Birder's Guide

OCT 2017

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

Issue link: http://bg.aba.org/i/880901

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Amazonian Big Day 14 Birder's Guide to Listing & Taxonomy | October 2017 guaranteed sign of a nest. I got on the bird with my binoculars—a male Madeira Antwren (then known as Stipple-throated Antwren)—and easily found the roofed, cup-shaped nest with two magenta-spot - ted white eggs 30 cm (about a foot) from the ground. The nest of this species was previously unknown to science (Williams 2016). The following day, I returned to formally describe the nest and record breeding behavior; there is no time for such frivolities on a Big Day. At last, I arrived at Cocha Raya, my fi- nal destination in daylight. I perched high on a cliff that viewed miles of canopy bro- ken by a grassy marsh mixed with bushes in the foreground. Many key marsh and scrub specialists were in full song, such as the Gray-breasted Crake, Little Cuckoo, Plain-crowned Spinetail, Black-billed Seed-Finch, and Solitary Black Cacique. A pair of regal Horned Screamers occu - pied their nest, and dozens of tanagers, including Turquoise, Paradise, and Opal- crowned, chipped and streamed through the trees overhead. With the sun at my back, I scanned the skies for distant flying species as they headed into their roosts, which including a Black Caracara, a high- flying Giant Cowbird, and two Crested Oropendolas, each converted into a saf - fron hue by the low sun. After an uneventful walk back to the BACKGROUND: n The overlook by the front cabins of the station offers spectacular scenes above the Río Madre de Dios. Sometimes you can even see snow atop Andean mountain peaks over 100 miles away. Photo © Sean Williams BELOW: n Scissor-tailed Nightjar is a poorly known austral migrant to southern Peru, so I was thrilled to find this individual on 2 June 2015. A month and a half later, the bird could be found in the same exact spot on the trail. Photo © Sean Williams BACKGROUND: n The overlook by the front cabins of the station offers spectacular scenes above the Río Madre de Dios. Sometimes you can even see snow atop Andean mountain peaks over 100 miles away. Photo © Sean Williams BELOW: n Scissor-tailed Nightjar is a poorly known austral migrant to southern Peru, so I was thrilled to find this individual on 2 June 2015. A month and a half later, the bird could be found in the same exact spot on the trail. Photo © Sean Williams

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