A JOURNEY INTO MY
PHOTOGRAPHY LIFE

Birds of Colombia

I always thought that Costa Rica was the place for bird photography, but oh boy, how wrong I was!
I always thought that Costa Rica was the place for bird photography, but oh boy, how wrong I was!

Colombia is 22 times bigger than Costa Rica and is the country with the highest number of bird species in the world, with more than 1900 native and migratory species! This is because Colombia is the only country that combines the Pacific, the Andes, the Amazon, the Llanos (Savanna) and the Caribbean.

Tinamú Birding Nature Reserve

This year we stayed in Tinamú Birding Nature Reserve in the Department of Caldas. Caldas has about 50% of the bird population of Colombia, thanks to the different ecosystems and climatic zones between 170 and 5.400 meters above sea level. Tinamú has 262 species! While in Caldas we visited “Río Blanco Reserva Natural” with over 350 bird species! We also went to “Nevado del Ruiz” to see the Oxypogon or buffy bearded helmetcrest at 4138 meters above sea level, but unfortunately and due to the wrong weather conditions we were not able to spot it or even hear it. On our way down we stopped at the hot springs “Termales del Ruiz” where we were able to see 10 species of hummingbirds that visit the feeders set up in the main garden. Many thanks to Fernando Galvis and Daniel F López Martínez (the bird guides).

La Manigua Lodge

The second part of our vacation was at La Manigua Lodge in the Department of Meta, built inside the tropical forest of La Serranía de la Macarena by the Guayabero river. I was expecting to see a lot of water birds, and I was not disappointed. Juan Pablo Bueno, the lodge owner, told me that I was the first bird photographer visiting his lodge, maybe because the same bird species found in the area can be seen in other parts of Colombia. We spent 2 full days in a canoe searching for wildlife, one day in Rio Guayabero and one day in Rio Losada. Many thanks to Rigo Albeiro Cifuentes (the bird guide) and Nelson (the excellent canoeist).

The following video was released at the launch of this website in 2019.

Please check this blog in the future! More photos will be added…

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Character, like a photograph, develops in darkness.

Yousuf Karsh