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Recent bird sightings:
Sites - El Paujil Bird Reserve

Site evaluation: 4 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars
Species:  
Elevation: 200-800 m
Climate: Hot and humid
Trails: Guided and self-guid
Accommodation: 4 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars
Food: 4 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars 4 Stars
Hot water: Yes
Electricity: Yes
Communications: Cell phone
Region: Magdalena valley
Location: Dept of Boyaca & Santander
Summary: This reserve was created in 2003 by Fundación ProAves to protect the critically endangered Blue-billed Curassow, and remains the sole location to reliably see this species, perhaps the most sought-after of Colombia?s endemics. This huge reserve also contains some of the last intact humid forest in the middle Magdalena valley, home to a large variety of endemic birds and mammals, including the endangered Variegated Spider Monkey (one of the rarest primates in the world). Good accommodation is available, including air-conditioned cabins.
Endemics: Blue-billed Curassow, White-mantled Barbet, Beautiful Woodpecker, Sooty Ant-Tanager.
Key Species: Northern Screamer, Crested Owl, Saffron-headed Parrot, Shining-green and Ruby-Topaz Hummingbird, Black-breasted and Barred Puffbirds, Black Antshrike, Bare-crowned Antbird, Black-billed Flycatcher, Southern Bentbill, Striped Manakin, Orange-crowned Oriole.
Access: 2 hrs from Puerto Boyacá to Puerto Pinzon. 30 min boat ride (when water levels are sufficient) or 10 min in 4x4 vehicle and 30 minute walk through forest to reserve.
Site Description: This reserve protects lowland humid forest, very little of which is left in the middle Magdalena valley. Northern Screamer and Least Grebe may be spotted en route.

The Blue-billed Currassow is the marquee bird of the reserve, but can be very difficult to find. Several full days are necessary to have a good chance at seeing this bird. Reserve staff can provide the current best locations and recommend visitors spend as much time walking trails as possible in the hopes of an encounter. The good news is the population may be increasing and a feeding station is hoped to assist with sightings. Displaying males may be found by carefully following their deep ?boom? vocalizations from April-July.

While the Curassows can be difficult to find, other species such as Pale-bellied and Stripe-throated Hermits, Violet-bellied and Shining-green Hummingbirds, Broad-billed and Rufous Motmots, Black-chested Jay, Sooty Ant-Tanager, Cinnamon Woodpecker, Bare-crowned Antbird, Southern Bentbill, White-bearded Manakin, Yellow-browed Shrike-Vireo, Black-bellied Wren, Plain-colored and Golden-hooded Tanagers, Fulvous-vented Euphonia and Orange-crowned Oriole are much more in evidence.

Marshy areas are home to Gray-necked Wood-Rail, White-throated and Russet-crowned Crakes, Greater Ani and waterbirds including Rufescent Tiger-Heron, while the clearing around the cabin and the adjacent riverine forest are a good location for Colombian Chachalaca, Crested Owl, Buff-rumped Warbler and a wide variety of hummingbirds. Midday heat brings out soaring raptors, and the excellent Saffron-headed Parrot sometimes can be seen winging over the area.

The avifauna is rich, and persistence will result in sightings of many of the less common forest dwellers, including Marbled Wood-Quail, Ruby-Topaz Hummingbird, White-mantled Barbet, Black-breasted and Barred Puffbirds, Beautiful Woodpecker, Black-striped Woodcreeper, Black Antshrike, Dull-mantled Antbird, Black-billed Flycatcher, Striped Manakin, and Scarlet-browed Tanager.
Photos:
Northern Screamer, Benjamin Freeman Golden-hooded Tanager, Benjamin Freeman
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