Trip report: Custom Ecuador Photo Tour (April 2016) by Tropical Birding

Guided by Lisle Gwynn. This was a custom tour with a slightly different itinerary; in addition to the sites visited on the Ecuador Photo Journey, it also visited WildSumaco Lodge.

Ecuador is surely one of the best wildlife photography destinations on the planet. It offers endless excellent birds to photograph in a country that is now amply set-up for the travelling photographer. In almost every corner of the country there are plenty of lodges, ranches and reserves that offer feeders that attract stunning neotropical birds into perfect photographic range.

This tour was a private custom tour organised with the key aim being to photograph as many species of hummingbird as possible, to use multi-flash techniques to create beautiful freeze-motion images of these fast-moving birds, and to photograph any other wildlife that was available along the way. We succeeded wildly in this regard and far exceeded the group’s previous record for number of species photographed with a final tally of 58 species of hummingbird seen, the vast majority of which were photographed well. Along the way we also shot a wide variety of beautiful tanagers, honeycreepers, jays, woodpeckers, parrots and macaws, woodcreepers, flowerpiercers, redstarts and saltators, as well as the highlight of the tour – a Spectacled Bear. During this 10 day tour we covered both the west and east slopes of the Andes, visiting three superb lodges and multiple other locations, staying in excellent accommodation, enjoying great local food and enjoying this safe and accessible neotropical gem amid the towering Andes.

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