Ecuador is in northwest South America, just south of Colombia and north of Peru. The Andes Mountain Range runs right down the middle, from north to south, through Quito.
When we were finishing up our Kenya trip in 2006, guide Steven Easley asked Sharon and me if we'd be interested in a private guided trip to Ecuador. He would bring his wife along and pay for her share. We agreed and over the next few months, he gave us a proposal which we accepted. We enjoyed Steven's birding and guiding expertise, as well as his sense of humor. So that's how this trip came about.
Go to Ecuador
Be ready for equatorial heat
Have Steven Easley be our guide
Minimize cost per bird
Hit the 2500 life birds mark
Send back emails with photos during our trip
Our life bird list (of the approximately 10,000 species on the planet) was at about 2200, and we were hoping to see about 400 birds on the trip, of which we hoped about 350 of those would be life birds.
We saw 386 birds (species) on the trip, of which 285 were lifers. This brings our total life bird count from about 2200 to over 2500. Bird #2500 was a Tricolored Brush-Finch.
Bests and Worsts. See Report 15 below.
TRIP REPORTS (DAILY TEXT AND PHOTOS)
Report 1. Travel to Miami, On to Quito, Ecuador.
Sep 2-3, 2007..
Report 2. Birding Day 1. Birding the Antisana Area of the Ecuadorian Andes. Tue Sep 4..
Report 3. Birding Day 2. Papallacta (papa-YOCK-tuh) Pass. 13,500 feet high. Wed Sep 5.
Report 4. Birding Day 3. Another Shot at Papallacta Pass. To San Isidro. Thu Sep 6.
Report 5. Birding Day 4. Birding San Isidro. Fri Sep 7.
Report 6. Birding Day 5. East to West. Sat Sep 8.
Report 7. Birding Day 6. To Bella Vista. Sun Sep 9.
Report 8. Birding Day 7. Bella Vista. Mon Sep 10.
Report 9. Birding Day 8. To Mindo. Tue Sep 11.
Report 10. Birding Day 9. PVM Birding Area. Wed Sep 12.
Report 11. Birding Day 10. Birding Milpe Road. The Mirador Bird Feeders. Thu Sep 13
Report 12. Birding Day 11. Angel Paz.
Report 13. Birding Day 12. Mindo Loma Hummingbird Watch
Report 14. Birding Day 13 and Last. Sachatamia. Middle of the Earth. Back to Quito..
Report 15. Shopping, Going Home. Statistics. Prizes.
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* - Life Bird = a bird species we've never encountered in the wild before. Also "lifer."