Colombia with Ontario Nature II
March 19, 2023 @ 8:00 am - March 29, 2023 @ 5:00 pm
Colombia is a fertile ground for bird diversity. Approximately one fifth of the world’s bird species have been observed here – more than in any other country – and many of these nearly 2,000 species are of a most alluring appearance and lifestyle. On this special tour for friends and supporters of Ontario Nature, we discover some of this abundance as we explore diverse and rich landscapes in the Magdalena Valley at the country’s heart within surprising proximity to the capital Bogotá.
The focus of our discoveries will be the central department of Cundinamarca and the Río Magdalena valley. In addition to being the seat of Bogotá, Cundinamarca has a varied topography housing a tremendous variety of bird life, including several of Colombia’s 83 endemic species! We begin our explorations in the city environs before going downslope into the valley, and later returning to the hills, visiting both warmer tropical rainforests and cooler montane forests, as well as tropical dry forest. We even head above the treeline into the fabled páramo, home to an otherworldly landscape of grassy tufts and fresh air. Hummingbirds and tanagers are the undoubted stars of Colombia’s bird life owing to the sheer diversity of form and colour, but we will have the opportunity to enjoy a fine selection of other birds and will watch for other wildlife as well. We stay at a small number of quaint lodges set in lovely locations, affording great landscape views and a chance to make casual discoveries in between excursions. All along, we’ll witness vignettes of Colombian daily life. Our pace is relaxed and easy so you can soak in the surroundings too.
We are offering a post-trip extension to Colombia’s Caribbean region in the north. Here we find a bizarre juxtaposition of warm coastal desert and turquoise waters with refreshing cloud forest in the nearby Santa Marta Mountains. These snow-capped outliers of the Andes are home to several birds and other fauna and flora found nowhere else.