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Thursday, July 24, 2008: Today was a travel day.

Near Yangana

Roadside Cliff
Roadside Cliff

We started by birding some areas near Yangana. Lifers included Plain-tailed Wren, Hooded Mountain-Tanager, Golden-crowned Tanager, Amazilia Hummingbird, Peruvian Pygmy-Owl, and Three-banded Warbler.

We found both forms of the Amazilia Hummingbird near Yangan, the standard Amazilia and the Loja Hummingbird. Some consider these separate species. In fact, there is a third form. Whether they are in fact separate species depends on how the third form fits in. Unfortunately, we were unable to see it on this trip, although we did pass through it's area.

The first Peruvian Pygmy-Owl was heard before it was seen. It was being closely watch by some Blue-gray Tanagers and actively harassed by a Tropical Kingbird. The Kingbird led me to the owl (a brown morph) and we were then able to scope it. Later, we found a rufous morph.

Roadside River Andes View
Scenes from a Roadside Stop

Catamayo Valley

It was a surprisingly long drive to Loja. We stopped at the nearby Catamayo Valley (near the Loja airport) for some more birding. One of the most obvious birds was the Long-tailed Mockingbird, with its outrageously long tail. A couple of flocks of Pacific Parrotlets provided my next lifer. Other life birds seen in the area included Scarlet-backed Woodpecker, Tumbes Sparrow, Croaking Ground-Dove, and Ash-breasted Sierra-Finch.

Eventually, we checked in at the hotel. After the shared accommodations at the Jocotoco Lodge, I was glad to be back in my own room.

Today's totals were 50 species including 12 lifers, making a grand total of 377 bird species with 268 lifers.

Hotel Libertador, Loja