Birding Tour Brazil: Comprehensive Southeast Brazil, Part II October 2019

Tour Details

Duration: 14 days
Group Size: 2 – 8
Date Start: October 02, 2019
Date End: October 15, 2019
Tour Start: Vitória
Tour End: São Paulo

Tour Costs

Price: US$7,343 / £6,110 / €6,782 per person sharing

Single Supplement: US$854 / £711 / €789

* Please note that currency conversion is calculated in real-time, therefore is subject to slight change. Please refer back to the base price when making final payments.

Price includes:
Guiding fees
Entrance fees
All transport while on tour

Price excludes:
International flights
Domestic flight Rio do Janeiro – Vitória for guest having been on Part I of this tour (Please contact us before booking flights. We can help book those for you, and we also need all participants to be on the same flight.)
Items of a personal nature, e.g. gifts
Alcoholic drinks
Personal insurance

Comprehensive Southeast Brazil, Part II 2019

When they first landed on its shores in the 1500s, the Portuguese discovered a vast stretch of verdant rainforest cloaking much of the Atlantic coast of what would one day be Brazil. Through centuries of deforestation, only 7% of this forest’s original area remains in remnants scattered within the most densely populated region of Brazil. Despite the long history of human population growth and disturbance, these highly threatened pockets of Atlantic Rainforest harbor an incredibly diverse and often highly endangered collection of bird species. Due to being long isolated from neighboring Neotropical wet forest ecosystems by a dry grassland and thorn-scrub corridor in the interior of Brazil, these forests possess a diverse and fascinating range of species, many of which are found nowhere else. In a country with more than 200 endemic bird species (the third-highest total for a single country in the world), the vast majority are found in the Atlantic Rainforest.

We split the southeast Brazil itinerary into two separate tours that are perfectly complementary, forming a 26-day mega tour with up to 70 Brazilian endemics and an additional 90 Atlantic Rainforest endemics possible when the tours are taken together.

Part II of the Comprehensive Southeast Brazil itinerary begins in Vitória in the state of Espírito Santo. From here we drive southwest to the town of Cachoeira de Itapemirim to target two difficult endemics: Plumbeous Antvireo and Wied’s Tyrant-Manakin. We then head north to the Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve near Linhares for a few days to see lowland endemics such as Red-billed CurassowRed-browed Amazon, and Black-headed Berryeater. On the last two mornings we also try for the difficult, Critically Endangered (IUCN), and very beautiful Cherry-throated Tanager at a reserve near Venda Nova do Imigrante. We then fly to São Paulo for the last leg of our journey.

We save the best for last! Intervales State Park is part of one of the largest remaining pieces of contiguous Atlantic Rainforest left in Brazil. Within this emerald paradise of deeply cut valleys, mossy forests, and trickling streams, we hope to have some of our best birding while we search for such delights as Russet-winged SpadebillBlack-fronted Piping Guan and Helmeted Woodpecker among a dizzying array of tyrant flycatchers, antbirds, furnariids, and tanagers. This species-rich site can potentially produce our highest day list totals of the tour. Finally, we go to the coastal town of Cananéia for a few more endemic species like Restinga Tyrannulet and Red-tailed Amazon, and for Azure Jay, before driving to São Paulo, where the tour ends.

This tour can be combined with our Brazil: Cerrado Endemics, Brazilian Merganser, and Maned Wolf tour and our Comprehensive Southeast Brazil, Part I tour for an extensive Brazil mega tour.


Itinerary (14 days/13 nights)

Day 1. Vitória to Cachoeiro de Itapemirim

After a short flight from Rio de Janeiro to Vitória, the state capital of Espírito Santo, for those clients having been with us on Part I of our Comprehensive Southeast Brazil tour, we continue to the town of Cachoeiro de Itapemirim for the night.

Overnight: Cachoeiro de Itapemirim

Day 2. Birding Cafundó Preserve, transfer to Venda Nova do Imigrante

Just a short drive from our hotel, our morning birding commences in the forests of Cafundó Private Preserve for two highly localized Brazilian endemics: Plumbeous Antvireo and Wied’s Tyrant-Manakin. More open and marshy areas nearby contain a different set of birds, including the spectacular Streamer-tailed Tyrant. After a sumptuous lunch at the fazenda(ranch), we drive north to the Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve near Linhares, stopping en route at the Augusto Ruschi estate in Santa Teresa to enjoy the famous (and very active) hummingbird feeders.

Overnight: Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve (Linhares)

Day 3 – 4. Birding at Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve

We spend the next few days birding the lowland Atlantic Rainforest of the Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve. An early morning start at this location is essential, as activity peaks early and declines rapidly in the heat of the day. Fortunately, our beautiful accommodations are just minutes away from the forest. Red-billed Curassow (endemic) and Solitary Tinamouregularly cross the road at first light, while a variety of parrots such as the endemic Red-browed AmazonWhite-eared Parakeet, and Ochre-marked Parakeet become active soon after. Black-headed Berryeater (endemic), East Brazilian Pygmy Owl, and White-necked Hawk (endemic) are among the more special birds of this site. If weather permits, we will do some night birding for nightjars such as Ocellated Poorwill and owls such as Tawny-browed Owl.

Overnight: Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve (Linhares)

Day 5. Linhares to Venda Nova do Imigrante

After driving from Linhares to Venda Nova do Imigrante (with a stop at the Andre Ruschi feeders for the endemic Minute Hermit), we will be in position for the beautiful and tantalizing Cherry-throated Tanager.

Overnight: Venda Nova do Imigrante

Day 6. Birding all day near Venda Nova do Imigrante

Perhaps the rarest species possible on this itinerary, the critically endangered Cherry-throated Tanager appears to persist in only a few fragments of foothill forest in Espírito Santo, despite intensive searches to find more populations. The known global population is only about a dozen birds. Boldly and distinctively marked in silver, black, white, and red, this tanager is a potential tour highlight due to its combination of rarity and beauty. It merits a special effort! While searching for this species we can observe a variety of other birds in mixed feeding flocks, such as Black-billed Scythebill and Sharpbill.

Overnight: Venda Nova do Imigrante

Day 7.Birding near Venda Nova do Imigrante, transfer to Intervales State Park

We spend an extra morning of birding in the foothill forest near Venda Nova do Imigrante, giving us another chance for the tanager if we missed it on the previous day, before driving back to Vitória to catch our flights to São Paulo. Once in São Paulo, our next destination is Intervales State Park (literally meaning ‘between the valleys’ due to the deeply cut ravines typical here) where we stay for the next four days. Our lodging here is literally at the doorstep of great birding!

Overnight: Intervales State Park

Day 8 – 11. Birding Intervales State Park

Birding from the extensive mountain roads and trail system, we search for Black-fronted Piping GuanMantled HawkHelmeted WoodpeckerSquamate Antbird (endemic), Rufous-capped Motmot, and Buff-bellied Puffbird, among others, for the next few days. Special targets such as the endemic Slaty Bristlefront (this local subspecies soon to be described as a distinct species from the nominate form), Variegated Antpitta, and Russet-winged Spadebill  inhabit the deeply forested gullies, while mixed feeding flocks of tanagers around the lodge can include beauties like Azure-shouldered TanagerBlack-legged Dacnis, and Chestnut-backed Tanager. Night birding is potentially productive. Rusty-barred Owl and Long-trained Nightjar are our main targets on the evening shift.

Overnight: Intervales State Park

Day 12.Birding Intervales State Park in the morning, transfer to Cananéia

After one more round of birding in the early morning we have to pull ourselves away from Intervales State Park in order to reach our next destination, the old coastal town of Cananéia.

Overnight: Cananéia

Day 13Birding Cananéia

The area around the resort town of Cananéia features a series of barrier islands with a low, dense forest growing on sandy soils called restinga (visually very different from the restinga around Praia Seca in Rio de Janeiro state). A unique set of Atlantic Rainforest endemics live in this highly endangered ecosystem, including Red-tailed AmazonRestinga Tyrannulet, and the near-endemic Azure Jay, all of which we target at this site.

Overnight: Cananéia

Day 14, Birding Cananéia in the morning, transfer to São Paulo

After some early morning birding around Cananéia for any misses from the previous day we drive back to São Paulo, where the tour ends.

Please note that the itinerary cannot be guaranteed as it is only a rough guide and can be changed (usually slightly) due to factors such as availability of accommodation, updated information on the state of accommodation, roads, or birding sites, the discretion of the guides and other factors.

Download Itinerary