a field guide to the planet - by Damon Ramsey
The birds of the Neotropical paramo and puna montane grasslands and shrublands...
Chroicocephalus serranus, Andean Gull
Theristicus branickii, Andean Black-faced Ibis
Phalcoboenus carunculatus, 'Carunculated Caracara', (Tambor Condor, Ecuador). Found only in the mountain grasslands & shrublands of Ecuador and Colombia.
Turdus chiguanco, 'Chiquanco Thrush', (Cusco, Peru).
Spinus magellanicus, Hooded Siskin, (Cusco, Peru).
Zonotrichia capensis, 'Rufous-collared Sparrow', 'Andean Sparrow','Tico-tico' (Portuguese), Chingolo (Spanish), (Cusco, Peru).
Saltator aurantiirostris, 'Golden-beaked Saltator', (Cusco, Peru).
Aglaeactis cupripennis, 'Shining Sunbeam' (Tambo Condor, Ecuador). Found in montane rainforest and shrubland in the Andes.
Ensifera ensifera, 'Sword-billed Hummingbird', (Tambo Condor, Ecuador). As suggested by the name, the bill is very long; the only bird that has a bill longer than it's body. It looks absurd, and the bird can not preen with it's own bill like most birds, but must use it's feet. When it perches, it is usually with the bill pointing upwards. They mostly feed on the nectar from flowers in the genera Datura and Passiflora, especially 'Curuba' Passiflora mixta, which it is thought to have co-evolved with. The bird is found in montane forest and shrublands in the Andes.
Patagona gigas, 'Giant Hummingbird' (Tambo Condor, Ecuador). Plain brown with rufous underbelly. As the names suggests, this is the largest of all hummingbirds; it is about the size of an European Starling, but is much lighter. It is found on the edge of the montane forest and in shrublands in the Andes.
Aglaiocercus kingii, 'Long-tailed Sylph', (Wayqecha Lodge, Peru). Only the males have the longer tails, as this would be impractical for nesting females. Often seen at feeders. Found in mountain rainforest and edge in Andes.
Thinking of travelling again after everything settles down? The first expedition I am booked to work on after the virus is Micronesia, New Guinea & Indonesia in 2021 with Silversea. Meanwhile I am giving a lecture on the Sunshine Coast (Australia) on the "Sounds of suburban south-east Queensland".