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Luke Seitz reports on our Guatemala tour

May 02: Luke Seitz reports on our Guatemala tour

Our Guatemala tour in April was simply wonderful, with amazing views of most of the highland specialties and a great bird-filled extension to Tikal.

Let’s start off with perhaps the most surprising moment of the tour, eye-level views of the exquisite and highly localized Azure-rumped Tanager...

 ...not to be outdone by this rather confiding Ocellated Quail!

As always, Pink-headed Warblers were numerous and confiding, like this individual just in the parking lot at Fuentes Georginas...

...although I’m more fond of the stunning Goldman’s Warbler, only a “Yellow-rumped” if you’re incapable of using most of your senses. This species is essentially restricted to the pine-juniper grasslands on one plateau in Guatemala plus a couple nearby volcano tops.

Of course, the experience wouldn’t be complete without coffee and local champurradas (a sort of dry biscuit) in hand.

On the extension, we fly a short distance north to the town of Flores, where we try to find a few localized Yucatan endemics. This year, Black Catbird showed better than ever.

The Tikal extension is always full of birds, but for me, the whole experience of standing atop a Mayan temple before dawn and listening to the forest come alive is simply unmatched...the parrots, toucans, and local Orange-breasted Falcon zipping around are just icing on the cake.

Ocellated Turkey must top the list of highlights on any trip to Tikal. Beautiful? Grotesque? You decide.

Two weeks fly by, just like this Plumbeous Kite. I’m already looking forward to next year!

Posted: May 02, 2023