Macaé de Cima
We spent the day in the Macaé de Cima area, including the road to David Miller's house. Our first stop off the main highway was very productive. We quickly picked up Rufous-crowned Greenlet, Orange-eyed Thornbird, Variable Antshrike, Ochre-faced Tody-Flycatcher, Scaly-headed Parrot, Pallid Spinetail, Mottle-cheeked Tyrannulet (world bird #1800), and Gray-capped Tyrannulet.
|Gray-capped Tyrannulet||Roadside Forest|
We worked our way up the road, sometimes walking, sometimes driving. On foot, we trended uphill, but with lots of reversals in search of birds. We ran into numerous Brassy-breasted Tanagers, with the day's total probably in excess of 100. We successively found Sharp-billed Treehunter, Buff-fronted Foliage-gleaner, and White-browed (Yellow-browed) Woodpecker when we ran into a couple of Streaked Xenops. They were the beginning of flock which included Pale-browed Treehunter and White-collared Foliage-gleaner, as well as some others that got away. Nick called in a Bertoni's Antbird, and later spotted a Blue-billed Black-Tyrant.
|Brassy-breasted Tanager||White-browed Woodpecker|
|Brazilian Ruby||View from the Road|
A long search finally yielded a Black-and-gold Cotinga that had been calling for some time. We went up the hill a bit, then back down, finding Ochre-rumped Antbird, Green-winged Saltator, White-throated Hummingbird, Shear-tailed Gray Tyrant, Drab-breasted Pygmy-Tyrant, and Hooded Berryeater. Finally, we headed to the top, where orchid expert David Miller lives. A Scale-throated Hermit was visiting his feeders, which were mostly patronized by Brazilian Rubys and White-throated Hummingbirds.
|View from David Miller's||Violet-capped Woodnymph||Brazilian Ruby|
|Brazilian Ruby||Violet-capped Woodnymph||White-throated Hummingbird|
We ate our sandwiches in David's house. As we left, he pointed out an interesting case of mimicry in his front yard. An orchid's leaves were imitating the leaves of another plant that browsers such as cattle find unpalatable. The leaves of the other plant are quite rough, almost like sandpaper. The orchids leaves are soft, but look like the rough leaves. Cattle and other browsers ignore the orchid, apparently thinking it is the rough-leafed plant.
|White-throated Hummingbird||Scale-throated Hermit|
Birding was much slower on the way down. A Velvety Black-Tyrant was nice. We'd been hearing Bare-throated Bellbirds. It took a while to actually locate one, but we did. In the same area, we found a Plovercrest. We finally got a White-browed Warbler, which is usually fairly common here. We heard a Surucua Trogon calling, another bird that we have repeatedly missed. Finally, we tracked it down! I think I was the only one who saw the Glittering-bellied Emerald. Although we saw more birds before getting back in the van, none were new.
|Velvety Black-Tyrant||Rufous-crowned Greenlet|
I took some photos at the lodge feeders late in the day. My last new bird of the day was a Saw-billed Hermit at the lodge. This brought the day's bird total to 57 species, 29 of them lifers. The trip total is now 247 species (244 seen), with 142 lifers.
|Chestnut-bellied Euphonia||Sombre Hummingbird|
Serra dos Tucanos Lodge, Rio de Janeiro State