Guided by Nick Athanas.
Tour summary with bird and mammal lists
2012 was a good year for Harpy Eagles in Brazil. Two pairs successfully nested in easily accessible spots near well known lodges. One of those nests, in the Serra das Araras, was only a few hours from the Pantanal, so easily combined with that famous wildlife destination.
This custom tour was put together with exactly those two things in mind. We spend six days in the Pantanal before heading up to see the Harpy Eagles, then wrapped up the trip in the scenic (and thankfully slightly cooler!) Chapada dos Guimarães, where we added a number of very neat birds of the scrubby cerrado habitat. We had a fun group of eight friends from Maryland and Washington DC, two of whom had never been to South America before. Maybe they got a bit spoiled with two Harpy Eagles (including an adult right next to the bus), half of the continent’s macaws, some of the best woodpeckers around, ridiculously easy Sunbitterns, huge numbers of waterbirds in the Pantanal, and tons of other neat birds like Red-legged Seriema, Bare-faced Curassow, White-eared Puffbird, Toco Toucan, Great Rufous Woodcreeper, Rufous-winged Antshrike, Helmeted Manakin, White-rumped Tanager, and Scarlet-headed Blackbird.