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WINGS Birding Tours – Itinerary

Brazil Southeast: A Photographic Tour

A Week at Itororo Lodge

Wednesday 20 September to Tuesday 26 September 2017
with Stuart Elsom as leader

Price: $2,800

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Itororo Lodge - our base for the tour Photo: Andy Foster

Itororo Lodge is located within Tres Picos State Park in the Brazilian Atlantic rainforest at an altitude of about 3800 feet. It’s tucked away in its own private valley of 50 acres, where over 170 bird species and 60+ Atlantic forest endemics have been recorded. The lodge sits in a quiet location with its own large landscaped orchid and bromeliad gardens, an array of flowering and fruiting trees and plants, and a network of trails through the forest, providing the opportunity to see many species within a short distance.

With its quiet, natural surroundings Itororo is not only a great place to take photographs but also perfect for walking and just relaxing if the mood strikes you. The grounds have a number of bird tables, feeding stations, and hummingbird feeders, which offer a chance to see a number of species close-up as well as great photographic opportunities.

Great birding, stunning surroundings, comfortable accommodation, easy access, and friendly staff make Itororo Lodge a superb location from which to explore the wealth of flora and fauna of the Atlantic rainforest.

Day 1: The tour begins this evening with a group transfer from Rio de Janeiro’s Galeão International Airport to Itororo Lodge. Night at Itororo Lodge.

Days 2–6: Although the lodge is surrounded by forest, the flora and fauna in the gardens alone are quite spectacular and there will be plenty to look at and photograph from the very start. The list of birds we can expect to see on the lodge grounds includes such treats as Surucua Trogon, Scaly-headed Parrot, Saw-billed Hermit, Sombre and Swallow-tailed Hummingbirds, Black Jacobin, Violet-capped Woodnymph, Spot-billed Toucanet, Channel-billed Toucan, Long-trained Nightjar, Blond-crested Woodpecker, Spot-backed and Giant Antshrikes, Brazilian, Burnished-buff, Flame-crested, Golden-chevroned, Orange-bellied, and Chestnut-bellied Euphonias, Buff-throated Saltator, and Black-throated Grosbeak, to name just a few.
Our time at the lodge will be interspersed with a series of excursions that will take us to a variety of habitats. We’ll spend one day at high altitude, walking a trail at approximately 5000 feet. Here we hope to see and photograph a myriad of species including Plumbeous Pigeon, Plovercrest, Pallid Spinetail, Sharp-billed Treehunter, Black-billed Scythebill, Giant, Large-tailed, and Rufous-capped Antshrikes, Rufous-backed Antvireo, Dusky-tailed and Rufous-tailed Antbirds, Mouse-colored Tapaculo, Black-and-gold and Swallow-tailed Cotingas, Blue-billed and Velvety Black-tyrants, Yellow-legged Thrush, White-browed Warbler, Green-headed, Ruby-crowned, Red-necked, Azure-shouldered, Chestnut-headed, Diademed, and Fawn-breasted Tanagers, Bay-chested Warbling-finch, and Green-winged and Thick-billed Saltators.

A morning visit to a nearby wetland will provide us with a mix of very different birds including Least Grebe, Brazilian Teal, Masked Duck, Grey-headed Kite, Crane Hawk, Limpkin, Yellow-chinned Spinetail, White-headed Marsh Tyrant, Yellowish Pipit, and Chestnut-capped Blackbird. The lowland forest surrounding the wetland is home to yet a different set of birds including Reddish Hermit, White-chinned Sapphire, Rufous-capped Motmot, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Crescent-chested Puffbird, Yellow-throated Woodpecker, Chestnut-backed Antshrike, White-flanked, Unicolored, and Rufous-winged Antwrens, and Shrike-like Cotinga. On another day a 30-minute drive toward Macae de Cima will take us up a forested track to view some excellent endemics including Barred Forest-falcon, White-throated Hummingbird, Brazilian Ruby, Orange-eyed Thornbird, White-collared Foliage-gleaner, Giant and Tufted Antshrikes, Rufous Gnateater, Black-and-gold Cotinga, and Drab-breasted Pygmy-tyrant. 

The fabulous Theodoro Trail, close to the lodge, passes through both primary and secondary forest, and we’ll hope to see and photograph a variety of birds including Mantled Hawk, Maroon-bellied and Plain Parakeets, Scale-throated Hermit, Black-throated Trogon, Spot-billed Toucanet, Yellow-eared and White-browed Woodpeckers, Sharp-tailed Streamcreeper, Black-capped and White-browed Foliage-gleaners, Lesser and Scaled Woodcreepers, Variable Antshrike, Star-throated Antwren, Such’s Antthrush, Variegated Antpitta, Bare-throated Bellbird, Pin-tailed Manakin, Grey-hooded Attila, Greenish Schiffornis, and Brassy-breasted Tanager.

One of the most sought-after birds of southeast Brazil is the endemic Three-toed Jacamar, and there will be one excursion to several sites where this bird is regularly found. Along the way we’ll pass through a variety of habitats and make many stops to look for other species. These may include Capped and Whistling Herons, Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, Plumbeous Kite, Savannah and White-tailed Hawks, Aplomado, Bat, and Laughing Falcons, Red-legged Seriema, Toco Toucan, and the striking Blue-winged Macaw.

Of course, anyone wishing to opt out of any of the excursions is welcome to remain at the lodge to spend time at the feeders or wandering along the trails. Nights at Itororo Lodge.

Day 7: We’ll leave the lodge and transfer back to Rio de Janeiro, where the tour concludes in time to connect with flights home.

Updated: 29 June 2016

Prices

  • 2017 Tour Price : $2,800
  • Single Occupancy Supplement : $430
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Notes

This tour is organized by our British company, Sunbird. Information on Sunbird and an explanation of Sunbird tour pricing can be found here.

* Tour invoices paid by check carry a 4% discount. Details here.

Maximum group size eight with one leader.