Colombia birding trip report December 2013  -  John van der Woude
Note: bird photos are in a separate section.

Finding endemic bird species and subspecies of Central and North Colombia was the main goal of this group tour with Tour leader was Laurens Steijn; Nollie and I had been with him on group tours to Madagascar and Ethiopia before. Andrés Trujillo was the local guide for ground agent Pro Aves/Ecoturs.

Andrés' great enthousiasm for finding as many specialties as possible was a real success factor, and luckily this meant that none of the group ever objected to the early hours he proposed for the next day, for nearly every day! Andrés knows the birds, the sounds and the stake-outs well. Tour leader Laurens has a sharp eye too and found many birds himself, and he is a quick photographer with his excellent equipment, his photos providing us many good memories of the birds we have seen.

Transport was partly by 17-seater bus and partly by 4WD cars. Lodging was in hotels and forest lodges. We were lucky with the weather: not too sunny (so the birds were active most of the day), and rain nearly only in a few nights. Despite all our previous birding trips to Venezuela, Ecuador and Costa Rica, we still got a fine 128 lifers (Nollie 128, me 125).

The itinerary was more or less standard for finding endemics in Central and North Colombia, see the map below. During the trip, ground agent Pro Aves/Ecoturs changed the itinerary for the Medellin region so that we had only one instead of two mornings at the important Las Tangaras site in the Choco region, a risky decision. However, we were very lucky with our only morning there as the weather was excellent for birding that day. We had stunning close-up views of my best bird of the trip, Gold-ringed Tanager, the top specialty of Las Tangaras.

For the rest, we had a smooth and well-organized trip. Colombia may have had a bad security reputation, but in the regions where we were, all looked fine, with friendly people.

All birding sites are described in the recent birdfinding guide by Jurgen Beckers and Pablo Florez (2013) - Birdwatching in Colombia. Highly recommended, even when going on an organized bird tour. ISBN 978-9-0902-7785-1.

This report is built up as follows:
Introduction - Map - Itinerary - Species lists - Photos of birding sites - Photos of birds (16 MB)

Birding sites:
1. Chingaza NP
2. La Florida marsh
3. Victoria
4. Rio Claro
5. Jardin
6. La Romera (Medellin Sabaneta)
7. Las Tangaras
8. Santa Marta mountains
9. Guajira peninsula (Los Flamencos NP)


2 Dec. 2013 - flight Amsterdam - Bogota via Panama
3 Dec. - Chingaza NP
4 Dec. - La Florida marsh and park; hummingbird garden (Jardin Encantado)
5 Dec. - forested plateau above Victoria; Llanos-like area on our way to Rio Claro
6 Dec. - Rio Claro forest and clearings
7 Dec. - Rio Claro and Oilbird area
8 Dec. - Entrance of oilbird area (Beautiful Woodpecker) and dry open area on our way to Jardin
9 Dec. - forest and open area above Jardin; riverside just below Jardin (Cock-of-the-Rock)
10 Dec. - forest above Jardin and same dry open area as 8 Dec., now on our way to Medellin
11 Dec. - La Romera forest above Medellin; drive to las Tangaras and first visit of hummingbird feeders on hill side
12 Dec. - Las Tangaras forest high and low
13 Dec. - Las Tangaras lodge grounds; flight Medellin - Santa Marta; dry forest at coast of Sta. Marta; Minca
14 Dec. - Minca area and birding drive up Sta. Marta mountain
15 Dec. - at and above Sta. Marta mountain lodge
16 Dec. - birding drive down to Minca
17 Dec. - dry coastal area of Los Flamencos NP
18 Dec. - Los Flamencos NP and flight Riohacha - Bogota
19 Dec. - park-like open forest at Laguna El Tabacal NW of Bogota; flight Bogota - Amsterdam via Paris
20 Dec. - arrival Amsterdam

Species lists
The complete day-to-day species list of the tour group can be found here. It is in Excel and includes a column of what Nollie and I saw or heard, which is the following list:
Great Tinamou
Little Tinamou
Northern Screamer
Blue-winged Teal
Ruddy Duck
Sickle-winged Guan
Band-tailed Guan
Andean Guan
Chestnut-winged Chachalaca
Colombian Chachalaca
Crested Bobwhite
Black-fronted Wood-Quail
Least Grebe
Pied-billed Grebe
Brown Pelican
Neotropic Cormorant
American Flamingo
Magnificent Frigatebird
Striated Heron
Cattle Egret
Great Egret
Capped Heron
Great Blue Heron
Cocoi Heron
Reddish Egret
Snowy Egret
Little Blue Heron
White Ibis
Wood Stork
Bare-faced Ibis
Roseate Spoonbill
Turkey Vulture
Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture
Black Vulture
King Vulture
Pearl Kite
White-tailed Kite
Hook-billed Kite
Swallow-tailed Kite
Double-toothed Kite
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Savanna Hawk
Roadside Hawk
Broad-winged Hawk
Gray-lined Hawk
Swainson's Hawk
White-tailed Hawk
Laughing Falcon
Crested Caracara
Yellow-headed Caracara
American Kestrel
Bat Falcon
Aplomado Falcon
Peregrine Falcon
Bogota Rail
White-throated Crake
Common Gallinule
Spot-flanked Gallinule
American Coot (Colombian)
Southern Lapwing
American Oystercatcher
Black-bellied Plover
Semipalmated Plover
Hudsonian Whimbrel
Spotted Sandpiper
Greater Yellowlegs
Lesser Yellowlegs
Solitary Sandpiper
Semipalmated Sandpiper
Western Sandpiper
Least Sandpiper
Wattled Jacana
Laughing Gull
Great Black-backed Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Yellow-billed Tern
Large-billed Tern
Gull-billed Tern
Caspian Tern
Black Skimmer
Common Tern
Cabot's Tern
Royal Tern
Common Ground Dove
Plain-breasted Ground Dove
Ruddy Ground Dove
Scaled Dove
Rock Pigeon
Band-tailed Pigeon
Pale-vented Pigeon
Bare-eyed Pigeon
Ruddy Pigeon
Eared Dove (bogota versie)
White-tipped Dove
Lined Quail-Dove
White-throated Quail-Dove
Ruddy Quail-Dove
Blue-and-yellow Macaw
Chestnut-fronted Macaw
Yellow-eared Parrot
Scarlet-fronted Parakeet
Brown-throated Parakeet
Santa Marta Parakeet
Flame-winged Parakeet
Green-rumped Parrotlet
Spectacled Parrotlet
Orange-chinned Parakeet
Saffron-headed Parrot
Blue-headed Parrot
Red-billed Parrot
Yellow-crowned Parrot
Orange-winged Parrot
Scaly-naped Parrot
Squirrel Cuckoo
Greater Ani
Smooth-billed Ani
Groove-billed Ani
Striped Cuckoo
Santa Marta Screech-Owl
Black-and-white Owl
Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl
Common Potoo
Rufous-bellied Nighthawk
Common Pauraque
White-collared Swift
Band-rumped Swift
Gray-rumped Swift
Short-tailed Swift
White-necked Jacobin
Rufous-breasted Hermit
Pale-bellied Hermit
Tawny-bellied Hermit
Long-billed Hermit
Brown Violetear
Green Violetear
Sparkling Violetear
Ruby-topaz Hummingbird
Black-throated Mango
Tourmaline Sunangel
Speckled Hummingbird
Long-tailed Sylph
Violet-tailed Sylph
Tyrian Metaltail
Greenish Puffleg
Glowing Puffleg
Coppery-bellied Puffleg
Brown Inca
Collared Inca
White-tailed Starfrontlet
Blue-throated Starfrontlet
Mountain Velvetbreast
Sword-billed Hummingbird
Buff-tailed Coronet
Velvet-purple Coronet
Booted Racket-tail
White-tailed Hillstar
Purple-bibbed Whitetip
Fawn-breasted Brilliant
Empress Brilliant
Long-billed Starthroat
White-bellied Woodstar
Gorgeted Woodstar
Santa Marta Woodstar
Purple-throated Woodstar
Western Emerald
Red-billed Emerald
Coppery Emerald
White-vented Plumeleteer
Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer
Crowned Woodnymph
Rufous-tailed Hummingbird
Andean Emerald
Blue-chested Hummingbird
Steely-vented Hummingbird
Indigo-capped Hummingbird
Sapphire-throated Hummingbird
Shining-green Hummingbird
Golden-headed Quetzal
White-tipped Quetzal
White-tailed Trogon
Gartered Trogon
Masked Trogon
Ringed Kingfisher
Amazon Kingfisher
Green Kingfisher
Whooping Motmot
Andean Motmot
Rufous-tailed Jacamar
Barred Puffbird
Russet-throated Puffbird
White-mantled Barbet
Toucan Barbet
Red-headed Barbet
Chestnut-mandibled Toucan
Keel-billed Toucan
Citron-throated Toucan
Santa Marta Toucanet
Groove-billed Toucanet
Black-billed Mountain-Toucan
Collared Aracari
Scaled Piculet
Grayish Piculet
Chestnut Piculet
Acorn Woodpecker
Beautiful Woodpecker
Red-crowned Woodpecker
Smoky-brown Woodpecker
Red-rumped Woodpecker
Golden-olive Woodpecker
Crimson-mantled Woodpecker
Spot-breasted Woodpecker
Cinnamon Woodpecker
Lineated Woodpecker
Powerful Woodpecker
Crimson-crested Woodpecker
Pale-legged Hornero
Silvery-throated Spinetail
Azara's Spinetail
Rufous Spinetail
Rusty-headed Spinetail
White-whiskered Spinetail
White-browed Spinetail
Red-faced Spinetail
Streak-capped Spinetail
Yellow-chinned Spinetail
Spotted Barbtail
Fulvous-dotted Treerunner
Pearled Treerunner
Buffy Tuftedcheek
Scaly-throated Foliage-gleaner
Montane Foliage-gleaner
Uniform Treehunter
Santa Marta Foliage-gleaner
Plain Xenops
Streaked Xenops
Tyrannine Woodcreeper
Plain-brown Woodcreeper
Wedge-billed Woodcreeper
Northern Barred-Woodcreeper
Straight-billed Woodcreeper
Cocoa Woodcreeper
Olive-backed Woodcreeper
Streak-headed Woodcreeper
Black-crested Antshrike
Barred Antshrike
Bar-crested Antshrike
Black-crowned Antshrike
Uniform Antshrike
Black-backed Antshrike
Plain Antvireo
Pacific Antwren
No. White-fringed Antwren
Santa Marta Antbird
Dusky Antbird
Magdalena Antbird
Chestnut-backed Antbird
Blue-lored Antbird
White-cheeked Antbird
Santa Marta Antpitta
Chestnut-naped Antpitta
Yellow-breasted Antpitta
Rufous Antpitta
Ochre-breasted Antpitta
Rusty-breasted Antpitta
Slaty-crowned Antpitta
Ash-colored Tapaculo
Blackish Tapaculo
Santa Marta Tapaculo

Alto Pisones Tapaculo
Choco Tapaculo
Stiles's Tapaculo
Nariño Tapaculo
Brown-rumped Tapaculo
Spillmann's Tapaculo
Pale-bellied Tapaculo
Black-capped Tyrannulet
Southern Beardless-Tyrannulet
Yellow-crowned Tyrannulet
Forest Elaenia
Yellow-bellied Elaenia
Lesser Elaenia
Mountain Elaenia
White-throated Tyrannulet
Agile Tit-Tyrant
Yellow Tyrannulet
Subtropical Doradito
Rufous-headed Pygmy-Tyrant
Choco Tyrannulet
Golden-faced Tyrannulet
Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant
Streak-necked Flycatcher
Olive-striped Flycatcher
Ochre-bellied Flycatcher
Sepia-capped Flycatcher
Northern Scrub-Flycatcher
Slender-billed Tyrannulet
Pale-tipped Tyrannulet
Ornate Flycatcher
Pale-eyed Pygmy-Tyrant
Pearly-vented Tody-Tyrant
Black-throated Tody-Tyrant
Rufous-crowned Tody-Flycatcher
Slate-headed Tody-Flycatcher
Common Tody-Flycatcher
Olivaceous Flatbill
Yellow-olive Flatbill
Handsome Flycatcher
Bran-colored Flycatcher
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher
Cinnamon Flycatcher
Black-billed Flycatcher
Tropical Pewee
Olive-sided Flycatcher
Smoke-colored Pewee
Black Phoebe
Vermilion Flycatcher
Streak-throated Bush-Tyrant
Santa Marta Bush-Tyrant
Smoky Bush-Tyrant
Pied Water-Tyrant
White-headed Marsh Tyrant
Yellow-bellied Chat-Tyrant
Slaty-backed Chat-Tyrant
Rufous-breasted Chat-Tyrant
Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant
Long-tailed Tyrant
Cattle Tyrant
Piratic Flycatcher
Rusty-margined Flycatcher
Social Flycatcher
Great Kiskadee
Lesser Kiskadee
Golden-crowned Flycatcher
Streaked Flycatcher
Boat-billed Flycatcher
Tropical Kingbird
Fork-tailed Flycatcher
Gray Kingbird
Dusky-capped Flycatcher
Panama Flycatcher
Apical Flycatcher
Brown-crested Flycatcher
Bright-rumped Attila
Green-and-black Fruiteater
Golden-breasted Fruiteater
Red-crested Cotinga
Andean Cock-of-the-rock
Olivaceous Piha
Dusky Piha
Golden-winged Manakin
White-bibbed Manakin
Yellow-headed Manakin
White-bearded Manakin
Blue-crowned Manakin
Black-crowned Tityra
Barred Becard
Cinnamon Becard
White-winged Becard
One-colored Becard
Rufous-browed Peppershrike
Black-billed Peppershrike
Yellow-throated Vireo
Choco Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Rufous-naped Greenlet
Golden-fronted Greenlet
Scrub Greenlet
Beautiful Jay
Black-chested Jay
Blue-and-white Swallow
Brown-bellied Swallow
White-thighed Swallow
Southern Rough-winged Swallow
Brown-chested Martin
Gray-breasted Martin
White-winged Swallow
Barn Swallow
Southern Nightingale-Wren
House Wren
Apolinar's Wren
White-headed Wren
Band-backed Wren
Bicolored Wren
Black-bellied Wren
Rufous-breasted Wren
Speckle-breasted Wren
Antioquia Wren
Rufous-and-white Wren
Rufous Wren
Sharpe's Wren
White-breasted Wood-Wren
Gray-breasted Wood-Wren
Chestnut-breasted Wren
White-capped Dipper
Tropical Gnatcatcher
Andean Solitaire
Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrush
Gray-cheeked Thrush
Swainson's Thrush
Yellow-legged Thrush
Pale-breasted Thrush
Black-billed Thrush
Black-hooded Thrush
Great Thrush

  White-necked Thrush
Tropical Mockingbird
Black-capped Hemispingus
Gray-hooded Bush Tanager
Gray-headed Tanager
White-shouldered Tanager
Tawny-crested Tanager
Crimson-backed Tanager
Lemon-rumped Tanager
Flame-rumped Tanager
Blue-gray Tanager
Palm Tanager
Blue-capped Tanager
Black-and-gold Tanager
Gold-ringed Tanager
Hooded Mountain-Tanager
Santa Marta Mountain-Tanager
Lacrimose Mountain-Tanager
Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager
Blue-winged Mountain-Tanager
Black-chinned Mountain-Tanager
Grass-green Tanager
Buff-breasted Mountain-Tanager
Purplish-mantled Tanager
Glistening-green Tanager
Black-headed Tanager
Black-capped Tanager
Scrub Tanager
Golden-hooded Tanager
Blue-necked Tanager
Rufous-throated Tanager
Blue-and-black Tanager
Beryl-spangled Tanager
Metallic-green Tanager
Plain-coloured Tanager
Bay-headed Tanager
Saffron-crowned Tanager
Golden Tanager
Silver-throated Tanager
Swallow Tanager
Yellow-tufted Dacnis
Blue Dacnis
Purple Honeycreeper
Green Honeycreeper
Golden-collared Honeycreeper
Yellow-backed Tanager
White-eared Conebill
Capped Conebill
Rufous-browed Conebill
Rusty Flowerpiercer
Black Flowerpiercer
Bluish Flowerpiercer
White-sided Flowerpiercer
Masked Flowerpiercer
Dusky-faced Tanager
Rosy Thrush-Tanager
Dull-colored Grassquit
Buff-throated Saltator
Black-winged Saltator
Grayish Saltator
Streaked Saltator
Orinocan Saltator
Rufous-collared Sparrow
Saffron Finch
Blue-black Grassquit
Gray Seedeater
Yellow-bellied Seedeater
Thick-billed Seed-Finch
Sierra Nevada Brush-Finch
Black-striped Sparrow
Orange-billed Sparrow
Golden-winged Sparrow
Gray-browed Brush-Finch
Olive Finch
White-naped Brush-Finch
Santa Marta Brush-Finch
Pale-naped Brush-Finch
Choco Brushfinch
Common Bush-Tanager
Dusky Bush-Tanager
Slaty Brush-Finch
Grey Pileated Finch
Red Tanager
Summer Tanager
Scarlet Tanager
Sooty Ant-Tanager
Golden-bellied Grosbeak
Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Crested Ant-Tanager
Vermilion Cardinal
Golden-winged Warbler
Tennessee Warbler
Tropical Parula
Yellow Warbler
Blackpoll Warbler
Bay-breasted Warbler
Blackburnian Warbler
American Redstart
Black-and-white Warbler
Prothonotary Warbler
Northern Waterthrush
Canada Warbler
Slate-throated White(Red)start
Golden-fronted White(Red)start
Yellow-crowned White(Red)start
Citrine Warbler
Black-crested Warbler
White-lored Warbler
Golden-crowned Warbler
Rufous-capped Warbler
Three-striped Warbler
Santa Marta Warbler
Buff-rumped Warbler
Russet-backed Oropendola
Chestnut-headed Oropendola
Crested Oropendola
Northern Mountain Cacique
Yellow-rumped Cacique
Yellow-tailed Oriole
Baltimore Oriole
Yellow Oriole
Red-bellied Grackle
Yellow-hooded Blackbird
Shiny Cowbird
Great-tailed Grackle
Red-breasted Blackbird
Eastern Meadowlark
Andean Siskin
Yellow-bellied Siskin
Trinidad Euphonia
Velvet-fronted Euphonia
Thick-billed Euphonia
Orange-bellied Euphonia
Blue-naped Chlorophonia
Nollie and I got the following lifers (species new for us). This list includes birds we only heard (as indicated, and placed between brackets), these do not count as lifers. The location descriptions give the first observation and often the only one.
Chestnut-winged Chachalaca along coast near Santa Marta town, dry open woodland
Colombian Chachalaca from bare top of forest plateau above Victoria, in flight below us
Black-fronted Wood Quail at lodge of Sta Marta, at feeder near kitchen
Northern Screamer Llanoslike part of Magdalena valley NE of Victoria
Bogota Rail La Florida Bogota in small puddle between rushes
Yellow-eared Parrot group at YEP-site above Jardin at sunrise
Santa Marta Parakeet above lodge on Sta Marta, 2 in flight
Flame-winged Parakeet (was Brown-breasted P) Chingaza NP before level part
Spectacled Parrotlet on plaza of Jardin
Santa Marta Screech Owl below lodge on Sta Marta, scope view at day time
Black-and-white Owl at Minca in large bamboo trees, awaking towards dusk
Tawny-bellied Hermit at feeders above Las Tangaras
Pale-bellied Hermit forest plateau above Victoria, at only 6 m
Red-billed Emerald at feeders of hotel Minca, low Sta Marta
Coppery Emerald near hotel Minca, low Sta Marta
Sapphire-throated Hummingbird Guajira peninsula Los Flamencos NP, in slightly moistier part
Shining-green Hummingbird in hummer garden NW of Bogota
Andean Emerald at feeders at Las Tangaras
Blue-chested Hummingbird forest plateau above Victoria, closeby in shadow
Steely-vented Hummingbird dry intermontane basin between Medellin and Jardin
Indigo-capped Hummingbird Nollie's 5000th species on world list; in hummer garden NW of Bogota
Blossomcrown at tienda when going up the Sta Marta
Empress Brilliant at feeders above Las Tangaras
Buff-tailed Coronet at YEP site above Jardin, around farm house
Velvet-purple Coronet at feeders above Las Tangaras
Brown Inca at feeders above Las Tangaras
White-tailed Starfrontlet upper site on Sta Marta when going down, in flight (white tail), side trail
Blue-throated Starfrontlet Chingaza NP closeby before level road
Coppery-bellied Puffleg level track Chingaza NP
Purple-bibbed Whitetip at feeders above Las Tangaras
Purple-throated Woodstar at feeders at Las Tangaras
White-bellied Woodstar in hummer garden NW of Bogota
Gorgeted Woodstar in hummer garden NW of Bogota
Santa Marta Woodstar forest road when going down from Sta Marta lodge, flight: only woodstar here
Western White-tailed Trogon Rio Claro reserve at cottages
Whooping Motmot in garden of hotel Minca, low Sta Marta
Barred Puffbird Rio Claro reserve at P clearing near main road, very close view, found by HS
White-mantled Barbet forest plateau above Victoria, scope view in tall tree
Santa Marta Toucanet on lodge grounds of Sta Marta
Black-billed Mountain Toucan temperate forest Chingaza NP
Greyish Piculet dry intermontane basin, in tall trees along road in S Antioquia
Chestnut Piculet Guajira peninsula Los Flamencos NP at 7 m in the cunucu woodland
Beautiful Woodpecker large clearing near Rio Claro reserve, finally, just before leaving the site
Cinnamon Woodpecker Rio Claro forest, brief view when flying up from tree, calling
Rusty-headed Spinetail upper site on Sta Marta, head i+DF1324n the sun, after taping, on side trail
Silvery-throated Spinetail La Florida Bogota in tree between houses on compound!
Red-faced Spinetail near top of forest trail above Las Tangaras
Streak-capped Spinetail upper site on Sta Marta, against small stem at 3 m
Star-chested Treerunner (Fulvous-dotted) along forest trail above Las Tangaras
Buffy Tuftedcheek along forest trail above Las Tangaras
Scaly-throated Foliage-gleaner along forest trail above Las Tangaras
Uniform Treehunter going up the trail above Las Tangaras
Santa Marta Foliage-gleaner going up the Sta Marta, in dense tangles at 8 m
Tyrannine Woodcreeper above Jardin 2nd day in large mixed flock, well seen bill too
Northern Barred Woodcreeper Rio Claro forest
Black-backed Antshrike behind Minca, low Sta Marta
Bar-crested Antshrike dry intermontane basin, below tall trees along road in S Antioquia
Pacific Antwren Rio Claro reserve along dirt road, female, near puddle
Santa Marta Antbird (split fr Long-tailed A) J only - briefly seen in bushes at Y down Sta Marta
Magdalena Antbird Rio Claro reserve trail up, 1 p. (split fr Dull-mantled)
Blue-lored Antbird (split fr Immaculate) last day outing NW of Bogota, female at 4 m
White-cheeked Antbird (split from Bicolored) Rio Claro reserve in puddle on dirt road
(Santa Marta Antpitta heard only)
Yellow-breasted Antpitta at forest trail above Las Tangaras, seen well at 12 m
(Ochre-breasted Antpitta heard only)
Ash-colored Tapaculo temperate forest Chingaza NP
(Santa Marta Tapaculo heard only)
(Alto Pisones Tapaculo heard only)
(Narino Tapaculo heard only)
(Choco Tapaculo heard only)
Stiles's Tapaculo La Romera reserve above Medellin, heard and shortly seen undergrowth
Brown-rumped Tapaculo very brief view calling at 3 m high part of Sta Marta (seen by J only)
Spillmann's Tapaculo temperate forest Chingaza NP
Pale-bellied Tapaculo (was Matorral T) first lifer of the trip, Chingaza NP, pale belly
Blackish Tapaculo near YEP reserve down forest road above Jardin
Lesser Elaenia along young trail Florida marsh
Agile Tit-Tyrant Chingaza NP in low temperate forest
Subtropical Doradito open marsh of La Florida
Choco Tyrannulet at top of forest trail above Las Tangaras
Golden-faced Tyrannulet near hotel Minca, low Sta Marta
Antioquia Bristle Tyrant trail up in Rio Claro forest
Slender-billed Tyrannulet (was Inezia) Guajira peninsula Los Flamencos NP, in slightly moistier part
Pale-tipped Tyrannulet (was Inezia) Guajira peninsula Los Flamencos NP
Handsome Flycatcher at start of forest trail above Las Tangaras, near the cars
Rufous-crowned Tody-Flycatcher in flock 2nd day above Jardin
Slaty-headed Tody-Flycatcher dry intermontane area S of Medellin, good view, after Tayra crossed the road
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher above Victoria, on track down from open hill
Black-billed Flycatcher Rio Claro reserve at P clearing near main road, clear view in cecropia
(Santa Marta Bush Tyrant heard only)
Panamanian Flycatcher Rio Claro reserve along river, seen well.
Apical Flycatcher dry intermontane basin, tall roadside trees, well seen, sound OK
Dusky Piha walking down from YEP site Jardin, along forest road, picking berries
Olivaceous Piha along forest trail above Las Tangaras
Golden-winged Manakin near start of forest trail above Las Tangaras
White-bibbed Manakin forest plateau above Victoria, back into forest, at 7 m!
Blue-crowned Manakin N only, along small river to oilbird caves near Rio Claro
(Yellow-headed Manakin heard only)
Black-billed Peppershrike part of large flock above Jardin 2nd day, closeby at roadside
Choco Vireo along forest trail above Las Tangaras
Rufous-naped Greenlet La Romera reserve above Medellin, seen well, 2 at eye level
(Beautiful Jay heard only, by N only)
White-thighed Swallow clearing near Rio Claro reserve
White-headed Wren in open area below forest trail above Las Tangaras, taped in from far
Sepia-brown Wren (Sharpe's W) above Jardin 2nd day, furnarid-like behaviour near flock
Apolinar's Wren La Florida Bogota end of golf course in dense reeds
Black-bellied Wren forest plateau above Victoria, back at the cars, heard, short flight views
Antioquia Wren (split fr Speckle-breasted) dry area S of Medellin, in small tree (J only)
(Chestnut-breasted Wren heard only)
Grey-cheeked Thrush Rio Claro reserve in puddle on dirt road
Velvet-fronted Euphonia two along rd to Victoria in bare branches
Golden-fronted Whitestart temperate forest Chingaza NP, nicely in top
Yellow-crowned Whitestart above lodge on Sta Marta, at 5 m only
Santa Marta Warbler upper site on Sta Marta, at 3 m, fine view+DF4815
White-lored Warbler going up the Sta Marta, closeby in lianas
Red-bellied Grackle La Romera reserve above Medellin, 2 seen well at eye level mossy trees
Golden-winged Sparrow near hotel Minca, low Sta Marta
Sierra Nevada Brush Finch at lodge on Sta Marta, compost heap
Santa Marta Brush Finch at lodge on Sta Marta, near building
Choco Brush Finch along forest trail above Las Tangaras
Dusky-faced Tanager small group below us at river in Rio Claro forest
Black-capped Hemispingus Chingaza NP
Tawny-crested Tanager Rio Claro reserve trail up, 1 p. below us > cap well seen
Flame-rumped Tanager at border of Jardin, near COTR lek and river
Black-and-gold Tanager at start of forest trail above Las Tangaras, near the cars
Gold-ringed Tanager at top of forest trail above Las Tangaras; bird of the trip for me
Santa Marta Mountain Tanager upper site on Sta Marta, abov+DF2366e track
Black-chinned Mountain Tanager near start of forest trail above Las Tangaras
Purplish-mantled Tanager above Jardin 2nd day, part of mixed flock, closeby
Glistening-green Tanager at start of forest trail above Las Tangaras, near the cars
Plain-colored Tanager Rio Claro reserve at P clearing main road, at 7 m foraging
Scrub Tanager forest plateau above Victoria, nearly at top; John's 5000th species
Metallic-green Tanager La Romera reserve abopve Medellin, 2 well seen at eye level
Yellow-tufted Dacnis in flock around Roadside Hawk in forest top above Victoria (=Black-faced D)
Golden-collared Honeycreeper near start of forest trail above Las Tangaras
Rufous-browed Conebill level track Chingaza NP
Dull-colored Grassquit N only, last day outing NW of Bogota (N only)
Sooty Ant Tanager forest plateau above Victoria, small group incl. adult male, crest seen
Crested Ant Tanager at dawn at Las Tangaras lodge before departure
Rosy Thrush-Tanager N only, last day outing NW of Bogota (N only)
Vermilion Cardinal Guajira peninsula Los Flamencos NP, at start already
Orinoco Saltator Guajira peninsula Los Flamencos NP, 2 at woodland border
Also a beautiful snake at the entrance to the oilbird area: Chironius carinatus spixii. See photo in the bird photo section.


Endemic (End) and near-endemic (nEnd) species of our personal species list were the following:
Northern Screamer   Chauna chavaria nEnd
Chestnut-winged Chachalaca   Ortalis garrula End
Colombian Chachalaca   Ortalis columbiana End
Black-fronted Wood-Quail   Odontophorus atrifrons nEnd
Bogota Rail   Rallus semiplumbeus End
Yellow-eared Parrot   Ognorhynchus icterotis End
Santa Marta Parakeet   Pyrrhura viridicata End
Flame-winged Parakeet   Pyrrhura calliptera End
Saffron-headed Parrot   Pyrilia pyrilia nEnd
Santa Marta Screech-Owl   Megascops sp nov End
Blossomcrown   Anthocephala floriceps End
Violet-tailed Sylph   Aglaiocercus coelestis nEnd
Coppery-bellied Puffleg   Eriocnemis cupreoventris nEnd
Brown Inca   Coeligena wilsoni nEnd
White-tailed Starfrontlet   Coeligena phalerata End
Velvet-purple Coronet   Boissonneaua jardini nEnd
Empress Brilliant   Heliodoxa imperatrix nEnd
Santa Marta Woodstar   Chaetocercus astreans End
Purple-throated Woodstar   Calliphlox mitchellii nEnd
Red-billed Emerald   Chlorostilbon gibsoni nEnd
Coppery Emerald   Chlorostilbon russatus nEnd
Indigo-capped Hummingbird   Amazilia cyanifrons End
White-tipped Quetzal   Pharomachrus fulgidus nEnd
White-mantled Barbet   Capito hypoleucus End
Toucan Barbet   Semnornis ramphastinus nEnd
Grayish Piculet   Picumnus granadensis End
Chestnut Piculet   Picumnus cinnamomeus nEnd
Beautiful Woodpecker   Melanerpes pulcher End
Silvery-throated Spinetail   Synallaxis subpudica End
Rusty-headed Spinetail   Synallaxis fuscorufa End
White-whiskered Spinetail   Synallaxis candei nEnd
Streak-capped Spinetail   Cranioleuca hellmayri nEnd
Fulvous-dotted Treerunner   Margarornis stellatus nEnd
Uniform Treehunter   Thripadectes ignobilis nEnd
Santa Marta Foliage-gleaner   Automolus rufipectus End
Black-crested Antshrike   Sakesphorus canadensis nEnd
Santa Marta Antpitta   Grallaria bangsi HO End
Yellow-breasted Antpitta   Grallaria flavotincta nEnd
Santa Marta Tapaculo   Scytalopus sanctaemartae HO End
Choco Tapaculo   Scytalopus chocoensis nEnd
Stiles's Tapaculo   Scytalopus stilesi End
Nariño Tapaculo   Scytalopus vicinior HO nEnd
Brown-rumped Tapaculo   Scytalopus latebricola End
Pale-bellied Tapaculo   Scytalopus griseicollis End
Agile Tit-Tyrant   Uromyias agilis nEnd
Antioquia Bristle-Tyrant   Phylloscartes lanyoni End
Slender-billed Tyrannulet   Inezia tenuirostris nEnd
Black-billed Flycatcher   Aphanotriccus audax nEnd
Santa Marta Bush-Tyrant   Myiotheretes pernix HO End
Apical Flycatcher   Myiarchus apicalis End
Yellow-headed Manakin   Xenopipo flavicapilla HO nEnd
Choco Vireo   Vireo masteri nEnd
Beautiful Jay   Cyanolyca pulchra HO nEnd
Apolinar's Wren   Cistothorus apolinari End
Flame-rumped Tanager   Ramphocelus flammigerus End
Black-and-gold Tanager   Bangsia melanochlamys End
Gold-ringed Tanager   Bangsia aureocincta End
Santa Marta Mountain-Tanager   Anisognathus melanogenys End
Black-chinned Mountain-Tanager   Anisognathus notabilis nEnd
Purplish-mantled Tanager   Iridosornis porphyrocephalus nEnd
Glistening-green Tanager   Chlorochrysa phoenicotis nEnd
Scrub Tanager   Tangara vitriolina nEnd
Rufous-throated Tanager   Tangara rufigula nEnd
Rufous-browed Conebill   Conirostrum rufum End
Indigo Flowerpiercer   Diglossa indigotica nEnd
Sierra Nevada Brush-Finch   Arremon basilicus End
Santa Marta Brush-Finch   Atlapetes melanocephalus End
Dusky Bush-Tanager   Chlorospingus semifuscus nEnd
Sooty Ant-Tanager   Habia gutturalis End
Crested Ant-Tanager   Habia cristata End
Golden-fronted Whitestart   Myioborus ornatus nEnd
Yellow-crowned Whitestart   Myioborus flavivertex End
White-lored Warbler   Basileuterus conspicillatus End
Santa Marta Warbler   Basileuterus basilicus End
Red-bellied Grackle   Hypopyrrhus pyrohypogaster End
Velvet-fronted Euphonia   Euphonia concinna End

Several of the birds we saw have endemic subspecies in Colombia. I made a list of these, as far as we saw the species (and most probably also this subspecies), based on IOC v. 3.5 (
Little Tinamou Crypturellus soui caucae (NC-Col.)
Sickle-winged Guan Chamaepetes goudotii goudotii (WC-Col.), sanctaemartae (St.M mts)
Band-tailed Guan Penelope argyrotis sanctaemartae (St.Marta mts)
Black-fronted Wood-Quail Odontophorus atrifrons atrifrons (Sta.Marta mts)
Spot-flanked Gallinule Gallinula melanops bogotensis (C-Col.)
American Coot (Colombian) Fulica americana columbiana (Col. & N-Ecuador near-endemic)
Wattled Jacana Jacana jacana dark type melanopygia (W-Col. to W-Ven.)
Ruddy Ground Dove Columbina talpacoti caucae (West-Colombia)
Ruddy Pigeon Patagioenas subvinacea anolaimae (C-Col.)
Eared Dove (bogota versie) Zenaida auriculata caucae (W-Col.), antioquiae (NC-Col.)
Brown-throated Parakeet Aratinga pertinax griseipecta (NE-Col.)
Green-rumped Parrotlet Forpus passerinus cyanophanes (N-Col.)
Spectacled Parrotlet Forpus conspicillatus caucae (SW-Col.)
Red-billed Parrot Pionus sordidus saturatus (Sta.Marta mts.)
Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl Glaucidium brasilianum medianum (N-Col.)
Long-billed Hermit Phaethornis longirostris susurrus (N-Col.)
Blossomcrown Anthocephala floriceps floriceps (Sta. Marta mts.)
Greenish Puffleg Haplophaedia aureliae aureliae (C&E-Col.)
Mountain Velvetbreast Lafresnaya lafresnayi longirostris (WC-Col.)
Booted Racket-tail Ocreatus underwoodii incommodus (W&C-Col.)
Red-billed Emerald Chlorostilbon gibsoni chrysogaster (Sta.Marta mts +)
Crowned Woodnymph Thalurania colombica (was Violet-cr W) subtropicalis (WC-Col.) ?
Sapphire-throated Hummingbird Lepidopyga coeruleogularis confinis (N-Col.)
Shining-green Hummingbird Lepidopyga goudoti goudoti (NC-Col.)
White-tipped Quetzal Pharomachrus fulgidus festatus (N-Col.)
Whooping Motmot Momotus subrufescens olivaresi (NC-Col.)
Rufous-tailed Jacamar Galbula ruficauda pallens (N-Col..;NE-Col. is brevirostris)
White-mantled Barbet Capito hypoleucus extinctus (C.-Col.)
Toucan Barbet Semnornis ramphastinus caucae (SW-Col.)
Red-headed Barbet Eubucco bourcierii occidentalis (W-Col.)
Santa Marta Toucanet Aulacorhynchus lautus Sta. Marta-endemic split from A. prasimus
Black-billed Mountain-Toucan Andigena nigrirostris occidentalis (W-Col.)
Grayish Piculet Picumnus granadensis antioquensis
Chestnut Piculet Picumnus cinnamomeus cinnamomeus (N-Col.)
Acorn Woodpecker Melanerpes formicivorus flavigula (Colombia)
Golden-olive Woodpecker Colaptes rubiginosus alleni (N-Col.)
Spot-breasted Woodpecker Colaptes punctigula striatigularis (WC-Col.)
Buffy Tuftedcheek Pseudocolaptes lawrencii (=Pacific T. Ps. johnsoni; Col & Ec.)
Montane Foliage-gleaner Anabacerthia striaticollis anxia (Sta. Marta mts.)
Cocoa Woodcreeper Xiphorhynchus susurrans rosenbergi (W-Col.)
Bar-crested Antshrike Thamnophilus multistriatus brachyurus (W-Col.)
Plain Antvireo Dysithamnus mentalis semicinereus (WC-Col.)
Magdalena Antbird Myrmeciza palliata (also in NW Ven. near-endemic)
Blue-lored Antbird Myrmeciza immaculata (Andean Immaculate-Antb) conception (C-Col.)
White-cheeked Antbird Gymnopithys leucaspis (split fr Bicolored) (ssp. leucapsis? E-Col.)
Chestnut-naped Antpitta Grallaria nuchalis ruficeps (C-Col.)
Slaty-crowned Antpitta Grallaricula nana occidentalis (W-Col.)
Pale-bellied Tapaculo Scytalopus griseicollis (=Col. endemic) griseicollis (Cundinamarca)
Black-capped Tyrannulet Phyllomyias nigrocapillus flavimentum (Sta.Marta mts.)
White-throated Tyrannulet Mecocerculus leucophrys setophagoides (NC-Col.),montensis (StM mts)
Streak-necked Flycatcher Mionectes striaticollis selvae (WC-Col.)
Olive-striped Flycatcher Mionectes olivaceus galbinus (Sta.Marta mts.)
Black-throated Tody-Tyrant Hemitriccus granadensis lehmanni (Sta.Marta mts.)
Yellow-olive Flatbill Tolmomyias sulphurescens (was Y-o Flycatcher)
Cinnamon Flycatcher Pyrrhomyias cinnamomeus assimilis (Sta.Marta mts.)
Yellow-bellied Chat-Tyrant Ochthoeca diadema jesupi (Sta.Marta mts.)
Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant Ochthoeca fumicolor ferruginea (W+C Col.)
Great Kiskadee Pitangus sulphuratus caucensis (W+S Col.)
Golden-breasted Fruiteater Pipreola aureopectus decora (Sta.Marta mts.)
Golden-winged Manakin Masius chrysopterus bellus (W-Col.)
White-bearded Manakin Manacus manacus flaveolus (C-Col.)
Blue-crowned Manakin Lepidothrix coronata caquetae (C-Col.)
Red-eyed Vireo Vireo olivaceus caucae (W-Col.)
Scrub Greenlet Hylophilus flavipes flavipes (N+C-Col.)
Black-bellied Wren Pheugopedius fasciatoventri fasciatoventris (NC-Col.)
Speckle-breasted Wren Pheugopedius sclateri columbianus (W-Col.)
White-breasted Wood-Wren Henicorhina leucosticta albilateralis (NC-Col.)
Gray-breasted Wood-Wren Henicorhina leucophrys bangsi (StM <2000ft), anachoreta(StM>2000ft)
Slaty-backed Nighting-Thrush Catharus fuscater sanctaemartae (N-Col.)
Black-billed Thrush Turdus ignobilis ignobilis (E+C Andes), goodfellowi (W-Andes)
Black-hooded Thrush Turdus olivater sanctaemartae (N-Col.)
Great Thrush Turdus fuscater cacozelus (Sta.Marta mts)
Crimson-backed Tanager Ramphocelus dimidiatus molochinus (C-Col.)
Flame-rumped Tanager Ramphocelus flammigerus (=Col. endemic!)
Blue-gray Tanager Thraupis episcopus leucoptera (C-Col.)
Blue-capped Tanager Thraupis cyanocephala annectens (C+W-Col.), margaritae (N-Col.)
Lacrimose Mountain-Tanager Anisognathus lacrymosus 3 endemic ssp in WC-Col.
Blue-winged Mountain-Tanager Anisognathus somptuosus antioquiae (NC-Col.)
Blue-necked Tanager Tangara cyanicollis granadensis (W-Col.)
Plain-coloured Tanager Tangara inornata inornata (NC-Col.)
Golden Tanager Tangara arthus occidentalis (W-Col.)
Swallow Tanager Tersina viridis grisescens (N-Col.)
Yellow-tufted Dacnis Dacnis egregia egregia (NC-Col.)
Blue Dacnis Dacnis cayana napaea (NC-Col.)
Yellow-backed Tanager Hemithraupis flavicollis albigularis (NC-Col.)
Rufous-browed Conebill Conirostrum rufum (=Col. endemic!)
Rosy Thrush-Tanager Rhodinocichla rosea harterti (NC-Col.)
Gray Seedeater Sporophila intermedia bogotensis? (W-Col.)
Gray-browed Brush-Finch Arremon assimilis (split from A. torquatus)
White-naped Brush-Finch Atlapetes albinucha gutturalis (N-Col., no other ssp. in Col.)
Choco Brushfinch Atlapetes tricolor split fr Tricolored Brush-Finch, near-endemic
Common Bush-Tanager Chlorospingus flavopectus several endemic ssp. in Col.
Dusky Bush-Tanager Chlorospingus semifuscus livingstoni (W-Col.)
Red Tanager Piranga flava S-Am split from Hepatic
Slate-throated Whitestart Myioborus miniatus sanctaemartae (N-Col.)
Citrine Warbler Basileuterus luteoviridis quindiana? (C-Col.)/richardsoni? (W-Col.)
Golden-crowned Warbler Basileuterus culicivorus occultus?(W-Col.)/austerus?(C-Col.)
Buff-rumped Warbler Phaeothlypis fulvicauda motacilla (N-Col.; Restall: NC-Col.)
Russet-backed Oropendola Psarocolius angustifrons sincipitalis (NC-Col.)
Northern Mountain Cacique Cacius leucoramphus split from C. chrysonotus; Ven. to N-Peru
Yellow-hooded Blackbird Chrysomus icterocephalus bogotensis (NC-Col.)
Blue-naped Chlorophonia Chlorophonia cyanea psittacina (N-Col.)

Photos of birding sites

Chingaza NP.

Chingaza NP.

La Florida marsh.

Hummingbird garden (Jardin Encantado).

Forest and clearings above Victoria.

Central plaza of Victoria (hotel at plaza), with parrotlets in the large tree.

Lake on our way to Rio Claro. Few birds, except the closeby potoo that the children pointed out to us.
Below: Andrés helping the girl of the potoo with Jan's scope.

Often we had to wait a little for road works. A sign of the resurrecting Colombia?

The Llanos-like open area on our way to Rio Claro (for the screamers).
Below front four: Laurens, Fred, Nollie, Rhea.

Rooms of the Rio Claro lodge, right inside the forest.
Below: Rio Claro upriver from the restaurant.

The clearing where the trail (stream!) to the oilbird cave starts. 
Below: Teva(-like) sandals were a must to get to the oilbird cave!

The lively plaza of Jardin, at our hotel doorstep. A very nice town with beautiful surroundings. Could stay there longer!

The farm (with hummingbird feeders right) near the Yellow-eared Parrot protection site high above Jardin.
Below: breakfast in the field (at the farm).

The forest above Jardin.

At the river just below Jardin, near the Cock-of-the-Rocks.

Part of Las Tangaras lodge.

Protected forest above Las Tangaras.
Below: lunch in the field.

Promising views of the Magdalena river, from the plane during the flight from Medellin to Sta. Marta.

Near Minca in the lower part of the Santa Marta mountains.

In the upper part of the Sta. Marta, near the lodge.

View of the snowy mountains of the Sta. Marta massif, from above the lodge.
Below: our Pro Aves lodge of the Sta. Marta mountains.

The very birdy garden of the Pro Aves lodge on the Sta. Marta mountains.

On our way back down to Minca (Sta. Marta mountains). Note the bad quality of the road (photo below).

In Los Flamencos NP on the dry Guajira peninsula.

At the lagoons of Los Flamencos NP.

Birding in the dry bush of Los Flamencos NP.

Laguna El Tabacal NW of Bogota, on our last morning before the flight back home. 
With a last view (below) of the lush forest vegetation that was so typical of this successful trip.

To the bird photos (16 MB)