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GUYANA

Saturday 17th February - Sunday 4th March 2018

Eustace Barnes

Guianan Cock-of-the-rock (Eustace Barnes)

Guianan Cock-of-the-rock (Eustace Barnes)

The Guianan shield avifauna is now principally accessed in Guyana and Suriname, with Venezuela off-limits (economic meltdown plus general anarchy) and Manaus out of fashion (for no good reason). These tiny countries offer a great opportunity to see much of what the region has to offer, with Guyana more the trip to see specialities and many species not readily seen elsewhere. Anyway, time to lapse in to the cliched patter that so typically introduces trip reports and say that the tour was simply better than ever, and our expectations far exceeded. We did find practically all our targeted species with spectacular views of many rarely seen range restricted species etc etc…. All of which is true, just a rather tedious, if necessary, introduction to a trip report.

Highlights A to Z; outstanding views of Red Siskin on day 2, great experience with the magnificent Sun Parakeets on day 3, a nice session along the Ireng river with Rio Branco Antbird and Hoary-throated Spinetails on day 4, at least six Crestless Curassows at Karanambu, the other-worldly Capuchinbird, Bearded Tachuri at three locations, a couple of Crested Doraditos, several Red and black Grosbeaks, a beautiful male Guianan Red Cotinga and the gorgeous Guianan Cock-of-the-Rock at a lek. Exploring Iwokrama was way better than usual for the specialities, producing great views of the rare Crimson Fruitcrow, two or three White-winged Potoos, a roosting Rufous Potoo, Crimson Topaz, a Spotted Antpitta and a superb Orange-breasted Falcon at our secret stakeout. Oh, and lest I forget, a Rufous-winged Ground-Cuckoo at an ant swarm with good numbers of White-plumed and Rufous-throated Antbirds, Amazonian Barred and White-chinned Woodcreepers amongst others. Mega! On the coast we found several pairs of Blood-coloured Woodpecker, Rufous Crab Hawk and those Piculets. WHAT! All that lot in two weeks I hear you say. Well yes, but the tour is designed to hunt down these species rather than provide a general rainforest experience and so, with a tireless leader, it is doable.

Sun Parakeet (Jonathan Newman)

Sun Parakeet (Jonathan Newman)