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Wildsumaco Lodge, Ecuador
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Sumaco Volcano from Papallacta, photo by Chris Fagyal

WILDSUMACO BIRDTOURS

In response to many requests, Wildsumaco Birdtours has expanded your birding options.  We now offer tours throughout Ecuador, including the following:

East Slope (8 days-see below)

West Slope (8 days)

Extreme northwest and northern Ecuador (2-3 weeks)

Southern Ecuador (2-4 weeks)

Amazon (1-2 weeks)

Any of our birdtours can be customized or combined according to your special birding requirements and preferred dates.

 

  Travel with Wildsumaco Birdtours


Wildsumaco's East Slope Birdwatching Tour

With this, our original and most popular birdtour, you'll visit all the important birding locations and elevations on the Andes' east slope with Wildsumaco Tours, the East Slope Specialists - at a comfortable price!

Day 1: Quito to Guango Lodge. Night at Guango Lodge.

After an early departure from your Quito hotel, we'll drive east over the Andes' Papallacta Pass. We'll stop at a ravine below the pass with chances on Giant Hummingbird, Black-tailed Trainbearer, Tawny-rumped Tyrannulet, Tufted Tit-Tyrant, Yellow-breasted Brush-Finch (called Rufous-naped Brush-Finch in Birds of Ecuador) and Buff-breasted Mountain-Tanager. Once at the pass we'll look for paramo species like Tawny Antpitta, Ecuadorian Hillstar, White-chinned Thistletail, Many-striped Canastero and Red-rumped Bush-Tyrant. At the antennas at 4300m we search for the endemic subspecies of Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe. Below the pass, a patch of polylepis forest holds Giant Conebill, Black-backed Bush-Tanager and sometimes Great Horned Owl. A short hike takes us to a paramo lake containing Silvery Grebe, Andean Ruddy Duck and Andean Coot. Other species like Andean Gull, Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle or Andean Condor might be seen anywhere along this stretch. Overnight at the very comfortable Guango Lodge.


Day 2: Papallacta to Guango. Night at Guango.

In the morning we'll bird the road above Termas Papallacta, looking for high elevation species such as Viridian Metaltail, Agile Tit-Tyrant, Paramo Tapaculo, Rufous Antpitta, and Masked, Black-chested, and Scarlet-bellied Mountain Tanagers and Golden-crowned Tanager, some of the most gaudy tanagers in the Andes. Also a slight chance on Crescent-faced Antpitta and Spectacled Bear!

Later we'll drive back to Guango Lodge and its wonderful hummingbird feeders, that normally hold around 10 species including Sword-billed Hummingbird, Tourmaline Sunangel, Collared Inca and Chestnut-breasted Coronet. Along the trails we look for Gray-breasted Mountain-Toucan, Turquoise Jay, Black-capped and Black-eared Hemispingus, Plain-tailed Wren, Plushcap, Northern Mountain-Cacique, Blue-backed and Capped Conebill to name a few. White-capped Dipper and Torrent Duck are often found on the river next to the lodge.

Day 3: Guango to San Isidro. Night at San Isidro.

We'll bird the morning at Guango and then drive to Cabanas San Isidro, our home for the next 2 nights. En route we scan the sky for Black-and-chestnut and Solitary Eagle and we should bump into our first Inca Jays and Russet-backed Oropendolas.

Arriving at San Isidro the avifauna changes dramatically and during the afternoon we have a chance to enjoy close views of Masked Trogon, Pale-edged Flycatcher, Black-billed Peppershrike, the colorful Crimson-mantled Woodpecker, White-crested Elaenia, Azara's Spinetail, Subtropical Cacique and others.

At dusk and in the evening we hope to see Rufous-bellied Nighthawk and the taxonomically disputed San Isidro Owl.

Day 4: San Isidro. Night at San Isidro.

An early start trying for the enigmatic Peruvian Antpitta; this is the only place in the world where you can look for it! Other possibilities include Montane Woodcreeper, Rufous-crowned Tody-Flycatcher, Streaked Tuftedcheek, White-capped Parrot, Yellow-billed Cacique, Golden-headed and Crested Quetzals, Handsome Flycathcer as well as several species of Tanagers and Flowerpiercers. At around 7:30 it's feeding time for habituated White-bellied Antpitta - have your cameras ready! The hummingbird feeders serve among others Fawn-breasted Brilliant, Speckled Hummingbird, Long-tailed Sylph and Bronzy Inca.

In the evening we'll do some night birding at the Guacamayos ridge. Chance on Andean Potoo, Swallow-tailed Nightjar and White-throated Screech-Owl.

Day 5: San Isidro, Guacamayos Ridge, Loreto Road to Wildsumaco Lodge. Night at Wildsumaco Lodge.

Early start and we'll take a box lunch with us when we leave San Isidro. This morning we bird along the Guacamayos Ridge trail. Beautiful pristine cloud forest with dense undergrowth and bamboo, this area hosts a heap of species like Black-billed Mountain-Toucan, White-capped and Grass-green Tanager, Slate-crowned Antpitta, Rufous Spinetail, Green-and-black Fruiteater, Long-tailed Antbird, several species of Tapaculos including the spectacular Ocellated. Also a slight chance on the very rare Greater Scythebill.

In the afternoon as we drop down on the eastern side of the Cordillera Guacamayos towards the amazon, the bird composition changes again. We'll make several stops for Slaty-backed Chat-Tyrant, Black-chested Fruiteater, Golden-eyed Flowerpiercer, Yellow-throated Tanager and Chestnut-bellied Thrush. We turn on to the famed Loreto Road heading towards Wildsumaco, continuing to add species: White-tailed Hillstar, Cliff Flycatcher, Lemon-browed Flycatcher, our first Paradise Tanager, Crested Oropendola, Yellow-browed Sparrow and Black-billed Thrush. Also a slight chance on Orange-breasted Falcon. Late afternoon arrival at the new Wildsumaco Lodge where we shall stay 3 nights.

Day 6: Wildsumaco Lodge. Night at Wildsumaco Lodge.

With a bird list of over 500 species it is difficult to start sorting out the specialties! We have 2 full days plus an additional morning to explore the trails and birds of Wildsumaco. The highlights are plenty and we hope to encounter some of the most sought after species like Coppery-chested Jacamar (the bird on Wildsumaco's logo!), Yellow-throated Spadebill, Gray-tailed Piha, Military Macaw, Spot-winged Parrotlet, Plain-winged Antwren, White-streaked Antvireo, Foothill Screech-Owl, Crimson-bellied Woodpecker, Foothill Elaenia, Wing-banded Wren, Scarlet-breasted and Fiery-throated Fruiteater.

Just birding around the deck can be fantastic and the street light on the driveway attracts Black-billed Treehunter, Lined Antshrike, Dusky Spinetail, Squirrel Cuckoo, Marble-faced Bristle-Tyrant, Slaty-capped and Dusky-capped Flycatcher. The feeders must be considered some of the absolute best in South Amercia including Napo Sabrewing, Gould's Jewelfront, Black-throated and Violet-fronted Brilliant, Many-spotted Hummingbird, Golden-tailed Sapphire, seasonally Ecuadorian Piedtail and Gray-chinned Hermit and often one or two rarities. Small-billed hummers like Gorgeted Woodstar and Wire-crested Thorntail feed on the porterweed around the lodge.

Day 7: Wildsumaco Lodge. Night at Wildsumaco Lodge.

We continue to look for species such as Chestnut-crowned Gnateater, Golden-collared Toucanet, White-tipped Sicklebill, Blackish Rail, Red-billed Tyrannulet, Yellow-breasted Antwren, Rufous-naped Greenlet, Coraya Wren, Foothill Antwren, Rufous-breasted Piculet, Golden-collared Honeycreeper, more species of tanagers including Magpie, White-lined, Silver-beaked, Blue-browed, Orange-eared, Spotted, Yellow-bellied and Golden-eared.

In the evening we look for Band-bellied and Mottled Owl (occasionally possible on day perches) and Great Poto.

Day 8: Wildsumaco Lodge to either Coca or Quito.

Last morning birding this avian El Dorado before we drive to either Coca (flight back) or Quito. On the way out we stop at a bamboo patch with chance on Large-headed Flatbill, Golden-winged & Black-and-white Tody-Flycatcher, Stripe-chested Antwren, Yellow Tyrannulet, Spot-backed Antbird, Dusky-billed Parrotlet and more.

 

2017 prices for the Wildsumaco East Slope Tour (with professional bird guide):

1 person: $4795 USD

2 people:  $2995 per person based on double occupancy (single supplement $170)

3 people: $2395 per person based on double occupancy (single supplement $170)

4 people: $2095 per person based on double occupancy (single supplement $170)

5 people:  $1995 per person based on double occupancy (single supplement $170)

6 or more people: $1895 per person based on double occupancy (single supplement $170)

Contact us at info@wildsumaco.com for more information about our tours and prices for 2017, or if you'd like to discuss other, personalized itineraries. We also offer cheaper tours with a local Spanish-speaking bird guide.


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