Moving from Lima to Cusco for our Classic Andes and Manu Road tour, we will take in the scenic Apurimac River valley - the source of the mighty Amazon, the world’s largest river system - in search of some highly localised and rarely seen endemics including Apurimac Spinetail and Apurimac Brushfinch. A full day up the might Abra Malaga will take our breath away – quite literally! The remnant patches of polylepis forest host both Tawny and endemic, White-breasted Tit-Spinetails, exhibitionist Stripe-headed Antpitta, endemic Junín Canastero, Puna Tapaculo, Ash-breasted Tit-Tyrant, Blue-mantled Thornbill, and Red-rumped Bush Tyrant.
Returning to Cusco, we climb the famous Manu Road before descending the eastern Andean slopes, birding through temperate zones and montane cloud forest, offering chances for an incredible variety of exceptional species, including Cerulean-capped and Yungas Manakins, Rufous-capped Thornbill, Crested and Golden-headed Quetzals, Blue-banded Toucanet, Spotted Barbtail, the outrageous Amazonian Umbrellabird, Chestnut-crested Cotinga, Inca Flycatcher, Saffron-crowned Tanager, Golden-eyed Flowerpiercer and Peruvian Piedtail. We will also visit an Andean Cock-of-the-rock lek, where numerous males sometimes congregate and perform their strange mating ritual! With persistence, night birding in this area might yield the uncommon Napo and Rufescent Screech Owls, Rufous-banded Owl, Lyre-tailed Nightjar and possibly even Andean Potoo.
Andean Condor; White-rumped & White-throated Hawks; Puna & Andean Ibis; Blue-headed Macaw; Mitred & Andean Parakeets; Versicolored Barbet; Yungas Pygmy Owl; Lyre-tailed & Swallow-tailed Nightjars; Andean Potoo; Grey-breasted Mountain Toucan; Southern Mountain Cacique; Andean Cock-of-the-rock; Crested & Golden-headed Quetzals; Yungas, Fiery-capped, Round-tailed & Cerulean-capped Manakins; Lanceolated Monklet; White-throated, Undulated, Stripe-headed, Urubamba, Thrush-like & chances for Red-and-white Antpittas; White-capped Dipper; Black-streaked Puffbird; Amazonian Umbrellabird; Scaled & Band-tailed Fruiteaters; Bolivian Tyrannulet; Inca Flycatcher; Koepcke’s Hermit; Sword-billed, Giant, Green-and-white, White-bellied & Oasis Hummingbirds; White-tufted Sunbeam; Great Sapphirewing; Scaled Metaltail; Bearded Mountaineer; Rufous-webbed Brilliant; Rufous-capped, Blue-mantled & Purple-backed Thornbills; Peruvian Piedtail; Inca Wren; Cuzco Warbler; Apurimac, Marcapata, & Creamy-crested Spinetails; White-breasted Tit-Spinetail; Parodi’s Hemispingus; Puna & Vilcabamba Thistletails; Peruvian Treehunter; Puna, Diademed, Trilling & chances for Vilcabamba Tapaculos; Rusty-fronted, Junin, Ayacucho (Pale-tailed) & Streak-throated Canasteros; chances for Royal Cinclodes; Streak-fronted Thornbird; Plumbeous Tyrant; Ash-breasted Tit-Tyrant; Kalinowski’s Chat-Tyrant; Many-colored Rush Tyrant; Giant, Blue-backed & White-browed Conebills; Black-faced & Tit-like Dacnis; Moustached & Golden-eyed Flowerpiercers; Chestnut-bellied Mountain Tanager; Paradise, Saffron-crowned, Golden-collared, Rust-and-yellow & Grass-green Tanagers; Andean Negrito; Peruvian Sierra Finch; Chestnut-breasted Mountain Finch; Apurimac & Cuzco Brushfinches.
Tayra; Brown-throated Sloth; Saddle-back Tamarin; White-fronted & Large-headed Capuchins; Bolivian Squirrel Monkey; Geoffroy’s Woolly Monkey; Brown Titi Monkey; Bolivian & Southern Amazon Red Squirrels; Long-tailed Weasel; White-lipped Peccary; White-tailed Deer.
humid montane forest, foothill forest, tropical forest, high altitude lakes, polylepis forest
cold to cool in the highlands, hot & humid in the lowlands
8 with 1 Rockjumper leader
moderate, with some long drives and high altitude
moderate with some challenging species
Cusco (the historical Incan capital city of Peru), Apurimac River valley (source of the Amazon), visiting an Andean Cock-of-the-rock lek
Rob Williams is right up there among the very best tour leaders. His vast experience from lots of research and conservation projects and intimate knowledge of the country add lots of value compared to a tour leader who is "just" a good organiser, birder and guide. He is also great company, with a sublime sense of humour.
Rob Williams is the best guide I have ever birded with - wonderful birding and people skills.
Rob Williams was a brilliant guide in all respects. Throughout the three weeks, he gave the group his all. He is outstanding, and we would love to travel with him again.
Successful and enjoyable. Rob proved his already high reputation. Special thanks to our driver Miguel - always helpful, always smiling.
Our guide, Rob Williams, was exceptionally well qualified, good humoured in all circumstances and remarkably diligent in accommodating all levels of birding skills within our group. He went out of his way to make sure that each member of the group realised their expectations for the trip. We would welcome the opportunity to join him on additional trips; he is a quality individual with sound values and a superb representative of Rockjumper Birding Tours.
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