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A Report from

Oaxaca and Guerrero, Mexico, March 6th to 27th 2009,


Report compiled by John Ward with assistance from Manuel Grosselet on the species list, notes on Guerrero, and the photographs.


John Duranti - Sydney, Australia
John Lovatt – Dublin, Republic of Ireland
Brian Porter – Dublin, Republic of Ireland
Allan Richards – Sydney, Australia
John Ward – Oxford, England


Planning for this trip started in April 2008. There were obviously a lot of good birds to be found in Mexico so where would a good place be to choose? After several evenings and weekends reading Steve Howell’s guide, I decided on the state of Oaxaca. I had travelled previously through Mexico in 1965, but that was a leisurely journey a long time ago - this time I wanted an intensive two week trip to see as many of the endemics and regional specials as possible plus the numerous migrants passing through during springtime. Later on in the planning stages, the tour would be extended a further week to include Guerrero.

A ground agent and guide were going to be essential and after sending off a number of enquiries, I decided I would try to get Manuel Grosselet of Tierra de Aves, Manuel is a French ornithologist based in Mexico carrying out research and conservation work and guiding. We agreed a price and worked on an itinerary that would maximize our time.

And so, after a few emails to friends and friends of friends, a group of five was formed and the trip was up and running.

Red-breasted Chat 
Russet-crowned Motmot

General Notes:

Oaxaca is well served with frequent flights from Mexico City, flight time about one hour. Allan and John D flew in from two weeks in Cuba and encountered an annoying bureaucratic glitch at Mexico City airport but luckily were able to get onto their Oaxaca flight OK. The rest of us had trouble-free journeys from Dublin and London.

Wader watching near Juichitan

The birding was very comfortable, mainly from the roadside or from good trails. The boat for the pelagic was ideal, and fortunately (for me at least) the sea was calm.

Regarding field guides, other than Ber Van Perlo’s, none of those listed below include illustrations of all the birds of Mexico which resulted in some long-winded checking at times. There seems to be an opening for someone to produce a good quality all inclusive guide…..any volunteers out there?

Our group number of five was perfect for the eight-seater Dodge Ram mini-bus, with plenty of spare room for bags, scopes, water and food etc – and rapid exiting was easy at the numerous stops.  We were an ideal size too for the narrow trails and confined spots but big enough for plenty of good banter between everyone, including Manuel whose sense of humour was great.

A word or two about our guide – Manuel’s identification skills were excellent, and he made absolutely every effort possible to get everyone onto every bird. He constantly searched for new birds and worked hard to keep us well fed and watered and looked after all our general welfare needs – his services were of the highest order and I can heartily recommend him for anyone thinking of a birding trip to Mexico.

The accommodation was fine, varying from cabins to very comfortable hotels and family houses.

We ate well and the food was mostly very tasty – although the black beans soon lost any popularity they may have had at the start of the trip! The local beer was incredibly cheap and tasty, and we pretty well OD’d at times on jug after jug of freshly made fruit-juice - it was so refreshing, the best I’ve ever tasted. But certainly some care needed to be taken with food. Because of the remoteness and being well off the tourist routes for a good bit of the time, often the only eating places available were those used just by the local people - the odd tummy up-set was going to be inevitable.

Mosquitoes weren’t too much of a problem, in fact some of the group dispensed with their malaria pills halfway through. Other biting/burrowing insects were present though. I got a lot of chiggers.

High in the mountains the temperature fell close to zero at night (or at least it felt like it). In the eastern lowlands it was hot and humid and in the Central Valley and the west it was mostly very hot and dry. The two Aussies took the heat in their stride of course but the rest of us were feeling it at times. We had no rain at all.

On occasions we were pulled over at security road blocks – correction, we were always pulled over – a couple of the group did look suspicious. The vehicle and one or two of our bags would be searched but soon we were on our way with minimal delay.

Very little English was spoken by the Mexican people once off the beaten track but everyone was extremely friendly and very welcoming towards us. We had good fun trying to converse with the few words we knew. Manuel spoke fluent Spanish so we had no problems and JD also helped out especially when ordering at mealtimes, although it would often be a ‘hope for the best’ sort of choice which usually turned out just fine.


Oaxaca Sparrow
Citreoline Trogon


Day No.



Key Birds



Birding in Las Guacamayas. Hotel in Oaxaca.

Dwarf Jay, Grey-barred Wren, Oaxaca Sparrow, Ocellated Thrasher



Birded dry scrub habitat in the Central Valley at Yagul and Teotitlan, then along the 175 road towards La Cumbre National Park. Night in cabins at La Cumbre.

Dwarf Vireo, Bridled Sparrow, Beautiful Hummingbird, Pileated Flycatcher



Montane pine and oak forest birding at La Cumbre. Second night in cabins at Ixtlan

Collared Towhee, Rufous-capped Brushfinch, Dwarf Jay, Pine Flycatcher



Drive to Valle National, with numerous stops in pine and oak forest, and cloud and tropical rainforest en route. Night in lodge on banks of Rio San Juan Bautista in village of San Mateo, Yelta.

Unicoloured Jay, Bumblebee Hummingbird, Slate coloured Solitaire, Cinnamon-bellied Flowerpiercer, Mountain trogon, Black Thrush, Blue-crowned Chlorophonia



Tropical rainforest birding around Valle National, then drive to Tuxtepec. Hotel in Tuxtepec.

White-collared Manakin, Red-legged Honeycreeper, Violaceous and Black-headed Trogons, Band-backed Wren, Yellow-headed Parrot



Birded tropical humid forest at Presa Miguel Aleman, then long drive to Juchitan with several stops en route including part of the Uxpanapan Road. Hotel in Juichitan.

Sumichrast’s Wren, White Hawk, and lowlands species.



Dry scrub birding in the Sierra de Tolistoque and coastal lagoon. Second night in Juchitan.

Rosita’s and Orange-breasted Buntings, Cinnamon-tailed Sparrow, Golden-crowned Emerald, Green-fronted Hummingbird, Russet-crowned Motmot



Drive from Juchitan towards Huatulco, birding thorn forest and shoreline before turning inland into tropical deciduous forest clad mountain slopes of the shade coffee plantations. Night at Finca Monte Carlo.

Red-breasted Chat, Blue Bunting, Banded Wren.



Birded coffee plantation forest. Second night at Finca Monte Carlo. A truly magical experience.

Cinnamon-sided Hummingbird, Vermiculated Schreech Owl, Fan-tailed Warbler



Drive from the mountain forest zone to coastal humid forest near Huatulco. Night in cabins in Huatulco National Park.

Flammulated Flycatcher, Colima Pygmy-Owl, Olive Sparrow, Happy Wren



Morning pelagic from Huatulco, then thorn forest birding in Huatulco National Park. Hotel in Huatulco.

Galapagos and Wedge-tailed Shearwaters, Masked and Blue-footed Boobies



Birding from the beach at Puerto Angel and Zipolete, then on the 175 road up into the mountains towards Oaxaca. Night in cabins at San Jose Pacifico

Red-billed Tropicbird, Blue capped Hummingbird, Grey-crowned Woodpecker, Garnet-throated Hummingbird



Montane pine/oak forest birding and then drive down into The Central Valley and Oaxaca City. Hotel in Oaxaca.

Aztec Thrush, Chestnut-sided Shrike-Vireo, Red Warbler



Birding around the ancient site of Monte Alban. Hotel in Oaxaca.

Slatey Vireo, Pileated Flycatcher, Occelated Thrasher



Visit to San Felipe Park in the morning. BP and JW return home pm. JD, JL and AR continue on to Guerrero.

Hooded Yellowthroat, Elegant Euphonia, Painted Redstart



Birding to Tecomavaca, in the National Park of Tehuacan Cuicatlan. Night in Yautepec.

Military Macaw, Bridled Sparrow, Nutting’s flycatcher



Birding in Cañon de los Lobos, then drive to Sierra de Atoyac, Night in El Carrizal

Black-chested Sparrow, Rusty-crowned Ground-Sparrow, Yellow Grosbeak.



Birding around El Carrizal, crossing the Sierra. Night in Nuevo Dehli in private family home.

White-throated Jay, Common Bush-Tanager (endemic form of Sierra Sur).Garnet-throated Hummingbird,



Birding around Nuevo Delhi, then down to El Paraiso. Night in the new Hotel de El Paraiso.

Short-crested Coquette, Sparking-tailed Hummingbird, Ruddy Foliage Gleaner, White-faced Quail Dove



Birding above the El Paraiso, afternoon ringing session. Night in el Paraiso

Collared Forest-Falcon, White-tailed Hummingbird, Singing Quail, Lilac-crowned Parrot, Berylline Hummingbird, Sinaloa Wren, Bright-rumped Attila



Birding on the Pacific Coast, lagoon boat trip and marsh area., then drive to Mexico City,.

Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture, marshes and wetlands species.



Final birding around Mexico city. End of the tour.

Sierra Madre Sparrow, Green-striped Brushfinch, Striped Sparrow

Enjoying hospitality from a Guerrero family

Species List:

 English Name

Scientific Name

Least Grebe

Tachybaptus dominicus

Pied-billed Grebe

Podilymbus podiceps

Wedge-tailed Shearwater

Puffinus pacificus

Black-vented Shearwater

Puffinus opistomelas

Galapagos Shearwater

Puffinus subalaris

Least Storm-Petrel

Oceanodroma microsoma

Black Storm-Petrel

Oceanodroma melania

Red-billed Tropicbird

Phaethon aethereus

American White Pelican

Pelecanus erythrorhynchos

Brown Pelican

Pelecanus occidentalis

Masked Booby

Sula dactylatra

Blue-footed Booby

Sula nebouxi

Brown Booby

Sula leucogaster

Neotropic Cormorant

Phalacrocorax brasilianus

Magnificent Frigatebird

Fregata magnificens

Great Blue Heron

Ardea herodias

Great Egret

Ardea alba

Reddish Egret

Egretta rufescens

Tricolored Heron

Egretta tricolor

Little Blue Heron

Egretta caerulea

Snowy Egret

Egretta thula

Cattle Egret

Bubulcus ibis

Green Heron

Butorides virescens

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron

Nyctanassa violacea

Boat-billed Heron

Cochlearius cochlearius

Bare-throated Tiger-Heron

Tigrisoma mexicanum

Least Bittern

Ixobrychus exilis

American Bittern

Botaurus lentiginosus

Wood Stork

Mycteria americana

White Ibis

Eudocimus albus

White-faced Ibis

Plegadis chihi

Roseate Spoonbill

Platalea ajaja

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck

Dendrocygna autumnalis

American Wigeon

Anas americana

Blue-winged Teal

Anas discors

Northern Shoveler

Anas clypeata

Ring-necked Duck

Aythya collaris

Lesser Scaup

Aythya affinis

Ruddy Duck

Oxyura jamaicensis

Black Vulture

Coragyps atratus

Turkey Vulture

Cathartes aura

Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture

Cathartes burrovianus


Pandion haliaetus

Hook-billed Kite

Chondrohierax uncinatus

Snail Kite

Rostrhamus sociabilis

Northern Harrier

Circus cyaneus

Sharp-shinned Hawk

Accipiter striatus

Cooper's Hawk

Accipiter cooperii

White Hawk

Leucopternis albicollis

Common Black-Hawk

Buteogallus anthracinus

Great Black-Hawk

Buteogallus urubitinga

Roadside Hawk

Buteo magnirostris

Broad-winged Hawk

Buteo platypterus

Gray Hawk

Buteo nitidus

Short-tailed Hawk

Buteo brachyurus

Swainson's Hawk

Buteo swainsoni

White-tailed Hawk

Buteo albicaudatus

Zone-tailed Hawk

Buteo albonotatus

Red-tailed Hawk

Buteo jamaicensis

Black Hawk-Eagle

Spizaetus tyrannus

Crested Caracara

Caracara cheriway

Laughing Falcon

Herpetotheres cachinnans

Barred Forest-Falcon

Micrastur ruficollis

Collared Forest-Falcon

Micrastur semitorquatus

American Kestrel

Falco sparverius


Falco columbarius

Bat Falcon

Falco rufigularis

Peregrine Falcon

Falco peregrinus

Plain Chachalaca

Ortalis vetula

West Mexican Chachalaca

Ortalis poliocephala

Long-tailed Wood-Partridge

Dendrortyx macroura

Singing Quail

Dactylortyx thoracicus

Montezuma Quail

Cyrtonyx montezumae


Porzana carolina

Common Moorhen

Gallinula chloropus

American Coot

Fulica americana

Northern Jacana

Jacana spinosa

Black-necked Stilt

Himantopus mexicanus

Double-striped Thick-knee

Burhinus bistriatus

Semipalmated Plover

Charadrius semipalmatus

Wilson's Plover

Charadrius wilsonia


Charadrius vociferus

Collared Plover

Charadrius collaris

Short-billed Dowitcher

Limnodromus griseus


Numenius phaeopus

Spotted Sandpiper

Actitis macularius

Solitary Sandpiper

Tringa solitaria

Greater Yellowlegs

Tringa melanoleuca


Tringa semipalmata

Lesser Yellowlegs

Tringa flavipes

Ruddy Turnstone

Arenaria interpres


Calidris alba

Semipalmated Sandpiper

Calidris pusilla

Western Sandpiper

Calidris mauri

Least Sandpiper

Calidris minutilla

American Herring Gull

Larus smithsonianus

Laughing Gull

Larus atricilla

Gull-billed Tern

Gelochelidon nilotica

Caspian Tern

Hydroprogne caspia

Black Tern

Chlidonias niger

Common Tern

Sterna hirundo

Royal Tern

Thalasseus maximus

Sandwich Tern

Thalasseus sandvicensis

Black Skimmer

Rynchops niger

Rock Pigeon

Columba livia

Band-tailed Pigeon

Patagioenas fasciata

Red-billed Pigeon

Patagioenas flavirostris

Short-billed Pigeon

Patagioenas nigrirostris

Mourning Dove

Zenaida macroura

White-winged Dove

Zenaida asiatica

Common Ground-Dove

Columbina passerina

Ruddy Ground-Dove

Columbina talpacoti

Inca Dove

Columbina inca

White-tipped Dove

Leptotila verreauxi

White-faced Quail-Dove

Geotrygon albifacies

Ruddy Quail-Dove

Geotrygon montana

Military Macaw

Ara militaris

Olive-throated Parakeet

Aratinga nana

Orange-fronted Parakeet

Aratinga canicularis

Barred Parakeet

Bolborhynchus lineola

White-crowned Parrot

Pionus senilis

White-fronted Parrot

Amazona albifrons

Lilac-crowned Parrot

Amazona finschi

Red-lored Parrot

Amazona autumnalis

Yellow-headed Parrot

Amazona oratrix

Mealy Parrot

Amazona farinosa

Squirrel Cuckoo

Piaya cayana

Groove-billed Ani

Crotophaga sulcirostris

Striped Cuckoo

Tapera naevia

Pheasant Cuckoo

Dromococcyx phasianellus

Lesser Ground-Cuckoo

Morococcyx erythropygus

Flammulated Owl

Otus flammeolus

Vermiculated Screech-Owl

Megascops guatemalae

Great Horned Owl

Bubo virginianus

Mottled Owl

Ciccaba virgata

Colima Pygmy-Owl

Glaucidium palmarum

Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl

Glaucidium brasilianum

Lesser Nighthawk

Chordeiles acutipennis


Nyctidromus albicollis

Buff-collared Nightjar

Caprimulgus ridgwayi


Caprimulgus vociferus

Black Swift

Cypseloides niger

Chestnut-collared Swift

Streptoprocne rutila

White-naped Swift

Streptoprocne semicollaris

White-collared Swift

Streptoprocne zonaris

Vaux's Swift

Chaetura vauxi

White-throated Swift

Aeronautes saxatalis

Western Long-tailed Hermit

Phaethornis longirostris

Eastern Long-tailed Hermit

Phaethornis superciliosus

Green-breasted Mango

Anthracothorax prevostii

Emerald-chinned Hummingbird

Abeillia abeillei

Short-crested Coquette

Lophornis brachylopha

Golden-crowned Emerald

Chlorostilbon auriceps

Canivet's Emerald

Chlorostilbon canivetii

Blue-capped Hummingbird

Eupherusa cyanophrys

White-tailed Hummingbird

Eupherusa poliocerca

Dusky Hummingbird

Cynanthus sordidus

Broad-billed Hummingbird

Cynanthus latirostris

White-eared Hummingbird

Hylocharis leucotis

Buff-bellied Hummingbird

Amazilia yucatanensis

Cinnamon Hummingbird

Amazilia rutila

White-bellied Emerald

Agyrtria candida

Azure-crowned Hummingbird

Agyrtria cyanocephala

Violet-crowned Hummingbird

Agyrtria violiceps

Green-fronted Hummingbird

Agyrtria viridifrons

Berylline Hummingbird

Saucerottia beryllina

Blue-throated Hummingbird

Lampornis clemenciae

Amethyst-throated Hummingbird

Lampornis amethystinus

Garnet-throated Hummingbird

Lamprolaima rhami

Magnificent Hummingbird

Eugenes fulgens

Plain-capped Starthroat

Heliomaster constantii

Long-billed Starthroat

Heliomaster longirostris

Sparkling-tailed Hummingbird

Tilmatura dupontii

Beautiful Hummingbird

Calothorax pulcher

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Archilochus colubris

Bumblebee Hummingbird

Atthis heloisa

Broad-tailed Hummingbird

Selasphorus platycercus

Rufous Hummingbird

Selasphorus rufus

Black-headed Trogon

Trogon melanocephalus

Citreoline Trogon

Trogon citreolus

Violaceous Trogon

Trogon violaceus

Mountain Trogon

Trogon mexicanus

Collared Trogon

Trogon collaris

Belted Kingfisher

Megaceryle alcyon

Ringed Kingfisher

Megaceryle torquata

Amazon Kingfisher

Chloroceryle amazona

Green Kingfisher

Chloroceryle americana

Russet-crowned Motmot

Momotus mexicanus

Blue-crowned Motmot

Momotus momota

Wagler's Toucanet

Aulacorhynchus wagleri

Keel-billed Toucan

Ramphastos sulfuratus

Acorn Woodpecker

Melanerpes formicivorus

Golden-cheeked Woodpecker

Melanerpes chrysogenys

Gray-breasted Woodpecker

Melanerpes hypopolius

Golden-fronted Woodpecker

Melanerpes aurifrons

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Sphyrapicus varius

Ladder-backed Woodpecker

Picoides scalaris

Hairy Woodpecker

Picoides villosus

Gray-crowned Woodpecker

Piculus auricularis

Northern Flicker

Colaptes auratus

Lineated Woodpecker

Dryocopus lineatus

Pale-billed Woodpecker

Campephilus guatemalensis

Rufous-breasted Spinetail

Synallaxis erythrothorax

Ruddy Foliage-gleaner

Automolus rubiginosus

Olivaceous Woodcreeper

Sittasomus griseicapillus

Ivory-billed Woodcreeper

Xiphorhynchus flavigaster

Spot-crowned Woodcreeper

Lepidocolaptes affinis

Streak-headed Woodcreeper

Lepidocolaptes souleyetii

Barred Antshrike

Thamnophilus doliatus

Scaled Antpitta

Grallaria guatimalensis

White-collared Manakin

Manacus candei

Greenish Elaenia

Myiopagis viridicata

Yellow-bellied Tyrannulet

Ornithion semiflavum

Northern Beardless-Tyrannulet

Camptostoma imberbe

Northern Bentbill

Oncostoma cinereigulare

Yellow-olive Flycatcher

Tolmomyias sulphurescens

Pileated Flycatcher

Xenotriccus mexicanus

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

Empidonax flaviventris

Willow Flycatcher

Empidonax traillii

Least Flycatcher

Empidonax minimus

Hammond's Flycatcher

Empidonax hammondii

Dusky Flycatcher

Empidonax oberholseri

Pine Flycatcher

Empidonax affinis

Pacific-slope Flycatcher

Empidonax difficilis

Cordilleran Flycatcher

Empidonax occidentalis

Greater Pewee

Contopus pertinax

Western Wood-Pewee

Contopus sordidulus

Tropical Pewee

Contopus cinereus

Tufted Flycatcher

Mitrephanes phaeocercus

Black Phoebe

Sayornis nigricans

Say's Phoebe

Sayornis saya

Vermilion Flycatcher

Pyrocephalus rubinus

Piratic Flycatcher

Legatus leucophaius

Social Flycatcher

Myiozetetes similis

Great Kiskadee

Pitangus sulphuratus

Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher

Myiodynastes luteiventris

Boat-billed Flycatcher

Megarynchus pitangua

Tropical Kingbird

Tyrannus melancholicus

Couch's Kingbird

Tyrannus couchii

Cassin's Kingbird

Tyrannus vociferans

Thick-billed Kingbird

Tyrannus crassirostris

Western Kingbird

Tyrannus verticalis

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Tyrannus forficatus

Rufous Mourner

Rhytipterna holerythra

Dusky-capped Flycatcher

Myiarchus tuberculifer

Ash-throated Flycatcher

Myiarchus cinerascens

Nutting's Flycatcher

Myiarchus nuttingi

Brown-crested Flycatcher

Myiarchus tyrannulus

Bright-rumped Attila

Attila spadiceus

Masked Tityra

Tityra semifasciata

Rose-throated Becard

Pachyramphus aglaiae

Horned Lark

Eremophila alpestris

Bank Swallow

Riparia riparia

Tree Swallow

Tachycineta bicolor

Violet-green Swallow

Tachycineta thalassina

Mangrove Swallow

Tachycineta albilinea

Purple Martin

Progne subis

Gray-breasted Martin

Progne chalybea

Northern Rough-winged Swallow

Stelgidopteryx serripennis

Barn Swallow

Hirundo rustica

Cliff Swallow

Petrochelidon pyrrhonota

American Pipit

Anthus rubescens

Golden-crowned Kinglet

Regulus satrapa

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Regulus calendula

Gray Silky-flycatcher

Ptilogonys cinereus

Cedar Waxwing

Bombycilla cedrorum

Band-backed Wren

Campylorhynchus zonatus

Gray-barred Wren

Campylorhynchus megalopterus

Rufous-naped Wren

Campylorhynchus rufinucha

Boucard's Wren

Campylorhynchus jocosus

Rock Wren

Salpinctes obsoletus

Canyon Wren

Catherpes mexicanus

Sumichrast's Wren

Hylorchilus sumichrasti

Happy Wren

Thryothorus felix

Spot-breasted Wren

Thryothorus maculipectus

Banded Wren

Thryothorus pleurostictus

Sinaloa Wren

Thryothorus sinaloa

Bewick's Wren

Thryomanes bewickii

House Wren

Troglodytes aedon

Brown-throated Wren

Troglodytes aedon brunneicapillus

Southern House Wren

Troglodytes aedon musculus

Gray-breasted Wood-Wren

Henicorhina leucophrys

Northern Mockingbird

Mimus polyglottos

Tropical Mockingbird

Mimus gilvus

Ocellated Thrasher

Toxostoma ocellatum

Curve-billed Thrasher

Toxostoma curvirostre

Blue Mockingbird

Melanotis caerulescens

Western Bluebird

Sialia mexicana

Brown-backed Solitaire

Myadestes occidentalis

Slate-colored Solitaire

Myadestes unicolor

Orange-billed Nightingale-Thrush

Catharus aurantiirostris

Russet Nightingale-Thrush

Catharus occidentalis

Ruddy-capped Nightingale-Thrush

Catharus frantzii

Black-headed Nightingale-Thrush

Catharus mexicanus

Swainson's Thrush

Catharus ustulatus

Hermit Thrush

Catharus guttatus

Black Robin

Turdus infuscatus

Clay-colored Robin

Turdus grayi

White-throated Thrush

Turdus assimilis

Rufous-backed Robin

Turdus rufopalliatus

American Robin

Turdus migratorius

Aztec Thrush

Ridgwayia pinicola

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Polioptila caerulea

White-lored Gnatcatcher

Polioptila albiloris


Psaltriparus minimus

Mexican Chickadee

Poecile sclateri

Bridled Titmouse

Baeolophus wollweberi

White-breasted Nuthatch

Sitta carolinensis

Brown Creeper

Certhia americana

Loggerhead Shrike

Lanius ludovicianus

Steller's Jay

Cyanocitta stelleri

White-throated Magpie-Jay

Calocitta formosa

Green Jay

Cyanocorax yncas

Brown Jay

Cyanocorax morio

Dwarf Jay

Cyanolyca nana

White-throated Jay

Cyanolyca mirabilis

Western Scrub-Jay

Aphelocoma californica

Unicolored Jay

Aphelocoma unicolor

Common Raven

Corvus corax

House Sparrow

Passer domesticus

Slaty Vireo

Vireo brevipennis

White-eyed Vireo

Vireo griseus

Bell's Vireo

Vireo bellii

Dwarf Vireo

Vireo nelsoni

Plumbeous Vireo

Vireo plumbeus

Cassin's Vireo

Vireo cassinii

Blue-headed Vireo

Vireo solitarius

Hutton's Vireo

Vireo huttoni

Warbling Vireo

Vireo gilvus

Golden Vireo

Vireo hypochryseus

Chestnut-sided Shrike-Vireo

Vireolanius melitophrys

Scrub Euphonia

Euphonia affinis

Yellow-throated Euphonia

Euphonia hirundinacea

Elegant Euphonia

Euphonia elegantissima

Olive-backed Euphonia

Euphonia gouldi

Blue-crowned Chlorophonia

Chlorophonia occipitalis

House Finch

Carpodacus mexicanus

Red Crossbill

Loxia curvirostra

Pine Siskin

Carduelis pinus

Lesser Goldfinch

Carduelis psaltria

Olive Warbler

Peucedramus taeniatus

Tennessee Warbler

Vermivora peregrina

Orange-crowned Warbler

Vermivora celata

Nashville Warbler

Vermivora ruficapilla

Virginia's Warbler

Vermivora virginiae

Crescent-chested Warbler

Parula superciliosa

Northern Parula

Parula americana

Tropical Parula

Parula pitiayumi

Yellow Warbler

Dendroica petechia

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Dendroica pensylvanica

Magnolia Warbler

Dendroica magnolia

Myrtle Warbler

Dendroica coronata coronata

Audubon´s Warbler

Dendroica coronata auduboni

Black-throated Gray Warbler

Dendroica nigrescens

Black-throated Green Warbler

Dendroica virens

Townsend's Warbler

Dendroica townsendi

Hermit Warbler

Dendroica occidentalis

Yellow-throated Warbler

Dendroica dominica

Grace's Warbler

Dendroica graciae

Prairie Warbler

Dendroica discolor

Palm Warbler

Dendroica palmarum

Black-and-white Warbler

Mniotilta varia

American Redstart

Setophaga ruticilla

Northern Waterthrush

Seiurus noveboracensis

Louisiana Waterthrush

Seiurus motacilla

Kentucky Warbler

Oporornis formosus

MacGillivray's Warbler

Oporornis tolmiei

Common Yellowthroat

Geothlypis trichas

Hooded Yellowthroat

Geothlypis nelsoni

Hooded Warbler

Wilsonia citrina

Wilson's Warbler

Wilsonia pusilla

Red-faced Warbler

Cardellina rubrifrons

Red Warbler

Ergaticus ruber

Painted Redstart

Myioborus pictus

Slate-throated Redstart

Myioborus miniatus

Fan-tailed Warbler

Euthlypis lachrymosa

Golden-crowned Warbler

Basileuterus culicivorus

Rufous-capped Warbler

Basileuterus rufifrons

Golden-browed Warbler

Basileuterus belli

Yellow-breasted Chat

Icteria virens

Red-breasted Chat

Granatellus venustus


Coereba flaveola

Common Bush-Tanager

Chlorospingus ophthalmicus

White-fronted Bush Tanager

Chlorospingus ophtalmicus

Red-crowned Ant-Tanager

Habia rubica

Hepatic Tanager

Piranga flava

Summer Tanager

Piranga rubra

Western Tanager

Piranga ludoviciana

Flame-colored Tanager

Piranga bidentata

Red-headed Tanager

Piranga erythrocephala

Crimson-collared Tanager

Ramphocelus sanguinolentus

Blue-gray Tanager

Thraupis episcopus

Yellow-winged Tanager

Thraupis abbas

Red-legged Honeycreeper

Cyanerpes cyaneus

Blue-black Grassquit

Volatinia jacarina

Variable Seedeater

Sporophila corvina

White-collared Seedeater

Sporophila torqueola

Yellow-faced Grassquit

Tiaris olivaceus

Cinnamon-bellied Flowerpiercer

Diglossa baritula

Rufous-capped Brush-Finch

Atlapetes pileatus

Chestnut-capped Brush-Finch

Buarremon brunneinucha

Green-striped Brush-Finch

Arremon virenticeps

Olive Sparrow

Arremonops rufivirgatus

Rusty-crowned Ground-Sparrow

Melozone kieneri

Collared Towhee

Pipilo ocai

Spotted Towhee

Pipilo maculatus

White-throated Towhee

Pipilo albicollis

Bridled Sparrow

Aimophila mystacalis

Black-chested Sparrow

Aimophila humeralis

Stripe-headed Sparrow

Aimophila ruficauda

Cinnamon-tailed Sparrow

Aimophila sumichrasti

Rufous-crowned Sparrow

Aimophila ruficeps

Oaxaca Sparrow

Aimophila notosticta

Rusty Sparrow

Aimophila rufescens

Striped Sparrow

Oriturus superciliosus

Chipping Sparrow

Spizella passerina

Vesper Sparrow

Pooecetes gramineus

Lark Sparrow

Chondestes grammacus

Savannah Sparrow

Passerculus sandwichensis

Sierra Madre Sparrow

Xenospiza baileyi

Grasshopper Sparrow

Ammodramus savannarum

Lincoln's Sparrow

Melospiza lincolnii

Yellow-eyed Junco

Junco phaeonotus

Grayish Saltator

Saltator coerulescens

Buff-throated Saltator

Saltator maximus

Black-headed Saltator

Saltator atriceps

Northern Cardinal

Cardinalis cardinalis

Yellow Grosbeak

Pheucticus chrysopeplus

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Pheucticus ludovicianus

Black-headed Grosbeak

Pheucticus melanocephalus

Blue Bunting

Cyanocompsa parellina

Blue Grosbeak

Passerina caerulea

Lazuli Bunting

Passerina amoena

Indigo Bunting

Passerina cyanea

Rose-bellied Bunting

Passerina rositae

Orange-breasted Bunting

Passerina leclancherii

Varied Bunting

Passerina versicolor

Painted Bunting

Passerina ciris

Red-winged Blackbird

Agelaius phoeniceus

Eastern Meadowlark

Sturnella magna

Melodious Blackbird

Dives dives

Great-tailed Grackle

Quiscalus mexicanus

Bronzed Cowbird

Molothrus aeneus

Brown-headed Cowbird

Molothrus ater

Black-vented Oriole

Icterus wagleri

Black-cowled Oriole

Icterus prosthemelas

Orchard Oriole

Icterus spurius

Yellow-tailed Oriole

Icterus mesomelas

Streak-backed Oriole

Icterus pustulatus

Bullock’s Oriole

Icterus bullockii

Black-backed Oriole

Icterus abeillei

Altamira Oriole

Icterus gularis

Dickey’s Oriole

Icterus graduacuada

Baltimore Oriole

Icterus galbula

Scott’s Oriole

Icterus parisorum

Yellow-billed Cacique

Amblycercus holosericeus

Yellow-winged Cacique

Cacicus melanicterus

Montezuma Oropendula

Psarocolius montezuma

Relaxing at Finca Monte Carlo


I was anxious about how the trip would turn out but I needn’t have been - we had no serious hitches and everyone agreed it went off extremely well.

The total trip list was a very respectable 440 species seen plus 18 heard. These included 31 hummingbirds, 40 flycatchers, 16 wrens, 8 jays, 40 warblers, 21 sparrows and 11 orioles. We all added hugely to our life lists and had refreshingly new sightings of previously seen species.

Apart from the amazing birding experience, it was a huge privilege just to be in this part of Mexico – it’s pine and oak forests of the high Sierra Madre, the cloud and tropical forests of the lower eastern slopes, the more arid terrain of the interior and Pacific slope, and to be among the rural people for a glimpse into their very hard way of life.

Finally, I would like to give my thanks to Allan, Brian, both Johns, and Manuel for making this trip so enjoyable, successful and memorable

John Ward



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