Sunday 24 September 2023

Brazil with Bird's Wildlife & Nature - 7th June 2023

The Rio Claro dawn chorus started well before that with Ferruginous Pygmy Owls being joined by the cacophony of Guans and Chachalacas and booming Curassows. Our breakfast walk gave us close views at last of an Undulated Tinamou as well as noisy (but invisible) Buff-breasted Wrens and Mato Grosso Antbirds decked out in black with white spots.  Back at the lodge Scaly Headed and Orange Winged Parrots fed in the trees while Giant Cowbirds and Picazuro Pigeons and a variety of smaller dove species.  A Roadside Hawk sat just a few feet away in the gardens - surprisingly small close up.

Roadside Hawk

Bare-faced Curassows

Giant Cowbird

Picazuro Pigeon

Scaly Headed Parrots

Chaco Chachalaca

Chestnut-bellied Guan

Undulated Tinamou

Undulated Tinamou

Mato Grosso Antbird

early morning Ringed Kingfisher

Bare-faced Curassow

Chestnut-bellied Guans

Southern Lapwing

The onward journey back along the Transpantaneira toward the famous Porta Jofree saw us make several stops.  The first added the imposing Crimson Crested Woodpeckers while a little Pearl Kite on roadside wires required a sudden stop to scope this bonus raptor. 

Crimson Crested Woodpecker - the female

Crimson Crested Woodpecker - the shyer male

Pearl Kite

Pearl Kite

Crimson Crested Woodpecker

Brazilian Teal were seen on roadside pools alongside the road with plenty of Herons, Egrets, Ibis and Limpkins and two Blue-throated Piping Guans sat up for long enough to actually watch.  

Blue-throated Piping Guans

Brazilian Teal

Horned Screamer


Horned Screamer

Southern Crested Caracara


Lesser Yellow-headed Vulture

Some quality marshland species were discovered with Rusty Collared Seedeaters, Subtropical Doraditos and noisy Black-capped Donacobius that were always in pairs that seemed inseparable.  White-rumped Swallows joined their White-winged cousins and Pale-legged and the ubiquitous Rufous Horneros dotted the roadside. 

Subtropical Doradito

Black-capped Donacobius

Common Tody-flycatcher

There were mammals too with Capybara and their downsized relatives the Brazilian Cavy as well as Marsh Deer, Crab-eating Foxes and a Collared Peccary all crossing the dusty road.  Ameivas scurried across as a streak of blue and green and two chunky Tegus waddled out of our way.


Some of the countless (although they are actually numbered) wooden bridges was an experience in itself and many were in an interestingly distressed state. We had to wait for one work crew to literally lay down some lose planks so that we could cross in the bus.  They waved and barely even moved out of the way while on a home made BBQ some interestingly offal was on the go!

Porto Jofree is quite literally the end of the road and the main hub for Pantanal Jaguar tourists.  We had riverside lodges and delightful Pied Lapwings were immediately seen on the sandy beach outside while Vermillion and Rusty-margined Flycatchers hawked over the water and Saffron Finches, Picui and Ruddy Ground Doves ran around our feet.  Everything here was so tame. 

Pied Lapwing

Cattle Tyrant - I had not noticed the red eyes

Vermillion Flycatcher

Rufous Hornero

Picui Ground Doves

Vermillion Flycatcher

Rusty-margined Flycatcher

Saffron Finch

Yellow Rumped Cacique

Green Kingfisher

Rufous Horneros

Down time before a walk gave us Hyacinth Macaws in the palms and Crested Caracaras, Jabirus, Buff-necked and Plumbeous Ibises strutted amongst the lounging Capybaras and Caiman on the lawn where a gang of Guira Cuckoos were meticulously searching for insects in the grass.  A gang of White Woodpeckers were industriously tackling a small Wasp nest in a palm tree.

Guira Cuckoo

Guira Cuckoo

Guira Cuckoo

Hyacinth Macaw

Southern Crested Caracara

Black Vulture

Black Vulture



Buff-necked Ibis

White Woodpeckers

Yacare Caiman - note the blood filled, stripy-eyed Horse Flies.  They never left the reptile

Cabybara action time - including a Giant Cowbird cleaning a wound

A giant bee with super furry pollen collecting pantaloons!

Water Hyacinth

A Hoverfly

After lunch we had a walk nearby but the Jaguar risk was quite high and we were told to all stick close!  Quite a few familiar species were seen but it was good to get close views of Rufous Tailed Jacamar, Grey-headed Tanagers, Southern Beardless Tyrannulet, Fork-tailed Woodstar and Blue-crowned Trogons.  Fawn Breasted Wrens were a new addition as they shouted from the herbage.

Green Iguana

Green Iguana

Brazilian Cavy!

Grey Headed Tanager

Blue-crowned Trogon

Blue-crowned Trogon

Silver-beaked Tanager

Southern Beardless Tyrannulet

Boat-billed Flycatcher

Rufous Tailed Jacamar


We spent the rest of the evening a few miles back down the road watching the sun go down and the marsh come back to life.  The Limpkins were warming up for an evening serenade and Southern Screamers and even a Least Bittern joined in.  It was seen in flight and briefly perched up in the gloom.  More Doraditos, Cinerous-breasted and Yellow-chinned Spinetails were in the road side vegetation along with White-headed Water Tyrants and their close cousin the Black-backed Water Tyrant.  Greater Thornbirds were getting very upset about the Monk Parakeets trying to start a new mega nest in their own chosen tree.

Lesser Bulldog Bats came out from roost under the bridges and started fishing with Pauraque and Band-tailed Nighthawks after aerial rather than aquatic prey.

Snail Kite

Southern Screamers - the knobbliest knees of any bird?

Lablab purpureus

Merremia umbellata

Black-backed Water Tyrant

White-headed Water Tyrant.

Grey Chested Martins

Southern Crested Caracara

Greater Thornbird and his Monk Parakeet neighbour

Monk Parakeets

We all loved Cocoi Herons

The Hyacinth Macaws and Caracaras were all roosting in the palms when we got back and jostling for position.

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