Birding Bogotá & Colombia

Chicaque Natural Park

Key species

Endemics: Black Inca, Indigo-capped Hummingbird and Silvery-throated Spinetail.

Near endemics: Golden-bellied Starfrontlet, Red-billed Emerald, Rufous-breasted Flycatcher, Scrub Tanager, Rufous-browed Conebill, and Moustached Brush-Finch.

Specialties:

Brown Tinamou (rare an most often a voice), Lined Quail-Dove (also most often a voice), Glowing Puffleg, Booted Rackettail, Gorgeted and White-bellied woodstars, Emerald Toucanet, Ash-browed Spinetail and Flame-faced tanager.

Approximate number of bird species: 262.

 

Height above sea level: 2000-2680m (6560-8790ft).

 

The Chicaque Natural Park is a 300 hectare (741 acre) reserve in a cloud forest ecosystem, located about one hour and a half southwest of Bogotá and not far from a main highway leading to the Magdalena River Valley.

A visit to this beautiful area begins in high Andean forest surrounding the reserve entrance, and at an elevation similar to that of Bogotá (2680m, 8790ft). Access into the area is via a steep road (and an adjacent forest trail) that continues downward to the main lodge at the bottom. This road follows a steep rock path that was originally built in Colonial times.

The Chicaque Natural Park is an excellent place to observe mixed species flocks, and while they often move quickly, it is not unusual to find ten or more species in these flocks, including foliage-gleaners, woodcreepers, hummingbirds, flycatchers, warblers, and tanagers.

Vegetation and avifauna change somewhat from top to bottom of the reserve. Near the park entrance it is possible to see a good variety of tanagers and warblers, among them Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager, Grass-green Tanager, Black-crested Warbler, Rufous-browed Conebill, Black Flowerpiercer and Pale-naped Brush-Finch.

Descending into the lower zone of the reserve, one encounters a decidedly different mix of birds. Here, where there fog is less persistent, we will look for Moustached Brush-Finch, Lined Quail-Dove, Three-striped Warbler and Slate-throated Whitestart, more proper of slightly lower elevations.

The walking descent to the lodge is particularly scenic and we usually encounter a good number of birds along the way. Depending upon our schedule we may have lunch at the lodge, and overnight stays are possible and well worth the time. Birding can be quite good around the lodge. The rare (and endemic) Black Inca can sometimes be found in the flower garden at the hotel and other possible hummers include, Bronzy Inca, Speckled Hummingbird, Booted Rackettail and Long-tailed Sylph.

Also possible are Masked and White-sided flowerpiercer. And at night sometimes we can see White-throated Screech-Owl and hear Tropical Screech-Owl.

At Birding Bogotá & Colombia’s tours, after our lunch at the lodge, normally we come back to the park entrance by a 4X4 vehicle and we visit, for one or two hours, a restaurant just outside the reserve entrance. It maintains a few hummingbird feeders and these are frequented by a remarkable collection of hummingbirds: Golden-bellied Starfrontlet, White-bellied and Gorgeted woodstars, Glowing Puffleg, Tourmaline Sunangel, Mountain Velvetbreast, Collared Inca, Booted Rackettail, and Sparkling and Green violetears.

To visit Chicaque Park email us at info@birdingbogotaandcolombia.com

 

Esta entrada también está disponible en: Spanish

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