the Atacama Desert in large breeding colonies, the global population nests within Chile. We saw them in good numbers in the north at Arica and off the Maipo River mouth.
FRANKLIN'S GULL (Leucophaeus pipixcan) – The large wintering population had yet to arrive during our tour but we did see small groups off Valparaiso and Arica.
BELCHER'S GULL (Larus belcheri) – Formerly lumped with Olrog's Gull of the south Atlantic under the name Band-tailed Gull. We saw this species in the north at Arica.

Andean Hillstar is a high-elevation gem. (Photo by participant George Sims)

KELP GULL (Larus dominicanus) – The common large gull of Chile and southern South America.
INCA TERN (Larosterna inca) – Some pretty nice views of perched birds on the coast at Renaca following our pelagic.
COMMON TERN (Sterna hirundo) – A single bird at the mouth of the Maipo River where it is a very uncommon bird. Most of the NA population winters in Brazil to Argentina.
SOUTH AMERICAN TERN (Sterna hirundinacea) – This is the common medium sized tern of southern South America. The identification issues are huge with other similar North American terns due to the fact that there appears to be two breeding populations on two entirely different schedules within Chile.
SNOWY-CROWNED TERN (Sterna trudeaui) – A couple of birds at the Maipo river mouth.
ELEGANT TERN (Thalasseus elegans) – A wintering species from Mexico and California, we saw these birds in good numbers at the mouth of the Maipo River.
BLACK SKIMMER (CINERASCENS) (Rynchops niger cinerascens) – These birds do not breed in Chile but are also spending part of their year away from Amazonian breeding areas along the coast. We saw them by the hundreds at the Maipo River and a few in Arica.
Stercorariidae (Skuas and Jaegers)
CHILEAN SKUA (Stercorarius chilensis) – This big skua was often seen flying high overhead in Magallanes, particularly on Tierra del Fuego or during the crossing of the Straits of Magallanes. One or two showed up on the pelagic as well.
Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)
ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) – A common urban bird across Chile.
SPOT-WINGED PIGEON (ALBIPENNIS) (Patagioenas maculosa albipennis) – This species is a recent colonizer to the north around Putre-so recent that it was unknown at the time of the publishing of our field guide! It now is found in small groups all around the town and surrounding fields.
CHILEAN PIGEON (Patagioenas araucana) – This is a large pigeon, quite like Band-tailed in North America, but one that was dipped in a wonderful Chilean red wine. Great looks in Temuco at Cerro Nielol.
WEST PERUVIAN DOVE (Zenaida meloda) – A bird of the northern dry coastal zone, it is spreading south into central Chile now. In appearance it is quite like White-winged Dove. Also known as Pacific Dove but that name was changed to avoid confusion with a dove of the western Pacific Ocean. Common in the northern valleys.
EARED DOVE (Zenaida auriculata) – A common garden bird of most of central Chile.
PICUI GROUND-DOVE (Columbina picui) – We somehow missed getting really good looks at this common dove of central Chile. We did flush a few as we passed through Chillan but never caught up with it again.
CROAKING GROUND-DOVE (Columbina cruziana) – A distinctive voice of the oasis valleys of the north; we saw them in Lluta and Azapa valleys.
BARE-FACED GROUND-DOVE (Metriopelia ceciliae) – Small to large groups of this ground dove were seen around Putre a couple of days.
BLACK-WINGED GROUND-DOVE (Metriopelia melanoptera) – We saw this species in good numbers in Farallones and Yeso Valleys at higher altitudes.
Strigidae (Owls)
AUSTRAL PYGMY-OWL (Glaucidium nana) – A very cooperative bird checked us out in Cerro Nielol early one morning.
RUFOUS-LEGGED OWL (Strix rufipes) – A single bird that responded quite nicely snuck up on us in the dark at Chillan but we managed fine views. Another pair nearby gave us a wonderful auditory display as well.
SHORT-EARED OWL (Asio flammeus) – There was a perched bird at the Seno Otway our first full field day.
Apodidae (Swifts)

This Red-gartered Coot struck a pose for participant George Sims.

ANDEAN SWIFT (Aeronautes andecolus) – A small group mixed with swallows in the Chaca Valley afforded some great views.
Trochilidae (Hummingbirds)
GREEN-BACKED FIRECROWN (Sephanoides sephaniodes) – It seemed to take a while but we finally caught up with some decent views of this bird in the de Chillan.
ANDEAN HILLSTAR (Oreotrochilus estella) – This wonderful hummer was common around the accommodations in Putre, even nesting on the hotel grounds outside our doors.
WHITE-SIDED HILLSTAR (Oreotrochilus leucopleurus) – Richard got us onto a female that was feeding actively at a huge Puya (ground bromeliad) flower at the bottom of the Yeso Valley.
GIANT HUMMINGBIRD (Patagona gigas peruviana) – Fairly common around Putre - we saw some individuals with rich cinnamon underparts.
GIANT HUMMINGBIRD (Patagona gigas gigas) – Who can forget that first bird that buzzed by us so closely at La Campana? Wonderful viewing of a spectacular bird!
CHILEAN WOODSTAR (Eulidia yarrellii) – We dug up a female in the Chaca valley and carefully went through the field marks that separate it from female Peruvian Sheartail. However it was the male that Connee spotted for us that made the day in Azapa! Well done Connee!!!
OASIS HUMMINGBIRD (Rhodopis vesper) – The most common hummer in the oasis valleys of the north. We saw a super diversity of plumages at the Hummingbird Garden in the Azapa.
PERUVIAN SHEARTAIL (Thaumastura cora) – Despite its reputation as an aggressive displacer of the threatened Chilean Woodstar, this superb little hummer is a treat to see. A couple of long trained males showed well for us in the Azapa Hummer Garden.
Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)
RINGED KINGFISHER (PATAGONIAN) (Megaceryle torquata stellata) – A flypast at the Salto de la princess on our day trip to Lonquimay valley.
Picidae (Woodpeckers)
STRIPED WOODPECKER (Veniliornis lignarius) – Several birds that offered some great views. Very closely related to the Checkered Woodpecker of Argentina.
CHILEAN FLICKER (Colaptes pitius) – A typical bird of the central Chilean countryside. We found them most easily during our trip through the agricultural landscape outside of Temuco en route to Lonquimay.
ANDEAN FLICKER (Colaptes rupicola) – This is a high andean woodpecker, which automatically makes it a bit of a wierdo as there are no trees! We saw them well in Lauca, where they make burrows in roadside embankments.
MAGELLANIC WOODPECKER (Campephilus magellanicus) – Celestyn must have had some sort of lucky charm for this bird - he managed to spot a male during our day in the Termas de Chillan for all of us to enjoy. Watching this male working on a Southern Beech tree trunk was truly magical.
Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)
MOUNTAIN CARACARA (Phalcoboenus megalopterus) – Several lovely adults in Farallones and Lauca.
SOUTHERN CARACARA (Caracara plancus) – Widespread and common in the Magallanes section of the trip.
CHIMANGO CARACARA (Milvago chimango) – One of Chile's most common birds- an ecological equivilent of corvids in the northern hemisphere. It was only in the deserts and highlands of the north that we didn't see them daily.

We enjoyed great views of Yellow-billed Tit-Tyrant near the hotel in Putre. (Photo by participant George Sims)

AMERICAN KESTREL (Falco sparverius) – Observed throughout the trip.
APLOMADO FALCON (Falco femoralis) – A pair whizzed past the bus as we drove through the Patagonian steppe.
PEREGRINE FALCON (Falco peregrinus) – We saw birds belonging to the resident subspecies cassini in Punta Arenas and Arica.
Psittacidae (Parrots)
AUSTRAL PARAKEET (Enicognathus ferrugineus) – Some decent looks in Torres del Paine but then super views at Termas de Chillan. A cold weather parakeet that can take about anything Chilean winters can throw at it.
SLENDER-BILLED PARAKEET (Enicognathus leptorhynchus) – A bird of the lowlands in the moist central Chilean heartland. They can occur in large groups and we had some fantastic viewing of one flock of 50+ birds on our day trip to Lonquimay, plus a number of other smaller flocks. [E]
Rhinocryptidae (Tapaculos)
CHESTNUT-THROATED HUET-HUET (Pteroptochos castaneus) – These guys were just getting vocal - it took some persistence but we did come across a pair delivering food to a nest. The male vigorously defended his territory and even walked right under our bus!
BLACK-THROATED HUET-HUET (Pteroptochos tarnii) – Cerro Nielol in Temuco was very kind to us for this species- we had male that ran about in the open several times during our prebreakfast birding, as well as our first visit the evening we arrived.
MOUSTACHED TURCA (Pteroptochos megapodius) – Who can't help but love a Tapaculo that runs around in the open, sitting on boulders and singing? This crazy looking bird is a favorite of many and we saw them multiple times in the central zone near Santiago. [E]
WHITE-THROATED TAPACULO (Scelorchilus albicollis) – This species always seems to be the toughest tapaculo to see well, despite the open habitat. We played with two pairs and I think many got just enough of a view to be certain that's what it was. [E]
CHUCAO TAPACULO (Scelorchilus rubecula) – probably the smartest looking tapaculo, if not bird species in Chile. We happened upon a female that flushed from her nest who then gave us spectacular views.
OCHRE-FLANKED TAPACULO (Eugralla paradoxa) – This was our first tapaculo of the trip and the pair was very cooperative for this species! Our views allowed for the distinctive coot-like frontal shield even!
MAGELLANIC TAPACULO (Scytalopus magellanicus) – Very successful with great views of this species; we saw the typical lowland forms that sometimes have white crown patches and also the highland central Chilean form that sounds, lives, and looks differently. Stay tuned!
DUSKY TAPACULO (Scytalopus fuscus) – A disappointing showing from this bird; we tried to pull one out of the blackberry bramble at the Maipo River mouth, but only a few managed fleeting views through all that vegetation. [E]
Furnariidae (Ovenbirds and Woodcreepers)
COMMON MINER (PATAGONIAN) (Geositta cunicularia cunicularia) – A very widespread species that exhibits alot of variation within its range; this form is found in the steppes of Patagonia and is not migratory. We saw them well at Seno Otway and other mainland sites in Magallanes.
SHORT-BILLED MINER (Geositta antarctica) – Almost an exclusive breeder to Tierra del Fuego, this species has much longer wings than the sympatric Common Miner. We managed some super views near Cerro Sombrero.
CREAMY-RUMPED MINER (Geositta isabellina) – A very distant and uncooperative bird at Valle Nevado was bested by several pairs along the snowy roadway at the top of the Yeso Valley. This high Andean breeder is tough to see outside of Chile and even here can be difficult. We owe our luck to the late spring snowfall we endured that day!
PUNA MINER (Geositta punensis) – Common in Lauca; this is another short-winged Miner that has a clear white breast.
RUFOUS-BANDED MINER (Geositta rufipennis fasciata) – Common in Farallones and Yeso Valleys. Watch for a future split with the form that occurs along the east slope of the Andes in Argentina.

King Penguins seem to be expanding their breeding range with this new colony in Tierra del Fuego. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

WHITE-THROATED TREERUNNER (Pygarrhichas albogularis) – An enduring bird of the southern Beech forests. Nuthatch-like in shape and just as cute, we saw them in many locations.
STRAIGHT-BILLED EARTHCREEPER (Ochetorhynchus ruficaudus) – A quick distant look at a bird above Putre where we had seen our first Ornate Tinamou.
CRAG CHILIA (Ochetorhynchus melanurus) – One of the special endemics of central Chile. A pair of birds showed very well for us and came in for a close view in the Yeso Valley. [E]
WREN-LIKE RUSHBIRD (Phleocryptes melanops) – This marsh-loving furnariid appears most like a Marsh Wren of North America. Our best views were at Lampa while we searched for Painted Snipe.
PATAGONIAN FOREST EARTHCREEPER (Upucerthia saturatior) – A recent split from Scale-throated Earthcreeper based on work by several Argentinian ornithologists, we are still working out its breeding range in Chile. It appears to be regular in Termas de Chillan were we found at least two birds. It also appears to be very shy and doesn't hang around long!
SCALE-THROATED EARTHCREEPER (Upucerthia dumetaria) – Widespread. We found this species on several occasions in the south and central valleys. A larger, longer-billed species that the Patagonian Forest Earthcreeper, always found in open habitats.
WHITE-THROATED EARTHCREEPER (Upucerthia albigula) – A singing male just outside of our hotel in Putre posed very well for several minutes.
PLAIN-BREASTED EARTHCREEPER (Upucerthia jelskii) – Observed in Lauca and the road above Putre. Very similar to White-throated Earthcreeper and perhaps conspecific with Buff-breasted Earthcreeper of Argentina and Bolivia.
BUFF-WINGED CINCLODES (Cinclodes fuscus) – Once lumped with Cream-winged Cinclodes to form Bar-winged Cinclodes of the entire Andean chain. Now this form is the southernmost of the three sister species and we saw it from central Chile south into Magallanes.
CREAM-WINGED CINCLODES (Cinclodes albiventris albiventris) – The northern taxa (in Chile) of what was once Bar-winged Cinclodes. It is very similar in appearance to White-winged Cinclodes and we were able to get good looks to separate the two. The northernmost form of this group is Chestnut-winged Cinclodes (Ecuador to Venezuela).
WHITE-WINGED CINCLODES (Cinclodes atacamensis) – A high altitude cinclodes that doesn't even show up in Putre (unlike Cream-winged). We saw several pairs in Lauca, hanging out with the Vizcachas!
GRAY-FLANKED CINCLODES (Cinclodes oustaleti) – Another cinclodes that likes higher altitudes for breeder usually. We tracked down a bird in Farallones and another in Yeso during our snowy walk to the DSP. This is a dark species, most like a smaller version of a Dark-bellied.
DARK-BELLIED CINCLODES (Cinclodes patagonicus) – A large, dark, water associated cinclodes which we saw in Magallanes and again in Termas de Chillan and the drive to Lonquimay.
SEASIDE CINCLODES (Cinclodes nigrofumosus) – The entire range of this bird is about 100 feet wide!! It also happens to extend almost 1000 km along the Chilean coast. We played with a couple of pairs in Renaca after our pelagic. [E]
THORN-TAILED RAYADITO (Aphrastura spinicauda) – What's not to like about this bird? A superb addition to the enchanting southern beech forests of Chile. They seemed to follow us wherever we went.
DES MURS'S WIRETAIL (Sylviorthorhynchus desmursii) – Persistence paid off with this bird. After several experiences, catching a face or half a tail, we were treated to a wonderful pair that came right out into the open in Termas de Chillan.

Umbrellas are useful in all sorts of weather. We found the coveted Diademed Sandpiper-Plover despite these conditions. And we were thankful the weather was much more cooperative than this for most of the tour! (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

PLAIN-MANTLED TIT-SPINETAIL (GRISESCENS) (Leptasthenura aegithaloides grisescens) – The northern, dry lowland form of this species. We saw it in the Chaca Valley south of Arica.
PLAIN-MANTLED TIT-SPINETAIL (BERLEPSCHI) (Leptasthenura aegithaloides berlepschi) – The altiplano, highland form of this species which we saw in Lauca during our trip there.
PLAIN-MANTLED TIT-SPINETAIL (AEGITHALOIDES) (Leptasthenura aegithaloides aegithaloides) – Probably the most colorful of the subspecies complex, found in the central portions of Chile. We observed it in Chillan, Farallones and El Yeso.
PLAIN-MANTLED TIT-SPINETAIL (PALLIDA) (Leptasthenura aegithaloides pallida) – This is the southernmost subspecies, and we saw these pallid birds in the steppe of Magallanes several times.
STREAKED TIT-SPINETAIL (Leptasthenura striata) – Outside of our hotel in Putre we played cat and mouse with a bird in a shrub until we all got some pretty good views.
CREAMY-BREASTED CANASTERO (DARK-WINGED) (Asthenes dorbignyi arequipae) – Quite common around Putre, we saw this species a few times. It is part of the Canastero complex and we treat it as Dark-winged Canastero of southernmost Peru and northern Chile.
AUSTRAL CANASTERO (Asthenes anthoides) – One of the first furnariids of the trip at Seno Otway, it looks a bit like a Sedge Wren which was also present there. We found another for Greg and Jenny on our way back into Punta Arenas from Torres del Paine.
CORDILLERAN CANASTERO (Asthenes modesta) – A bird carrying nesting material in Farallones offered great views of this highland canas tero. We also saw a couple around Putre.
SHARP-BILLED CANASTERO (Asthenes pyrrholeuca) – The Lonquimay valley appeared to be full of this canas tero, as we found several in a short distance there. It is much more widespread in Argentina and found in the highlands and lowlands there.
CANYON CANASTERO (Asthenes pudibunda) – Stunning views in Putre during our morning bird walk; a very rufous species dorsally with a loud, rolling song. It was unknown in Chile prior to the mid 1990's almost certainly due to being overlooked.
DUSKY-TAILED CANASTERO (Pseudasthenes humicola) – We struggled a bit to get a good look at this canastero of the matorral zone of central Chile. However, a pair made a pretty good showing for us on our way up Farallones. [E]
Tyrannidae (Tyrant Flycatchers)
YELLOW-BILLED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes flavirostris) – Two birds near the hotel in Putre came in quite well for great views. Although it occurs much further south in Argentina, it is only found in the northern highlands of Chile.
TUFTED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes parulus) – This cute flycatcher was observed on several occasions during the trip in central Chile. It's habit of wing flicking like a kinglet made it easily recognizable.
WHITE-CRESTED ELAENIA (CHILEAN) (Elaenia albiceps chilensis) – A common inhabitant of the southern beech forests of Chile. This form is migratory and leaves the country entirely during the austral winter.
WHITE-CRESTED ELAENIA (PERUVIAN) (Elaenia albiceps modesta) – This form is sedentary and doesn't leave the oasis valleys of northern Chile through the year. We were able to see a few of the structural and plumages differences with the preceeding taxon.
MANY-COLORED RUSH TYRANT (Tachuris rubrigastra) – A couple of these brightly marked reed inhabitants were seen at El Peral, Maipo River mouth and Lampa.
BRAN-COLORED FLYCATCHER (RUFESCENT) (Myiophobus fasciatus rufescens) – Another taxon to watch- this southern Peru/northern Chile form of Bran-colored Flycatcher is sure to be split off as it looks and sounds entirely different. We saw it on our way up to Putre our first afternoon in the north.

We got great looks at this Chucao Tapaculo. (Photo by participant George Sims)

VERMILION FLYCATCHER (Pyrocephalus rubinus) – A beautiful and common bird of the oasis valleys.
AUSTRAL NEGRITO (Lessonia rufa) – A common ground inhabiting flycatcher of much of southern Chile.
ANDEAN NEGRITO (Lessonia oreas) – We saw a few of these on the bofedales of Lauca - once lumped with the former species as Rufous-backed Negrito.
SPECTACLED TYRANT (Hymenops perspicillatus) – We observed this crazy looking tryant well along the PanAmerican highway near the town of Victoria with a couple males giving their swooping display flight.
SPOT-BILLED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola maculirostris) – Thanks to the late spring snowstorm, we were able to see this smallest of the ground-tyrants in good numbers in El Yeso.
PUNA GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola juninensis) – The common ground-tyrant of Lauca.
CINEREOUS GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola cinereus) – We were able to pick out a singleton amoungst the large numbers of White-broweds in El Yeso. Again, we can thank the snow storm for this sighting!
WHITE-FRONTED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola albifrons) – The large ground-tyrant of Lauca, not found south of here in Chile.
OCHRE-NAPED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola flavinucha) – Many birds driven down by the late snow storm in El Yeso and in Farallones.
WHITE-BROWED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola albilora) – The common ground-tyrant of central Chile.
CINNAMON-BELLIED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola capistratus) – In Patagonia, this is the common species of the steppe. We saw good numbers, already breeding during our stay in Magallanes.
BLACK-FRONTED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola frontalis) – A large, silvery ground-tyrant of the central Chilean highlands. We saw it best below Valle Nevado ski lodge.
BLACK-BILLED SHRIKE-TYRANT (Agriornis montanus) – Black-billed is the smallest of the Shrike-tyrants in Chile and can have considerable amounts of white in the tail. Our best looks were the day we went up to Valle Nevado above Santiago.
GREAT SHRIKE-TYRANT (Agriornis lividus) – A fantastic pair on the Yeso Valley road allowed us to watch them from a close distance. This species is low density and always difficult to find in Chile.
GRAY-BELLIED SHRIKE-TYRANT (MICROPTERUS) (Agriornis micropterus micropterus) – We got to see a pair of these birds at the beginning of Sierra Baguales; the subspecies micropterus is the southernmost form of this species and lacks bold throat stripes. This is a relatively new bird for this part of Chile and quite rare.
FIRE-EYED DIUCON (Xolmis pyrope) – A common species of central Chile in rural areas, we saw this species daily within range, including a nesting pair in Termas de Chillan.
CHOCOLATE-VENTED TYRANT (Neoxolmis rufiventris) – Wow! What a great flycatcher- we saw a good number in Magallanes while we drove across the steppe.
D'ORBIGNY'S CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca oenanthoides) – We were helped out by the Wings group who pointed out a singleton above Putre for us.
WHITE-BROWED CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca leucophrys) – A bird deep in a canyon above Putre gave most of the group the slip unfortunately.
PATAGONIAN TYRANT (Colorhamphus parvirostris) – Chillan gave us a nice chance to see this very southern flycatcher that inhabits the Coihue Beech forests of the southern cone of South America. Although they stayed high, we got pretty good looks!
Cotingidae (Cotingas)

This Alpaca doesn't look the least bit intimidated by Pugilist Pete.

RUFOUS-TAILED PLANTCUTTER (Phytotoma rara) – These crazy looking birds with the 'devil's eyes' were seen in a number of places, sitting quietly, looking around.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)
BLUE-AND-WHITE SWALLOW (PERUVIANA) (Pygochelidon cyanoleuca peruviana) – The birds of northern Chile southern Peru are recognized as a different subspecies- typically more dark under the tail and browner above than the southern forms. There are calls for closer study of these birds.
BLUE-AND-WHITE SWALLOW (PATAGONICA) (Pygochelidon cyanoleuca patagonica) – A long-distance migrant that comes into Chile to breed before returning as far north as Panama to spend the winter. Seen many times during the trip in the central zone.
ANDEAN SWALLOW (Orochelidon andecola) – A few in the highlands of Lauca and around Putre.
CHILEAN SWALLOW (Tachycineta meyeni) – Common south of Atacama desert.
BANK SWALLOW (Riparia riparia) – A few mixed into swallow flocks in the oasis valleys of the north.
BARN SWALLOW (AMERICAN) (Hirundo rustica erythrogaster) – Wintering birds that frequent the oasis valleys of the north in small groups. Very bright underneath, almost white, mostly due to bleaching and wear most likely. Or do they have molt that changes their appearance?
CLIFF SWALLOW (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) – A few birds mixed into swallow flocks in the Chaca Valley of the north.
Troglodytidae (Wrens)
HOUSE WREN (SOUTHERN) (Troglodytes aedon tecellatus) – This was the pale, well marked form of the oasis valleys of the north.
HOUSE WREN (SOUTHERN) (Troglodytes aedon chilensis) – A common garden bird of central Chile.
SEDGE WREN (PLATENSIS GROUP) (Cistothorus platensis hornensis) – These large buffy wrens of the steppe were seen best at the Penguin colony of Seno Otway.
Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)
AUSTRAL THRUSH (Turdus falcklandii) – Another common garden bird of much of Chile.
CHIGUANCO THRUSH (CHIGUANCO) (Turdus chiguanco chiguanco) – This species replaces Austral Thrush in the highlands of the north; it forms a superspecies group with Great Thrush of the Andes and together they have many forms in Bolivia, Peru and Argentina.
Mimidae (Mockingbirds and Thrashers)
CHILEAN MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus thenca) – A superb mockingbird, common in the matorral of central Chile. We saw them along roadways in many areas we visited. [E]
PATAGONIAN MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus patagonicus) – A pair that was almost certainly nesting was at the beginning of Sierra Baguales in Magallanes. It has a very restricted range in southern Chile.
Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)
CORRENDERA PIPIT (Anthus correndera) – The common pipit of central and southern Chile.
Thraupidae (Tanagers and Allies)

We scoped Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe in the highlands below Lauca National Park. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

BLUE-AND-YELLOW TANAGER (Thraupis bonariensis darwinii) – A couple of flashy males below Putre lit up the morning shrubbery.
CINEREOUS CONEBILL (Conirostrum cinereum) – This is a warbler-like bird of the oasis valleys, which we saw well in Chaca and Azapa.
TAMARUGO CONEBILL (Conirostrum tamarugense) – Yes!! A truly range restricted bird that we searched successfully for in the Chaca valley. With close views, this is one sharp looking passerine!
BLACK-THROATED FLOWERPIERCER (Diglossa brunneiventris) – What a great bird- with its upside down shaped bill and black patterned body, a couple of males offered great views.
BLACK-HOODED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus atriceps) – Probably the sharpest looking Sierra-Finch- a common bird around Putre where we saw many.
GRAY-HOODED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus gayi) – This species and the next form a really tough species complex in Chile - our guide oversimplifies the issue as many individuals do not fall into either category. Having said that, we did see very good examples of each species, this one in the steppes and in the valleys above Santiago.
PATAGONIAN SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus patagonicus) – Our best looks at this species were in Torres del Paine and Termas de Chillan.
MOURNING SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus fruticeti) – Common around Putre and a few above Santiago.
PLUMBEOUS SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus unicolor) – This is a sexually dimorphic Sierra Finch of the highlands. We saw it occasionally through the trip.
WHITE-THROATED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus erythronotus) – This high Andean bird was seen on a couple of bofedales below Lauca. It is thought to hybridize with Red-backed Sierra-Finch in some parts of the range, but not in Lauca.
ASH-BREASTED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus plebejus) – A couple of quick looks at this high elevation bird near Putre.
BAND-TAILED SIERRA-FINCH (Phrygilus alaudinus) – We saw a nice male at Farallones singing from atop a rock in the scope.
WHITE-WINGED DIUCA-FINCH (Diuca speculifera) – A big. long-winged finch that we saw a few times on our day up to Lauca, foraging in the bofedales.
COMMON DIUCA-FINCH (Diuca diuca) – One more common Chilean garden bird that we often encountered between Puerto Montt and Santiago.
WHITE-BRIDLED FINCH (Melanodera melanodera) – What a great bird! A lovely male fed beside the road for us while we scoped it up in the steppes of Magallanes.
SLENDER-BILLED FINCH (Xenospingus concolor) – This bluish colored finch with a bright golden bill flitted through the greenery in the oasis valleys in good numbers.
GREATER YELLOW-FINCH (Sicalis auriventris) – The large Yellow-Finch of the central Andes. We saw plenty of them in Farallones and El Yeso.
GREENISH YELLOW-FINCH (Sicalis olivascens) – The Yellow-Finch of the northern high Andes, common right in the town of Putre. [a]
PATAGONIAN YELLOW-FINCH (Sicalis lebruni) – A pair showed nicely for us during our walk to the Magellanic Plover site.
GRASSLAND YELLOW-FINCH (GRASSLAND) (Sicalis luteola luteiventris) – A familiar bird of the central zone of Chile, this Yellow Finch is a bit of an oddball in its small size a buzzy song. We saw them in good numbers in grassy areas on a number of days.
CHESTNUT-THROATED SEEDEATER (Sporophila telasco) – A small seedeater of the oasis valleys of the north. Seen well the day we birded Azapa and Chaca valleys.

We watched a Cordilleran Canastero carrying nesting material. (Photo by participant George Sims)

BAND-TAILED SEEDEATER (Catamenia analis) – The males were a wonderful steel-gray color with bright golden bills - not to be confused with the Band-tailed Sierra Finch which we saw in the central zone of Chile.
Emberizidae (Buntings and New World Sparrows)
RUFOUS-COLLARED SPARROW (Zonotrichia capensis) – Common and widespread; a wonderful singer which we heard throughout the trip.
Icteridae (Troupials and Allies)
PERUVIAN MEADOWLARK (Sturnella bellicosa) – Another oasis valley specialist, we found this meadowlark in the Lluta valley river mouth in good numbers.
LONG-TAILED MEADOWLARK (Sturnella loyca) – Known as Loica in Chile, this is a common rural bird in most of the country south of the desert. One can never tire of such a beautiful bird!
AUSTRAL BLACKBIRD (Curaeus curaeus) – We observed this bird in the southern half of the country in good numbers. It is in a genus shared only with Forbe's Blackbird of northeastern Brazil, which has a highly constricted range.
YELLOW-WINGED BLACKBIRD (Agelasticus thilius) – We saw this small marsh blackbird well in Lampa, where it sang it's "Chil-ay!" song from the reeds and hopped about the shoreline.
SHINY COWBIRD (Molothrus bonariensis) – Fairly common in the central zone. We often flushed them off the roadsides as we drove smaller roadways.
Fringillidae (Siskins, Crossbills, and Allies)
THICK-BILLED SISKIN (Spinus crassirostris) – Richard was able to track down a trio of birds that were described to us by another birder heading up the Yeso Valley during our lunch break. This is a difficult to find and poorly known species of the high Andes.
HOODED SISKIN (Spinus magellanicus bolivianus) – Common around Putre and also in the Chaca valley, this is a bird of the north in Chile.
BLACK SISKIN (Spinus atratus) – A couple of birds posted up in roadside shrubs along the shore of Lago Chungara our day in Lauca.
YELLOW-RUMPED SISKIN (Spinus uropygialis) – A lovely group of about 8 birds sat along the roadside in the Yeso valley.
BLACK-CHINNED SISKIN (Spinus barbatus) – Great views of this common garden bird throughout the southern half of the country.
Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)
HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus) – Widespread in towns and cities.


The seafood paila at Puerto Varas was incredible. (Photo by guide Peter Burke)

BIG HAIRY ARMADILLO (Chaetophractus villosus) – Super looks at an individual crossing our path in Sierra Baguales.
OLD WORLD RABBIT (Oryctolagus cuniculus) – widespread. [I]
EUROPEAN BROWN HARE (Lepus europaeus) – widespread [I]
MUSKRAT (Ondatra zibethica) – one in Patagonia looked out of place! [I]
NORTHERN MOUNTAIN VISCACHA (Lagidium peruanum) – Just couldn't get enough of these guys in Lauca!
NUTRIA (Myocastor coypus) – At our spot-flanked gallinule spot.
CORURO (Spalacopus cyanus) – The small, black rodent that played hide and seek up at Farallones. Related to the Tuco-tucos of South America, these are fossorial mammals.
COMMERSON'S DOLPHIN (Cephalorhynchus commersonii) – A brief, distant view of one during our ferry crossing at the Primera Angostura back to mainland South America from Tierra del Fuego.
ORCA (Orcinus orca) – This was real surprise on the pelagic; our captain had never seen one in 30 plus years out of Valparaiso! This individual seemed to be in a hurry to get somewhere.
SOUTHERN GRAY FOX (Pseudalopex griseus) – Commonly seen in Magallanes during our travels.
PATAGONIAN HOG-NOSED SKUNK (Conepatus humboldti) – A couple of sightings including a two individuals scapping together on the road into Boque Quemado wetlands.
SOUTHERN SEA LION (Otaria byronia) – A number of individuals were hauled out onto rocks at Renaca as well as up in Arica at the Fish Plant.
GUANACO (Lama guanicoe) – This was the common Camelid in Patagonia, scrambling out of the way of traffic seemingly everywhere! We also saw a few up towards Putre.
LLAMA (Lama glama) – The domesticated form of the Guanaco, seen in herds up into Lauca.
ALPACA (Lama pacos) – This is the domesticated form of the Vicuna, although the resemblance can be tough to discern with their short, fluffy appearances. Common in Lauca.
VICUNA (Vicugna vicugna) – Great views of roadside herds all day during our Lauca trip. These are more delicate, gentle looking than Guanacos and found only in the north of Chile.


Totals for the tour: 291 bird taxa and 16 mammal taxa