Southern Atlantic Forest Birding Tour, Brazil
A 12 days Birdwatching Brazil tour in the Atlantic Rain Forest. The Atlantic Forest has long been isolated from other major rainforest areas of South America, and has an extremely diverse and unique mix of vegetation and forest types, with 950 species of bird, including many endemics.
Our birding tour in Brazil concentrates on the amazing diversity of species found in the narrow belt of the South Amazonian Rain Forest, and we will be based in comfortable lodges, in three key and distinct areas.
We will start our Birdwatching Brazil tour in the famous Intervales State Park, a 4.5-hour drive to the South West of Sao Paulo. This UNESCO site has a dazzling array of species including many Atlantic Forest endemics. We will be based in a lodge in a small clearing in the centre of the park and will concentrate on birding the trails from here.
Itatiaia National Park & Ubatuba
Our next stop will be Itatiaia National Park, the oldest in Brazil, based on the border between Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais. The birding from the lodge itself is amazing, with an array of hummingbirds, tanagers and aracaris constantly visiting the feeders on the lodge balconies. Itatiaia has an extensive area of trails and roads, making for easy-paced birding. As well as the forest itself, Itatiaia features rivers and lakes, and an amazing area of highlands, which, at 2,400 metres, features its own extensive list of specialities.
Our final stop is Ubatuba, a coastal town in the north of Sao Paulo state. Here we will find a completely different set of species as well as picking up some coastal birds as well.
This is an enormously diverse area and you can expect to see more than 350 species during your tour while you experience some of the best birdwatching in Brazil. But it is not just the number of species that makes birding in Brazil special, but the sheer variety of colour, size and behaviour of the birds. There is something here for everyone - colourful confiding species such as tanagers and hummingbirds, plenty of owls, and real forest skulkers such as the Antpittas and Leaftossers.
Edson Endrigo - Lead Guide
You will be led throughout by Edson Endrigo, one of Brazil's foremost bird photographers. As well as having published more than 17 books on the Birds of Brazil, Edson's enthusiasm and fieldcraft are well known - nobody knows the calls of the Atlantic Rain Forest birds better than him. This is an opportunity to experience a birding brazil tour and photograph the birds of this highly diverse, but threatened area of this fascinating country.
Birdwatching Brazil Tour highlights include:
- Atlantic Royal flycatcher - A spectacular bird, often during our adventures at the Atlantic Forest. Not always showing the wonderful crest, but always beautiful to see.
- Black-and-Gold Cotinga - This Cotinga lives in higher altitude areas and impresses not only with its beauty but also with its incredible song.
- Giant Snipe - A very discreet species and you need to know your habitats well to be able to observe them. We are often able to observe and photograph this species during our tours.
- Helmeted Woodpecker - A rare species which is difficult to observe, but over the years, we have learned a lot about its behaviour and have successfully seen it on many of our tours.
- Giant Antshrike - The name could not describe this species better, as it surpasses all other Antshrikes. Its strong call spreads over long distances and through the forest, But you normally still need to know how he behaves in order to obtain a good view.
If you’d like to try an alternative tour, look at what this Manaus Amazon & Presidente Figueiredo Tour, Brazil has to offer.
Alternative Tour Name: Southern Atlantic Forest Tour
Arrival and reception at São Paulo International Airport, Guarulhos. Transfer to Intervales State Park, São Paulo state. Check into our hotel which is located inside the park.
Target birds are Dusky-legged Guan, Slaty-breasted Wood-Rail, Plumbeous Pigeon, Maroon-bellied Parakeet, Scale-throated Hermit, Black-throated Trogon, Red-breasted Toucan, Crescent-chested Puffbird, Yellow-fronted and Blond-crested Woodpecker, Large-tailed and Giant Antshrike, Dusky-tailed and Squamate Antbird, Plain Antvireo, Star-throated Antwren, White-breasted Tapaculo, Rufous Gnateater, White-throated Woodcreeper, Rufous-capped São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro State and Pallid Spinetail, Buff-fronted Foliage-gleaner, Streaked Xenops, Brown-breasted Bamboo-Tyrant, Planalto Tyrannulet, White-throated Spadebill, Gray-hooded Attila, Blue Manakin, Greenish Schiffornis, Sharpbill, Hooded Berryeater, Swallow-tailed Cotinga, Chestnut-backed Tanager, Black-legged Dacnis and Gray-throated Warbling-Finch. Opportunities are good for night birding and we will look for Rusty-barred and Mottled Owl, Long-trained Nightjar and Short-tailed Nighthawk.
Dinner and checklist.
After an early breakfast, we will spend all day birding, on trails in the Intervales Atlantic Forest.
Our targets here will be, Black-fronted Piping-Guan, Gray-bellied Goshawk, Mantled Hawk, Blue-bellied and Red-capped Parrot, Pavonine Cuckoo, Least Pygmy-Owl, Dusky-throated Hermit, Rufous-capped Motmot, Helmeted Woodpecker, White-bearded and Tufted Antshrike, Bertoni’s and Ochre-rumped Antbird, Variegated Antpitta, White-collared Foliage-gleaner, Pale-browed Treehunter, Black-billed Scythebill, Pin-tailed Manakin, Serra do Mar Tyrant-Manakin, Bare-throated Bellbird, Hangnest Tody-Tyrant, Oustalet's Tyrannulet, Three-striped Flycatcher, Brown and Azure-shouldered Tanager, Buffy-fronted and Temminck’s Seedeater. Opportunities are good for night birding and we will look for Tawnybrowed and Buff-fronted Owl, Ocellated Poorwill and Silky-tailed Nightjar.
Dinner and checklist.
After an early breakfast, we will spend another full day biding the Atlantic Forest trails of Intervales National Park.
Target birds will be, Solitary Tinamou, Spot-winged Wood-Quail, Black Hawk-eagle, White-rumped Hawk, Barred Forest-Falcon, Red-and-White Crake, Blackish Rail, Pileated Parakeet, Violet-crowned Plovercrest, Surucua Trogon, Saffron and Spot-billed Toucanet, Ochre-collared Piculet, Robust and Yellow-browed Woodpecker, Buff-bellied Puffbird, Rusty-breasted Nunlet, Spot-backed Antshrike, Spot-breasted Antvireo, Ferruginous Antbird, White-shouldered Fire-eye, Black-cheeked Gnateater, Slaty Bristlefront, Spotted Bamboowren, Short-tailed Antthrush, Rufous-breasted Leaftosser, Plain-winged Woodcreeper, Grey-bellied Spinetail, Orange-breasted Thornbird, Black-capped and Ochre-breasted Foliage-gleaner, Ochre-faced Tody-Flycatcher, Rough-legged Tyrannulet, Sao Paulo Tyrannulet, Russet-winged Spadebill, Atlantic Royal-Flycatcher, Red-ruffed Fruitcrow, Cinnamon Piha, Rufous-crowned Greenlet, Green-headed and Brassy-breasted Tanager. Night birding for the species that we have not seen previously.
Dinner and checklist.
Early breakfast and all day birding at Intervales, on trails in the Atlantic Forest.
For the next two days we will be looking for any remaining Intervales specialties’ which we may not yet have seen already and which are present only here. Night birding to search for any species that we have not seen.
Dinner and checklist
After an early breakfast, we will check out of our hotel and transfer to Itatiaia National Park, Rio de Janeiro state (8hr drive).
During the journey, we may have opportunities to see Whistling Heron, Savanna and White-tailed Hawk, Aplomado Falcon, Red-legged Seriema, White-eyed Parakeet, Guira Cuckoo, Burrowing Owl, White-collared Swift, White-eared Puffbird, Toco Toucan, White Woodpecker, Campo Flicker, White-rumped Monjita, Streamer-tailed Tyrant, Curl-crested Jay, Yellowish Pipit and Yellow-rumped Marshbird. After lunch we will check in at the famous Hotel do Ypê, located in the heart of Itatiaia National Park. We will spend the rest of the day birding around the lodge with excellent chances to see Rufous-thighed Kite, Black Hawk-Eagle, Blue-winged Parrotlet, Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl, Sick's Swift and Gray-rumped Swift, Black Jacobin, Frilled Coquette, White-throated Hummingbird, Brazilian Ruby, Black-eared Fairy, Red-breasted Toucan, Saffron Toucanet, Robust and Lineated Woodpecker, Streak-capped Antwren, Planalto and Scaled Woodcreeper, Yellow-lored Tody-Flycatcher, Masked Water-Tyrant, Chestnut-crowned Becard, Magpie Tanager and Gilt-edged Tanager. Night birding to look for new species.
Dinner and checklist.
Early breakfast and birding in the morning on the trails around the Lodge.
Our target birds are Brown Tinamou, Black-and-white Hawk-Eagle, Collared Forest-Falcon, Spot-winged Wood-Quail, Slaty-breasted Wood-Rail, Gray-fronted Dove, Plumbeous Pigeon, Swallow-tailed Hummingbird, Black-throated Trogon, Yellow-browed Woodpecker, White-bibbed Antbird, Such’s Antthrush, Speckle-breasted Antpitta, Lesser Woodcreeper, Black-billed Scythebill, Red-ruffed Fruitcrow, Yellow Tyrannulet, Large-headed Flatbill and Blackish-blue Seedeater. We will then make a brief stop for lunch followed by a short break at our hotel. In the afternoon we will drive to a farm outside the Itatiaia National park to look for Giant Snipe, Ash-throated Crake, White-eared Puffbird, Planalto Hermit, Sapphire-spangled Emerald, Green-barred and White Woodpecker, Wing-banded Hornero, Chicli Spinetail, Crested Black-Tyrant, Gray Monjita, Streamer-tailed Tyrant, Tawny-headed Swallow, Burnished-buff and Orange-headed Tanager, White-bellied Seedeater, Chestnut-vented Conebill and Yellow-rumped Marshbird. At dusk we will have a chance to see Tropical Screech-Owl.
Dinner and checklist.
Early breakfast followed by a one hour drive to the upper part of the Itatiaia National Park (altitude about 2.400 meters) to see birds such as Green-crowned Plovercrest, Rufous-tailed Antbird, Large-tailed Antshrike, Rufous-backed Antvireo, Rufous-tailed Antthrush, Speckle-breasted Antpitta, Serra do Mar Tapaculo, Gray-bellied Spinetail, Araucaria Tit-Spinetail, Itatiaia Thistletail, Buff-browed Foliage-gleaner, Sharp-tailed Streamcreeper, Black-and-Gold Cotinga, Swallow-tailed Cotinga, Serra do Mar Tyrant-Manakin, Black-capped Piprites, Mottle-cheeked and Serra do Mar Tyrannulet, Blue-billed and Velvety Black-Tyrant, Shear-tailed Gray Tyrant, White-rimmed Warbler, Diademed Tanager, Long-tailed Reed-Finch, Red-rumped Warbling-Finch, Great Pampa-Finch, Thick-billed Saltator, White-bellied Seedeater and Golden-winged Cacique. Depending of the weather conditions we will decide whether to spend the whole day in the mountains, or to return for a late lunch at the hotel.
Dinner and checklist.
Early breakfast and all-day birding at Itatiaia National Park, on trails in the Atlantic Forest. Today we will be looking for any species we have not seen already and which are not found elsewhere.
Early breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to Ubatuba city, São Paulo state (4hr drive).
During the journey, we will have a chance to see Comb Duck, Jabiru, Wood Stork, Pinnated Bittern, Roseate Spoonbill, Spotted Rail, Purple Gallinule, White-backed Stilt, Striped Cuckoo, Firewood-Gatherer and White-browed Blackbird. After lunch, we check in at our Lodge. In the afternoon we will visit a trail in the forest. Target birds will be, Bicolored Hawk, Uniform Crake, Saw-billed Hermit, Reddish Hermit, Sombre Hummingbird, Festive Coquette, White-chinned Sapphire, Unicolored Antwren, Scaled Antbird, Rufous-capped Antthrush, Black-cheeked Gnateater, Slaty Bristlefront, Tawny-throated Leaftosser, Plain-winged Woodcreeper, Black-capped Foliage-gleaner, Eye-ringed Tody-flycatcher, Long-billed Wren, Red-crowned Ant-Tanager, Green Honeycreeper and Violaceous Euphonia. At dusk we will have a chance to see Black-capped Screech-Owl and Striped Owl.
Dinner and checklist.
Early breakfast and birding in the morning on the trails around Ubatuba city with opportunities to see Brown Booby, Magnificent Frigatebird, White-necked Hawk, Kelp Gull, Channel-billed Toucan, Plain Parakeet, Brown-backed Parrotlet, Buff-bellied Puffbird, White-barred Piculet, Blond-crested and Yellow-throated Woodpecker, Salvadori's Antwren, Squamate Antbird, Spot-breasted Antvireo, Spotted Bamboowren, Buff-throated Purpletuft, Fork-tailed Tody-flycatcher, Lemon-chested Greenlet, White-thighed Swallow, Neotropical River Warbler, Flame-crested and Brazilian Tanager. After lunch, we will decide which trails to take, depending on the species we still need to see. Dinner and checklist.
Early breakfast. Our last day will be dedicated to finding any species that we have not seen during the trip. After lunch and a short break, we will transfer to São Paulo International Airport, Guarulhos where our trip finishes.
Some of the wildlife expected to see on this trip are:
Black-fronted Piping-Guan, Red-breasted Toucan, Crescent-chested Puffbird, Helmeted and Blond-crested Woodpecker, Large-tailed and Giant Antshrike, Dusky-tailed and Squamate Antbird, Star-throated Antwren, White-breasted Tapaculo, Rufous Gnateater, White-throated Woodcreeper, Rufous-capped and Pallid Spinetail, Buff-fronted Foliage-gleaner, Streaked Xenops, Brown-breasted Bamboo-Tyrant, Planalto Tyrannulet, White-throated Spadebill, Gray-hooded Attila, Blue Manakin, Greenish Schiffornis, Sharpbill, Hooded Berryeater, Swallow-tailed Cotinga, Chestnut-backed Tanager, Black-legged Dacnis and Gray-throated Warbling-Finch.
Gray-bellied Goshawk, Mantled Hawk, Blue-bellied and Red-capped Parrot, Pavonine Cuckoo, Least Pygmy-Owl, Dusky-throated Hermit, Rufous-capped Motmot, Helmeted Woodpecker, White-bearded and Tufted Antshrike, Bertoni’s and Ochre-rumped Antbird, Variegated Antpitta, White-collared Foliage-gleaner, Pale-browed Treehunter, Black-billed Scythebill, Pin-tailed Manakin, Serra do Mar Tyrant-Manakin, Bare-throated Bellbird, Hangnest TodyTyrant, Oustalet’s Tyrannulet, Three-striped Flycatcher, Brown and Azure-shouldered Tanager, Buffyfronted and Temminck’s Seedeater.
What is included?
- All accommodation or lodgings based on double occupancy
- Professional bi-lingual guide and support staff
- Specialist guide fees
- Local transfers and all ground transport throughout the tour
- Entrance fees to all National Parks, Nature Reserves and/or use of Hides where applicable
- All meals including water and soft drinks
- All activities as specified within the tour itinerary
- Personalised checklists
- All Applicable Taxes
What is not included?
- All international or domestic airfares
- Visa Fees (if applicable)
- Departure taxes
- Travel & medical insurance (incl. personal equipment and repatriation)
- Medical costs or hospitalisation
- Items of personal nature (incl. binoculars and telescopes)
- Excess baggage charges
- Laundry & telephone Charges
- Room service
- Optional tour extensions where applicable
- Tips & gratuities
- Alcoholic beverages or bottled drinks
- Anything else not mentioned in “What is included”
With twenty years of experience working in the field, we know where the birds are, and have the fieldcraft skills to find them for you, especially the skulking endemics. This we do with unrivalled skill and commitment, and always with enthusism and a sense of humour.
We have been constantly upgrading this tour over the past twenty years and are now confident we can find all the key species, as well as studying the more common and colourful birds of Brazil. Whether you are a first timer to South America. or a seasoned campaigner, we can find something special for you. We put in as many hours as is needed to get the bird, and ensure you have you a fantastic trip. We specialise in small group sizes, speak fluent English, and insist on enjoying ourselves. Many of our customers come back time and time again, and have become good friends over the years.
We will adjust the pace of the tour based on client requirements. We will do our birding from established trails and dirt roads, always with the safety of our clients uppermost.
Yes, Brazil has a wonderful variety of foods to offer, and we will sample many regional specialities during this tour. The restaurants in the lodges where we will stay will meet all types of requirements. Quality is the keyword throughout our tour.
WiFi at the lodges and accommodation is usually very good. WiFi quality while out in the field is variable, especially in some of the more remote areas, but it is usually possible to get access via a mobile hotspot connection.