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A Report from

Mammals and birds recorded at Bilsa Biological Station, and other sites in NW Ecuador,


Joe Tobias and Nat Seddon - September-October 2002

131 Catharine Street, Cambridge CB1 3AP, UK

Western Emerald
Tooth-billed Hummingbird
Hoary Puffleg

Full sized versions of Joes Photos can be seen at


13-15/09/02:   Tinalandia
2-4/10/02:       Bellavista
6-13/10/02:     Bilsa Biological Station
14-16/10/02:   Playa Escondida
17/10/02:        Finca 106.5
18-19/10/02:   Mindo Lindo

Notes on Sites

Tinalandia (TI): A well-known locality near Alluriquin, on the main road between Quito and Santo Domingo. We stayed in a hotel by the river at Alluriquin: nice food and lodgings, but for the infernal traffic noise. Pre-dawn you can hop onto one of the abundant mini-buses heading towards Santo Domingo, and jump off c.500 m before the actual entrance to Tinalandia. If you enter by the proper route you need to pay a ridiculous US$10 entrance fee, but if you get off just before-hand and walk up the first little side-road towards Quito for c.800 m, it rises uphill, goes round a couple of bends and then passes a little bit of barbed-wire fencing on the right. If you hop over this fence you come to a patch of mown grass and just to the left is an entrance into one of the Tinalandia trails, which you can explore at leisure for free, unless you are unlucky enough to bump into someone (which I haven't been in 6 visits). The patch of forest here is very small, but is a reasonable intro to the foothill Chocó avifauna.

Bellavista (BE): Again, a well-known birding site. You can contact Richard Parsons at his Bellavista numbers and organise taxi to the lodge for US$70 or so from Quito. We took a bus from Terminal Terrestre in Quito to Los Bancos, and jumped off at Nanegalito (2 hours, US$2) then hired a pick-up for US$10 to take us to Bellvista lodge, which proved very easy. The rooms at this lodge are quite expensive, but you can stay in cheaper (but still perfectly adequate) accommodation at the research station uphill (US$5 per night). You get bunks and a mattress and a roof over your head. Meals at the lodge were US$11 during our visit, but you can take your own food and cook in the perfectly adequate kitchen at the research station. Tap-water is drinkable there. About 3 km downhill towards Tandayapa live Tony Nunnery and Barbara Bolz - it's worth visiting their lovely house and paying a small fee to enjoy the spectacle of hummingbirds visiting their feeders. Although close to the feeders at Bellavista, the two sets get remarkably different species. We saw 23 species of hummer in three hours there, which is getting on for the day record. Go and try your luck. Ask directions from Bellavista, as the house is tricky to find from the road, being concealed on a bend with a tiny entrance.

Bilsa Biological Station (BBS): A bit of a mission to get to this station, but worth the hassle. At the time of our visit it was the dry season. This is probably the best season to visit as the trails are slightly less incredibly muddy than at other seasons, and the walk in is much less strenuous (3.5 hours from La Ye to Bilsa, instead of up to 7 hours when the road is a quagmire in March-April). Intensity of bird vocalisation was reasonably high, although this is probably much better in the wetter breeding season. One drawback of the dry season is the almost constant fog in the late mornings and afternoons. This makes it tricky to see parrots and cotingas - we dipped Black-tipped Cotinga as a result. (In the wet season it is apparently clear when not raining). Visits should be arranged through the Jatunsacha Foundation in Quito - accommodation in bunk rooms at the station cost US$20 per night during our stay. It takes five hour on a bus to get to Quininde from Quito (taking TransEsmeraldas); if you get there early enough you can make it to La Ye de la Laguna on the same day, catching a tiny pick-up in mid-afternoon from one of the streets near the centre of Quininde (ask around). Once at La Ye de la Laguna, install yourself at the simple bunk-bed hostel (US$8 per night including food) - you need to arrange this beforehand through Jatunsacha. It is worth staying here rather than Quininde (a dump) if only to have access to the lake and marshes 100 m from the hostel. Just below the hostel there is a boardwalk to the lake with a locked gate, but you can easily step around this gate and get to the shore (we saw Spotted Rail and White-throated Crake in early morning wandering around tamely on a tiny pool in reeds just by the gate). You can organise a vehicle into Bilsa in the dry season, but it's quite pleasant walking in with a horse carrying your stuff. Once at the station, try and work as many trails as possible; we concentrated on the Red Trail (which goes through the best intact humid lower-stratum), Green Trail (which is slightly more trashed but good, and descends to a lovely river) and Orange/Yellow Trails (which pass along drier ridges but are better for certain species, including an awesome umbrellabird "lek" along the Yellow trail while we were there).  

Playa Escondida (PE): Not a birding site, but a nice quiet beach to visit and cure the trenchfoot you acquired at Bilsa. Get there by catching a bus from Esmeraldas town to Muisne, and jumping off at the Punta Galera turn-off beyond Tonchigue (ie well after Atacames). The bus-drivers know which turn-off goes to Punta Galera and Playa Escondida; it's the same turn-off and they know which it is whichever name you ask for. Wait at that turn-off for a bus or car to give you a lift; Playa Escondida comes after 13 km or so (Punta Galera is further along). Playa Escondida has a big sign and is only c.100 m off the road. Nice rooms with sea-view cost something like US$12 a night and food is great. The place is extremely safe and secluded in contrast to noisy, crowded, watch-yer-wallet Atacames. There are reasonable scraps of forest on hills behind which must still hold Esmeraldas Woodstar, at least seasonally. They take an hour to get to on foot (ask Canadian owner of Playa Escondida for directions), but on our visit we didn't stick around long enough to get alongside the woods for more than half-an-hour (there were millions of ticks in the grass which made life unpleasant).

Finca 106.5 (FI): A property owned by Filipe Quiroz at, you guessed it, Km 106.5 on the road between Los Bancos and Quito. We got the bus from Atacames and jumped off. It's quite difficult to spot as the sign is tiny and only visible if you're coming from Quito; I suggested he set up a bigger sign, so there might be one, but he didn't seem particularly dynamic. Nice chap though, and he'll gladly take you round his property for a small fee. We gave him extra as he deserves support for being the only landowner around to have kept his forest intact. Visiting this strip of high quality forest definitely goes towards its conservation. You can't really stay here unless you take a tent, but it's easy to get to by car or bus from Mindo, as some groups seem to do.

Mindo Lindo (ML): Continuing towards Quito from Finca 106.5, Mindo Lindo appears about 1 km before "La ye de Mindo", ie the first Mindo turn-off. I think it's at Km 129 on the road, but this might be a bit out. There is a nice little cabin here for US$10 a night, although they appreciate advance warning of your visit. There is only 7 ha or so of forest, but this contains some interesting species, and the hummingbird feeders are very good. From here it is easy to do the forest at the top end of the Mindo road which is still good for a few things, if getting a bit trashed. Off this Mindo road, you can sneak into a posh looking place called "Septimo Paraiso": trundle along their entrance path, and then, just before you enter the hotel grounds take a trail marked to the right which runs through reasonable hillside forest. We'd been to Mindo before, and we didn't have time to explore further.


From a total of 363 species, the best birds for us were Oilbird, Black-and-chestnut Eagle, Hoary Puffleg, Ocellated Tapaculo, Western Hemispingus and Tanager-Finch (Threatened) at Bellavista; Spotted Rail at La Ye de la Laguna; Brown Wood-rail (Threated), Rufous-fronted Wood-quail, Indigo-crowned Quail-dove, Rose-faced Parrot, Tooth-billed Hummingbird, Lita Woodpecker, Scaled Antpitta, Slaty Becard (Threatened), Long-wattled Umbrellabird, Dagua Thrush, Stripe-throated Wren and Scarlet-thighed Dacnis at Bilsa; Rufous-headed Chachalaca (Threatened) and Anthony's Nightjar at Playa Escondida; Cloud-forest Pygmy-owl, Nariño Tapaculo, Empress Brilliant and Club-winged Manakin at Mindo Lindo.

Species lists

For taxonomy and nomenclature of mammals we follow Emmons and Feer (1997); for birds we roughly follow Ridgely and Greenfield (2001). Codes for sites are given in "Notes for sites" above.


[.]      = a note or a provisional record
(T)       = tape recorded


One troop of c.20 seen on the Orange trail at BI

Regularly heard and three seen at BI; also two groups heard near La Ye de la Laguna, and another group in a hilltop forest fragment behind PE, proving that they are not much hunted round here (T)

RED-TAILED SQUIRREL Sciurus granatensis
Fairly common at BBS

WESTERN DWARF SQUIRREL Microsciurus mimulus
Several seen at BBS

Several tame individuals around the station buildings at BBS


GREAT TINAMOU Tinamus major
One heard at BBS along the Orange Trail

LITTLE TINAMOU Crypturellus soui
Fairly commonly heard at TI, also around La Ye de la Laguna; two seen crossing the trail at FI

c.5 at La Ye de la Laguna

2-3 were seen flying along the ridge at BBS on three occasions (700 m altitude and 20 km from the sea over mossy cloud-forest: looked strange); common at PE

Three flew past PE

NEOTROPIC CORMORANT Phalacrocorax brasilianus
c.30 at La Ya de la Laguna

BROWN PELICAN Pelecanus occidentalis
Very common at sea around PE

GREAT EGRET Casmerodius albus
A few near PE

SNOWY EGRET Egretta thula
A few on the beach at PE

CATTLE EGRET Bubulcus ibis
Common at La Ye de la Laguna

STRIATED HERON Butorides striatus
Several around the lake at La Ye de la Laguna

1 juvenile bird on tidal rocks at dusk, PE

KING VULTURE Sarcorhamphus papa
Several seen at close range flying over the top road at BBS

BLACK VULTURE Coragyps atratus
Regular at TI and BBS

TURKEY VULTURE Cathartes aura
A few at BE, common around TI and BBS

OSPREY Pandion haliaetus
Singles seen on 2-3 occasions at PE

GREY-HEADED KITE Leptodon cayanensis
One seen over Tinalandia

HOOK-BILLED KITE Chondrohierax uncinatus
At least two seen soaring from the Mindo road near ML

SWALLOW-TAILED KITE Elanoides forficatus
A few soaring over the golf-course near TI

DOUBLE-TOOTHED KITE Harpagus bidentatus fasciatus
One of the rather distinct Chocó race perched in open canopy after rain at BBS

PLUMBEOUS KITE Ictinia plumbea
One near the golf-course at TI

PLAIN-BREASTED HAWK Accipiter ventralis
One chasing a Great Thrush along the road above BE, another crcling near ML

PLUMBEOUS HAWK Leucopternis plumbea
One flushed from a pathside perch along the Red trail at BBS (seen all too briefly)

BARRED HAWK Leucopternis princeps
A pair semi-constantly displaying over BBS (T)

SAVANNA HAWK Buteogallus meridionalis
One in farmland behind PE

GREY HAWK Asturina nitida
A pair circling near BBS and one calling on hillsides behind PE; not mapped for this area by Ridgely and Greenfield 2001 (T)

ROADSIDE HAWK Buteo magnirostris
One at La Ye de la Laguna and others on walk to BBS

WHITE-RUMPED HAWK Buteo leucorrhous
Good views of one by the roadside just above the lodge at BE

SHORT-TAILED HAWK Buteo brachyurus
An initially confusing dark morph bird seen on 3 occasions over BBS

One of these impressive raptors was circling above forest at BE for c.20 minutes one morning

BARRED FOREST-FALCON Micrastur ruficollis
Heard daily and two taped in at BBS; need to compare some recordings with Plumbeous Forest-falcon Micrastur plumbeus (T)

Seemed fairly common around PE, calling in gully next to the chalets at dawn and several seen out in shrubs and forest patches towards the nearby hills

CRESTED GUAN Penelope purpurascens
2-3 heard along the Orange trail at BBS

SICKLE-WINGED GUAN Chamaepetes goudotii
Fairly common around BE

RUFOUS-FRONTED WOOD-QUAIL Odontophorus speciosus
Regularly heard at BBS; two obliging groups called in at dawn near the Green trail (T)

DARK-BACKED WOOD-QUAIL Odontophorus melanonotus
Heard at close range in the grounds of ML, where it is apparently common, but not seen; also heard distantly at BE (T)

WHITE-THROATED CRAKE Laterallus albigularis
c.10 calling around La Ye de la Laguna (often heard in tall damp grass along roadsides here, and towards Quininde and Bilsa); two seen very well on the path to the Laguna early am; also heard along the road at PE (T)

SPOTTED RAIL Pardirallus maculatus
One performing ridiculously well on a small pool at La Ye de la Laguna

BROWN WOOD-RAIL Aramides wolfi
One bird seen walking along the Green trail c.400 m from station (still in Heliconia-dominated degraded habitat); a big and bulky brownish wood-rail with pale head, blackish belly, bright pink legs and greeny yellow bill

c.10 at La Ye de la Laguna

WILLET Catoptrophorus semipalmatus
A few on the beach at PE

SPOTTED SANDPIPER Actitis macularia
A couple seen around Alluriquin, near TI

LEAST SANDPIPER Calidris minutilla
Fairly common on the beach at PE

SEMIPALMATED PLOVER Charadrius semipalmatus
Fairly common along the beach at PE

BAND-TAILED PIGEON Columba fasciata
Several small groups at BE and ML

SCALED PIGEON Columba speciosa
Small numbers seen and heard in high canopies at BBS (T)

PALE-VENTED PIGEON Columba cayennensis
A few around PE

RUDDY PIGEON Columba subvinacea
One heard at La Ye de la Laguna, commonly heard in BBS and a few heard at FI (T)

PLUMBEOUS PIGEON Columba plumbea
A few in cloud-forest at BE (T)

DUSKY PIGEON Columba goodsoni
A few heard and seen during the walk to and from BBS; also regularly heard in canopies at BBS where it was roughly as common as C. subvinacea (T)

Small flocks noted in bushy farmland inland of PE

CROAKING GROUND-DOVE Columbina cruziana
Fairly common close to the beach at PE

BLUE GROUND-DOVE Claravis pretiosa
2-3 seen crossing the road in walks in and out of BBS

WHITE-TIPPED DOVE Leptotila verreauxi
Heard quite frequently (usually in fragments and partially cleared areas) around La Ye de la Laguna, BBS and PE

PALLID DOVE Leptotila pallida
Several heard at BBS (T)

Seen on c.6 occasions at BBS, mostly along the Green trail (T)

c.10 in flight at TI; another small flock perched at FI, and some around Mindo

BARRED PARAKEET Bolborhynchus lineola
Several small flocks flying over ML and upper Mindo road, also a flock of c.15 watched perched in a canopy at close range (a rare sight) on the trail at Septimo Paraiso

PACIFIC PARROTLET Forpus coelestis
Fairly common in small groups around La Ye de la Laguna and PE

One group of three was flushed from trees along the Orange trail; they gave high-pitched tweee notes as they left, but views were poor

ROSE-FACED PARROT Pionopsitta pulchra
Only two seen flying over the top road beyond the top end of the Red trail at BBS

BLUE-HEADED PARROT Pionus menstruus
Common to very common at all forested sites (T)

RED-BILLED PARROT Pionus sordidus
A few flocks of c.10 at BE

BRONZE-WINGED PARROT Pionus chalcopterus
Common and noisy around TI and BBS (up to 50 daily) (T)

RED-LORED AMAZON Amazona rhodocorytha
Several distantly at La Ye de la Laguna in early morning (distinctive call); a pair flew nicely past the buildings at BBS one morning also (T)

MEALY AMAZON Amazona farinosa
Regularly seen and heard at BBBS (T)

A few at TI and BBS

LITTLE CUCKOO Piaya minuta
One by the road at FI

STRIPED CUCKOO Tapera naevia
Heard and seen around La Ye de la Laguna

SMOOTH-BILLED ANI Crotophaga ani
c.50 around La Ye de la Laguna and several around BBS

GROOVE-BILLED ANI Crotophaga sulcirostris
One group at PE

CLOUD-FOREST PYGMY-OWL Glaucidium nubicola
One called in to speculative playback near the river at ML

MOTTLED OWL Ciccaba virgata
Heard on one night in fog at BBS

OILBIRD Steatornis caripensis
One flushed in broad daylight from pathside bamboo (no cave in sight) and seen very well as it banked round: Ocellated Tapaculo trail at BE

SHORT-TAILED NIGHTHAWK Lurocalis semitorquatus
One flying high above Alluriquin (near TI) at dusk

PAURAQUE Nyctidromus albicollis
Seen once along the road near BBS

ANTHONY'S NIGHTJAR Caprimulgus anthonyi
Several heard calling along the road west of PE at dusk; 2 seen at dawn along the cattle track towards the hills that starts c.1 km west of PE entrance (T)

WHITE-COLLARED SWIFT Streptoprocne zonaris
Fairly common near TI and one flock of c.20 flew over BBS

BAND-RUMPED SWIFT Chaetura spinicauda
One tight flock of c.70 flying over the lake at La Ya de la Laguna at dawn

GREY-RUMPED SWIFT Chaetura cinereiventris
2-3 small flocks seen over BBS

c.4 at La Ye de la Laguna

One seen well on the Red trail at BBS

WHITE-WHISKERED HERMIT Phaethornis yaruqui
Often heard in flight at TI, a few seen perched; common and vocal at leks at BBS; a few at FI (T)

TAWNY-BELLIED HERMIT Phaethornis syrmatophorus
Fairly common around BE, Tony and Barbara's porch and ML, usually seen coming to feeders

STRIPE-THROATED HERMIT Phaethornis striigularis
One seen along the road near the beginning of the Orange trail at BBS

Several at BBS, mostly heard in flight, but some seen at Heliconias and bananas

TOOTH-BILLED HUMMINGBIRD Androdon aequatorialis
2-3 individuals permanently at a lek c.100 m before the end of the Green trail; 2-3 leks heard off trails elsewhere, and two singles seen foraging in upper canopy (T)

BROWN VIOLETEAR Colibri delphinae
Small numbers visiting feeders at BE, Tony and Barbara's porch and ML

GREEN VIOLETEAR Colibri thalassinus
Small numbers visiting feeders around BE and Tony and Barbara's porch

Regular around feeders at Tony and Barbara's porch

GREEN-THROATED MANGO Anthracothorax (nigricollis) prevostii
c.4 in trees beside woodland on hills behind PE

GREEN THORNTAIL Popelairia conversii
One female picking insects off cobwebs in the lower-stratum at TI

WESTERN EMERALD Chlorostilbon melanorhynchus
Fairly common at feeders on Tony and Barbara's porch; a few also visiting ML

Common in TI, BBS and FI where the most frequently encountered hummer

Common in secondary habitats and cleared areas around TI, BE, Tony and Barbara's porch, La Ye de la Laguna, PE and FI

Fairly common around PE

ANDEAN EMERALD Amazilia franciae
c.10 seen or heard daily at BE and ML; also a few individuals in song at BBS (T)

SPECKLED HUMMINGBIRD Adelomyia melanogenys
Common at BE, Tony and Barbara's porch and ML

PURPLE-BIBBED WHITE-TIP Urosticte benjamini
Scarce (but mouth-watering) at Tony and Barbara's feeders

EMPRESS BRILLIANT Heliodoxa imperatrix
This bird should be called the F*cking Brilliant. Males showing down to 1 m at ML were stunning

Fairly common at BBS where c.5 seen in understorey

FAWN-BREASTED BRILLIANT Heliodoxa rubinoides
Several visiting feeders at BE, Tony and Barbara's porch and ML

One male came in at Tony and Barbara's porch near BE

One female came in at Tony and Barbara's porch near BE

BROWN INCA Coeligena wilsoni
2-3 coming into feeders at BE and Tony and Barbara's porch

COLLARED INCA Coeligena torquata
Fairly common (and spectacular) at feeders at BE and Tony and Barbara's porch

BUFF-TAILED CORONET Boissonneaua flavescens
Very common around feeder at BE and Tony and Barbara's porch; absent from ML

VELVET-PURPLE CORONET Boissonneaua jardini
Several visiting feeders at ML

GORGETED SUNANGEL Heliangelus strophianus
Fairly common (and gorgeous) around feeders at BE and on Tony and Barbara's porch

HOARY PUFFLEG Haplophaedia lugens
1-2 at Tony and Barbara's feeders and similar numbers at ML

BOOTED RACQUET-TAIL Ocreatus underwoodii
Fairly common at feeders around Tony and Barbara's porch and at ML

One male coming into flowers, but ignoring feeders, at Tony and Barbara's porch

VIOLET-TAILED SYLPH Aglaiocercus coelestis
Fairly common around feeders at BE, Tony and Barbara's porch, and ML

One male at least coming into feeders at Tony and Barbara's porch near BE

PURPLE-CROWNED FAIRY Heliothryx barroti
One individual in the canopy at FI

LONG-BILLED STARTHROAT Heliomaster longirostris
One in cleared areas beside TI

PURPLE-THROATED WOODSTAR Calliphlox mitchellii
A few coming into feeders at BE and more at Tony and Barbara's porch

WHITE-BELLIED WOODSTAR Chaetocercus mulsant
Several coming into feeders at Tony and Barbara's porch (some individuals tricky to distinguish from the above species)

GOLDEN-HEADED QUETZAL Pharomachrus auriceps
One female at FI

CHOCÓ TROGON Trogon comptus
A few heard and one pair seen at TI; a few more encountered at BBS (T)

Fairly common (3-6 seen or heard daily) at BBS and FI (T)

COLLARED TROGON Trogon collaris
Fairly common in TI, BBS and FI; song much more rapid than in Amazonian birds (T)

MASKED TROGON Trogon personatus
One pair at BE

One female seen along the Orange trail at BBS

One pair in the grounds of PE and several seen and heard on the walk to woodlands nearby (T)

RINGED KINGFISHER Megaceryle torquata
Seen along the rivers at TI, BBS; also at the lake at La Ye de la Laguna, and the seashore at PE

GREEN KINGFISHER Chloroceryle americana
One male at La Ye de la Laguna and another at BBS on the stream at the end of the Green trail

RUFOUS MOTMOT Baryphthengus martii
Common and vocal at dawn in TI and BBS; one at FI

A few at forest edge at TI

BARRED PUFFBIRD Nystalus radiatus
A pair seen and heard at BBS, and another heard on two occasions near Septimo Paraiso, upper Mindo road (T)

WHITE-WHISKERED PUFFBIRD Malacoptila panamensis
One on the Green trail at BBS; one at FI

One male seen in roadside shrubs about midway along the walk into BBS - likes semi-trashed areas

RED-HEADED BARBET Eubucco bourcieri
A few seen or heard with mixed-species flocks at TI, BBS and ML (T)

TOUCAN BARBET Semnornis ramphastinus
Regularly heard giving the duet call around BE and seen occasionally in mid-stratum (T)

CRIMSON-RUMPED TOUCANET Aulacorhynchus haematopygius
A few seen and heard in TI and BBS (T)

PALE-MANDIBLED ARAÇARI Pteroglossus erythropygius
Fairly common (up to 20 a day) around TI, BBS and FI

Commonly heard and regularly seen around BE (T)

CHOCÓ TOUCAN Ramphastos brevis
A group of three seen at TI, and fairly common at BBS; also several seen and hear in forest scraps near La Ye de la Laguna and two heard at FI (T)

Fairly common, vocal and conspicuous at BBS; one heard at FI (T)

OLIVACEOUS PICULET Picumnus olivaceus
Two seen in lower-stratum flock at TI, a few along roadside at BBS, and a pair at PE

Two at BE

Several seen at TI, BBS and FI

One individual calling and drumming at the edge of primary forest on the Green trail

LINEATED WOODPECKER Dryocopus lineatus
Fairly common around BBS and FI, mostly in slightly trashed habitat (T)

Several seen in degraded habitat near TI and BBS

RED-RUMPED WOODPECKER Veniliornis kirkii
Fairly common at TI and BBS

SCARLET-BACKED WOODPECKER Veniliornis callonotus
A pair at La Ye de la Laguna; others at PE

GUAYAQUIL WOODPECKER Campephilus gayaquilensis
Several encountered at BBS, and seemed common around woodland patches near PE (T)

POWERFUL WOODPECKER Campephilus pollens
Heard daily at BE, but not seen

PACIFIC HORNERO Furnarius cinnamomeus
Common around TI, BBS, La Ye de la Laguna and PE

SLATY SPINETAIL Synallaxis brachyura
Common by voice but inconspicuous in shrubby or grassy areas around TI, BBS and La Ye de la Laguna (T)

RED-FACED SPINETAIL Cranioleuca erythrops
Fairly common in disturbed habitats at BBS (T)

STREAKED TUFTEDCHEEK Pseudocolaptes boisonneautii
2-3 with most canopy flocks at BE

PEARLED TREERUNNER Margarornis squamiger
Several at BE

SPOTTED BARBTAIL Premnoplex brunnescens
A few seen and heard around ML

Three in mid-stratum with one mixed-species flock at BE, another two at ML; distinctive abrupt nasal skyunh call (T)

SCALY-THROATED FOLIAGE-GLEANER Anabacerthia variegaticeps
A few with mixed-species flocks in mid-stratum at TI and BBS

WESTERN WOODHAUNTER Hyloctistes virgatus
Two in mid-stratum with mixed-species flock at FI

One with a large mid-stratum flock at FI

One at FI in lower-stratum

RUDDY FOLIAGE-GLEANER Automolus rubiginosus
Two heard in "song" in lower-growth of dense gullies along the main road beyond the beginning of the Orange trail; one of these was eventually called into view using playback - very skulking (T)

STRIPED TREEHUNTER Thripadectes holostictus
Several at BE, and 1-2 probably seen at ML (T)

STREAK-CAPPED TREEHUNTER Thripadectes virgaticeps
At least one at ML (T)

PLAIN XENOPS Xenops minutus
A few each at TI, BBS and FI

STREAKED XENOPS Xenops rutilans
A few seen at TI

A few heard at BBS and one seen well at dawn on the Green trail

PLAIN-BROWN WOODCREEPER Dendrocincla fuliginosa
Several seen or heard at BBS; four at FI

WEDGE-BILLED WOODCREEPER Glyphorhynchus spirurus
A few each at TI, BBS and FI

BLACK-STRIPED WOODCREEPER Xiphorhynchus lachrymosus
c.5 seen at BBS, mostly with mixed-species canopy flocks

SPOTTED WOODCREEPER Xiphorhynchus obsoletus
Fairly common (up to eight daily) at TI, BBS and FI

STREAK-HEADED WOODCREEPER Lepidocolaptes souleyetii
Several at TI and BBS

MONTANE WOODCREEPER Lepidocolaptes lacrymiger
Regularly seen with mixed-species flocks at BE (T)

FASCIATED ANTSHRIKE Cymbilaimus lineatus
One with a mid-stratum flock on the Red trail at BBS

One heard near PE

UNIFORM ANTSHRIKE Thamnophilus unicolor
Two pairs in bamboo along the trail at Septimo Paraiso (T)

WESTERN SLATY ANTSHRIKE Thamnophilus atrinucha
2-3 at BBS in more tangled or degraded habitat at beginning of the Green trail, and in land-slides on the Orange trail (T)

RUSSET ANTSHRIKE Thamnistes anabatinus
A few in mixed flocks at TI and BBS; four at FI

SPOT-CROWNED ANTVIREO Dysithamnus puncticeps
Fairly common with mixed-species flocks in mid-stratum at TI and BBS; c.6 in a short visit to FI (T)

PACIFIC ANTWREN Myrmotherula pacifica
Fairly common in edge habitats and gardens at TI; also seen and heard at La Ye de la Laguna and in partially cleared habitat around BBS (T)

CHECKER-THROATED ANTWREN Myrmotherula fulviventris
A few most days at TI and BBS; c.6 in short visit to FI where it seemed common with lower-stratum flocks

WHITE-FLANKED ANTWREN Myrmotherula axillaris
Fairly common in mixed-species flocks at BBS

SLATY ANTWREN Myrmotherula schisticolor
A few in mixed-species flocks in mid and lower-strata at TI, BBS and FI

DOT-WINGED ANTWREN Microrhopias quixensis
A pair seen at BBS on Orange trail

LONG-TAILED ANTBIRD Drymophila caudata
Regularly heard, and occasionally seen around BE and ML (Septimo Paraiso): usually in or near bamboo (T)

IMMACULATE ANTBIRD Myrmeciza immaculata
Several at BBS in gullies along the road past the Orange trail, and along the beginning of the Orange trail itself; also two in song at FI (T)

Fairly common (2-8 seen or heard daily) in low undergrowth at TI, BBS and FI (T)

ESMERALDAS ANTBIRD Mymeciza nigricauda
One at TI and 3-4 seen or heard at BBS and two at FI, but in general rather inconspicuous (T)

BICOLOURED ANTBIRD Gymnopithys leacaspis
4-5 seen at BBS, others heard singing but we never tracked down an antswarm despite much effort (T)

OCELLATED ANTBIRD Phaenostictus mcleannani
One gave two songs near some Bicoloured Antbirds, but we never saw this bird, nor found the antswarm that was presumably close by (habitat steep and impenetrable)

BLACK-HEADED ANTTHRUSH Formicarius nigricapillus
Several heard and two seen at BBS, another singing from scraps of woodland on hills behind PE, and one singing at FI (T)

SCALED ANTPITTA Grallaria guatimalensis
Several heard daily at BBS and ML; only seen at BBS where a fine pair were called in to close range on the Red Trail (T)

Several heard around BE (T)

YELLOW-BREASTED ANTPITTA Grallaria flavotincta
One heard most mornings near the research station at BE

2-3 regularly heard in bamboo at BE

NARIÑO TAPACULO Scytalopus vicinior
2-3 at ML, where taped in, and others heard along the upper Mindo road (T)

SPILLMANN'S TAPACULO Scytalopus spillmanni
Common by voice around BE (T)

OCELLATED TAPACULO Acropternis orthonyx
A few heard around BE, usually from the upper road; one pair seen at close range after patient playback on the A trail (T)

SOOTY-HEADED TYRANNULET Phyllomyias griseiceps
Common in more open woodland and trees along hedgerows near TI and BBS, and especially around La Ye de la Laguna (T)

ASHY-HEADED TYRANNULET Phyllomyias cinereiceps
One seen with a mixed-species flock along the upper Mindo road near ML

Fairly common in more open habitat near TI

BROWN-CAPPED TYRANNULET Ornithion brunneicapillum
One heard singing and seen in high canopies from the backroad into TI (T)

Common around TI, c.5 at La Ye de la Laguna and a few along edges at BBS

Several seen and heard in trees around La Ye de la Laguna, and on the walk from there to BBS (T)

GREENISH ELAENIA Myiopagis viridicata
1-2 accompanying the large mixed-species flock around the station compound at BBS

YELLOW-BELLIED ELAENIA Elaenia flavogaster
Common and conspicuous in around PE (T)

Several in roadside shrubbery around BE

[SIERRAN ELAENIA Elaenia pallatangae]
1-2 birds at BE seemed to have yellowish on belly, but identification inconclusive

WHITE-BANDED TYRANNULET Mecocerculus stictopterus
A few seen at BE

WHITE-TAILED TYRANNULET Mecocerculus poecilocercus
Regularly accompanying canopy flocks at BE, where the high-pitched call was commonly heard (T)

RUFOUS-WINGED TYRANNULET Mecocerculus calopterus
1-2 seen with mixed-species flocks on the upper Mindo road near ML

STREAK-NECKED FLYCATCHER Mionectes striaticollis
Common (c.10 seen daily) at BE

Several at BBS

SLATY-CAPPED FLYCATCHER Leptopogon superciliaris
Fairly common at TI and FI, usually accompanying lower or mid-strata flocks of insectivores

RUFOUS-HEADED PYGMY-TYRANT Pseudotriccus pelzelni
3-4 seen or heard in lower-stratum at BE, mostly along the A trail (T)

BLACK-CAPPED PYGMY-TYRANT Myiornis atricapillus
A pair in canopy of low secondary growth opposite the entrance to BBS

SCALE-CRESTED PYGMY-TYRANT Lophotriccus pileatus
Fairly common, especially by voice, at TI, BBS, FI and around La Ye de la Laguna (T)

COMMON TODY-FLYCATCHER Todirostrum cinereum
Fairly common around TI, BBS, La Ye de la Laguna and in the garden of PE

PACIFIC FLATBILL Rhynchocyclus pacificus
c.4 seen at TI, another 3 at FI, always with or near mid-stratum flocks (T)

[YELLOW-OLIVE FLYCATCHER Tolmomyias sulphurescens]
One Tolmomyias seen poorly in scappy woodland behind PE was probably this species, although may have been Yellow-margined Flycatcher

WHITE-THROATED SPADEBILL Platyrinchus mystaceus
Several heard and seen at TI and BBS; one heard at FI (T)

ORNATE FLYCATCHER Myiotriccus ornatus
Common and conspicuous at BBS; two at FI (T)

SULPHUR-RUMPED FLYCATCHER Myiobius sulphureipygius
A few in lower-stratum at TI and FI; c.8 seen at BBS, mostly along the river at the end of the Green Trail

FLAVESCENT FLYCATCHER Myiophobus flavicans
Regularly seen (and heard once) in lower and mid-strata at BE (T)

One seen at BBS

WESTERN WOOD-PEWEE Contopus sordidulus
Several vocal wintering birds in partially cleared areas around BBS (T)

SMOKE-COLOURED PEWEE Contopus fumigatus
1-2 regularly at ML (T)

BLACK PHOEBE Sayornis nigricans
Fairly common along rivers at TI, also in Mindo village

Regularly heard singing in lower-stratum at BE, mostly along the road past the research station where seen occasionally (T)

MASKED WATER-TYRANT Fluvicola nengeta
Several around La Ye de la Laguna and PE, and along nearby roads wherever something damp was happening

2-3 heard singing at BBS (T)

DUSKY-CAPPED FLYCATCHER Myiarchus tuberculifer
Several at forest edges in BBS and FI (T)

BOAT-BILLED FLYCATCHER Megarhynchus pitangua
Fairly common around TI, BBS and PE, especially in partially cleared areas with tall trees (T)

RUSTY-MARGINED FLYCATCHER Myiozetetes cayanensis
Common along the backroad into TI, and in cleared areas at BBS (T)

GREY-CAPPED FLYCATCHER Myiozetetes granadensis
A few around TI

STREAKED FLYCATCHER Myiodynastes maculatus
One at BBS, another at PE

GOLDEN-CROWNED FLYCATCHER Myiodynastes chrysocephalus
1-2 at BE, 1 at BBS

One at TI, another at BBS

TROPICAL KINGBIRD Tyrannus melancholicus
Very common around TI, BBS, PE

SNOWY-THROATED KINGBIRD Tyrannus niveigularis
One seen well foraging in pastures near the main entrance to BBS (presumably a non-breeding visitor); distinctive sharp pik calls, very different from the trills of melancholicus (T)

SLATY BECARD Pachyramphus spodiurus
One young male (still with orange patches in wings) accompanying the mixed-species flock roving around the station grounds at BBS; identification confirmed by voice - bird gave both songs types typical of Slaty Becard (T)

CINNAMON BECARD Pachyramphus cinnamomeus
Fairly common in partially cleared areas around TI, BBS and La Ye de la Laguna

BLACK-AND-WHITE BECARD Pachyramphus albogriseus
A pair at BE; A few around BBS, accompanying mixed-species flocks including the large one roving about the station garden

ONE-COLOURED BECARD Platypsaris homochrous
A few in mixed-species flocks at BBS, usually in edge habitats, including the station garden; one seen at FI

MASKED TITYRA Tityra semifasciata
Fairly common, especially in partially cleared areas, around TI and BBS

Fairly common (2-5 seen daily) at BE

SCALED FRUITEATER Ampelioides tschudii
Several heard (distinctive high-pitched split-tone whistle) and one seen at BBS (T)

RUFOUS PIHA Lipaugus unirufus
Several heard and c.4 seen at BBS (T)

Two heard at TI, down along the river, and one group encountered at BBS (T)

LONG-WATTLED UMBRELLABIRD Cephalopterus penduliger
c.5 individuals seen in mid-stratum while walking trails; one calling area encountered along the Yellow trail - at least three males and a female in attendance, one male responding to playback by approaching, booming and extending wattle to around 40 cm in length. Quite incredible (T)

Several lekking areas encountered, mainly on ridgetops (e.g. the Green trail) at BBS (T)

BLUE-CROWNED MANAKIN Lepidothrix coronata
Several males attending song-posts along ridges at BBS (T)

GOLDEN-WINGED MANAKIN Masius chrysopterus
Fairly common at BBS and FI, where males were regularly seen or heard displaying (T)

A few seen in lower-stratum at TI and FI; many males heard lekking on the walk into BBS (less common in the forest itself)

CLUB-WINGED MANAKIN Machaeropterus deliciosus
2-3 males at lek close to the cabaña at ML (T)

GREEN MANAKIN Chloropipo holochroa
A few at BBS with lower and mid-strata flocks

THRUSH-LIKE SCHIFFORNIS Schiffornis turdinus
A few seen or heard calling at BBS (T)

TURQUOISE JAY Cyanolyca turcosa
Fairly common at BE (5-10 seen or heard daily)

2-3 around PE

SLATY-CAPPED SHRIKE-VIREO Vireolanius leucotis
One seen with mid-stratum flock at FI

RED-EYED VIREO Vireo olivaceus
Seen at La Ye de la Laguna and FI

BROWN-CAPPED VIREO Vireo leucophrys
A few seen around ML and the upper Mindo road

LESSER GREENLET Hylophilus decurtatus
Fairly common in mixed-species canopy flocks at TI, BBS and FI

ANDEAN SOLITAIRE Myadestes ralloides
One heard at BE

One watched hopping along the H trail at dusk, BE; others heard in song

Several heard at BBS (mostly along Green or Red trails); one seen at dawn hopping along the former; another heard at FI (T)

GREAT THRUSH Turdus fuscater
Fairly common at BE

ECUADORIAN THRUSH Turdus maculirostris
Several seen, especially in semi-cleared areas, at TI, BBS, La Ye de la Laguna and PE

DAGUA THRUSH Turdus daguae
Only one seen by chance in mid-stratum at BBS along the Green Trail (T)

A few around PE

BLUE-AND-WHITE SWALLOW Notiochelidon cyanoleuca
A few around Mindo and Nanegalito

WHITE-THIGHED SWALLOW Niochelidon tibialis
Small groups along the road near BBS

SOUTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW Stelgidopteryx ruficollis
Fairly common and nesting in cleared areas around TI, BBS and La Ye de la Laguna

BARN SWALLOW Hirundo rustica
c.5 at La Ye de la Laguna

BAND-BACKED WREN Campylorhynchus zonatus
Heard at La Ye de la Laguna, and also seen and heard in trashed habitat near the station at BBS and FI (T)

[SEPIA-BROWN WREN Cinnycerthia olivascens]
A small group of wrens seen briefly at BE was probably this species

PLAIN-TAILED WREN Thryothorus euophrys
Occasional loud duets heard from bamboo at BE (T)

BAY WREN Thryothorus nigricapillus
Fairly common and vocal around TI, BBS and FI (T)

STRIPE-THROATED WREN Thryothorus leucopogon
Brief views of one individual with a mixed-species flock in vine-tangled mid-stratum along Red trail at BBS

HOUSE WREN Troglodytes aedon
Seen and heard almost throughout

MOUNTAIN WREN Troglodytes solstitialis
A few seen with flocks at BE

WHITE-BREASTED WOOD-WREN Henicorhina leucosticta
Two of the darker-breasted NW form at FI (T)

GREY-BREASTED WOOD-WREN Henicorhina leucophrys
Commonly heard and occasionally seen at BE (T)

SONG WREN Cyphorinus phaeocephalus
Fairly common - but not very vocal - at BBS; encountered on c.7 occasions, mostly along the Red or Green trails (T)

SOUTHERN NIGHTINGALE-WREN Microcerculus marginatus
Regularly heard and several seen around the trail system at BBS; also heard at TI and FI (T)

TAWNY-FACED GNATWREN Microbates cinereiventris
Fairly common (2-6 heard or seen daily) in lower-stratum at BBS (song like Tawny-crowned Greenlet on other side of Andes) (T)

A few in trees at PE

TROPICAL PARULA Parula pitiayumi
Fairly common and vocal in mixed-species flocks at TI, BBS, PE (T)

Several accompanying mixed-species canopy flocks at BE

2-3 males in song at La Ye de la Laguna, others in marshy areas along the road at PE

Scarce at BE

Fairly common at BE (c.5 seen daily) (T)

CHOCÓ WARBLER Basileuterus chlorophrys
Common at TI and FI, fairly common at BBS (T)

THREE-STRIPED WARBLER Basileuterus tristriatus
Common and vocal at BE (T)

RUSSET-CROWNED WARBLER Basileuterus coronatus
Common and vocal in lower-stratum at BE (T)

BUFF-RUMPED WARBLER Basileuterus fulvicauda
A few along the river and backroad at TI, along streams at BBS and two at FI (T)

BANANAQUIT Coereba flaveola
Common in gardens, farmland, and forest edge at TI, near La Ye de la Laguna and at PE (T)

PURPLE HONEYCREEPER Cyanerpes caeruleus
One at FI

GREEN HONEYCREEPER Chlorophanes spiza
Seen twice with canopy flocks at BBS

Fairly common around TI

One exquisite male accompanying Scarlet-browed Tanagers in upper canopies along the road at BBS beyond the beginning of the Orange trail

CAPPED CONEBILL Conirostrum albifrons
One female seen in a mixed-species canopy flock at BE

Fairly common in and around forest at BE

BLACK FLOWERPIERCER Diglossa humeralis
A few in cleared areas around BE

Regularly with mixed-species flocks at BE

GUIRA TANAGER Hemithraupis guira
Small numbers regularly seen in partially cleared areas around TI; also one male seen on the walk between La Ye de la Laguna and BBS

THICK-BILLED EUPHONIA Euphonia laniirostris
Common, especially in partially cleared areas around TI, BBS and PE

GOLDEN-RUMPED EUPHONIA Euphonia cyanocephala
Several small groups in canopies alongside the upper Mindo road near ML (T)

ORANGE-BELLIED EUPHONIA Euphonia xanthogaster
Fairly common at BBS where several seen singing in mid or lower-strata; also at PE (T)

Seen in small numbers most days around TI

One individual seen in canopy of isolated tree near the station at BBS

GOLDEN TANAGER Tangara arthus
Fairly common (5-10 daily) with canopy flocks at BE

EMERALD TANAGER Tangara florida
c.5 seen with mid-stratum and canopy flocks at BBS, mostly along the Orange trail

SILVER-THROATED TANAGER Tangara icterocephala
Regularly observed at BBS, FI and ML

SAFFRON-CROWNED TANAGER Tangara xanthocephala
A few seen on the upper Mindo road near ML

FLAME-FACED TANAGER Tangara parzudakii
2-3 with mixed-species flocks at BE

METALLIC-GREEN TANAGER Tangara labradorides
Several individuals seen with canopy flocks near ML

A few with mixed-species flocks at BE

BERYL-SPANGLED TANAGER Tangara nigroviridis
2-4 daily with mixed-species flocks at BE

Several at ML

BLUE-NECKED TANAGER Tangara cyanicollis
Regularly seen in partially cleared areas around TI and BBS

A few seen at BBS; one at FI

BLUE-WINGED MOUNTAIN-TANAGER Anisognathus somptuosus
Fairly common at BE

GRASS-GREEN TANAGER Chlorornis riefferii
A few with mixed-speces flocks at BE

BLUE-GREY TANAGER Thraupis episcopus
Fairly common in partially cleared areas around TI, BBS and PE

PALM TANAGER Thraupis palmarum
Fairly common around TI and BBS

BLUE-CAPPED TANAGER Thraupis cyanocephala
Several at BE and ML

LEMON-RUMPED TANAGER Ramphocelus icteronotus
Very common in degraded forest, cleared areas, gardens etc. near TI, BBS, FI

OCHRE-BREASTED TANAGER Chlorothraupis stolzmanni
Common - especially by loud voice at dawn - at BBS (T)

DUSKY-FACED TANAGER Mitrospingus cassini
One flew across the road near La Ye de la Laguna, others were seen and heard skulking around in lower-stratum at BBS (T)

WHITE-SHOULDERED TANAGER Tachyphonus luctuosus
Regularly seen in mid-stratum flocks at TI

TAWNY-CRESTED TANAGER Tachyphonus delatrii
A small noisy group encountered at FI

SCARLET-BROWED TANAGER Heterospingus xanthopygius
A group of c.5 individuals perched in canopy near the road beyond the beginning of the Red trail

DUSKY BUSH-TANAGER Chlorospingus semifuscus
Very common and vocal (a major component of mixed-species flocks) at BE (T)

YELLOW-THROATED BUSH-TANAGER Chlorospingus flavigularis
Common at BBS, present in all mixed-species flocks from mid-stratum upwards (T)

WESTERN HEMISPINGUS Hemispingus ochraceus
One feeding in bamboo below the lodge at BE, and another pair heard on the A trail

PLUSHCAP Catamblyrhynchus diadema
One seen near bamboo with a large mixed-species flock by the research station at BE

A few seen around TI and BBS

BLACK-WINGED SALTATOR Saltator atripennis
Regularly seen in partially cleared areas around TI and BBS

1-2 in song at BBS (T)

SOUTHERN YELLOW-GROSBEAK Pheucticus chrysogaster
c.3 at BE

BLUE-BLACK GROSBEAK Cyanocompsa cyanoides
2-3 heard in densely vegetated ravines at BBS

CRIMSON-BREASTED FINCH Rhodospingus cruentus
Two males seen at edge of forest fragments behind PE

BLUE-BLACK GRASSQUIT Volatinia jacarina
Two at La Ye de la Laguna

Two in roadside shrubs just uphill from BE lodge

LESSER SEEDFINCH Oryzoborus angolensis
One male seen on the backroad to TI, a few more at La Ye de la Laguna

VARIABLE SEEDEATER Sporophila corvina
Seen around TI, BBS and PE

YELLOW-BELLIED SEEDEATER Sporophila nigricollis
A few around La Ye de la Laguna

RUFOUS-NAPED BRUSH-FINCH Atlapetes latinuchus
A few at BE

CHESTNUT-CAPPED BRUSH-FINCH Buarremon brunneinucha
One seen hopping along the H trail, and others heard at BE; one seen and heard along the Green trail at BBS (T)

TANAGER FINCH Oreothraupis arremonops
Great views of a pair at BE; these were found through speculative playback along the road near the research station, where the top of the R path meets the road. The same pair was heard here on subsequent occasions, and once nearby from the beginning of the A path opposite (T)

ORANGE-BILLED SPARROW Arremon aurantiirostris
Regularly seen and heard around TI, even in gardens; also singles at BBS and FI

BLACK-STRIPED SPARROW Arremonops conirostris
Two seen along the backroad to TI

RUFOUS-COLLARED SPARROW Zonotrichia capensis
A few in upland areas

SCARLET-RUMPED CACIQUE Cacicus microrhynchus
Small numbers at TI and BBS, often accompanying oropendolas at the latter site (T)

Fairly common in the canopy of tall forest at BBS (T)

SHINY COWBIRD Molothrus bonariensis
A few in farmland round PE

SCRUB BLACKBIRD Dives warszewiczi
A few in cleared areas around TI and La Ye de la Laguna

GREAT-TAILED GRACKLE Quiscalus mexicanus
Fairly common along the coast at PE

YELLOW-TAILED ORIOLE Icterus mesomelas
A few in song around PE

PERUVIAN MEADOWLARK Sturnella bellicosa
Fairly common in open areas around PE

YELLOW-BELLIED SISKIN Carduelis xanthogastra
A few flying around the station at BBS

LESSER GOLDFINCH Carduelis psaltria
Small numbers on the upper Mindo road near ML

HOUSE SPARROW Passer domesticus
Seen in Esmeraldas town centre

Some of Joes Photos acn be seen at

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