blue-necked tanager bird on bird photography tours
bird photography tours

Bird Photography Tours in Ecuador

On a recent trip to Ecuador we had a couple of scheduled bird photography tours out of Mindo. We were in the back roads of Mindo beyond the Nambillo falls and river when we found this beauty. A Blue-necked Tanager. Being a huge fan of Tanagers, it was actually one of the birds we were searching for. It was not the most spectacular photo but instead of looking at this bird through a lens, we spent time observing and admiring its behavior and beauty.Sometimes we get so caught up with photography that we forget to really enjoy what is right in front of us. I know a lot of bird photographers who have seen most species through the lens of their camera rather than with the naked eye.

Other Species in Mindo

In addition to the Blue-necked Tanager, some other notable species worth mentioning and totally worth the effort with it comes to bird photography are the Flamed-faced Tanager, Golden-hooded Tanager, Scarlet-bellied Tanager, Scarlet Tanager, Rufous-throated Tanager, Golden Tanager, Blue-winged Mountain Tanager and many others. I can go on and on. Mindo has some great areas which are easy and facilitate bird photography. Areas, like Rio Silanche with its tower is excellent. Lodges such as Sachatamia is also excellent. Here they have various Tanagers coming to the feeders daily. Among Tanagers you will find different species of birds a few feet away. I have seen Toucan Barbets sitting 5 meters away.

My Personal Favourite

Of all the Tanagers around, one of my personal favorite is the Paradise Tanager. To view and photograph this bird you need to go to the Amazon. The Paradise Tanager is simply spectacular. They are found feeding on the fruits high up in the deep Amazon. You should be able to see them in most areas in the Amazon and in most Amazon lodges. Areas such as in Shiripuno are good place. There is a mirador where these birds come to feed a short distance away from you. If you are ever in the Shiripuno lodge, ask for a tour to the “Mirador”. The only challenge is that these birds are very skittish. They flit around more than the average and photography is a challenge. However, if you have the patience and on a bird photography tour this should definitely be on your list.