Guatemala is quite simply a fantastic Central American birding destination. Not only does it harbour some very special and beautiful birds, but the setting is scenically splendid, including spectacular volcanoes, fabulous highland lakes and forests, and some of the world’s best shade coffee (finca) productions. What’s more, our tour also coincides with the northern winter, a time when Guatemala literally teems with North American migrants over and above its many resident species, making for a truly rewarding birding experience!
Among the many targets on our Guatemala – Central American Specialties tour is the stunning Turquoise-browed Motmot, one of the most beautiful species in this exceptionally colourful family. Assigned to its own genus and with as many as seven recognized subspecies, it occurs only in a relatively small area encompassing the Yucatán Peninsula of eastern Mexico and northernmost Guatemala, as well as on the Pacific slope of Middle America, from southern Mexico to northwest Costa Rica. Found in fairly open habitats such as forest edge, gallery forest and even scrubland, it is more conspicuous than other motmot species, regularly perching in the open including even on wires and fences.
This is just one of so many potential highlights on our upcoming Guatemala tour, with additional targets including the incomparable Resplendent Quetzal, gorgeous little Pink-headed Warbler, Fulvous Owl, Mountain Trogon, Blue-throated Motmot, Guatemalan Pygmy Owl, Mexican Whip-poor-will, Lesser Ground Cuckoo, Lesser Roadrunner, Velasquez’s Woodpecker, Steller’s Jay, White-throated Magpie-Jay, Montezuma Oropendola, Long-tailed Manakin, Emerald-chinned and Wine-throated Hummingbird, Rufous and Violet Sabrewing, Green-throated Mountaingem, Green Violetear, Grey Silky-flycatcher, Prevost’s Ground Sparrow, eye-searing Painted Bunting and the localized Cabanis’s (Azure-rumped) Tanager. A day will also be devoted to hiking the slopes of the impressive San Pedro Volcano in search of one of the world’s most exceptional birds: the incredible Horned Guan!
This tour also comes with a short yet thoroughly recommended Tikal Extension, which not only explores the region’s remarkable Mayan ruins, but also targets such avian gems as the glittering Ocellated Turkey, Orange-breasted Falcon, Pale-billed Woodpecker, stunning Keel-billed Toucan, Mexican Antthrush, Northern Royal Flycatcher and the impressive Great Curassow!
For further information on these departures, which still have limited spaces available, click on the links below or contact our office.
Guatemala – Central American Specialties (15 – 25 January 2016 (11 days), US$3,175 per person sharing);
Tikal Extension – Birding the Mayan Ruins (25 – 29 January 2015 (5 days), US$1,600 per person sharing).