Iquitos: Amazon and White Sand Rainforests

DYNAMITE AMAZON RIVER, RAINFOREST, CANOPY WALKWAY, RIVER ISLAND AND WHITE SAND FOREST SPECIALTIES TRIP

Zimmer's-AntbirdChestnut-belllied GnateaterPhotographer: Alex Durand

A visit to Iquitos, in the Peruvian Amazon, has many birding highlights! Iquitos is one of the best areas to actually see the legendary Nocturnal and Wattled Curassows. Iquitos is also an antbird paradise and we will observe the special variety that exists here on both banks of the Amazon.

During our stay we will explore all the habitats that constitute Amazonia. We will explore both new and old river islands, this being the best place to explore this normally difficult to access micro-habitat. We will also explore both varzea and terra firma forests.

We will stay at three lodges during this tour in order to maximize our chances of finding the specialty species. ACTS canopy walkway lodge has a fabulous 1,500-foot long, continuous walkway through the canopy of the rainforest, enabling us to follow canopy flocks as they move through the treetops at eye level! Allpahuayo-Mishana reserve protects some endangered sand soil forest and here we will look for some birds which have only recently been described to science. A stay at Muyuna lodge will give us a chance of the endangered Wattled Currasow and other birds not found on the north bank of the Amazon.

Day 1: ARRIVAL IN LIMAArriving in Lima our staff will transfer you to our selected hotel near the airport, where you will spend the night. B: L: D
Day 2: IQUITOS TO ACTS FIELD STATION AND THE CANOPY WALKWAYWe will take an early morning flight from Lima to Iquitos. Arriving in Iquitos we will transfer to our fast boat which will take us along the Sucusari river until we reach Explornapo Lodge for lunch and then we bird slowly through the forest to arrive at the remote ACTS canopy walkway field station where we will be staying for the next 3 nights. The accommodation and food are excellent here. Night at ACTS canopy walkway lodge. B:L:D
Days 3 and 4: ACTS FIELD STATION AND THE CANOPY WALKWAYWe will spend the next 2 full days exploring the terra firma forest and observing from the canopy walkway. The sturdy and easily accessible 1,500-foot long canopy walkway reaches a height of 115 feet and was planned by botanists and vertebrate biologists to allow visitors to walk through the canopy between fruiting and flowering trees particularly attractive to wildlife. We will look for tree top specialties but also spend time slowly walking trails Here we will be hoping to find such species as Dugand's and Collared Antwrens, Band-tailed Oropendola, Sapphire-rumped Parrotlet, Olive-striped Antpitta, White-browed Purpletuft, Paradise, Great and Yellow-billed Jacamars, Yellow-browed, Sooty, Bicolored, Lunulated, Spot-winged and Slate-colored Antbirds, Chestnut-belted Gnateater and Reddish and Black-spotted Bare-eyes. We have even seen Red-billed Ground-cuckoo here.
This is also a great place for manakins and we will visit leks of Band-tailed, Golden-headed, Striped, Blue-backed, Blue-crowned and Wire-tailed Manakins.
Striped, Blue-backed, Blue-crowned and Wire-tailed Manakins. Local staff will be alert during the night for the song of Nocturnal Curassow and, if we hear one, those who wish can participate in a night-time hunt for this rarely-seen species. Both nights at ACTS canopy walkway lodge. B:L:D
Days 5 and 6: EXPLORNAPO LODGE AND AMAZON RIVER ISLANDSOn the morning of Day 5 we will move on to Explornapo lodge where we will stay for the next 2 nights. At Explornapo lodge we will spend our time exploring the varzea forest and river islands.
Species we will be looking for include Zimmer's Woodcreeper, Short-tailed Parrot, Lesser Wagtail-tyrant, Castelnau's Antshrike, Parker's and White-bellied Spinetails, Bay and Lesser Horneros, Leaden Antwren, Bicolored and Pearly-vented Conebills, Black-and-White and Ash-breasted Antbirds, Olive-spotted Hummingbird, Riverside Tyrant and River Tyrannulet.
In varzea forest we will look for the recently-described Orange-eyed Flycatcher as well as Yellow-crowned Elaenia, Cinnamon Atilla, Dot-backed Antbird, Spotted Antpitta, Velvet-fronted Grackle, Black Bushbird, White-chinned Jacamar and Spotted Puffbird. Both nights at Explornapo lodge. B:L:D
Day 7: EXPLORNAPO TO IQUITOSToday we will spend the morning at Explornapo lodge before transferring back to Iquitos after lunch. An afternoon fast boat ride will take us to the bustling city and in the late afternoon those who wish can wander down town to the Malecon marshes. Night in our selected air conditioned hotel in the bustling and interesting city of Iquitos. B:L:D
Days 8 and 9: THE WHITE SAND FORESTBased in Iquitos, the next 2 days will both comprise day trips to the Allpamayo-Mishana reserve. Here we will be on the look-out for some rare and recently-found white sand forest birds, including the newly-described Ancient Antwren, Allpahauyo Antbird, Mishana Tyrannulet, Northern Zimmers Antbird and the very rare Iquitos Gnatcatcher.
Other special birds to be found at this reserve include Pompadour Cotinga, Yellow-throated Flycatcher, Orange-crowned and White-crowned Manakins, Sulphur-crested Tyrant-manakin, Cinnamon-crested Spadebill, Citron-bellied Atilla, Zimmers Tody-flycatcher, Red-legged Honeycreeper and Yellow-browed Antbird.
One afternoon we may visit the Nanay river to look for Black-crested Antshrike and Band-tailed Nighthawk. Staying out late we will also try some night birding as both White-winged and Rufous Potoos are here, as well as the commoner Crested and Spectacled Owls. Both nights at our comfortable air-conditioned hotel in Iquitos. B:L:D
Days 10 to 13: MUYUNA LODGEOn Day 10 we will move on to Muyuna lodge, where we will be spending the next 4 nights. Our main target at Muyuna lodge will be finding the endangered Wattled Curassow, as this is one of the few places in the world where you can see this species.
Other birds to be found here include Black-tailed and Band-tailed Antbirds, Rufous-necked Puffbird, Bluish-cheeked Jacamar, Saturnine. Bluish-slate and Amazonian Antshrikes, Gray-chested Greenlet, Rufous-headed Woodpecker, Festive Parrot, Horned Screamer, Cuvier’s Toucan, Lined Forest-falcon and Velvet-fronted Grackle.
Trails around the lodge could also produce Wire-tailed and Blue-crowned Manakins, Black-tailed and Amazonian Trogons, Curl-crested and Chestnut-eared Aracaris and Bluish-fronted Jacamar.
Aquatic habitats around the lodge support Sunbittern, Sungrebe, Hoatzin, Gray-necked Wood-rail, Black-banded Crake, Black-capped Donacobius and Wattled Jacana. Primates are common, including Coppery Titi Monkey, Ma's Night Monkey and Colombian Red Howler Monkey. Also, two species of freshwater dolphin, Pink and Gray, can be seen here.
There is an excellent river island at the mouth of the Yanayaco river and here we could find such species as Zimmer's Woodcreeper, Brownish Elaenia and Plain-breasted Piculet. All 4 nights spent at Muyuna lodge. B:L:D
Day 14: MUYUNA LODGE TO LIMA AND HOMEWe will spend our final morning at Muyuna lodge before returning to Iquitos after lunch. In the evening we will take a flight back to Lima where the tour ends. B:L:D
If overnight in Lima is needed by anyone this can be arranged at an airport hotel.
Does not include air Lima – Iquitos - Lima but we will tell you where to buy and which flights to purchase. You can check current prices at www.LATAM.com

Customer Testimonials

Ron Jensen - Canada

I want to say thank you very much for a wonderful birding experience, your enthusiasm and seemingly endless energy for finding those hard to see species. I hope to have the opportunity to participate in another birding trip which you are involved. I would like to hear of your trips with potential for others to join.

Bill and Liz Heinsen

We were totally pleased with the Manu trip and especially with the services you provided. Your willingness to share your knowledge and experiences made this one of our most memorable experiences. For now, feliz navidad, amigo. May you have the best Christmas ever this weekend.

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Comments

I want to say thank you very much for a wonderful birding experience, your enthusiasm and seemingly endless energy for finding those hard to see species. I hope to have the opportunity to participate in another birding trip which you are involved. I would like to hear of your trips with potential for others to join.

We were totally pleased with the Manu trip and especially with the services you provided. Your willingness to share your knowledge and experiences made this one of our most memorable experiences. For now, feliz navidad, amigo. May you have the best Christmas ever this weekend.

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