A Field Guides Birding Tours Report

Northern Peru: Endemics Galore 2022

October 7-26, 2022 with Dan Lane & Fernando Angulo guiding

Field Guides Birding Tours
Participant Paul Beerman captured this pair of Scarlet-fronted Parakeets throwing on the brakes as they came in for a landing at Sinsicap, providing a dramatic scene in the process.

This was the inaugural departure of the all new and revamped North Peru tour, visiting an impressive array of habitats and netting nearly 450 species of birds in its 18 days (that’s about as many as are usually found in Europe)! The region is a spectacular one with scenery that is hard to beat, what with the barren coastal deserts, arid Pacific foothill woodlands, steep western Andean slopes, cloudforests, puna grasslands, and dry intermontane valleys. The amount of contrasting mountains and valleys and the dry and humid habitats of each has resulted in a complex evolutionary history and a great deal of endemism. We encountered over thirty endemics of the country, and many more range restricted species that are shared between northwestern Peru and southwestern Ecuador. And this tour certainly took us off the beaten tourist path! I was so pleased to have Fernando Angulo along as coleader so he could share his immense knowledge of the region, its culture, its history, and its birds with us. Fernando was an excellent guide on a couple visits to local markets, which I think added a dimension to the tour it would have otherwise sorely lacked… and his ebullient good nature additionally added greatly to our enjoyment!

Peru is, among other things, a country of contrasts. In the region we visited, the long coastline, where the cold Pacific Ocean meets a dry desert, is dissected periodically with river valleys that now have extensive agriculture, and often end with a small wetland. Farther inland, barren desert gives way to arid scrubland and eventually deciduous or semi-deciduous foothill forest. As one continues upslope, the humidity rises until one reaches real cloudforest and then treeline and the puna habitat above. Once across the continental divide, a series of arid intermontane valleys dissect the mountains with humid forested ridges between. The local Amazonian drainage comprises the Huancabamba, Chinchipe, and Marañon rivers and their lesser tributaries, and these provide real barriers to the montane forest species living between them, in combination, they form one of the most important of the montane barriers along the Andean chain, the North Peruvian Low. We witness firsthand how related species and subspecies differ across this valley barrier! The decrease of humidity from east to west was also apparent as we headed east in the north and then west in the south. The Chaupe area near San Ignacio was an impressive humid lower elevation cloudforest that contrasted with the more arid forests on the other side of the mountains in the Huancabamba valley and the Pacific coast. And the cloudforests in Amazonas department, such as around Pomacochas and Leymebamba were far richer in diversity than the scrubbier woodlands, in adjacent southern Cajamarca department. Of course, the last contrast was made greater still by the impact of human land use around Cajamarca—one of the important seats of the Incan empire. Of course, the Chachapoyan culture in Amazonas was no slouch by comparison! In short, our odyssey took us through a great deal of interesting terrain and allowed us the opportunity to see these contrasts first hand.

The tour’s list contained many stars, and the list we compiled of everyone’s three favorites was extensive. It was topped by the rare and imposing White-tailed Shrike-Tyrant, a bird I had long wanted to see, and we finally did near Cruz Conga in a scrap of woodland that contained several local specialties. Other high-earners were the well-named Unicolored Tapaculo that put on a very un-tapaculo-like show for us on our last full day, the incredible seabird show at the “Booby Cliffs” at Eten, the endemic Gray-bellied Comet we saw in the Sangal Canyon near Cajamarca, and two memorable raptor encounters. One was the adult and young black morph (!) Sharp-shinned Hawks we enjoyed near the Huembo hummingbird feeders, and the other was the totally unexpected pair of Short-eared Owls that were out in full daylight in the wet puna grasslands near La Purla in Cajamarca! Other memorable mentions were additional endemics such as the White-winged Guans at Chaparri, the sneaky Marvelous Spatuletails at Huembo, the striking Pale-billed Antpitta on the San Lorenzo hike, and the skulky Russet-bellied Spinetails at Sinsicap. Then there were several other favorite hummingbirds, a group well represented on our list with no fewer than 35 species (!): the flashy Amethyst-throated Sunangel (which raises its wings when perching like a gymnast sticking the landing) and the gargantuan Giant Hummingbird that allowed close approach at Sinsicap. We managed to see an Andean Condor on our visit to the aptly-named Canyon of Condors above Leymebamba, the boldly patterned Gray-breasted Mountain-Toucans in the cloudforest at Abra Barro Negro, a family of Aplomado Falcons on the ridge above Sinsicap, where we also had a close encounter with a White-capped Dipper (a much-desired species for Guy). We stood in awe of the skylarking flight of a Slender-billed Miner near Laguna Huanico, enjoyed the bold personalities of a group of White-tailed Jays at Chaparri, felt the terror of a flock of shorebirds as a migrant Peregrine ripped through them as it hunted, and tried to comprehend the diversity of brushfinches on this route, with the rare and poorly-known Paynter’s form of White-winged Brushfinch perhaps being one of the top ones (and a good candidate for a split, I might add in a Shakespearean aside).

Fernando and I were delighted to share this undervisited part of Peru with you all, and we hope you enjoyed the visit as much as we did! We hope this new tour will have a strong following in the years to come, as it is a spectacular part of the world with a lot of great birds to see, as well as scenery, culture, and more! So tell a friend!

Meanwhile, keep them binoculars close at hand and we’ll see you again on another trail out there! Baile con dios!

—Dan Lane

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

Tinamidae (Tinamous)

TATAUPA TINAMOU (Crypturellus tataupa inops) [*]

Anatidae (Ducks, Geese, and Waterfowl)

COMB DUCK (Sarkidiornis sylvicola)

We had a nice gaggle of these large pied ducks at Tinajones Reservoir our first day.

TORRENT DUCK (Merganetta armata)

We managed to find a juvenile from our side road near Cruz Conga.

PUNA TEAL (Spatula puna)

This and many of the other highland ducks were at the Laguna Huanico near Cajamarca.

CINNAMON TEAL (Spatula cyanoptera)

This and the next were at Tinajones and Eten near the coast.



Our first of this usually highland duck was at Tinajas, but we later had many in bodies of water near Cajamarca.

YELLOW-BILLED TEAL (Anas flavirostris)

We encountered this highland species in bodies of water near Cajamarca.

ANDEAN DUCK (Oxyura ferruginea)

At Laguna Huanico. This species has recently been split from Ruddy Duck.

Cracidae (Guans, Chachalacas, and Curassows)


Mostly a lowland Amazonian species, but there is a small population in the lower elevations of the Chinchipe valley where we were on day 6.

ANDEAN GUAN (Penelope montagnii)

We saw this guan during our dusk walk along the road below Leymebamba.

WHITE-WINGED GUAN (Penelope albipennis) [E]

Great views up close of this Peruvian endemic at Chaparri and then Laquipampa. Both of these populations are thanks to the reintroduction efforts of Fernando and his associates.

Field Guides Birding Tours
White-winged Guans at Chaparri lodge are bold and inquisitive, allowing close views. These are the product of a reintroduction process that coleader Fernando Angulo helped organize to bolster wild populations of this endangered species. Photo by guide Dan Lane.
Phoenicopteridae (Flamingos)

CHILEAN FLAMINGO (Phoenicopterus chilensis)

A single bird was at Tinajones our first day.

Podicipedidae (Grebes)

LEAST GREBE (Tachybaptus dominicus)

One bird at Tinajones was our only one of the tour.

PIED-BILLED GREBE (Podilymbus podiceps)

Also at Tinajones.

SILVERY GREBE (ANDEAN) (Podiceps occipitalis juninensis)

A small group was at Laguna Huanico. This was one of the birds that doofus with a slingshot was shooting at. Happily, the grebe was very much aware and dove to avoid the pellets!

Columbidae (Pigeons and Doves)

ROCK PIGEON (Columba livia) [I]

Encountered most days, although we did our best to ignore them.

BAND-TAILED PIGEON (WHITE-NECKED) (Patagioenas fasciata albilinea)

Seen on several days in the humid montane forests.

PERUVIAN PIGEON (Patagioenas oenops)

Seen on the two days we were birding the lower Maranon canyon. Our best view was of a sunbathing bird just beside the river on day 13.

ECUADORIAN GROUND DOVE (Columbina buckleyi)

It was lucky that we got onto this dry habitat relative of Ruddy Ground-Dove in Bosque Yanahuana. They seem particularly skulky.

CROAKING GROUND DOVE (Columbina cruziana)

Common on the Pacific slope and a few in the Maranon valley.

BLUE GROUND DOVE (Claravis pretiosa)

Great views of this attractive dove in Bosque Yanahuana.

BARE-FACED GROUND DOVE (Metriopelia ceciliae)

A peculiar small dove of dry rocky habitats; we had our best look at the canyon of Sangal.

WHITE-TIPPED DOVE (DECOLOR) (Leptotila verreauxi decolor)

Common, encountered most days of the tour. This form, decolor, is a distinctively-voiced one that may warrant splitting at some point. It is mostly on the Pacific Coast of Peru and Ecuador, but also is found in the Maranon drainage.

WEST PERUVIAN DOVE (Zenaida meloda)

True to its name, this species remains on the Pacific slope in Peru. Apparently, it has managed to cross the Andes in Argentina, however!

Field Guides Birding Tours
The scenery of North Peru is captivating, as illustrated by this vertical multibladed Swiss army knife ridge on the edge of the Marañon valley. Photo by guide Dan Lane.

EARED DOVE (Zenaida auriculata)

Cuculidae (Cuckoos)

SMOOTH-BILLED ANI (Crotophaga ani) [*]

Heard only at Bosque Yanahuanca.

GROOVE-BILLED ANI (Crotophaga sulcirostris)

STRIPED CUCKOO (Tapera naevia)

Seen at Yanahuanca and heard many other places.

SQUIRREL CUCKOO (Piaya cayana)

Caprimulgidae (Nightjars and Allies)

COMMON PAURAQUE (Nyctidromus albicollis) [*]

Apodidae (Swifts)

CHESTNUT-COLLARED SWIFT (Streptoprocne rutila)

WHITE-COLLARED SWIFT (Streptoprocne zonaris)

Seen or heard on several days at various points of the tour.

WHITE-TIPPED SWIFT (Aeronautes montivagus)

Seen on Cruz Blanca.

ANDEAN SWIFT (Aeronautes andecolus)

At the canyon of Sangal.

Trochilidae (Hummingbirds)

GRAY-CHINNED HERMIT (Phaethornis griseogularis)

Brief views by a few lucky folks at Laquipampa.

SPARKLING VIOLETEAR (Colibri coruscans)

LESSER VIOLETEAR (Colibri cyanotus)

Amazingly, we only had this species at the feeders at Huembo!

AMETHYST-THROATED SUNANGEL (Heliangelus amethysticollis)

Seen on two days in the cloudforests of Amazonas dept. But interestingly, we had what appeared to be a male hybrid with Purple-throated Sunangel at Huembo!

Field Guides Birding Tours
This odd hummingbird we encountered at Huembo appeared to be a hybrid between Purple-throated and Amethyst-throated sunangels. Photo by guide Dan Lane.

LITTLE SUNANGEL (Heliangelus micraster)

Several in the cloudforests along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.


Several at Huembo and then again on our walk that evening above Leymebamba.

SPECKLED HUMMINGBIRD (Adelomyia melanogenys)

Seen in Amazonas and again at Sinsicap, the latter was the pale west slope subspecies maculatus.

LONG-TAILED SYLPH (Aglaiocercus kingii)

We had this long-tailed lovely on the Tabaconas-Namballe day and again on the hike up the San Lorenzo trail.

GRAY-BELLIED COMET (Taphrolesbia griseiventris) [E]

A smashing endemic that Fernando got for us as Sangal! It is very local and difficult to find.


In Amazonas, perhaps with the best views at Huembo.

RUFOUS-CAPPED THORNBILL (Chalcostigma ruficeps) [*]

TYRIAN METALTAIL (Metallura tyrianthina)

Widespread and common in higher cloudforests of the tour.

COPPERY METALTAIL (Metallura theresiae) [E]

Took a while to see well at Abra Barro Negro, but we eventually did, including a begging fledgling.

BLACK METALTAIL (Metallura phoebe) [E]

Ian got us our best view while we were birding that canyon near Huanico.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Black Metaltail is a truly black hummingbird, and a Peruvian endemic to boot! Photo by guide Dan Lane.

MARVELOUS SPATULETAIL (Loddigesia mirabilis) [E]

Thanks for Santos for his efforts at Huembo. We had a few birds, but none really stayed around for stellar looks... particularly the males, which seemed embarrassed by their short tail spats.

SHINING SUNBEAM (Aglaeactis cupripennis)

BRONZY INCA (Coeligena coeligena)

COLLARED INCA (Coeligena torquata)

Fine views at Huembo.


Basically only on the San Lorenzo hike.


This one really was hard to see well. We had them on several occasions, but usually fleeting views.


A few lucky folks saw this flying sewing needle just on the San Lorenzo hike, and even there it didn't show for long.

CHESTNUT-BREASTED CORONET (Boissonneaua matthewsii)

VIOLET-FRONTED BRILLIANT (Heliodoxa leadbeateri)

GIANT HUMMINGBIRD (Patagona gigas)

Fine views of this rather well named hummer at Sinsicap!

LONG-BILLED STARTHROAT (Heliomaster longirostris)

We had this at our breakfast spot at Laquipampa where it mobbed a Pygmy-Owl.

PERUVIAN SHEARTAIL (Thaumastura cora)

Our best views were at our first birding site at Mocupe our first morning, but we had them at several of the lower elevation Pacific slope sites.


A female or two showed well for us at breakfast at Chaparri.


Our first, and perhaps best, views were at Chaparri at the hummingbird bathing spot.

WHITE-BELLIED WOODSTAR (Chaetocercus mulsant)

A male came to the feeders at Huembo.

TUMBES HUMMINGBIRD (Thaumasius baeri)

At Chaparri. This was the extraordinarily dull one.

SPOT-THROATED HUMMINGBIRD (Thaumasius taczanowskii)

Seen at several spots around the Maranon drainage, with our first being on the dry slopes above Sondor as we drove from Huancabamba to Tabaconas-Namballe.

AMAZILIA HUMMINGBIRD (WHITE-THROATED) (Amazilis amazilia leucophoea)

The north Peruvian form of this species has that big white blaze on the lower throat. It's quite a fetching species, actually, and common on the coast.

ANDEAN EMERALD (Uranomitra franciae cyanocollis)

First, and perhaps best, seen at the feeders at Huembo, but also later in the Maranon valley.

WHITE-BELLIED HUMMINGBIRD (CHIONOGASTER) (Elliotomyia chionogaster chionogaster)

This one also was at the Huembo feeders.

Rallidae (Rails, Gallinules, and Coots)

PLUMBEOUS RAIL (Pardirallus sanguinolentus)

Great views of this lovely species at the shore of Lake Pomacochas, but we also saw one flush from the marsh at Eten on the coast.

Field Guides Birding Tours
The group after our final lunch at a nice ceviche restaurant near Trujillo. Photo by Dan Lane.

COMMON GALLINULE (Gallinula galeata)

SLATE-COLORED COOT (Fulica ardesiaca)

Wow, we only saw this at Huanico, but we had a LOT of them there!

PURPLE GALLINULE (Porphyrio martinica)

A lucky encounter in the rice fields on the way to Laquipampa got us this handsome rail.

RUSSET-CROWNED CRAKE (Anurolimnas viridis) [*]

Heard only in the scrub at Yanahuanca.

Burhinidae (Thick-knees)

PERUVIAN THICK-KNEE (Burhinus superciliaris)

Thanks to Ismael for getting us on these charismatic "shorebirds" in their rocky scrub environment near Chaparri.

Recurvirostridae (Stilts and Avocets)

BLACK-NECKED STILT (BLACK-NECKED) (Himantopus mexicanus mexicanus)

Haematopodidae (Oystercatchers)

AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER (Haematopus palliatus)

Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)

BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER (Pluvialis squatarola) [b]

ANDEAN LAPWING (Vanellus resplendens)

A couple at Lake Pomacochas and others in the higher open areas in southern Cajamarca.

COLLARED PLOVER (Charadrius collaris)

Usually a species of freshwater habitats, but we had a pair at the beach near Chao, Playa Encantado.

SNOWY PLOVER (Charadrius nivosus)

Also at Playa Encantado by Chao.

SEMIPALMATED PLOVER (Charadrius semipalmatus) [b]

These were migrants at Tinajones and Eten.

KILLDEER (Charadrius vociferus)

This is a locally resident population of this familiar plover.

Scolopacidae (Sandpipers and Allies)

WHIMBREL (Numenius phaeopus) [b]

A flock of these curlews was at Playa Encantado.

HUDSONIAN GODWIT (Limosa haemastica) [b]

A bit of a surprise was this at Eten! Most are in Chile at this time of year.

RUDDY TURNSTONE (Arenaria interpres) [b]

STILT SANDPIPER (Calidris himantopus) [b]

A few of these fine birds at Eten.

SANDERLING (Calidris alba) [b]

BAIRD'S SANDPIPER (Calidris bairdii) [b]

Interestingly, this species is largely a highland migrant in South America, as it was on our tour, when we encountered a small group at Huanico.

LEAST SANDPIPER (Calidris minutilla) [b]

Field Guides Birding Tours
Koepcke's Screech-Owl is one of the specialties of NW Peru, and is named for the former curator of ornithology at the Lima Museum, Maria Koepcke. Photo by participant Paul Beerman.

PECTORAL SANDPIPER (Calidris melanotos) [b]

Seen at three sites: Tinajones, Eten, and Huanico.

SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER (Calidris pusilla) [b]

WESTERN SANDPIPER (Calidris mauri) [b]

WILSON'S PHALAROPE (Phalaropus tricolor) [b]

First at Eten, but Guy got us on one at Huanico as well.

SPOTTED SANDPIPER (Actitis macularius) [b]

GREATER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa melanoleuca) [b]

LESSER YELLOWLEGS (Tringa flavipes) [b*]

Laridae (Gulls, Terns, and Skimmers)

ANDEAN GULL (Chroicocephalus serranus)

Fairly common around Cajamarca city.

GRAY-HOODED GULL (Chroicocephalus cirrocephalus)

GRAY GULL (Leucophaeus modestus) [a]

Strictly at Playa Encantado.

FRANKLIN'S GULL (Leucophaeus pipixcan)

Our last day, we enjoyed watching a huge flock (well over 10K birds!) flying south!

BELCHER'S GULL (Larus belcheri)

One single bird as we had lunch our last day at Playa Huanchaco was our last official bird of the tour.

KELP GULL (Larus dominicanus)

ELEGANT TERN (Thalasseus elegans)

At Playa Encantado.

BLACK SKIMMER (CINERASCENS) (Rynchops niger cinerascens)

We had an anomolous bird at Tinajones, but a small group at Playa Encantado the last day. This form migrates over the Andes from Amazonia spend the winter!

Sulidae (Boobies and Gannets)

BLUE-FOOTED BOOBY (Sula nebouxii)

Wow! What a scene to have these boobies flying to their roosting cliffs at Eten, where we could see hundreds perched.

PERUVIAN BOOBY (Sula variegata)

Like the last, we had an amazing spectacle at Eten watching hundreds of these flying to their roost cliffs!

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A set of cliffs at Eten, a small town on the coast of Lambayeque, Peru, acts as a roost for a large number of boobies, such as this Peruvian Booby that gave us a glance as it coasted by. Photo by guide Dan Lane.
Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants and Shags)

NEOTROPIC CORMORANT (Nannopterum brasilianum)

GUANAY CORMORANT (Leucocarbo bougainvillii)

Large groups were passing by at Playa Encantado.

Pelecanidae (Pelicans)

PERUVIAN PELICAN (Pelecanus thagus)

Quite a bit larger than the more northerly Brown Pelican, but very similar looking. We had many at several coastal sites. The species is suffering right now due to a sudden outbreak of avian flu in Peru!

Ardeidae (Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns)

FASCIATED TIGER-HERON (Tigrisoma fasciatum)

After a few disappointing drive-bys on the Utcubamba, we had a great view of one in the Condor Canyon by Leymebamba.

COCOI HERON (Ardea cocoi)

This South American version of a Great Blue was at Tinajones and Playa Encantado.

GREAT EGRET (Ardea alba)

SNOWY EGRET (Egretta thula)

LITTLE BLUE HERON (Egretta caerulea)

CATTLE EGRET (Bubulcus ibis)

STRIATED HERON (SOUTH AMERICAN) (Butorides striata striata)

We saw this in passing in the rice fields of the lower Utcubamba valley.

BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON (Nycticorax nycticorax)

Threskiornithidae (Ibises and Spoonbills)

PUNA IBIS (Plegadis ridgwayi)

ROSEATE SPOONBILL (Platalea ajaja)

A little surprising was a small group resting on the island at Tinajones our first day.

Cathartidae (New World Vultures)

ANDEAN CONDOR (Vultur gryphus)

After a big buildup, we managed to spot a youngster as it flew to its night roost along the Canyon of the Condor by Leymebamba.

KING VULTURE (Sarcoramphus papa)

Ismael got us on a distant adult flying in front of the mountain that was a nice backdrop to the Spectacled Bear enclosure.

Field Guides Birding Tours
To get to the hummingbird bath at Chaparri, one must first cross the suspension bridge over the chasm of dooooooom. Photo by Dan Lane.

BLACK VULTURE (Coragyps atratus)

TURKEY VULTURE (Cathartes aura)

Pandionidae (Osprey)

OSPREY (Pandion haliaetus) [b]

At Tinajones and Playa Encantado. These are North American migrants.

Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles, and Kites)

PEARL KITE (Gampsonyx swainsonii)

A bird at Mocupe was a nice way to start the tour!

HOOK-BILLED KITE (Chondrohierax uncinatus)

Two birds circling over us along the Maranon River got our blood flowing!

SWALLOW-TAILED KITE (Elanoides forficatus)

Seen at several sites on days 6 and 7.

SHARP-SHINNED HAWK (PLAIN-BREASTED) (Accipiter striatus ventralis)

After seeing a soaring bird on the slopes of Cruz Blanca, we were treated by an adult and juvenile BLACK MORPH (!) at Huembo! How cool was that?!

SAVANNA HAWK (Buteogallus meridionalis)

Burning fields on the drive back to Chiclayo from Laquipampa netted us oodles!

ROADSIDE HAWK (Rupornis magnirostris)

HARRIS'S HAWK (Parabuteo unicinctus)

Great views of an adult flying over us at Bosque Pomac and then the next day by Palambla.

VARIABLE HAWK (Geranoaetus polyosoma)

A large Buteo-like hawk we saw on several days, mostly on the west slope.

BLACK-CHESTED BUZZARD-EAGLE (Geranoaetus melanoleucus)

Our best view was probably as we were headed into the Maranon valley from Celendin.

WHITE-THROATED HAWK (Buteo albigula) [a]

A bit late was a bird that we had on the San Lorenzo hike! This species is believed to breed strictly in Patagonia and winter in the Peruvian Andes.

Tytonidae (Barn-Owls)

BARN OWL (Tyto alba) [*]

Heard by Leymebamba.

Strigidae (Owls)

KOEPCKE'S SCREECH-OWL (KOEPCKE'S) (Megascops koepckeae koepckeae)

After a little work, we had nice views of this owl above Leymebamba.

PERUVIAN SCREECH-OWL (PACIFICUS) (Megascops roboratus pacificus) [*]

Unfortunately, only heard at Chaparri.

YUNGAS PYGMY-OWL (Glaucidium bolivianum)

Great views of this little bundle of pith and vinegar at Abra Barro Negro.

PERUVIAN PYGMY-OWL (Glaucidium peruanum)

Seen and heard many times over the course of the tour.

BURROWING OWL (Athene cunicularia)

Encountered on the drive out of Chaparri, at Pomac, and finally by Chao.

SHORT-EARED OWL (Asio flammeus)

Wow! What a cool record. We had two birds in the puna grassland by La Purla in Cajamarca--only the second record I'm aware of for the department!

Field Guides Birding Tours
A real surprise was this pair of Short-eared Owls we encountered as we were driving to Cajamarca. Apparently, only the second documented report from the area! Photo by Paul Beerman.
Trogonidae (Trogons)

GOLDEN-HEADED QUETZAL (Pharomachrus auriceps)

Seen both in the Chaupe area near San Ignacio and again on the Canyon of the Condor road.

CRESTED QUETZAL (Pharomachrus antisianus) [*]

Unfortunately, only heard near Chaupe.

Momotidae (Motmots)

WHOOPING MOTMOT (ARGENTICINCTUS) (Momotus subrufescens argenticinctus)

Great views of this Pacific slope form at Huabal our evening at Canchaque.

ANDEAN MOTMOT (Momotus aequatorialis) [*]

Heard only by Chaupe.

Alcedinidae (Kingfishers)

RINGED KINGFISHER (Megaceryle torquata)

Seen on three occasions: at Tinajones, flying high over Laquipampa, and on the drive to Trujillo.

AMAZON KINGFISHER (Chloroceryle amazona)

One or two while driving along the Utcubamba (which is an Amazonian tributary, so it fits).

Ramphastidae (Toucans)

SOUTHERN EMERALD-TOUCANET (BLACK-BILLED) (Aulacorhynchus albivitta cyanolaemus)

Nice views of this lovely species by Chaupe.


Great views of this very colorful toucan at Abra Barro Negro.

Picidae (Woodpeckers)

LAFRESNAYE'S PICULET (Picumnus lafresnayi)

We had this one as we drove the Tabaconas-Namballe road from Huancabamba to San Ignacio.

ECUADORIAN PICULET (Picumnus sclateri)

Fine views of this diminutive woodpecker at Laquipampa.

SMOKY-BROWN WOODPECKER (Dryobates fumigatus)

Seen at San Lorenzo and Sinsicap.

SCARLET-BACKED WOODPECKER (Dryobates callonotus)

Nice views of this looker at Mocupe.

LINEATED WOODPECKER (Dryocopus lineatus)

This relative of our Pileated showed at Pomac, but we heard it at Chaparri and Chaupe.

GOLDEN-OLIVE WOODPECKER (GOLDEN-OLIVE) (Colaptes rubiginosus coloratus)

This was the east slope form we had at Chaupe.

GOLDEN-OLIVE WOODPECKER (RUBRIPILEUS) (Colaptes rubiginosus rubripileus)

This is the Pacific slope form we had at several places, perhaps best at Chaparri.


Great views of this lovely flicker at Abra Barro Negro.

BLACK-NECKED WOODPECKER (Colaptes atricollis) [E]

A Peruvian endemic we saw at several points including by Sondor and then again in the Utcubamba and Maranon valleys.

ANDEAN FLICKER (NORTHERN) (Colaptes rupicola cinereicapillus)

A high elevation flicker we encountered at several points on the tour, mostly at or above treeline.

Falconidae (Falcons and Caracaras)

CRESTED CARACARA (Caracara plancus)

Thankfully, the northern and southern forms have been lumped again (there isn't much that distinguishes them!), but we were seeing northern ones on this tour, mostly in that field with the Savanna Hawks.

MOUNTAIN CARACARA (Daptrius megalopterus)

Near or above treeline at higher elevations.

AMERICAN KESTREL (Falco sparverius)

APLOMADO FALCON (Falco femoralis)

Nice save when we encountered adults and begging young above Sinsicap!

Field Guides Birding Tours
This black morph Sharp-shinned Hawk was another unexpected sight on the tour. Photo by Dan Lane.

PEREGRINE FALCON (Falco peregrinus) [b]

We had one bird flush all the shorebirds at Playa Encantado.

Psittacidae (New World and African Parrots)

RED-BILLED PARROT (Pionus sordidus)

Seen on several occasions around Chaupe.

SPECKLE-FACED PARROT (Pionus tumultuosus)

Not rare at higher elevations in Amazonas.

SCALY-NAPED PARROT (Amazona mercenarius)

Similar to the last. Always spots in the sky, though.

PACIFIC PARROTLET (Forpus coelestis)

Not rare on the coast and in the Jaen area.

YELLOW-FACED PARROTLET (Forpus xanthops) [E]

After quite some work, we eventually had smashing views beside the Maranon!

GOLDEN-PLUMED PARAKEET (Leptosittaca branickii)

Wow! A hard bird at the best of times, but we had fantastic and extended views of a flock at Abra Barro Negro, which is a very lucky event!


After missing good views, we finally had them after lunch at the Maranon, and again at Sinsicap.

MITRED PARAKEET (Psittacara mitratus)

Great views of a flock near their nesting cliffs in the Utcubamba valley.

RED-MASKED PARAKEET (Psittacara erythrogenys)

Fine views at Chaparri.

WHITE-EYED PARAKEET (Psittacara leucophthalmus)

A few flybys near Chaupe.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Yellow-faced Parrotlet is a rare endemic of the Marañon valley that we saw well. Photo by Dan Lane.
Thamnophilidae (Typical Antbirds)

RUFOUS-RUMPED ANTWREN (Euchrepomis callinota)

The little warbler-like canopy antwren we saw near Chaupe.

RUFOUS-CAPPED ANTSHRIKE (NORTHERN) (Thamnophilus ruficapillus jaczewskii)

Some mediocre views of this bird in the alders below the old hotel at Laguna Pomacochas.

CHAPMAN'S ANTSHRIKE (Thamnophilus zarumae)

This small but sporty antshrike showed off for us at Laquipampa and again above Palambla.

COLLARED ANTSHRIKE (COLLARED) (Thamnophilus bernardi bernardi)

This is the coastal form.

COLLARED ANTSHRIKE (SHUMBAE) (Thamnophilus bernardi shumbae)

This was the whiter-cheeked form we saw at Yanahuanca.

NORTHERN SLATY-ANTSHRIKE (PERUVIAN) (Thamnophilus punctatus leucogaster)

A pair showed well for us at Yanahuanca.

GRAY-HEADED ANTBIRD (Ampelornis griseiceps) [*]

Drat, we only heard this local species on the slopes of Cruz Blanca.

Melanopareiidae (Crescentchests)

MARANON CRESCENTCHEST (Melanopareia maranonica)

This species may have taken more work than almost any other of the tour, but we eventually got everyone views of this fancy skulker on the road near Bagua.

ELEGANT CRESCENTCHEST (Melanopareia elegans)

After stonking views at the main building at Chaparri, we heard this species at a few other sites.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Although usually skulky, this Elegant Crescentchest was amazingly bold, allowing us great views. If only its cousin the Maranon Crescentchest had been so easy! Photo by John Rounds.
Grallariidae (Antpittas)

UNDULATED ANTPITTA (Grallaria squamigera) [*]

CHESTNUT-CROWNED ANTPITTA (Grallaria ruficapilla)

Heard on many days throughout the tour, but we finally got to see one at the stop on a side road between Celendin and Cajamarca.

PALE-BILLED ANTPITTA (Grallaria carrikeri) [E]

Wow! This fine species was surprisingly easy when we got to the right spot on the San Lorenzo trail! Great views of a truly impressive antpitta.

WHITE-BELLIED ANTPITTA (Grallaria hypoleuca) [*]

Heard near Chaupe.

RUSTY-TINGED ANTPITTA (Grallaria przewalskii) [E*]

Heard near the bottom of the San Lorenzo trail.

CAJAMARCA ANTPITTA (Grallaria cajamarcae) [E]

This and the next species are splits from the Rufous Antpitta complex. Cajamarca Antpitta is an endemic found in the mountains around Cajamarca city and north on the west side of the Maranon to Cruz Blanca, where we first heard it. We finally saw one on the track near Cruz Conga.

CHACHAPOYAS ANTPITTA (Grallaria gravesi) [*]

Heard only at Abra Barro Negro.

LEYMEBAMBA ANTPITTA (Grallaricula leymebambae)

We encountered this antpitta at three sites, only hearing it at two: Cruz Blanca (on the Pacific slope), and Abra Barro Negro. Those who walked the San Lorenzo trail with me had stunning views of this attractive antpitta.

Rhinocryptidae (Tapaculos)

ASH-COLORED TAPACULO (Myornis senilis)

Another species we encountered on the San Lorenzo hike. We had surprisingly good looks at this very difficult to see species.

NEBLINA TAPACULO (Scytalopus altirostris) [E]

It took several attempts, but we managed views of one or two of these treeline tapaculos on the Maranon side of Abra Barro Negro.

Field Guides Birding Tours
The stunning Pale-billed Antpitta requires a strenuous hike to see, but those few souls who did it with guide Dan Lane (who took this photo) were well-rewarded!

WHITE-CROWNED TAPACULO (Scytalopus atratus) [*]

Heard only at Huembo.

LONG-TAILED TAPACULO (Scytalopus micropterus) [*]

Heard only at Chaupe.

UTCUBAMBA TAPACULO (Scytalopus intermedius) [E]

Formerly part of Blackish Tapaculo, but voice and size are quite different from the remaining forms of that species (which no doubt has further splits a-coming!). This one was on the San Lorenzo hike and also at Abra Barro Negro.

UNICOLORED TAPACULO (Scytalopus unicolor) [E]

After hearing several individuals, we had smashing looks at a pair along the road above Sinsicap!

BLACKISH TAPACULO (PACIFIC) (Scytalopus latrans subcinereus) [*]

Heard only on Cruz Blanca.

CHUSQUEA TAPACULO (Scytalopus parkeri) [*]

Heard only on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

Furnariidae (Ovenbirds and Woodcreepers)

COASTAL MINER (Geositta peruviana) [E]

We only saw one on the dunes as we walked back from the beach at Eten.

SLENDER-BILLED MINER (Geositta tenuirostris)

A skylarking bird by Huanico was a great experience!

OLIVACEOUS WOODCREEPER (AMAZONIAN) (Sittasomus griseicapillus amazonus)

Encountered in several flocks by Chaupe.

STREAK-HEADED WOODCREEPER (Lepidocolaptes souleyetii)

Encountered at Chaparri and Pomac.

MONTANE WOODCREEPER (Lepidocolaptes lacrymiger)

A species of higher cloudforests, we encountered it along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

STREAKED XENOPS (Xenops rutilans)

A pair at Chaupe.

PALE-LEGGED HORNERO (PACIFIC) (Furnarius leucopus cinnamomeus)

Widespread in most lowland sites of the tour.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Participant Paul Beerman got a fine image of this pair of endemic Russet-bellied Spinetails at their home in streamside brush at Sinsicap.

WREN-LIKE RUSHBIRD (Phleocryptes melanops)

Living up to its name in the cattails at Eten and Playa Encantado.

CREAM-WINGED CINCLODES (Cinclodes albiventris)

In the puna grasslands near La Purla.

WHITE-WINGED CINCLODES (Cinclodes atacamensis)

A pair showed very well for us at Sangal

MONTANE FOLIAGE-GLEANER (Anabacerthia striaticollis)

BUFF-BROWED FOLIAGE-GLEANER (Syndactyla rufosuperciliata)

Fine views of this one near Chaupe, also heard at Huembo.


Good views of this local Pacific slope specialist at Laquipampa.

PEARLED TREERUNNER (Margarornis squamiger)

A handsome creeper that we encountered in flocks on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

RUSTY-CROWNED TIT-SPINETAIL (Leptasthenura pileata cajabambae) [E]

In the scrub above Sinsicap.

RUFOUS-FRONTED THORNBIRD (RUFOUS-FRONTED) (Phacellodomus rufifrons peruvianus)

Responsive at Yanahuanca.

CHESTNUT-BACKED THORNBIRD (Phacellodomus dorsalis) [E]

Often a very difficult species to see, but we had it on both sides of the Maranon between Abra Barro Negro and Celendin.

MANY-STRIPED CANASTERO (Asthenes flammulata taczanowskii)

This is the plain-throated Peruvian form that we encountered both around Abra Barro Negro and again near La Purla.


Great views at La Purla road.


It took a bit of work, but we got views at Abra Barro Negro.

RUSSET-MANTLED SOFTTAIL (Thripophaga berlepschi) [E]

Great views for those who did the San Lorenzo hike, and then again at Abra Barro Negro.

LINE-CHEEKED SPINETAIL (Cranioleuca antisiensis)

This species has absorbed "Baron's Spinetail" in recent years, and we saw several of the forms at several localities.

MARANON SPINETAIL (Synallaxis maranonica)

Sneaky, but eventually relenting and allowing us views in the gully at Yanahuanca.

GREAT SPINETAIL (Synallaxis hypochondriaca) [E]

Fernando took us to a locality near Jesus south of Cajamarca where we had fine views of this large spinetail before breakfast!

Field Guides Birding Tours
Furnariids, such as this endemic Great Spinetail, occupied a large portion of our bird list on this tour. Participant John Rounds immortalized this individual.

NECKLACED SPINETAIL (Synallaxis stictothorax maculata)

Encountered at several dry forest sites on the Pacific slope, perhaps best seen at Chaparri.

NECKLACED SPINETAIL (LA LIBERTAD) (Synallaxis stictothorax [undescribed La Libertad form]) [E]

This population is currently under "Necklaced" but probably should be described as a full species. Apparently it is highly restricted to the small patches where we encountered it, and may be critically endangered!

CHINCHIPE SPINETAIL (Synallaxis chinchipensis) [E]

Recently split from Necklaced, this species is now restricted to the Chinchipe and adjacent Maranon valleys. We had nice views at Yanahuanca.

RUSSET-BELLIED SPINETAIL (Synallaxis zimmeri) [E]

Our main target at Sinsicap, and we saw them well! The last of the four members of the "necklaced" spinetail group that we had on the tour, so a clean sweep!

AZARA'S SPINETAIL (Synallaxis azarae)

RUFOUS SPINETAIL (Synallaxis unirufa)

A bird on the San Lorenzo trail came in for a look-see.

Pipridae (Manakins)

GOLDEN-WINGED MANAKIN (Masius chrysopterus)

A couple of these attractive manakins were in the forest edge near Chaupe.

Cotingidae (Cotingas)

BARRED FRUITEATER (Pipreola arcuata)

In the high cloudforest above Leymebamba.

BLACK-CHESTED FRUITEATER (Pipreola lubomirskii)

What a frustrating bird, but we finally got reasonable glimpses of a couple individuals near Chaupe.

PERUVIAN PLANTCUTTER (Phytotoma raimondii) [E]

One of our first birds of the tour, and fine views at Mocupe and then Chao on the last day!

Field Guides Birding Tours
Looking a bit disgruntled, this Peruvian Plantcutter was one of the first endemic species we saw on the tour while we birded a patch of habitat near Mocupe. Photo by guide Dan Lane.

RED-CRESTED COTINGA (Ampelion rubrocristatus)

A bird out the window of the bus on the descent from Abra Barro Negro was nice.


Always a nice surprise wherever you encounter these! We had a couple near Chaupe.

Tityridae (Tityras and Allies)

BARRED BECARD (Pachyramphus versicolor)

BLACK-AND-WHITE BECARD (Pachyramphus albogriseus salvini) [*]

A pair were in a flock by Chaupe.

Tyrannidae (Tyrant Flycatchers)

MANY-COLORED RUSH TYRANT (Tachuris rubrigastra)

Eventually one came into view at Eten. Snazzy little bird!

STREAK-NECKED FLYCATCHER (Mionectes striaticollis)

Brief looks at one as we headed from Tamborapa to Chaupe.

RUFOUS-BREASTED FLYCATCHER (Leptopogon rufipectus)

Another Chaupe bird we saw pretty well.

MOTTLE-CHEEKED TYRANNULET (Phylloscartes ventralis)

While we hiked up to the Spatuletail feeders above Huembo, we enjoyed views of this rather average looking tyrannulet.

SCALE-CRESTED PYGMY-TYRANT (Lophotriccus pileatus) [*]

JOHNSON'S TODY-FLYCATCHER (Poecilotriccus luluae) [E]

A pair were at the bottom of the San Lorenzo trail.

COMMON TODY-FLYCATCHER (CINEREUM GROUP) (Todirostrum cinereum peruanum) [*]

Heard at Yanahuanca.

COMMON TODY-FLYCATCHER (SCLATERI) (Todirostrum cinereum sclateri)

Nice views along the Rio Leche at Pomac.

CINNAMON FLYCATCHER (Pyrrhomyias cinnamomeus)

CLIFF FLYCATCHER (Hirundinea ferruginea) [*]


A species ripe for splitting, but it's still not clear in what divisions. We had this one in several areas on the coast and the Maranon. Subspecies involved would have been griseum and maranonicum.

WHITE-TAILED TYRANNULET (Mecocerculus poecilocercus)

Best views were above Palambla.

WHITE-BANDED TYRANNULET (Mecocerculus stictopterus)

Flock member in high cloudforests such as on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.


We had one of these rather inconspicuous tyrannulets near Chaupe.

BLACK-CRESTED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes nigrocristatus)

First one was on the curve just before arriving in Celendin, and we had another at Sangal. This species is largely restricted to the Maranon drainage.

PIED-CRESTED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes reguloides)

Similar to the last, we had one on the slopes of Cruz Blanca.

TUFTED TIT-TYRANT (Anairetes parulus)

This one had the little recurved hairlike crest and pale eyes. We saw it around Leymebamba and again near Cruz Conga.

TUMBES TYRANNULET (Nesotriccus tumbezana tumbezana)

Common in the coastal arid scrub of Mocupe, Chaparri, Pomac, and Chao.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Tumbes Chat-Tyrant not only just lost its endemic status (a site for it was recently found in Ecuador), but has been reclassified as a chat-tyrant in genus Ochthoeca, anulling its monotypic genus Tumbezia! Whatever, it's still pretty cute. Photo by Dan Lane.

MARANON TYRANNULET (Nesotriccus maranonica)

This and the last species were just split by Clements/eBird from Mouse-colored Tyrannulet. This one we saw at Yanahuanca and in the arid scrub of the Maranon valley.

PACIFIC ELAENIA (Myiopagis subplacens)

One seen well at Laquipampa.


A bit of a surprise was one along the road between Tabaconas and the Chaupe reserve.

HIGHLAND ELAENIA (Elaenia obscura)

A large, nondescript elaenia we had at Huembo and Lago Pomacochas.

YELLOW-BELLIED ELAENIA (Elaenia flavogaster)

A large elaenia with a bushy crest we saw at Yanahuanca and a few other sites.

SIERRAN ELAENIA (Elaenia pallatangae)

TORRENT TYRANNULET (Serpophaga cinerea)

Along a stream as we drove from Tabaconas to Chaupe.

BLACK-CAPPED TYRANNULET (Phyllomyias nigrocapillus)

A cute tyrannulet in the high cloud forest of Tabaconas-Namballe road.

ASHY-HEADED TYRANNULET (Phyllomyias cinereiceps)

Seen briefly near Chaupe. It had that smudge on its ear and often raised one wing over its back.

TAWNY-RUMPED TYRANNULET (Phyllomyias uropygialis)

Called in just around breakfast on the day we drove from Celendin to Cajamarca.

PLUMBEOUS-CROWNED TYRANNULET (Phyllomyias plumbeiceps)

Another tyrannulet we saw in the flock in the Chaupe reserve.

FULVOUS-FACED SCRUB-TYRANT (Euscarthmus fulviceps)

Until recently called "Tawny-crowned Pygmy-Tyrant" but a split and a renaming happened. This one was fairly widespread, but hard to see. We had our first best look at Laquipampa.

GRAY-AND-WHITE TYRANNULET (Pseudelaenia leucospodia)

Like a mini elaenia (as the genus name suggests), this one has a white patch in its crest. Seen at a few of the arid woodland sites our first days.

MOUSE-GRAY FLYCATCHER (Myiophobus crypterythrus)

This and the next are recent splits by Clements/eBird from Bran-colored Tyrannulet. This was the more widespread that we saw at several points.

RUFESCENT FLYCATCHER (Myiophobus rufescens) [*]

... and this one we only heard as we descended into the agricultural valley below Sinsicap.

GRAY-BREASTED FLYCATCHER (Lathrotriccus griseipectus)

Fine views of this Empidonax-like flycatcher in the woodland of Huabal near Canchaque.

SMOKE-COLORED PEWEE (Contopus fumigatus)

TUMBES PEWEE (Contopus punensis)

Another Clements/eBird split from Tropical Pewee, this one is found only in western Ecuador and Peru.

ALDER FLYCATCHER (Empidonax alnorum) [b]

Migrants from North America just arriving. We had a brief view (and heard) one at Yanahuanca, and another along the road at Huembo.

BLACK PHOEBE (WHITE-WINGED) (Sayornis nigricans angustirostris)

VERMILION FLYCATCHER (Pyrocephalus rubinus)

RUFOUS-TAILED TYRANT (Knipolegus poecilurus)

Views of this understated flycatcher at Chaupe and Huembo.

WHITE-WINGED BLACK-TYRANT (WHITE-RUMPED) (Knipolegus aterrimus heterogyna)

A fine male showed well for us near Jesus at our Great Spinetail spot. This subspecies is quite distinctive, and may well warrant being split.

RUFOUS-NAPED GROUND-TYRANT (Muscisaxicola rufivertex)

Nice views of this terrestrial tyrant at Huanico.

RUFOUS-WEBBED BUSH-TYRANT (Cnemarchus rufipennis)

Also at Laguna Huanico, this one hovers like a Kestrel.


Nice views of this tyrant near La Purla, where it was in open puna grassland and around tree plantations.

WHITE-TAILED SHRIKE-TYRANT (Agriornis albicauda)

Ok, I will admit that this was one of my favorite birds of the trip as it was a much anticipated lifer for me! We had some nice views of this husky tyrant on the side road by Cruz Conga.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Voted top highlight of the tour was this White-tailed Shrike-Tyrant, a lifer for guide Dan Lane, who took this commemorative photo.

STREAK-THROATED BUSH-TYRANT (Myiotheretes striaticollis)

SMOKY BUSH-TYRANT (Myiotheretes fumigatus)

Those of us who walked the San Lorenzo trail had great views of this retiring cloudforest denizen. We had more distant views at Abra Barro Negro.

JELSKI'S CHAT-TYRANT (Silvicultrix jelskii)

A frustrating little twerp! One didn't allow for very good views at the bend above Celendin, and another was hardly any better above Sinsicap.

GOLDEN-BROWED CHAT-TYRANT (Silvicultrix pulchella)

By comparison, this cute chat-tyrant showed well at Abra Barro Negro.

TUMBES CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca salvini)

This is a recent Clements/eBird renaming of Tumbes Tyrant, which we saw well at Chaparri.

CHESTNUT-BELLIED CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca cinnamomeiventris)

Another Clements/eBird split that allowed us two species instead of one on this tour: we had this one on the Tabaconas-Namballe road north of the Maranon.

MAROON-BELTED CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca thoracica angustifasciata)

And those who spent the morning with Fernando birding the lower San Lorenzo road had this form there.

RUFOUS-BREASTED CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca rufipectoralis)

PIURA CHAT-TYRANT (Ochthoeca piurae) [E]

Distant but pretty good views above Sinsicap after frustrating efforts above Canchaque earlier in the tour.

SHORT-TAILED FIELD TYRANT (Muscigralla brevicauda)

Encountered our first and last days at Chaparri and Chao respectively.

RUFOUS FLYCATCHER (Myiarchus semirufus) [E]

Well-named and quite a handsome flycatcher we enjoyed at Pomac.

Field Guides Birding Tours
Another distinctive endemic we encountered on the tour was the Rufous Flycatcher, here photographed by participant John Rounds. Found in arid coastal scrub, it is the most distinctive member of the widespread genus Myiarchus, which includes the likes of Great Crested and Ash-throated flycatchers.

DUSKY-CAPPED FLYCATCHER (NIGRICEPS/ATRICEPS) (Myiarchus tuberculifer atriceps)

This was a flycatcher seen by those who birded with Fernando on the lower San Lorenzo road.

SOOTY-CROWNED FLYCATCHER (INTERIOR) (Myiarchus phaeocephalus interior)

It took some work, but we managed to see a pair of these Myiarchus at the top of the gully at Yanahuanca.

BROWN-CRESTED FLYCATCHER (Myiarchus tyrannulus)

Seen simultaneously as the last.

GREAT KISKADEE (Pitangus sulphuratus)

For being so widespread in Latin America, this familiar species is quite local on this tour route. We only had it around Yanahuanca and close to Jaen.

SOCIAL FLYCATCHER (Myiozetetes similis)

Similar to the last, we only had this one near Jaen and around Tabaconas.

BAIRD'S FLYCATCHER (Myiodynastes bairdii)

A really attractive large flycatcher we enjoyed at Chaparri and some other Pacific slope sites.

TROPICAL KINGBIRD (Tyrannus melancholicus)

Vireonidae (Vireos, Shrike-Babblers, and Erpornis)


This is another species that may well find itself under the scalpel in the future. The forms we saw were the Pacific slope virinticeps, the cloudforest-living contreresi on the San Lorenzo trail, and saturata in the Maranon valley.

BROWN-CAPPED VIREO (Vireo leucophrys)

Much like our Warbling Vireo in North America; we saw this above Palambla and at Huembo.

CHIVI VIREO (Vireo chivi)

A recent split from Red-eyed Vireo, and comprising the resident tropical forms and austral migrant forms of the complex. We saw them mostly at Yanahuanca and in the Maranon valley.

Corvidae (Crows, Jays, and Magpies)

TURQUOISE JAY (Cyanolyca turcosa)

The north Peruvian replacement of the next, and we saw it well on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

WHITE-COLLARED JAY (Cyanolyca viridicyanus)

This attractive jay showed well at Abra Barro Negro.

GREEN JAY (Cyanocorax yncas)

First seen near Chaupe, then at Huembo, and finally in the drier Maranon valley.

WHITE-TAILED JAY (Cyanocorax mystacalis)

Our first jay of the tour, this one was quite easy to see at Chaparri.

Field Guides Birding Tours
White-tailed Jays are fun to watch from the dining room at Chaparri lodge. Photo by guide Dan Lane.
Hirundinidae (Swallows)

BLUE-AND-WHITE SWALLOW (Pygochelidon cyanoleuca)

BROWN-BELLIED SWALLOW (Orochelidon murina)

The above-treeline replacement of the last species.

SOUTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW (Stelgidopteryx ruficollis)

GRAY-BREASTED MARTIN (Progne chalybea)

At Pomac.

TUMBES SWALLOW (Tachycineta stolzmanni)

This is a very range-restricted swallow we were searching for at Pomac, and saw in spades! They were very agitated by the singing pygmy-owl.

BANK SWALLOW (Riparia riparia) [b]

A boreal migrant we saw at Chao.

BARN SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica) [b]

A boreal migrant we saw at several Pacific slope sites.

CHESTNUT-COLLARED SWALLOW (Petrochelidon rufocollaris)

After some terrible views around Palambla, we had good views as we departed Chao.

Polioptilidae (Gnatcatchers)

TROPICAL GNATCATCHER (MARANON) (Polioptila plumbea maior)

At present in this species, the Maranon subspecies may well be split off, so keep alert.

WHITE-BROWED GNATCATCHER (Polioptila bilineata bilineata)

Recently carved off of Tropical Gnatcatcher, this is the Pacific slope form in Peru, and extends all the way to Mexico.

Troglodytidae (Wrens)

HOUSE WREN (Troglodytes aedon)

MOUNTAIN WREN (Troglodytes solstitialis)

Great views of a pair bringing food to a nest in the roadbank on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

GRASS WREN (Cistothorus platensis)

Recently split from Sedge Wren, this one was in the puna grasslands at Abra Barro Negro.

FASCIATED WREN (Campylorhynchus fasciatus)

Widespread on the tour in arid woodlands, and has one of the most musical voices in the world! (he pronounced very tongue in cheek)

Field Guides Birding Tours
This attractive Baird's Flycatcher showed itself off proudly at Chaparri, allowing participant Paul Beerman the honor of snapping this photo.

PLAIN-TAILED WREN (PLAIN-TAILED) (Pheugopedius euophrys atriceps)

This was the wren we saw in the bamboo on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

PLAIN-TAILED WREN (GRAY-BROWED) (Pheugopedius euophrys schulenbergi)

The south of the Maranon replacement for the last-- and definitely due for a split given the distinctive voice--we had this at San Lorenzo trail and again heard it on the Leymebamba side of Abra Barro Negro.

SPECKLE-BREASTED WREN (SPECKLE-BREASTED) (Pheugopedius sclateri paucimaculatus)

Briefly seen at Laquipampa.

SPECKLE-BREASTED WREN (MARANON) (Pheugopedius sclateri sclateri)

This form was the one at Huembo.

SUPERCILIATED WREN (Cantorchilus superciliaris)

Heard at several Pacific slope arid woodlands, but seen easily at Chaparri.

RUFOUS WREN (Cinnycerthia unirufa)

Some good views of this range-restricted (in Peru) species on the Tabaconas-Namballe road, where we saw some birds with random white patches on them.

PERUVIAN WREN (Cinnycerthia peruana) [E*]

Heard only on the San Lorenzo trail.

GRAY-BREASTED WOOD-WREN (Henicorhina leucophrys) [*]

Cinclidae (Dippers)

WHITE-CAPPED DIPPER (Cinclus leucocephalus)

We heard one tantalizingly close on the Condor Canyon walk above Leymebamba, but our views above Sinsicap were outstanding!

Mimidae (Mockingbirds and Thrashers)

LONG-TAILED MOCKINGBIRD (Mimus longicaudatus)

Turdidae (Thrushes and Allies)

ANDEAN SOLITAIRE (VENEZUELENSIS/CANDELAE) (Myadestes ralloides venezuelensis)

This was the solitaire we saw well near Chaupe. It has a leisurely vireo-like song.

ANDEAN SOLITAIRE (RALLOIDES) (Myadestes ralloides ralloides)

This solitaire was encountered by the folks who remained with Fernando on the lower San Lorenzo road near Pomacochas. Its song is a more crystalline series of notes, quite different from the last. A split is likely.


A very difficult species to see... but apparently not so much around Leyemebamba! We had one at dusk below town and great views of another the next evening along the Condor Canyon road.

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Typically next to impossible to see, we found Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrushes uncharacteristically friendly around Leymebamba. Photo by Paul Beerman.

SWAINSON'S THRUSH (Catharus ustulatus) [b]

These familiar thrushes had recently arrived and were chowing down on berries near Chaupe.


After one or two rather frustrating near-views, we had prolonged scope views before breakfast along the road above Palambla.

MARANON THRUSH (Turdus maranonicus)

Our best view was along the road between Tabaconas and Chaupe, but a singing bird at Huembo was memorable as well.

GREAT THRUSH (Turdus fuscater)

Was it truly great? Or just so-so?

CHIGUANCO THRUSH (Turdus chiguanco)

Similar to the last, but more common in drier habitats.

GLOSSY-BLACK THRUSH (Turdus serranus)

A bird of humid cloudforest. Our best view was of a male at Abra Barro Negro.

Passeridae (Old World Sparrows)

HOUSE SPARROW (Passer domesticus) [I]

Motacillidae (Wagtails and Pipits)

PERUVIAN PIPIT (Anthus peruvianus)

Until recently, considered part of Yellowish Pipit, but this form was split off and is found on the Pacific coast of Ecuador, Peru, and Chile. We had it at Playa Encantado.

PARAMO PIPIT (Anthus bogotensis)

A singing bird in the Puna of La Purla was ventriloqual, and took some looking to find!

Fringillidae (Finches, Euphonias, and Allies)

BLUE-NAPED CHLOROPHONIA (Chlorophonia cyanea)

A pair were in one of the flocks near Chaupe.

PURPLE-THROATED EUPHONIA (Euphonia chlorotica)

Widespread in the Maranon drainage.

THICK-BILLED EUPHONIA (Euphonia laniirostris)

Mostly in the foothill vegetation around Canchaque.

BRONZE-GREEN EUPHONIA (Euphonia mesochrysa)

A montane species we encountered near Chaupe.

LESSER GOLDFINCH (Spinus psaltria)

A species that reaches from Peru to the US, but Peruvian males are black-backed and lack wing bars. We saw them at several points, but probably best on the edge of the Maranon valley.

HOODED SISKIN (Spinus magellanicus)

Passerellidae (New World Sparrows)

TUMBES SPARROW (Rhynchospiza stolzmanni)

A standard "sparrow" that we encountered at Chaparri.

YELLOW-BROWED SPARROW (Ammodramus aurifrons)

Typically a species of Amazonian river islands and clearings, it is invading the foothills where humans have been clearing forest. We had some along a creek between Tabaconas and Chaupe.

GRAY-BROWED BRUSHFINCH (Arremon assimilis)

Formerly part of Stripe-headed Brushfinch, but after a multi-way split, this is now the species found in most of Peru. We encountered it at several points of the tour.

BLACK-CAPPED SPARROW (BLACK-CAPPED) (Arremon abeillei abeillei)

This was the sparrow we saw at Laquipampa with a gray back.

BLACK-CAPPED SPARROW (MARANON) (Arremon abeillei nigriceps)

This was the green-backed form we saw as we descended into the Maranon canyon from Abra Barro Negro.


We had great views of this cloudforest denizen along the road in the Tabaconas-Namballe reserve.

RUFOUS-COLLARED SPARROW (Zonotrichia capensis)

WHITE-HEADED BRUSHFINCH (Atlapetes albiceps)

A bold species around the dining hall of Chaparri.

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White-headed Brushfinches are another denizen of the deciduous woodlands around Chaparri that were easily seen around the dining hall. Photo by Dan Lane.

PALE-NAPED BRUSHFINCH (Atlapetes pallidinucha)

A large and attractive brushfinch we saw along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.


This was the form of the species we saw on Cruz Blanca.

YELLOW-BREASTED BRUSHFINCH (YELLOW-BREASTED) (Atlapetes latinuchus latinuchus)

This was the most widespread form we saw on many of the eastern slope cloudforest sites.


Finally, this was the form we saw as we headed from Celendin to Cajamarca.

WHITE-WINGED BRUSHFINCH (WHITE-WINGED) (Atlapetes leucopterus dresseri)

Many were boldly hopping along the road above Palambla.

WHITE-WINGED BRUSHFINCH (PAYNTER'S) (Atlapetes leucopterus paynteri)

Quite different from the last form, and almost certainly worth splitting off. We had this rare and local form by Chaupe... a life bird for everyone in the group!

BAY-CROWNED BRUSHFINCH (Atlapetes seebohmi)

A large brushfinch we enjoyed above Sinsicap.

Icteridae (Troupials and Allies)

PERUVIAN MEADOWLARK (Leistes bellicosus)

YELLOW-BILLED CACIQUE (Amblycercus holosericeus) [*]

Heard calling at Abra Barro Negro.

SCARLET-RUMPED CACIQUE (SUBTROPICAL) (Cacicus uropygialis uropygialis)

Some fancy blackbirds we enjoyed near Chaupe.

MOUNTAIN CACIQUE (GOLDEN-SHOULDERED) (Cacicus chrysonotus peruvianus)

These were at Abra Barro Negro, traveling with the White-collared Jays.

WHITE-EDGED ORIOLE (Icterus graceannae)

A fairly common oriole in the Pacific slope arid woodlands.

YELLOW-TAILED ORIOLE (Icterus mesomelas)

Not uncommon along creeks with lush vegetation on the Pacific slope and Maranon drainages.

SHINY COWBIRD (Molothrus bonariensis)

SCRUB BLACKBIRD (Dives warczewiczi)

Common in most arid habitats of the tour.

Parulidae (New World Warblers)

BLACK-LORED YELLOWTHROAT (Geothlypis auricularis peruviana)

A Clements/eBird split from Masked Yellowthroat. This one is found in western Peru and Ecuador.

TROPICAL PARULA (Setophaga pitiayumi)

Common in the drier woodlands of the tour.

BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER (Setophaga fusca) [b]

How cool is it to see a familiar bird from back home in its winter habitat? For me, it really gives a new respect for their lifestyle!

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This Saffron Finch kept us entertained as it dealt with an invader it could see in our van's rearview mirror. Photo by Dan Lane.

THREE-STRIPED WARBLER (Basileuterus tristriatus)

This warbler was in flocks in the Chaupe area.

THREE-BANDED WARBLER (Basileuterus trifasciatus)

Found in lower elevations of the foothills at Laquipampa and above Canchaque.

CITRINE WARBLER (NORTHERN) (Myiothlypis luteoviridis luteoviridis)

This is the form north of the Maranon that we encountered along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

CITRINE WARBLER (PERUVIAN) (Myiothlypis luteoviridis striaticeps)

Citrine Warbler could stand to be split into at least 3 species. This form is endemic to Peru, found from just south of the Maranon to Cusco. Those who walked the San Lorenzo trail had it with me.

BLACK-CRESTED WARBLER (Myiothlypis nigrocristata)

Fairly common and widespread on this tour route.

GRAY-AND-GOLD WARBLER (Myiothlypis fraseri)

A really snazzy warbler we enjoyed at Chaparri, Laquipampa, and above Canchaque.

RUSSET-CROWNED WARBLER (Myiothlypis coronata)

The warbler with a rather sad song we had along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

CANADA WARBLER (Cardellina canadensis) [b]

Another friend from back home we saw in its winter digs at Huembo.

SLATE-THROATED REDSTART (Myioborus miniatus)

SPECTACLED REDSTART (Myioborus melanocephalus ruficoronatus)

This is one of the species with rather distinct forms across the Maranon. We enjoyed the rufous-capped one along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

SPECTACLED REDSTART (Myioborus melanocephalus melanocephalus)

After crossing the Maranon, we saw these black-crowned birds in Amazonas and southern Cajamarca.

Cardinalidae (Cardinals and Allies)

HEPATIC TANAGER (HIGHLAND) (Piranga flava lutea)

GOLDEN GROSBEAK (Pheucticus chrysogaster)

A glowing grosbeak we enjoyed at many places, but particularly good views were at Chaparri and in the Maranon valley.

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Golden Grosbeaks glow gloriously at charming Chaparri. Photo by guide Dan Lane.
Thraupidae (Tanagers and Allies)

OLEAGINOUS HEMISPINGUS (Sphenopsis frontalis)

A brief encounter near Chaupe of this olive-oil colored bird (hence the name).

BLACK-EARED HEMISPINGUS (PIURA) (Sphenopsis melanotis piurae)

A very attractive tanager we first saw on the slopes of Cruz Blanca, and later above Sinsicap.

BUFF-BELLIED TANAGER (Thlypopsis inornata)

Nice views of this near-endemic at Huembo and along the edges of the Maranon valley.

SUPERCILIARIED HEMISPINGUS (WHITE-BELLIED) (Thlypopsis superciliaris insignis)

Seen on a couple of outings in Amazonas cloudforests. This form is the white-bellied one of central Peru.

PLAIN-TAILED WARBLING FINCH (Microspingus alticola) [E]

A Peruvian endemic we saw near Huanico.

HOODED MOUNTAIN TANAGER (Buthraupis montana)

Those huge blue/black/yellow tanagers we saw both at Tabaconas-Namballe and again at Abra Barro Negro.

BLUE-CAPPED TANAGER (Sporathraupis cyanocephala)

GRASS-GREEN TANAGER (Chlorornis riefferii) [*]

LACRIMOSE MOUNTAIN TANAGER (Anisognathus lacrymosus)


A flaming tanager we saw around Abra Barro Negro and a few of the higher elevation woodlands in southern Cajamarca.

BLUE-WINGED MOUNTAIN TANAGER (Anisognathus somptuosus)

In the flocks around Chaupe.


This was the tanager we saw along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.


Conspecific with the last, though I argue it really shouldn't be! We had incredible views of a pair at Abra Barro Negro.

FAWN-BREASTED TANAGER (Pipraeidea melanonota)

Guy got us on this lovely number above Sinsicap.

BLUE-AND-YELLOW TANAGER (GREEN-MANTLED) (Rauenia bonariensis darwinii)

BLUE-GRAY TANAGER (Thraupis episcopus)

This is a mostly lowland species we saw on both sides of the Andes. On the Pacific slope they have blue shoulders, on the Maranon/Amazonian slope they have white shoulders and a bold white wingbar.

PALM TANAGER (Thraupis palmarum)

SILVERY TANAGER (Stilpnia viridicollis)

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On the tour, we saw three of the five members of the endemic genus Incaspiza, the Inca-Finches. Here is the attractive Buff-bridled Inca-Finch from the Marañon canyon. Photo by guide Dan Lane.

BLUE-AND-BLACK TANAGER (BLUE-AND-BLACK) (Tangara vassorii vassorii)

Another pair of subspecies that turn over across the Maranon. This is the Indigo Bunting-like blue one we saw along the Tabaconas-Namballe road.

BLUE-AND-BLACK TANAGER (BLUE-AND-BLACK) (Tangara vassorii branickii)

And this was the slightly more black-mottled form we saw on the San Lorenzo hike.

BERYL-SPANGLED TANAGER (Tangara nigroviridis)

METALLIC-GREEN TANAGER (Tangara labradorides)

Among the varied Tangara tanagers we enjoyed near Chaupe.

SAFFRON-CROWNED TANAGER (Tangara xanthocephala)

FLAME-FACED TANAGER (Tangara parzudakii)

This was a particularly attention-getting species at Chaupe!

GOLDEN-COLLARED HONEYCREEPER (Iridophanes pulcherrimus)

And a real hum-dinger we saw in the mixed tanager flocks at Chaupe! What a find!

BLUE-BACKED CONEBILL (Conirostrum sitticolor)

In some of the flocks at Abra Barro Negro.

CAPPED CONEBILL (Conirostrum albifrons)

At the bottom of the San Lorenzo trail.

CINEREOUS CONEBILL (Conirostrum cinereum)

At several sites on the Pacific slope of the mountains and at Chao.


Fine views of this classy flowerpiercer at Abra Barro Negro.

BLACK-THROATED FLOWERPIERCER (Diglossa brunneiventris)

We saw this at the spot we visited above Celendin our second day there, and again at the Sangal Canyon.


RUSTY FLOWERPIERCER (Diglossa sittoides)

BLUISH FLOWERPIERCER (Diglossa caerulescens)

This was in the first patch of cloudforest on the Tabaconas-Namballe road.


PERUVIAN SIERRA FINCH (Phrygilus punensis)

PLUMBEOUS SIERRA FINCH (Geospizopsis unicolor)

This was the all-gray finch we saw in the puna grassland near La Purla.

ASH-BREASTED SIERRA FINCH (Geospizopsis plebejus)

A sparrow-like finch that was singing in the desert scrub where we had the Gray-winged Inca-Finch above Sondor.

CINEREOUS FINCH (Piezorina cinerea) [E]

A Peruvian endemic we saw at Mocupe, Chaparri, and Chao.

GRAY-WINGED INCA-FINCH (Incaspiza ortizi) [E]

Whew! In the end, it's good we saw this above Sondor, as we only heard it in the Maranon valley!

BUFF-BRIDLED INCA-FINCH (Incaspiza laeta) [E]

Great views of this attractive inca-finch in the Maranon valley.

LITTLE INCA-FINCH (Incaspiza watkinsi) [E]

It took a bit of work, but we got a pair of these skulky inca-finches at our side road near Bagua.

BAND-TAILED SIERRA FINCH (Rhopospina alaudina)

A male was along the road below Sinsicap.

DRAB HEMISPINGUS (Pseudospingus xanthophthalmus)

Fernando looked at his photos and discovered that we were looking at these dull tanagers in one of the flocks at Abra Barro Negro. I didn't notice them at the time, though!

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Another antpitta that showed itself to those who walked the San Lorenzo hike was this Leymebamba Antpitta, named for the town where we stayed a couple days later. Photo by guide Dan Lane.

COLLARED WARBLING FINCH (Poospiza hispaniolensis)

SAFFRON FINCH (Sicalis flaveola)

An entertaining event was the male that sang to his reflection in the rear view mirror of our van at Chaparri.

SULPHUR-THROATED FINCH (Sicalis taczanowskii)

We encountered several flocks on the drive in to Chaparri.

BLUE-BLACK GRASSQUIT (Volatinia jacarina)

PARROT-BILLED SEEDEATER (Sporophila peruviana)

Good numbers on the way to and at Chaparri.


A male at Chao was our only one.

DRAB SEEDEATER (Sporophila simplex)

Common at Yanahuanca.

VARIABLE SEEDEATER (Sporophila corvina)

A nice surprise was a lovely male amid the rice fields as we departed Laquipampa.

BAND-TAILED SEEDEATER (Catamenia analis)

This and the next were at Sangal canyon.

PLAIN-COLORED SEEDEATER (Catamenia inornata)

RED-CRESTED FINCH (Coryphospingus cucullatus)

A nice brick red finch with a flaming scarlet crest we saw at Yanahuanca.

BANANAQUIT (Coereba flaveola)

DULL-COLORED GRASSQUIT (Asemospiza obscura)

STREAKED SALTATOR (Saltator striatipectus immaculatus)

This was the relatively unmarked coastal form we saw at Pomac and Chao.

STREAKED SALTATOR (Saltator striatipectus peruvianus)

This is the more streaked form that occurs in the Chinchipe and Maranon valleys, such as at Yanahuanca.

BLACK-COWLED SALTATOR (Saltator nigriceps)

A very lovely and local montane saltator we saw before breakfast above Canchaque.

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Black-cowled Saltator is a local resident of the Pacific slope woodlands of the Andean foothills, adding a dash of color to the landscape. Photo by Dan Lane.

GOLDEN-BILLED SALTATOR (Saltator aurantiirostris)

Similar to the last, but far more widespread, occurring into Argentina and Brazil. We had it at our side road by Cruz Conga.


GUAYAQUIL SQUIRREL (Sciurus stramineus)

Seen at Chaparri.

SECHURAN FOX (Pseudalopex sechurae)

Very common at Chaparri!

SOUTHERN SEA LION (Otaria byronia)

Seen by a few folks by the booby cliffs at Eten.

COLLARED PECCARY (Tayassu tajacu)


WHITE-TAILED DEER (Odocoileus virginianus)


GREEN IGUANA (Iguana iguana)

BOA CONSTRICTOR (Boa constrictor)

This was on our evening walk at Chaparri. I made the mistake of picking it up, and it repaid me by drawing a little blood.


Amaeiva aggerecusans: the largish runner lizard we saw beside the road in the Maranon valley. Apparently, this is a very range-restricted species, found strictly in the valley!

Phyllodactylus gecko: at Chaparri

Spectacled Bear: Not wild, but definitely memorable at Chaparri!

Totals for the tour: 449 bird taxa and 5 mammal taxa