Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Bolivia Los Volcanes - Part One!

The journey to Los Volcanes Bolivia was longer than it should have been. My fault totally! But I finally made it to a truly amazing site with the accommodation surrounded by volcanos. The reserve is a national park and is therefore protected. Visitors are restricted to twenty persons which made this a perfect choice to chilax and do some birding during my visa run!

Once I had got over the initial wow factor I had to focus my mind on the birds who wasted no time in announcing themselves. A Military Macaw was first squawking away as it flew from tree to tree. The only downside to this was the lack of photos as this was my first Macaw but I have a feeling this bird will be here for a few days.

I saw a few Turkey vulture thermalling above me when a large black monster made the vultures look like dots entered the fray. An Andean Condor soared between two peaks wow this was going to be birding on a crazy scale! What an amazing bird!

Just as I thought the rush was over an adult King Vulture floated effortlessly into view. My camera was on fire and my mind was buzzing!

After lunch I went for a walk with one of the guides and some guys I had been talking too. The trail was fairly quiet for birds but it was mid afternoon. Two Banded Warbler featured en route that oddly enough reminded me of the Golden crowned Warblers at Laguna Blanca.

The next call I picked up on was the Yungas Manakin which was pretty good considering I had only downloaded the calls that morning in my hotel room. This bird was difficult to see in the canopy despite the red cap and aluminous blue wings. This bird has a great call which sounds like "Frio, frio!!" (cold in Spanish)

Some Laguna Blanca regulars made an appearance including Plush-crested and Purplish Jay, Sayaca Tanager, Blue Fronted Amazon, Glittering bellied Emerald and Rufous bellied Thrush. A very tame Giant Cowbird came up to the group to say hi as well.

I returned to the accommodation block and wandered about the area keeping my eyes fixed on anything that moved! A Blue Throated Piping Guan was seen taking brief flights from tree to tree. A flock of Mitred Parakeets flew overhead. A pair of Thick-billed Euphonia made a short appearance in one of the trees.

A Black Phoebe was making itself busy hawking insects at low level before posing for a couple of pictures and then continuing with its programme.


A small flock of Blue Fronted Parrots flew low over the trees to close the days proceedings. What a fantastic day!

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