Sunday, September 11, 2016

Bulletin 274 - Ecuador #8 - Cotingas, Trogons and Jacamars

These are the places visited. At the end of each bird description, I will give the 2 letter code where the photo was taken.

Shiripuno Lodge in Amazon  (SH)
Mindo area on west slope has several close reserves that we visited (MI)

The cotingas are a diverse New World family of 66 songbirds. Overall they are rather difficult to find. The 12" male Andean Cock-of-the Rock (Rupicola peruvianus) is red on the west slope of the Andes where we saw several at a lek. He has a large crest and black wings with large white patches.The males on the east slope of the Andes are orange as seen here.  MI

Andean Cock-of-the-Rock - male west slope
Another group of cotingas are called fruitcrows for their overall black color. We saw 2 species on the trip but I only got photos of the 11" Purple-throated Fruitcrow (Querula purpurata)  MI

Purple-throated Fruitcrow

We also got a distant view of the 7" male Purple-throated Cotinga (Porphyrolaema porphyrolaema). Although the purple throat cannot be seen, the black back, white underside and white wing patch is diagnostic for this bird. It is listed as scarce in the Ecuador Guide book.  SH

Purple-throated Cotinga - male
The trogons are worldwide family of 43 species with 2/3 in the New World. They are medium sized colorful fruit eating birds that are easy to photograph when you find them as they usually sit still. The 10" male Blue-crowned Trogon (Trogon curucui) has a blue head, red belly and yellow bill.  SH

Blue-crowned Trogon - male
The 11" female Green-backed Trogon (Trogon viridis) has gray head and chest and yellow belly. She has a blue eye ring and black bill. The male would have a blue head and chest. This bird was formerly known as the Amazonian White-tailed Trogon. SH

Green-backed Trogon - female
The 11" male White-tailed Trogon (Trogon chionurus) has bluish purple head and chest, yellow belly, pale bill and solid white tail. This individual is missing some of his white tail feathers (probably molting). This bird was formerly called the Western White-tailed Trogon.  MI

White-tailed Trogon - male
The quetzals are 6 larger birds in the trogon family with fancy plumage such as epaulets, crests, long tails etc. The 13.5" male Golden-headed Quetzal (Pharomachrus auriceps) has green back and red underparts, golden green head and black undertail. I only got a single photo of the bird before he flew.  MI

Golden-headed Quetzal - male
The jacamars are a small family of New World birds (18 species) most of which are found in Amazonia. I got 2 new ones for the trip. They resemble large hummingbirds as the have long tails and long pointed bills. The 7.5" Yellow-billed Jacamar (Galbula albirostris) is the only jacamar in Ecuador with a yellow bill.  SH

Yellow-billed Jacamar
The 7.5" White-eared Jacamar (Galbalcyrhynchus leucotis) is brown with a white cheek patch and pink bill.  SH

White-eared Jacamar
I have photographed 14 of the 43 trogons now and they can be seen here.

Happy birding and photography,

David McDonald

photos copyright 2006 - 2016 David McDonald

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