Santiago to Chiloe Island - February 2019

Published by Albatross Birding & Nature Tours In Chile (contact AT



This is the trip report for the passengers Butch and Susan Carter from the United States. The tour took place in central and Southern Chile birding in all possible sites according to the schedule designed and specially looking for target birds Mr. Carter was particularly interested to see along the area described. Mr. Carter is an enthusiast birder, whereas Mrs. Carter likes to join him along, and in many occasions waited in the car or hotel while birding.

We finally observed 154 species, including several of the species Mr. Carter had in his list. Some of the highlights in this trip were: Diademed Sandpiper-Plover, day views of Rufous-legged Owl, Southern and Northern Royal Albatross.


Day 1. February 7th Birding at Farellones and Valle Nevado.

On our first day we met at Orly hotel and after some struggle, because of traffic, we drove up Farellones to look for Andean endemics. We manage to see Moustached Turca, White- throated Tapaculo and at least heard Dusky Tapaculo. Other birds like Dusky-tailed Canastero. Chilean Mockingbird, amazing views of Andean Condor and even a Magellanic horned owl vocalizing in the trees. Further up saw Creamy-rumped Miner and most of the other birds from the high Andes. Drove back to Santiago

Day 2. February 8th Full day on the coast

We left Santiago early in the morning to reach Algarrobo on the first lights. Susan stood at Santiago. At the reed beds in Algarrobo we had great views of at least three Striped-backed Bittern, other birds like Spot-flanked Gallinule. We drove up the valley to find Striped Woodpecker, Dusky Tapaculo. After this we drove to the Maipo Rover Mouth where we missed to find Tickling Doradto but had great chances of other birds including Black Skimmer, Many colored Rush Tyrant, etc.

After Maipo we drove to Valparaiso, went for some delicious Peruvian food for dinner.

Day 3. February 9th Pelagic trip and coastal birding

As scheduled, we left early towards the port to meet with the other participants of the pelagic. We found most of the Humboldt Current birds including both Northern and Southern Royal, Salvin’s Albatross, Buller’s Shearwater,

After Pelagic we drove back to Santiago stopping at La Cadellada plant to look for Black-headed Duck. Back to Santiago to meet Susan.

Day 4. February 10th El Yeso and the high Andes

Being a Sunday, this day we drove very early to El Yeso in order to avoid traffic. We found Crag Chilia, Diademed Sandpiper-Plover, Thick-billed Siskin, some of the Ground Tyrants we were missing. Susan stood at the hotel and walked around town. Drove back to Santiago by mid-afternoon.

Day 5. February 11th Lake Colbun and Vilches

We left Santiago heading south, stop at Chimbarobgo to buy handicraft and visited the main square to look for Screaming Cowbird with no success. After that mostly driving directly to arrive early to the Colbun Lake area where we saw Des Mur’s Wiretail, Rosy-billed Pochard, Upland geese, Andean Gull, Burrowing Parrot. Drove up to Lircay and got to see Chucao tapaculo and some other birds of the forest. Overnight at Hosteria Vilches.

Day 6. February 12th Altos del Lircay National Park

Next day went to Altos de Lircay, this time to the trails were we had great day views of Rufous-legged Owl and Magellanic Woodpecker, Patagonian Tyrant. In the afternoon we drove down to the Colbun Lake again to look for Chilean Tinamou (which we heard but didn’t see) and had great views of the Parrakeets again.

Day 7. February 13th Cerro Ñielol and Temuco

After breakfast left Vilches heading down to Temuco. This was a driving day mostly. Drove around the outskirt of Ñielol and got distant views of Rufous-tailed Hawk. Gave a try to Huet Huets and Chucaos with no luck. Overnight at Temuco.

Day 8. February 14th Full Day Araucaria Forest

This morning we visited the Cerro Ñielol where we had great views of Black-throated Huet Huet. Later in the day we drove up towards the Andes to see Araucaria Forest and found a Sharp-billed Canastero which was Mr. Carter.

Day 9. February 15th Birding in Nothofagus Forest

This day we departed from Temuco heading towards Puerto Montt. Long drive but upon arrival we look for Snowy-crowned Tern at Caicaen near Calbuco where we failed to find it but got to see other species like Flightless Steamer Duck and flocks of Brown-Hooded Gulls. We did also visit Pelluco near Puerto Montt.

Day 10. February 16th Birding in Chiloe Island

This day we took the ferry to Chiloe birding the Pagua area. Took the ferry across the Chacao channel. Checked the little village of Chacao at the market we had some large numbers of Back necked Swans, Hudsonian Whimbrel. Later visited the little bay of Caulin to find a large flock of Godwit mixed in with Red Knots. Drove back to catch the ferry again where we saw Ringed Kingfisher. We visited Maullin, where we had lunch still looking for Snowy-crowned Tern. Return early enough to take you to your new lodge and after that we drove to the airport for you to rent a car.

Species Lists

BIRD LIST (154 species)

Taxonomic order and notes follow South American Classification Committee

Detailed checklists available on eBird


Family Anatidae [Swans, Geese and Ducks]
Black-necked Swan Cygnus melancoryphus
Coscoroba Swan Coscoroba coscoroba
Upland Goose Chloephaga picta
Flightless Steamer Duck Tachyeres pteneres
Crested Duck Lophonetta specularioides
Chiloe Wigeon Anas sibilatrix
Yellow-billed Teal Anas flavirostris
Yellow-billed Pintail Anas georgica
Rosy-billed Pochard Netta peposaca
Black-headed Duck Heteronetta atricapilla
Red Shoveler Anas platalea
Lake Duck Oxyura vittata


Family Odontophoridae [New World Quail]
California Quail Calipepla californica


Family Podicipedidae [Grebes]
White-tufted Grebe Rollandia rolland
Pied-billed Grebe Podilymbus podiceps
Great Grebe Podiceps major
Silvery Grebe Podiceps occipitalis


Family Columbidae [Pigeons]
Rock Pigeon Columba livia
Chilan Pigeon Patagioenas araucana
Eared Dove Zenaida auriculata
Picui Ground Dove Columbina picui
Black-winged Ground Dove Metriopelia melanoptera


Family Trochilidae [Hummingbirds]
Green-backed Firecrown Sephanoides sephaniodes
White-sided Hillstar Oreotrochilus leucopleurus
Giant Hummingbird Patagona gigas


Family Rallidae [Rails and Coots]
Plumbeous Rail Pardirallus sanguinolentus
Spot-flanked Gallinule Porphyriops melanops
Red-fronted Coot Fulica rufifrons
Red-gartered Coot Fulica armillata
White-winged Coot Fulica leucoptera


Family Recurvirostridae [Avocets and stilts]
White-backed Stilt Himantopus mexicanus melanurus

Family Haematopodidae [Oystercatchers]
American Oystercatcher Haematopus palliatus

Family Charadriidae [Lapwings and Plovers]
Southern Lapwing Vanellus chilensis
Diademed Sandpiper Plover Phegornis mitchellii

Family Thinocoridae [Seedsnipes]
Gray-breasted Seedsnipe Thinocorus orbignyianus

Family Scolopacidae [Sandpipers]
Whimbrel Numenius phaeopus
Hudsonian Godwit Limosa haemastica
Red Knot Calidris canutus
Sanderling Calidris alba
Baird's Sandpiper Calidris bairdii
Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla
Greater Yellowlegs Tringa melanoleuca
Lesser Yellowlegs Tringa flavipes
Family Laridae [Gulls and Terns]
Andean Gull Chroicocephalus serranus
Brown-hooded Gull Chroicocephalus maculipennis
Dolphin Gull Leucophaeus scoresbii
Kelp Gull Larus dominicanus
Franklin’s Gull Leucophaeus pipixcan
Inca Tern Larosterna inca
Elegant Tern Thalasseus elegans
South American Tern Sterna hirundinacea

Family Rynchopidae [Skimmers]
Black Skimmer Rhynchops niger


Family Spheniscidae [Penguins]
Magellanic Penguin Spheniscus magellanicus


Family Diomedeidae [Albatrosses]
Southern Royal Albatross Diomedea epomophora epomophora
Northern Royal Albatross Diomedea epomophora sanfordi
Black-browed Albatross Thalassarche melanophris
Salvin’s Albatross Thalassarche salvini

Family Procellariidae [Petrels and Shearwaters]
Northern Giant Petrel Macronectes halli
Sooty Shearwater Puffinus griseus
Manx Shearwater Puffinus puffinus
Westland Petrel Procellaria westlandica
Buller’s Shearwater Ardenna bulleri
Sooty Shearwater Ardenna grisea
Pink-footed Shearwater Ardenna creatopus

Family Hydrobatidae [Storm-Petrels]
Wilson's Storm Petrel Oceanites oceanicus

Pelecanoididae [Diving Petrels]

Peruvian Diving Petrel Pelecaniodes garnotii 


Family Sulidae [Boobies]
Peruvian Booby Sula variegata

Family Phalacrocoracidae [Cormorants]
Red-legged Cormorant Phalacrocorax gaimardi
Neotropic Cormorant Phalacrocorax brasilianus
Guanay Cormorant Phalacrocorax boungainvillii
Imperial Cormorant Phalacrocorax atriceps


Family Pelecanidae [Pelicans]
Peruvian Pelican Pelecanus thagus

Family Ardeidae [Herons]
Stripe-backed Bittern Ixobrichus involucris
Black-crowned Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Great Egret Ardea alba
Cocoi Heron Ardea cocoi
Snowy Egret Egretta thula

Family Threskiornithidae [Ibises]
Black-faced Ibis Theristicus melanopis


Family Cathartidae [New World Vultures]
Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
Black Vulture Coragyps atratus
Andean Condor Vultur gryphus


Family Accipitridae [Hawks and Eagles]
White-tailed Kite Elanus leucurus
Cinereous Harrier Circus cinereus
Rufous-tailed Hawk Buteo ventralis
Variable Hawk Geranoaetus polyosoma
Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle Geranoaetus melanoleucus
Family Strigidae [Owls]
Magellanic Horned Owl Bubo magellanicus
Rufous-legged Owl Strix rufipes


Family Alcedinidae [Kingfishers]
Patagonian (Ringed) Kingfisher Megaceryle torquata stellata


Family Picidae [Woodpeckers]
Striped Woodpecker Dryobates lignarius
Magellanic Woodpecker Campephilus magellanicus
Chilan Flicker Colaptes pitius


Family Falconidae [Falcons]
Mountain Caracara Phalcoboenus megalopterus
Chimango Caracara Milvago chimango
American Kestrel Falco sparverius


Family Psittacidae [Parrots]
Austral Parakeet Enicognathus ferrugineus
Slender billed Parakeet Enicognathus leptorhynchus
Burrowing Parrakeet Cyanoliseus patagonus



Family Rhinocryptidae [Tapaculos]
Chestnut-throated Huet-huet Pteroptochos castaneus
Black-throated Huet huet Pteroptochos tarnii
Moustached Turca Pteroptochos megapodius
White-throated Tapaculo Scelorchilus albicollis
Chucao Tapaculo Scelorchilus rubecula
Ochre-flanked tapaculo Eugralla paradoxa
Magellanic Tapaculo Scytalopus magellanicus
Dusky Tapaculo Scytalopus fuscus

Family Furnariidae [Ovenbirds]
Rufous-banded Miner Geositta rufipennis
Creamy-rumped Miner Geositta isabellina
White-throated Treerunner Pygarrychas albogularis
Crag Chilia Ochetorhynchus melanurus
Scale-throated Earthcreeper Upucerthia dumetaria
Buff-winged Cinclodes Cinclodes fuscus
Gray-flanked Cinclodes Cinclodes oustaleti
Dark-bellied Cinclodes Cinclodes patagonicus
Thorn-tailed Rayadito Aphrastura spinicauda
De Mur’s Wiretail Sylviorthorhynchus desmursii
Plain-mantled Tit-Spinetail Leptasthenura aegithaloides
Sharp-billed Canastero Asthenes pyrrholeuca
Cordilleran Canastero Asthenes modesta
Dusky-tailed Canastero Pseuasthenes humicola

Family Cotingidae (Cotingas)
Rufous-tailed Plantcutter Phytotoma rara

Family Tyrannidae [Tyrant Flycatchers]
White-crested Elaenia Elaenia albiceps chilensis
Tufted Tit-Tyrant Anairetes parulus
Many-coloured Rush Tyrant Tachuris rubrigastra
Spectacled Tyrant Hymenops perspicillatus
Ochre-naped Ground-Tyrant Muscisaxicola flavinucha
Rufous-naped Ground-Tyrant Muscisaxicola rufivertex
Black-fronted Ground Tyrant Muscisaxicola frontalis
White-browed Ground-Tyrant Muscisaxicola albilora
Black-billed Shrike-tyrant Agriornis montanus
Fire-eyed Diucon Xolmis pyrope
Patagonian Tyrant Colorhamphus parvirostris


Family Hirundinidae [Swallows]
Blue-and-white Swallow Pygochelidon cyanoleuca
Chilean Swallow Tachycineta meyeni

Family Troglodytidae [Wrens]
House Wren Troglodytes aedon
Sedge Wren Cistothorus platensis
Family Mimidae [Mockingbirds]
Chilean Mockingbird Mimus thenca

Family Turdidae [Thrushes]
Austral Thrush Turdus falcklandii

Family Passeridae (Old World Sparrow)
House Sparrow Passer domesticus

Family Fringillidae [Finches]
Thick-billed Siskin Spinus crassirostris
Black-chinned Siskin Spinus barbatus
Yellow-rumped Siskin Spinus uropygialis

Family Emberizidae [Sparrows]
Rufous-collared Sparrow Zonotrichia capensis

Family Icteridae [New World Blackbirds]
Long-tailed Meadowlark Leystes loyca
Shiny Cowbird Molothrus bonaeriensis
Austral Blackbird Curaeus curaeus
Yellow-winged Blackbird Agelasticus thilius

Family Thraupidae [Tanagers]
Grey-hooded Sierra-finch Phrygilus gayi
Common Diuca-Finch Diuca diuca
Plumbeous Sierra-Finch Geospizopsis unicolor
Mourning Sierra-finch Rhopospina fruticeti
Greater Yellow-finch Sicalis auriventris
Grassland Yellow-finch Sicalis luteola