This 5-day birding tour goes to prime locations to see the most and best birds available on any tour. Tanagers, Hummingbirds, Trogons, Toucans, Hoatzin, Sungrebe, Sunbittern, Antbirds, Woodcreepers are the highlights on the iconic Manu Road. Manu road is also home to some of the most photogenic and obliging birds you can find anywhere.
A brief stop at Huacarpay Lake, specifically to look for the endemic Bearded Mountaineer. We continue over the highlands, and look for Andean Goose, Andean Lapwing, Mountain Caracara and Andean Flicker The Manu Road drops into the Amazon cutting through amazing habitats of cloud forest, ranging in altitude from 3,600m to 600m. In the afternoon we visit a Cock-of-the-Rock lek and spend the night at Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge
The morning at the feeders at the Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge until lunch.
The veranda at Cock-of-the-Rock Lodge has a number of hummingbird feeders and plants that attract hummingbirds, also fruit tables for tanagers. Some of these are Violet-fronted Brilliant, Many-spotted Hummingbirds, Speckled Hummingbird, Fawn-breasted Brilliant, Wire- crested Thorntail, Wedge-billed Hummingbird and with some luck, Buff-tipped Sicklebill.
In the afternoon we travel to Villa Carmen, where there is good bamboo. Species like Bamboo Antshrike, Pavonine Cuckoo, Dot-winged Antwren and Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher, Ornate Antwren and, Bamboo Antshrike, Manu Antbird, Yellow-billed Nunbird, Pheasant Cuckoo, Large-headed Flatbill and White-cheeked Tody-Tyrant can be seen here. Additional species we shall be looking for here include Peruvian Recurvebill, Rufous-headed Woodpecker, White-cheeked Tody-Flycatcher, Flammulated Bamboo-Tyrant, Large-headed Flatbill and many more. Night Villa Carmen
Also it is not unusual to see Brown Capuchin Monkey, Woolly Monkey, Tayra and Brown Agouti at Cock of the Rock Lodge
Apart from the birds mentioned above, VIlla Carmen now has an Amazonian Antpitta coming to a feeding station, as well as a feeding station for Black-capped Tinamou, and other tinamours.
Later we continue to Amazonia Lodge.
Absolutely one of the best birding porches in the world at Amazonia Lodge. It is excellent for bird photography with many species of hummingbirds and tanagers.There is also a good trail by a lake where one can, with patience, get close-up photographs of Hoatzin, Sungrebe and Sunbittern. On the trail we also often see Gray-necked Wood-Rail, Undulated and Black-capped Tinamous, Rufous-vented Ground-Cuckoo, Amazonian Antpitta and Fiery-capped Manakin. Mammals include Red Howler Monkey, Saddle-backed Tamarins and Squirrel Monkeys and Night Monkey.
At Amazonia Lodge we also concentrate on the lodge clearing that has an enormous variety of birds including many hummingbirds such as Gould’s Jewelfront, Koepcke’s Hermit, Rufous-crested Coquette, Fork-tailed Woodnymph, Grey-breasted Sabrewing and many tanagers such as Magpie Tanager and Masked Crimson-Tanager.
Afterwards we visit the small oxbow-lake of Machu Wasi to get closer to some waterbirds. We need to return around mid-morning to go from Cock-of-the- Rock Lodge to the Wayqecha Cloud Forest Biological Station (2,900m) in the temperate cloud forest zone. We are closer to Cusco from here, and it will ensure that we have plenty time to reach Cusco, on the way. Machu Wasi Lake with Horned Screamer, Black-capped Donacobius and Pale-eyed Blackbird, often very close. Capibaras are often be seen in the lake.
The journey between Cock-the-Rock-Lodge and Wayquecha has often rewarded us with sightings of Andean Potoo. At Wayqecha we’ll look for Swallow-tailed Nightjar at dusk.
Wayqecha is managed by the conservation NGO ACCA. The cabins are comfortable and spacious. Departure from Wayqecha will be around 9.00 to allow for a few stops en-route. We’ll be at Cusco airport for a flight around 5:00 or 6:00 pm.The area near Wayqecha is very good for Red-and-White Antpitta and Rufous-capped Thornbill. There are also often good Tanager flocks which sometimes pass at close range for good photo opportunities. The flocks include Hooded Mountain-Tanager, Masked Flowerpiercer, Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager, Streaked Tuftedcheek, Pearled Treerunner and many more.
On the way to Cusco, we may visit if time permits a highland lake above San Salvador, where there are Giant Coot and Crested Duck. Lower down, and going into the Sacred Valley, we look for the endemic Chestnut-breasted Mountain-Finch and Bearded Mountaineer.