Greetings from Ecuador! I am here on Spring Break right now with my family, and today was our first day in Quito. We decided to spend our day exploring La Parque de Carolina which is about a three minute walk from our hotel. Here, we visited the Quito Botanical Gardens. The birding was great knowing we are in a huge city. We only saw 9 species on this trip, but some were very interesting.
We arrived at the Gardens around 9:00 AM and I immediately found a very close and well lit Great Thrush, a very common bird in Quito.
Our main bird targets were Black Flowerpiercer and Black-tailed Trainbearer. We had success with both, although the Flowerpiercers were very flighty and hard to see well. We encountered the Flowerpiercers about five minutes into our walk.
From here, we continued on and found a Sparkling Violetear feeding on some flowers, glistening in the sunlight. I was unable to get any photos of it, but while watching, I caught a glimpse of a small gray bird flying over me. I followed it into a rose bed, and was able to refind it. I got some pictures of it and when I got back to the hotel in the afternoon, I found out I had seen a Southern-beardless Tyrannulet!
But in Ecuador there is always something else around the corner. After the Thrush, my mom soon found a Passerine in the top of the trees. I got a glimpse of it, and the first thought that popped into my head was that it was a Vireo. I took some photos and sent them to a few people this afternoon. It turns out it was a Yellow-green Vireo, my second lifer of the trip.
We continued on to find the part of the gardens that had the crops the Incan's had planted back in the 13th Century, but along the way we stopped again for a Black-tailed Trainbearer feeding
While watching this magnificent bird, I noticed two Rufous-collared Sparrows begging for me to take their photo:
|Adult Rufous-collared Sparrow|
|Juvenile Rufous-collared Sparrow|
After we found the Incan portion of the Gardens, we were getting hot and decided to call it a day. Tomorrow I will be off to Yanacocha for some Hummingbirds and who knows what else! Hope you enjoyed this taste of Ecuador!