Day 1: Continue birding around Tortí (last full day of
After some morning birding with the full group, the trip
participants who did not decide to enjoy the Darién will be
driven to Panama City. Those on the extension will
continue birding around Tortí, improving their chances of
finding some of the interesting birds of this area.
Overnight in Tortí
Day 2: Torti to Yaviza
Today you will travel into Darién, a region that was once
much more difficult to visit. With the improvements to the
Pan-American Highway, it is easy to travel as far as the
town of Yaviza, where you will be lodging the next two
Before arriving in Yaviza, you will do some birding at the
Tierra Nueva Nature Reserve. This new preserve is a
non-profit, focused on environmental education,
conservation and sustainable development, with currently
over 1,600 acres of rainforest in the town of Canglon.
You could explore either the trails that go through the
reserve’s old-growth forest or explore the eastern border
of the property which leads to the Chucunaque River,
along the El Salto Road.
The exceptionally diverse bird list includes Slaty-backed
Forest-Falcon, Great Jacamar, Blue-and-gold Macaw,
Pale-bellied Hermit, Golden-green Woodpecker, Black
Antshrike, Black-billed Flycatcher (found only in Panama
and Colombia), White-headed Wren and White-eared
Once you reach Yaviza, still more great birding awaits.
Wetlands in this area can add Pied Water-Tyrant, Black-
collared Hawk, Black-capped Donacobius – and two
recent arrivals to Panama, Yellow-hooded Blackbird and
Overnight in Yaviza
Day 3: El Real - Darién National Park
Early today you will board a small motor boat which will
take you by river deeper into the Darién. Along the way
you may find numerous herons and egrets, White Ibis, as
well as “Mangrove” Black-Hawk, and with some luck even
the rare Black-collared Hawk. You may also spot some
Crab-eating Raccoons working the riverbanks. The
nearly-endemic Black Oropendola can also be seen here.
Later you will begin your trek through the Darién jungle
towards the old-growth primary forest. This forest
typically boasts towering emergent trees, huge lianas
swinging through the canopy, as well as a rich epiphytic
flora. This is one of the least-known parts of Panama.
Along the trail you can hope to find Rufous Piha, Red-
throated Caracara and Gray-cheeked Nunlet. With some
luck you can come across endangered game birds such
as Crested Guan and Great Curassow.
Following lunch, you will continue your exploration of the
primary forest in search of Stripe-throated Wren, Green
Manakin, etc. However, the real highlight would be to find
the National Bird of the Republic of Panama: the Harpy
Eagle. Standing three feet tall and with up to a seven foot
wingspan, it is the strongest bird of prey in the world!
Overnight in Yaviza
Day 4: Tierra Nueva Reserve to Tortí
This morning you will once again explore the rainforest
around the Tierra Nueva foundation land. You will keep
your eyes open for specialties like Red-billed Scythebill,
Rufous-winged Antwren, as well as for colorful birds that
should be hard to miss like Blue Cotinga. You may also
find some treats such as Spot-breasted Woodpecker,
Orange-crowned Oriole, Barred Puffbird, and the nearly
endemic Double-banded Graytail.
After birding has slowed down, you will spend the
afternoon driving back to Tortí.
Overnight in Tortí
Day 5: Morning Birding at San Francisco or Lake
Bayano for missed species
Where you go this morning will depend on what species
are missing from your target list. You may return to San
Francisco or check out spots in the Lake Bayano area.
Late in the afternoon, you will return to Panama City and
settle down at your hotel.
Day 6: Departure
If your departing flight leaves late enough, you can enjoy
morning birding around the grounds of the hotel. Check-
out time at the Riande Aeropuerto Hotel is 12:00 noon.
The hotel offers complimentary shuttle service to the
|4 More Days Birding in Darien
|For More Information or to Register for this Trip, call
Charles at 888-203-7464 or directly at 720-320-1974
or by email at info@PIBird.com.