Mike’s Monday Pics – Some Cold, I Mean Chile, Birds

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Today I would like to share some pictures of birds we saw during our first stay in Chile during our “Birds and Wines of Chile and Argentina” bird trip in February, 2024 (a Field Guides offering).  As you might recall we started our trip in Chile, then after three days we drove over the Andes Mountains into Argentina. Eight days later we flew back to Chile where we spent our last three days on the Pacific coast.

If you would like to see a map of the places we visited and the species we saw during this time in Chile CLICK HERE to go to my eBird Trip Report (a very easy way to summarize any birding trip with multiple checklists).

We arrived in Santiago a day before the trip began and walked around the city, including the Parque Bicentenario de Vitacura.  Always on the lookout for birds, we spotted several of the most common birds that day – species we would see many times during our stay.

One of the first birds we heard after walking out of our hotel was a Monk Parakeet.  We flew 5,300 miles to see a species we can find four miles from our house (nesting in an electrical sub-station).  The Monk Parakeet is considered an introduced species in the U.S. and in Santiago so we really didn’t get to count it as a lifer until we saw them in Argentina.  They were right in downtown Santiago squawking and rushing from tree to tree foraging for food.


As we went through Parque Bicentenario (Bicentennial Park) we couldn’t help but notice the similarities between the Austral Thrush and our American Robin (also a thrush).


We also observed several Black-winged Ground Doves in the park.  These were perhaps the most common birds we saw during our trip, both in Chile and Argentina.


Another very common bird was the Rufous-collared Sparrow.  It seemed like one found us every stop we made.  Not a shy bird, it often posed for us quite near the trail.


Our last “common” bird of our trip today was the White-crowned Elanea.  A rather plain brown bird – until you caught its bright white feathers atop its head.  A stunner!


More birds (and wines) of Chile and Argentina to come!


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