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  • Where to watch BIRDS and

  • other wildlife in the world
  • Photograph of Red-and-green Macaws

    Red-and-green Macaws at a clay ick in Manu National Park by Dubi Shapiro.

  • Where to watch birds and wildlife in
  • MANU -

    Photograph of Diademed Sandpiper Plover

    Diademed Sandpiper Plover at Marcapomacocha by Lars Petersson.

    Photograph of Golden-backed Mountain-tanager

    Golden-backed Mountain-tanager at Bosque Unchog by Lars Petersson.

    Best Birds and other wildlife in Manu - Southern Peru


    Western (Bearded) Mountaineer, Western (Bearded) Mountaineer, Koepcke’s Hermit, White-tufted sunbeam, Rufous-webbed Brilliant (recorded in Bolivia), Green-and-white Hummingbird, Peruvian Piedtail, Coppery-naped Puffleg, White-browed Tit-spinetail, Vilcabamba Thistletail, Apurimac, Creamy-crested and Marcapata Spinetails, Junin and Rusty-fronted Canasteros, Red-and-white Antpitta, Vilcabamba Tapaculo, Inca Flycatcher, Black-backed Tody-flycatcher, Unstreaked Tit-tyrant, Masked Fruiteater, Cerulean-capped Manakin, Inca Wren, Parodi's Hemispingus, Chestnut-breasted Mountain-finch, and Apurimac and Cuzco and Vilcabamba Brush-finches.


    Peru and Brazil 6
    Fine-barred Piculet, Acre Antshrike, Manu Antbird, Black-tailed Antbird, Elusive Antpitta and Acre Tody-tyrant.

    Peru, Brazil and Bolivia 38
    Purus Jacamar, White-throated Jacamar, Blue-necked (-cheeked) Jacamar, Bluish-fronted Jacamar, Semi-collared Puffbird, Rufous-necked Puffbird, Fulvous-chinned Nunlet, Rufous-capped Nunlet, Black-throated (Emerald) Toucanet, Green-billed (Golden-collared) Toucanet, Brown-mandibled Aracari, Flame-throated (Lemon-throated) Barbet, Amazonian Parrotlet, Black-legged Parrot, Rose-fronted Parakeet, Black-capped Parakeet, Blue-headed Macaw, Southern Red-shouldered Macaw, Sclater’s Antwren, Ihering’s Antwren, Saturnine Antshrike, Bluish-slate Antshrike, Bamboo Antshrike, White-lined Antbird, Goeldi’s Antbird, Rufous-fronted Antthrush, Ocellated Woodcreeper, Inambri Woodcreeper, Flame-crested Manakin, Red-headed Manakin, Round-tailed Manakin, Black-faced Cotinga, Rufous Twistwing, Long-crested Pygmy-tyrant, Flammulated Bamboo-tyrant, White-cheeked Tody-flycatcher, Yellow-crested Tanager and Pearly-breasted Conebill.

    Peru and Bolivia 84
    (Seven hummingbirds, three cotingas and ten tanagers)
    Taczanowski’s Tinamou, Stripe-faced Wood-quail, Titicaca Grebe, White-browed Hermit, Olivaceous Thornbill, Scaled Metaltail, Buff-thighed Puffleg, Gould’s Inca, Huanaco (Violet-throated) Starfrontlet, Rufous-booted (Booted) Racket-tail, Cloudforest Screech-owl, Blue-banded Toucanet, Hooded Mountain-toucan, Blue-moustached (Versicoloured) Barbet, Black-crowned (Crimson-mantled) Woodpecker, Andean Parakeet (also recorded in Argentina), Black-winged Parrot, Plumero (Speckle-faced) Parrot, Yellow-rumped Antwren, Ashy Antwren, Upland Antshrike, Brownish-headed Antbird, Rufescent (Russet) Antshrike, Slaty Antshrike, Stripe-headed Antpitta, Rufous-faced Antpitta, Trilling Tapaculo, Bolivian Tapaculo, Puna Tapaculo, Diademed Tapaculo, Royal Cinclodes, Bolivian Recurvebill, Rufous-backed Treehunter, Line-fronted Canastero, Streak-throated Canastero, Puna Thistletail, Light-crowned Spinetail, Cabanis’s Spinetail, Yungas Manakin, Scarlet-breasted Fruiteater, Band-tailed Fruiteater, Scimitar-winged Piha, Hazel-fronted Pygmy-tyrant, Cinnamon-faced Tyrannulet, White-bellied (Slaty-capped) Flycatcher, Yungas Tody-tyrant, Ochraceous-breasted Flycatcher, Bolivian Tyrannulet, Yungas Tyrannulet, Ash-breasted Tit-tyrant, Unadorned Flycatcher, Kalinowski’s (Crowned) Chat-tyrant, Golden-browed Chat-tyrant, Chestnut-belted (Slaty-backed) Chat-tyrant, Taczanowski’s Ground-tyrant, Chestnut-naped (Rufous-naped) Ground-tyrant, Rufous-bellied Bush-tyrant, Olive Flycatcher, White-collared Jay, Fulvous Wren, Southern Chestnut-breasted Wren, White-eared Solitaire, Black-faced Brush-finch, Dusky-green Oropendola, Southern Mountain Cacique, Bolivian Citrine Warbler, Golden-bellied Warbler, Bolivian (Three-striped) Warbler, Slaty Tanager, Golden-bellied (Grey-hooded) Tanager, Drab Hemispingus, Orange-browed Hemispingus, Three-striped Hemispingus, White-browed Conebill, Peruvian Sierra-finch, Moustached Flowerpiercer, Golden-collared Tanager, Chestnut-bellied Mountain-tanager, Bolivian (Blue-winged) Mountain-tanager, Fire-bellied (Scarlet-bellied) Mountain-tanager, Blue-throated (Orange-eared) Tanager, Rusty-naped (Golden) Tanager, Green-capped Tanager and Spot-bellied (Blue-and-black) Tanager.

    Other specialities
    White-winged (Pale-winged) Trumpeter, Razor-billed Curassow, Yungas Pygmy-owl, Ocellated Poorwill, Andean Potoo, White-bellied Parrot, Green-fronted Lancebill, Festive and Rufous-crested Coquettes, Gould’s Jewelfront, Wire-crested Thorntail, Buff-thighed Puffleg, Rufous-capped Thornbill, Many-spotted Hummingbird, Andean Motmot, Black-streaked and (Western) Striolated Puffbirds, Curl-crested Aracari, Scarlet-hooded Barbet, Ocellated and Rufous-breasted Piculets, Rufous-headed and White-throated Woodpeckers, Brown-rumped Foliage-gleaner, Plain Softtail, Pale-footed Swallow, Varzea Antbird, Black-spotted Bare-eye, Amazonian Antpitta, Slaty Gnateater, Cinnamon-faced and Red-billed Tyrannulets, Johannes's and White-bellied Tody-tyrants, Dusky-tailed Flatbill, Rufous-webbed Bush-tyrant, Band-tailed and Fiery-capped Manakins, Hauxwell's Thrush, Tawny-faced Gnatwren, Rust-and-yellow Tanager, White-browed Hemispingus, Black-billed Seed Finch, Pale-eyed Blackbird and Casqued Oropendola. Also a chance of Bartlett's, Black-capped, Cinereous, Grey, Hooded and Variegated Tinamous, Buckley's Forest-falcon, Rufous-breasted Wood-quail, Crested and Harpy Eagles, Uniform Crake, Golden-plumed Parakeet, Long-tailed Potoo, White-browed Hermit, Pavonine Quetzal, Rusty-breasted and Thrush-like Antpittas, and Yellow-shouldered Grosbeak.

    Horned Screamer, Orinoco Goose, Muscovy and Torrent Ducks, Blue-throated Piping-guan, Fasciated Tiger-heron, Agami and Capped Herons, King Vulture, Black-and-chestnut and (Montane) Solitary Eagles, Sunbittern, Sungrebe, Pied Plover, Andean Lapwing, Andean Gull, Yellow-billed and Large-billed Terns, pigeons and doves, Blue-and-yellow, Red-and-green and Scarlet Macaws, parrots, Hoatzin, Sand-coloured Nighthawk, Lyre-tailed and Swallow-tailed Nightjars, hummingbirds including Black-eared Fairy, Sword-billed, Long-tailed Sylph, Black-tailed and Green-tailed Trainbearers, Gould's Jewelfront and Giant, trogons, Crested and Golden-headed Quetzals, all five South American kingfishers, puffbirds, jacamars, barbets, Channel-billed and White-throated Toucans, Grey-breasted Mountain-toucan, Golden-collared Toucanet, Chestnut-eared and Ivory-billed Aracaris, woodpeckers including Crimson-bellied, foliage-gleaners, Pearled Treerunner, Streaked Tuftedcheek, woodcreepers, many antbirds, tyrannulets, Short-tailed Pygmy-tyrant (the world's smallest passerine along with Black-capped Pygmy-tyrant), tody-tyrants, tody-flycatchers, flycatchers, ground-tyrants, chat-tyrants, Many-coloured Rush-tyrant, Andean Cock-of-the-rock, Screaming Piha, Plum-throated, Purple-throated and Spangled Cotingas, Bare-necked and Purple-throated Fruitcrows, tityras, jays, Musician Wren, Black-capped Donacobius, Giant Conebill, many tanagers, Black-faced and Yellow-bellied Dacnises, honeycreepers, sierra-finches, flowerpiercers, oropendolas and Orange-backed Troupial. Also a chance of Andean Condor, Military Macaw, Crested and Spectacled Owls, Chestnut-crested Cotinga, White-browed Purpletuft, Tit-like Dacnis and Plushcap.

    Giant Otter, Saddleback Tamarin, and Red Howler, (Common) Woolly, (Black-headed) Night, Common Squirrel, Black (Peruvian) Spider, Dusky Titi, Brown Capuchin and White-fronted Capuchin Monkeys. Also a chance of Brazilian Tapir, Emperor Tamarin, Gray's Bald-faced Saki Monkey, Red Brocket Deer and Tayra, and an outside chance of Spectacled Bear (this great rarity is now seen with some regularity in the Chaparri Ecological Reserve near Chiclayo in Northern Peru).

    Reptiles, Amphibians and Fish
    Spectacled Caiman.

    Numerous spectacular butterflies.

    Photograph of Red-and-green Macaws

    Red-and-green Macaws at a clay lick in Manu by Dubi Shapiro.

    Best Sites for Birds and other wildlife in Manu - Southern Peru

    Best Times for Birds and other wildlife in Manu - Southern Peru

    The dry season usually lasts from May to October and this is the best time to visit, especially August-September when activity usually peaks at the Andean Cock-of-the-rock lek and the clay licks, which large flocks of parrots and macaws visit daily, are busy. These clay licks are usually used mostly during the dry season. During the wet season the most rain usually falls from January to March.

    Recommended Bird Books etc. for Manu - Southern Peru

    Birds of Peru by T S Schulenberg et al. Helm, 2010 (Second Edition).

    Birds of South America: Non-Passerines by J R Roderiguez Mata et al. Harper Collins, 2006 hbk/Princeton University Press, 2006 pbk.

    Birds of South America: Passerines by R S Ridgely and G Tudor. University of Texas Press/Helm, 2009 (Updated paperback edition of books listed next with 400 more illustrations).

    The Birds of South America: Passerines by R S Ridgely and G Tudor. University of Texas Press, 1989 and 1994 (Two volumes).

    Where to Watch Birds in Peru by T Valqui. Valqui, 2004.

    Mammals of South America by R D Lord. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2007.

    Monkeys of Peru: Pocket Identification Guide by R Aquino Y et al. Conservation International, 2015.

    Travellers' Wildlife Guides: Peru by D Pearson and L Beletsky. Interlink Books, 2015 (Second Edition).

    Bradt Wildlife Guide: Peruvian Wildlife by G Cheshire, H Lloyd and B Walker. Bradt Travel Guides, 2007.

    Where to watch birds in South America by N Wheatley. Helm, 1994.

    Don’t know which country/countries to visit in South America? Then it may be worth considering taking a look at this book, written by this website’s author. It is many years old of course but it still provides a starting point, an overview and a guiding light to the best birds and the best places to look for them on the continent, and could save hours of searching for similar information on the internet. However, it is important to check more up-to-date sources for sites which have been opened up, sites and species which have been discovered, lodges that have been built etc. since the book was published.

    Birding and Wildlife Trip Reports for Manu - Southern Peru

    Many trip reports, some for Southern Peru, are posted on the websites listed here. On some of these websites some reports are independent and some are posted by tour companies who organize tours to Southern Peru. These tour companies and others also post their own reports on their websites, which are listed under 'Some Organized Tours to Southern Peru' below.

    Local bird and wildlife guides in Manu - Southern Peru

    The costs of organized tours partly reflect the quality of the tour leaders. Some leaders are certainly better than others and many companies claim their leaders are the best but even the best rely at least to some extent on the exceptional skills of the local guides they employ. If you are travelling independently, employing such local guides will greatly increase your chances of seeing the wildlife you wish to see.

    Accommodation for birders in Manu - Southern Peru

    Some Organized Tours for birds and other wildlife to Manu - Southern Peru

    There are many tour companies who organize tours to see mammals, birds, other wildlife and other natural wonders. The cost of these tours vary considerably according to such variables as the airlines used, the number of days the tours last, the number of sites visited, the number of people in the group (an important consideration if you wish to see such wildlife as rainforest mammals and birds), the number of tour leaders, the standard of accommodation and transport, and the percentage profit the company hopes to make. Generally, where the number of days tours last and the number of sites visited are similar, the cheapest tours are those that use the cheapest airlines, accommodation and local transport, that have the largest groups with the least number of leaders, and that make the least amount of profit. The most expensive tours tend to be those which are exceptionally long, use the most expensive accommodation (ridiculously lavish in some cases, even for single nights) and which make the most profit. Some tour costs partly reflect the quality of the tour leaders. Some leaders are certainly better than others and many companies claim their leaders are the best but even the best rely at least to some extent on the exceptional skills of the local guides they employ.

    While tour companies organize tours with set itineraries many also organize custom tours for individuals and private groups who instead of taking a tour with a set itinerary want to follow their own itinerary to suit their own personal tastes, whether it be mammals, birds, other wildlife, other natural wonders or even man-made attractions, or a mixture of them all. Many organized tours with set itineraries are also fast-paced and target as many species as possible, whether they are mammals, birds or other wildlife or everything, which usually leaves little time to enjoy the best sites and individual species, but on a custom tour those taking part can specify the pace and the sites and species they wish to concentrate on. Custom tours also suit people who like to travel with people they already know, rather than with a group of strangers, and people with partners with different interests. Individuals and small groups will almost certainly have to pay more than the price of an organized tour with a set itinerary but a large group of friends may be able to travel for less than the price quoted for a set tour.

    Tour companies who run organized tours or can arrange custom tours to Southern Peru include the following.