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Greetings, and welcome to our June emailing!

Summer is certainly in full swing. Just look outside the window and there's a chance you'll see adult birds carrying food, or speckled robins and bluebirds hanging around your lawn. For those who get involved with breeding-season surveys, you've probably already run your BBS route. The longest day of the year just slipped past us, and the sun sets a bit earlier each evening.

Our Field Guides summer tours are rolling along. As you read this, we have folks on tour in Peru, Brazil, and Borneo. Within the next week we set off to explore Ecuador, launch another Brazil tour, and embark on a cruise in the Norwegian Arctic. There is always an exciting adventure or three happening, and we hope you can be a part of one.

In this month's emailing we highlight a few tours in different parts of the world. There's a set to choose from in the New World, a close-up on New Guinea and Australia, and a couple in Africa.

We also have our regular features, including images from recent tours in our Recent Photos Gallery—this month's virtual tour contains 110 pics taken by participants and guides from nine destinations on three continents. We also have a couple short video clips from two trips below. And we present 20 new triplists from recent tours and 18 updated itineraries for 2023 and 2024.

Our appreciation to participant Lance Runion for the image of a pair of Chestnut-breasted Coronets he captured while on our Holiday at San Isidro, Ecuador tour. We're offering that again over Thanksgiving this year, Nov 18-27 with Mitch Lysinger guiding, and there are still a few spaces available.

Thanks also to guide Doug Gochfeld for the photo below of the tour participants from our Central Mexico & Baja: Birds, Butterflies & Whales tour back in February. It is truly an exceptional trip with the possibility of up-close encounters with Gray Whales, lots of specialty birds, and a visit with Monarch Butterflies that must be experienced to be fully appreciated. Micah Riegner & Bret Whitney will guide this itinerary again next Feb 18-29, and there is space available. If you'd like to get more information or hold a spot, please contact our office.
The New World tropics in fall
We have selected four upcoming tours to Central and South America to highlight, each with unique characteristics that might pique your interest.

This is an extensive survey of Andean Ecuador, with a focus on colorful and interesting hummingbirds and tanagers, and subtle and haunting antpittas. Jay VanderGaast leads this tour, aiming to see 500 or more species, with 60 species of hummers and tanagers possible! This is our first encore of this long-running itinerary since 2019.

Chris Benesh is our guide on a quest for the most interesting birds of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula amidst its attractive Mayan sites, all just a short flight from the States. Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and nearby Cozumel Island combine rich tropical birding with a spectacular cultural setting, and we'll have a chance to savor the magnificent ruins at Uxmal and Chichen Itza.

This tour offers a week-long getaway to explore the islands, estuaries, and cactus forests near Kino Bay. Guided by Micah Riegner & Doug Gochfeld, this relatively new tour (this will be our third running) is a wonderful opportunity to explore the Gulf of California region, while staying at one site for most of the tour.

We can't say enough about Guyana. It is truly one of the best-kept secrets in South America, and one of the few truly wild places left on Earth. Join guide Marcelo Barreiros on this survey birding tour of the country's vast untrammeled rainforest, with an emphasis on Guianan Shield specialties, and side trips to coastal and savanna regions and spectacular Kaieteur Falls.
New Guinea & Australia
Given just one chance to bird in Australasia, and wanting to get the most of your experience, what choice would you make? Would you stick with the common one, Australia, with its myriad and cool endemic birds such as Laughing Kookaburra, Superb Lyrebird, colorful Rainbow Lorikeets, and the daunting Southern Cassowary...not to mention iconic mammals like kangaroos and wallabies, cuddly Koalas, and the bizarre Platypus? Or would you select the more adventurous route with Australia plus a short hop over to Papua New Guinea, where the culture and lifestyle feel less familiar, and the birding is considerably tougher but replete with fantastic birds, from the numerous and spectacular birds-of-paradise to lesser-known but no less amazing birds like the unique Blue-capped Ifrita and the strange Wattled Ploughbill? Not an easy choice, is it? We think the combo of both amazing destinations is the way to go. Our popular Papua New Guinea-Australia sampler tour is back, and there are still a couple of spaces open on this late September-October excursion with veteran guide Jay VanderGaast. Visiting a few well-picked locations in each country, we will have the chance to track down many of the incredible creatures unique to this part of the world, including the ones mentioned above. That includes some fantastic mammals, too, as we will make an effort to find Koala and Platypus, along with plenty of other fascinating animals during our time in Australia.

Jay VanderGaast has been guiding with Field Guides for more than two decades on more than 170 tours, including 23 to Australasia. Many of New Guinea's birds are extremely challenging to see; that's where the many years of experience in New Guinea of both our company and guides distinguish us.

"Jay is an excellent guide. The trip would not have been the same without him. His acute hearing and sight and genuine interest and caring resulted in our seeing many exquisite birds. He made certain that everyone saw each bird, and he took great care of us from handling things at airports to choosing super restaurants. The pace was perfect." S. M., NEW GUINEA & AUSTRALIA
For more information or to sign up, please contact our office.
Africa in autumn
We have exciting news! We have just added a September departure to fabulous Namibia & Botswana! Even better is that this tour is already operational—which means it is a go with only two spaces available! The venerable Terry Stevenson along with Tarry Butcher (who was born and raised in Namibia) will lead our small group (limited to six, for an amazing guide-to-participant ratio) to these amazing destinations. We’ve also been upgraded at a couple lodges due to our normal places of establishment not being available at our late booking date—Field Guides is absorbing the extra expense and running the tour at our regularly advertised price.

We also have space available on our September-October South Africa tour, guided by Jesse Fagan and Tarry Butcher. This itinerary has been specially designed to give us an opportunity to see as many of the South African endemics as possible in three weeks while surveying a diversity of scenery and habitat. Many of the endemics we'll be looking for are extremely localized, and Jesse and Tarry are just the combo to help you find them.

Now truly is the time for Africa travel, With tourism not yet fully recovered, we’ll see fewer people in the parks, which means better viewing, less dust, and just a better experience overall. That’s not going to last long! Please call our office to jump on an adventure to some of the birdiest and most beautiful places in the world. We are certain you won’t regret it, and you’ll have memories for a lifetime. Please contact our office to sign up or for more information.
Short videos from recent tours
Many of our triplists contain videos recorded by guides or participants. Sometimes they are just a few seconds showing a neat behavior of a bird, while others are longer, edited productions that showcase highlights of a tour.

We have two videos linked in the photos above that give a taste of a couple of our tours. Click here or on the image of the singing Nava's Wren for a video filmed by guide Micah Riegner from an exciting new tour, our Mexico: Enchanted Chiapas tour. This clip comes from our inaugural run earlier this year. Click here or on the image of the Townsend's Solitaire for a video from our Arizona Winter Specialties tour. This tour was guided by Tom Johnson, who also compiled the video linked from the image. Both tours are coming up again in the next six months or so, and both have space available. If you are interested in learning more or holding a space, please contact our office.
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 our most recent episode, guides Doug Gochfeld & Jesse Fagan take us along for some highlights from our recent Central Mexico & Baja: Birds, Butterflies & Whales tour. The video includes footage of a Monarch Butterfly spectacle, some close encounters with Gray Whales, and of course lots of interesting birds.

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 is my birding company of choice. I chose this tour because I wanted to revisit the Himalayas which I visited over 30 years ago before I was a birder. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to be with both Megan Edwards Crewe and Jay VanderGaast guiding together on one trip. I've traveled with both Megan and Jay in the past and look forward to future opportunities to travel with them again. They are individually very impressive guides, and together they were an incredible dream team! My overall tour experience was wonderful and exceeded my expectations in many ways. Tour manager Karen Turner was very helpful, as always. I think Field Guides provides better accommodations and services and your guides are always top-notch and delightful to travel with. I have never been disappointed in any aspect of a Field Guides tour.” D.R., Bhutan, 2023
“My tour experience was wonderful. Our guide, John Coons, and guide-in-training Alex Sundvall were excellent birders, who worked extremely hard to find the birds we were seeking. I was amazed at John's ability to predict where birds would land, so we were able to get the best views. John's and Alex's spotting scopes really helped to highlight the birds' identifying features, particularly colors. The guides worked hard to insure that everyone got to see a particular species, if at all possible. Besides the birds, the lodging, travel experience, and food were great. Our tour manager Sharon Mackie (and the office staff) did a wonderful job in keeping me informed and working with me during the registration process. Everything was well organized, and everyone felt that we were special guests. The tour was most enjoyable and worthwhile.” J.G., Northern Arizona's Canyons and Condor I, 2023
Tours with openings through year's end
If you haven't gotten around to planning a holiday getaway yet, have a look below at the tours with space between now and the end of the year. We have space available on tours to Brazil, Mexico, and Ecuador over Thanksgiving, and for Christmas we've got space on tours to Costa Rica and Mexico. If you're staying home for the holidays but still thinking about a getaway this fall, have a look below to see if something catches your eye. 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. The photo shown here is from our Uruguay: Birds & Wines in the Land of the Gauchos (Nov 25-Dec 7) with Marcelo Padua. Did you know that Uruguay means "river of painted birds" in the language of its native inhabitants? And did you also know that recently a winery there was selected as the best winery in the New World by Wine Enthusiast magazine? Have a look at Uruguay. The country is safe and beautiful, and we are certain you'll fall in love with its culture, cuisine, wine and, most of all, its birds.






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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