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Greetings, and welcome to our April emailing!

If you're in the northern hemisphere, then spring migration is just outside your window. The vanguard has arrived, and many of us are just a couple weeks away from the main event. Temperatures are rising, and summer doesn't seem too far away. But we're not there just yet!

While you're reading this, some of our participants are winding down a tour in Bhutan, two groups are enjoying the mating rituals of dancing grouse and prairie-chickens in Colorado, and another group is taking in the migration spectacle of the Texas coast. In the next week we'll travel with even more people to Texas—with Big Bend National Park in the mix; our Birds and Wine tour will visit Portugal; and our first of many Arizona tours will kick off, seeking nightbirds and more.

In this month's emailing you'll find an update about Brazil travel (not pandemic related!). We've got a spotlight on our upcoming July tour to Papua New Guinea, on which we'd love to take a few more folks. We also have an exciting tweak to tell you about in our September itinerary for Bolivia's Avian Riches, which adds a night at a new-to-us lodge and gives access to a few species we've not been able to encounter previously. There are a couple of great videos our guides assembled from recent tours to southern Argentina and southern Mexico. And, as always, we have our regular features, including photos from our recent tours in our Recent Photos Gallery—this month's panoply contains almost 100 photographs submitted by participants and guides from eleven destinations on three continents. We feature nine new triplists from recent tours and 11 updated itineraries for 2023.

Our thanks to guide Eric Hynes for the lead image above of the village on Monhegan Island from our Maine in Fall: Seabirds & Coastal Migrants tour. This ten-day tour spends three nights on Monhegan, a quaint fishing village and artist enclave sitting ten miles off the mainland. It also also happens to be one of the best migration hotspots for songbirds in the Northeast. Eric, who calls Maine home, will again lead this year's departure. He has guided this tour since its inception in 2019 and knows his way around the birds—and the fine coastal cuisine. There's space left to join him; it runs September 8-17.

Thanks to guide Chris Benesh for the excellent photo below of a Chestnut-capped Warbler from our Panama's Canopy Lodge: El Valle de Anton tour in January. The same tour runs again in December, so if you'd like to join guide Megan Edwards Crewe and ring in the New Year in Panama, just contact our office.
Brazil travel update
Beginning October 1, 2023, Brazil is reinstating the electronic entry visa requirement for travelers from the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Japan. But you can still take advantage of visa-free travel in the next few months—we have a few summer adventures to Brazil that have space remaining!

Ecuador in October: eye candy galore!
Does a possible eye-pleasing haul of 60-plus species of hummers and more than 80 species of tanagers and their allies, along with chances at a dozen species of antpittas, have just a wee bit of appeal to you? (Of course, ha!) Then we suggest you join guide Jay VanderGaast for his upcoming Jewels of Ecuador: Hummers, Tanagers & Antpittas 18-day survey tour of the best of northern and southern Ecuador. Along the way, Jay and group will encounter more than 500 species of birds amidst some beautiful montane scenery and habitats. It runs Oct 27-Nov 13 and there are a few spaces still open. Check out our last couple of triplists here and here.
Papua New Guinea with Tom & Doug
We're thrilled to be returning to Papua New Guinea for the first time since 2019, and we have a few spaces available. We depart 25 July, and while that is only three months from now, we're hoping a few of you have the time and inclination to join guides Doug Gochfeld and Tom Johnson to visit one of the most remarkable avifaunal destinations on earth. We should find in excess of 300 bird species during our 19-day tour—with well over 100 endemics. Doug and Tom are both excellent guides, and they're even better friends. Client reviews of tours they lead together are always excellent, with folks struggling to find enough superlatives to describe their experience. Our tour centers around locating a fantastic variety of birds-of-paradise, including some of the most highly prized birds on the planet: King-of-Saxony, Twelve-wired, Raggiana, and Blue birds-of-paradise, the lovely Ribbon-tailed Astrapia, and the huge Brown Sicklebill pictured above. Often people have the impression that a birding tour to Papua New Guinea must be unusually demanding or uncomfortable. For all of Papua New Guinea’s remoteness, however, travel is surprisingly easy and food and accommodations are mostly good to very good. While we spend some time in the humid lowlands, more than half of our birding is done in the wonderfully comfortable foothills and highlands, with cool nights and pleasant days. We know it's short notice, but if you can swing it, this is surely an adventure of a lifetime. If you'd like more information, please contact our office.
Doug Gochfeld
Tom Johnson
Bolivia—Cliffs covered in Macaws!
Following guide Micah Riegner's productive scouting endeavor after our Bolivia's Avian Riches tour last September, we’ve tweaked the Bolivia itinerary for our 2023 departure running Sep 11-27 to include a night at the Red-fronted Macaw Lodge. This cozy lodge overlooking the Rio Mizque is backdropped by giant red-rock cliffs, which just so happen to be the most important nesting site of the Red-fronted Macaw. With its vermilion crown, fiery shoulder patches, and electric-blue primaries, the Red-fronted Macaw is one of the most handsome of all parrots. Sadly, habitat degradation, illegal pet-trade trafficking, and persecution by agriculturalists in its desert home have reduced this Bolivian endemic to just over 1000 individuals. However, thanks to rigorous conservation efforts by Armonia—an NGO specializing in protecting Bolivia’s birds—the species is on its way to recovery. The establishment of the Red-fronted Macaw Lodge back in 2006 was one of their conservation initiatives to provide income to the nearby community of Perereta, thus incentivizing the people to protect their colorful rock-dwelling neighbors. The cliffs behind the lodge are not only home to the macaws. Here too nest Cliff Parakeets (another Bolivian endemic soon to be split from Monk Parakeet), Bolivian Blackbirds, Mitred Parakeets, and Turquoise-fronted Parrots. Watching all these birds congregate to roost at the end of the day is quite a visual and auditory spectacle! Guide Dan Lane joins Micah, and they are thrilled to be bringing the first Field Guides group to visit the site in September. Click here to view photos of the lodge and the macaws.

Short videos from recent tours
A great way to check out our tours is by having a look at past triplists. Aside from the informative narrative that the guides write and the roster of birds seen, the lists have plenty of photographic highlights. Often the guides include great video clips of the tour too. Such is the case with the two videos linked here. Guide Tom Johnson guided our most recent Southern Argentina: The Pampas, Patagonia & Tierra del Fuego tour and uploaded a video that you can watch by clicking here or on the Guanaco above. This tour only runs every other year and fills up fast. Our next departure is in October 2024.

Guide Micah Riegner assembled another fun video from our Mexico: Enchanted Chiapas tour. Two watch this one, click here or on the Pygmy Kingfisher above. This tour's next departure is in January 2023, and there is space available.
Triplists from recent tours
We have triplists from past tours linked below, each with some lovely images and some with video clips, and all with great annotations by our guides. Enjoy!
Field Guides video series
Our OutBirding subscription series continues to grow with new videos regularly added. In the latest episode, guide Tom Johnson takes us seawatching at Kilauea Point, Hawaii, with some fantastic footage of Great Frigatebirds, Red-tailed Tropicbirds, and Laysan Albatrosses. Be sure to check it out!

We have made five full videos available free on our YouTube channel. They are marked OutBirding. Check them out, and if you enjoy what you're watching, join us as a subscriber!
Comments from participants
We carefully read each post-tour evaluation we receive from our participants, so that we can continue to offer the best possible birding experiences and service on Field Guides birding tours. Here are a couple of representative recent comments. From all of us at Field Guides, our thanks for all your valuable feedback.
“Field Guides trips are reliably wonderful. I knew that it would be well organized, led by expert birders and naturalists, and offer the chance to see lots of great birds in a beautiful setting, all of this with others who share my level of enthusiasm. Personal safety is a concern any time one travels by oneself, and I felt safe staying in the hotels and with our guides as drivers. Our guide Tom Johnson is kind, patient, very diplomatic (I admired the nice ways he asked us to be quiet if we got chatty), and so knowledgeable. Our group was also friendly, fun, interesting (I love when participants offer a nice mix of expertise—a veterinarian, a chemist, a geologist, etc.) and very good birders. I love hearing about what other Field Guides trips they recommend so I can plan my future travels. The size of the group was very nice—lots of eyes to look for birds, enough people to get to know, but not too many to be unwieldy. The service of the office staff and tour manager was very good—I feel like I'm in capable hands with the planning and support offered by Nicole Cannon and the office staff. Everyone was personable, helpful and efficient. I really appreciate that! Field Guides tours spoil me for other trips. I have found that others just don't have the level of expertise, training, and professionalism that your guides and staff have. I really like that your guides actively teach us about not only the birds but also the environment, ecology, and current research.” J.M., Hawaii II, 2023

“Field Guides is the only company I have an interest in going on tours with, which is based on your reputation and the quality of the guides and service. I chose the Bahia tour largely because it filled the needs of both my travel companion and myself, which included things like cost, location (we wanted to do South America in general and Brazil in particular), less driving than most tours from what I could tell, and I wanted to do a tour with guide Bret Whitney. Bret is the ‘bomb diddy.’ His birding skills are superb, his knowledge is encyclopedic, his interpersonal skills are outstanding, his patience is just about endless, and his stories are simultaneously fascinating, entertaining, and educational. I had a wonderful experience. The service of the tour manager and office staff was excellent. I booked my flights through Field Guides and that all went well, and any questions I had were answered or addressed quickly and professionally. This was a really, really good tour.” K.I., Brazil: Bahia Birding Bonanza, 2023
Tours with openings through October
For folks who can get away on short notice, here is a listing of all our tours with space available that depart between now and the end of October. Aside from the birds, some of these tours visit legendary, bucket-list destinations such as Victoria Falls, Grand Canyon, Machu Picchu, and the Galapagos, among others. Just contact our office for more information or to book.

You can find more information about each of the tours listed here by clicking the links to visit their tour pages. Our thanks to participant Doug Clarke for this photo of a boastful Magnificent Frigatebird seen during our Galapagos: An Intimate Look at Darwin's Islands tour. We have two departures coming up this summer, and there's at least one space left on each of them.






  • Taiwan, May 2-13 with Phil Gregory & local guide (4 spaces)
  • Japan in Spring, May 13-30 with Phil Gregory (1 space)

Recently posted upcoming itineraries
Click on any image or link below to see the detailed itinerary for the following tours. All of these itineraries are packed with information (and have a few nice photos as well).
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