Flying Jewels of Arroyos y Esteros.
PBNPY9_Half or full day tour.
Arroyos y Esteros (streams and wetlands) declared an IBA site (Important Bird Area) years ago. It is an extensive area of wetlands with natural pastures and shrub plants and all this makes for an excellent place to observe some specialized birds of these environments and only 100 km from Asunción. The star here is undoubtedly the recently described new species for science, the Ibera Seedeater (observed most frequently from September to December) and the spectacular and endangered Strange-tailed Tyrant, and as a breeding site for the species, this is one of the best places to see it. Males are decked out in black and white and the long, twisted tail is, well, strange to say in the least. Another unusual feature of this frankly odd tyrant is that the feathers of the throat are lost during the breeding season, leaving it bare and red, only to grow back when reproduction is over.
One morning in the area allows us to see a large number and variety of bird species.Here are some of the most notable and frequent: Maguari Stork, White-faced and Bare-faced Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, Great, Snowy and Cattle Egrets, Cocoi, Whistling and Striated Heron, Tawny-headed and White-rumped Swallow, Brown-chested Martin, Savannah, Black-collared and Great Black Hawks, Snail Kite, Limpkin, Bearded Tachuri, Crested Doradito, Lesser Grassfinch, Long-tailed Reedfinch and during October and November for migrant seedeaters like Chestnut, Dark-throated, Marsh, Rufous-rumped and Tawny-bellied which often accompany flocks of the more common Blue-black Grassquit and Double-collared Seedeater. More associated with open marsh, we will look for two wetland tyrant flycatchers, the White-headed Marsh-Tyrant and the Sooty Tyrannulet, as well as the Fork-tailed Flycatcher and White Monjita, more common in summer. There is always the possibility of rails in the marsh vegetation too. We will be listening for Ash-throated Crake and Rufous-sided Crake and others, while South American Snipe is frequently observed. Flocks of the charismatic and noisy Yellow-rumped Marshbird will be easy enough to locate and they are often in the presence of other Icterids such as Chopi and the amazing Scarlet-headed Blackbird and another interesting one is the Black-capped Donacobius. Overhead wires should give photo opportunities for Ringed and Amazon Kingfishers.
- Length: Half or full-day tour.
- Species in the trip: 400 Number of bird species expected: 60 – 140
- Tour Pace & Walking: To get to the site, we have about 1.5 hours in a car. Walk on relatively flat trails with few obstacles.
- Focus: Bird and wildlife observation.
- Recommended season: All year.
- Suggested extensions: If you take the half-day option, you can combine it with the half-day tour of the Jardin Botanico (5 km from Asunción), or the half-day tour of the Bay of Asuncion or the half-day tour of Humid Chaco (50 km from Asunción) . Depending on the number of additional days you have and the species of your interest, we suggest that you observe our list of Paraguay and regional tours that are easy to connect.