From the several members of the office staff to the actual tour itself, I have nothing but high praise for my Rockjumper experience. This was my first tour with Rockjumper, but I hope it won’t be my last. Alison and Sarah were tremendously helpful. Rob Williams is as good a leader as I have ever experienced. He not only knows the birds, but he made sure that we all got to see them, showing patience way beyond what I thought necessary. When one of our participants lost his passport, Rob bent over backwards to help this hapless person, never complaining while doing so. Rob always told us what the plan was for the next day. When Plan A didn’t pan out, he had Plan B ready. If something went askew, he handled it with aplomb, always keeping his sense of humour. Did I mention he showed us wonderful birds? Oh, we saw some beautiful ones!
Our post tour Llanos extension gives us the opportunity to explore the little visited eastern plains of Colombia where we will search for several range restricted species including Pale-headed Jacamar, White-bearded Flycatcher and Orinoco Goose. We also hope to take in a whole plethora of waterbirds including stately Jabiru, charismatic Sunbittern and ungainly Horned Screamers. We will bird in the open seasonally flooded grasslands and gallery forest of the Llanos and will undertake jeep and boat safaris and night drives. This is a highly enjoyable addition to our Remote Colombia Tour.
Pale-headed Jacamar, White-bearded Flycatcher, Orinoco Goose, Razor-billed Curassow, Jabiru, Yellow-browed Tyrant, Rusty-backed Spinetail, Burrowing Owl, Nacunda Nighthawk, Hoatzin, Whistling Heron, Sunbittern, Sharp-tailed, Scarlet and Buff-necked Ibis’s, Horned Screamer, Grey-necked Wood Rail, Pied Lapwing, Double-striped Thick-Knee, Rufous-vented Chachalaca, Oriole Blackbird, Masked Cardinal, Black-and-White Owl, White-tailed Goldenthroat, Scaled Piculet
Venezuelan Red Howler, Capybara, White-tailed Deer – Chance of Puma, Jaguar and Giant Anteater. Chance of Green Anaconda.
Open Savanah, Grassland, flooded llanos, Gallery forest, Scrub forest, marshes, Farmland.
Pleasantly cool at night and in the early mornings and evenings but hot during the middle of the day when we will take some time out.
Relaxed. A fairly long drive out and back to our ranch in the Llanos but while there gentle walking and boat and jeep safaris. Flat.
Fantastic scenery and a chance to witness traditional life of the cowboys of the wide plains of the llanos.
Day 1: Arrival in Bogota
For those continuing onwards from the main tour, we shall have a group dinner this evening before transferring to our comfortable hotel in Bogota for a good night’s rest.
Day 2: Bogota to Hato la Aurora via Yopal
Today on our Colombia bird watching tour, we will take an early morning flight from Bogota to Yopal. Upon arrival, we have a fairly lengthy drive ahead of us, heading east, away from the base of the Andes and out onto the plains of the Llanos. We will make regular birding stops along the way, with the quality of birding increasing the further we travel. Commonly encountered species en route include Oriole Blackbird, Whistling Heron, Horned Screamer, Purple Gallinule, Limpkin, Many-banded Aracari, Black-capped Donacobius and Orinoco Goose. To allow maximum flexibility, we will take a packed lunch.
We expect to arrive at Hato La Aurora in the mid-afternoon. After checking in, we will spend some time birding in the grounds where we may find Pale-headed Jacamar, White-bearded Flycatcher and Great-Horned Owl.
Day 3: Hato la Aurora
We will leave very early this morning, and spend some time in nearby forest patches trying to locate the elusive Razor-billed Curassow. Other species we may come across include Rusty-backed Spinetail and Boat-billed Heron. In the afternoon we will take a jeep safari across the Llanos looking for Jabiru, Yellowish Pipit, Orinoco Goose, Sharp-tailed, Scarlet, Green and Buff-necked Ibises, Sunbittern, Brazilian Teal, Black-bellied Whistling Duck, Azure Gallinule, Rufescent Tiger, Capped and Cocoi Herons, Roseate Spoonbill, Wood stork, Greater Ani, Anhinga, Lesser-Yellow-headed and King Vultures, White-tailed and Plumbeous Kites, Black-necked Stilt, Aplomado Falcon and Yellow-browed Tyrant and the prehistoric Hoatzin. We are also likely to see plenty of Capybara and White-tailed Deer, and could even get lucky with a Collared Peccary or a Puma. After dinner, we shall spend some time owling for Nacunda and Band-tailed Nighthawks.
Day 4: Cascabel and surrounds
We will spend this morning of our Colombia birding tour birding in the grounds and forest near the lodge. We hope to find Rufous-vented Chachalaca, Cinereous Becard, Rufous-fronted Thornbird, Masked Cardinal, Pale-eyed Pygmy Tyrant, Yellow-rumped Cacique, Double-banded Puffbird, Scaled Piculet, Little and Striped Cuckoos, Crane, White-tailed and Great-black Hawks, Pale-vented Pigeon, Scaled Dove, White-bearded Hermit, Blue-tailed and Glittering-throated Emeralds, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Little, Spot-breasted, Crimson-crested and Lineated Woodpeckers, Yellow-crowned and Orange-winged Parrots, Brown-throated and Blue-crowned Parakeets, Black-crested and Barred Antshrikes, White-fringed Antwren, Straight-billed Woodcreeper, Pale-breasted Spinetail, Mouse-colored and Yellow Tyrannulets, Pale-tipped Inezia, Ochre-lored Flatbill, Bicolored, Buff-breasted and Rufous-breasted Wrens, Spectacled Thrush, Black-faced, Hooded and Burnished-buff Tanagers, Orange-fronted Yellow Finch, Yellow-browed Sparrow, Purple-throated Euphonia and many other commoner species.
In the afternoon we will again visit more open areas where we may find Burrowing Owl, Double-striped Thick-knee, and Crested Bobwhite; and as dusk approaches, Nacunda and Band-tailed Nighthawks, Pauraque and Common Potoo. We may try some night birding near the lodge which could produce Tropical Screech and Black-and-white Owls.
Day 5: Hato la Aurora to Bogota via Yopal and depart
We will have a final morning boat trip which should produce Hoatzin, Yellow-billed and Large-billed Terns, Pied Lapwing, Ringed, Green and Amazon Kingfishers, Bat Falcon, Chestnut-fronted Macaw, Violaceous Jay, White-winged Swallow and Chestnut-eared Aracari. We will then retrace our steps to Yopal, making birding stops en route before catching an evening flight back to Bogota, where this tour will conclude.
What our clients say about tours to Colombia
- CA, Colombia 2017
We had a great time with Forrest Rowland in Colombia. A wonderful country. Forrest is a fantastic birder and a great guide.MK, Colombia 2017
Rob Williams and the Rockjumper folks were absolutely fantastic in helping me after I lost my passport. They made sure I got back to Bogota for the embassy appointments, changing plans on the fly. Very impressive dedication to help customers.BA, Colombia 2017
Forrest was absolutely fantastic. The best birder/guide that we have ever had the pleasure of travelling with. His enthusiasm and passion for his work were exceptional and made for an awesome birding trip.DH & RD, Colombia Highlights