Dominican Republic Birding Tours
The Dominican Republic, together with the country of Haiti, is located on the island of Hispaniola, a place of great historical importance as the scene of one of the most significant events of humanity, when the Old World, represented by Christopher Columbus, met the New World in the 1492 discovery of the Americas. Today the Dominican Republic with 11 million people is the most-frequently-visited destination in the Caribbean.
The birdlife of this vacation paradise is blessed with an incredibly high level of endemism. Out of a country list of 319 bird species, 29 of the 30 species endemic to the island of Hispaniola can be found in the Dominican Republic! The country also holds a Hispaniola-endemic monotypic family, Dulidae, with Palmchat the only member, three of the four species in the Hispaniola-endemic family Phaenicophilidae, namely White-winged Warbler, Green-tailed Warbler, and Black-crowned Palm-Tanager (the fourth species, the scarce Grey-crowned Palm-Tanager, is restricted to Haiti), and the Critically Endangered (IUCN) Ridgway’s Hawk, also a Hispaniola-endemic species. In addition, an interesting and beautiful set of widespread Caribbean species adds to making the Dominican Republic a wonderful and relatively easy birding destination. On our nine-day tour we will visit all the country’s main nature reserves, including Los Haitises National Park, Sierra de Bahoruco, Lago Enriquillo, Laguna Rincon, Puerto Escondido, and the Alcoa Road.
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Our Dominican Republic birding tour will begin in Santo Domingo, the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the Americas, and from here we will explore the fantastic countryside of the country away from the hordes of beach visitors. Deep in the woods we will visit a good number of different habitats in search of Hispaniolan Trogon, Narrow-billed Tody, Broad-billed Tody, White-fronted Quail-Dove, Bay-breasted Cuckoo, Hispaniolan Amazon, Hispaniolan, Woodpecker, Hispaniolan Lizard Cuckoo, Rufous-throated Solitaire, Greater Antillean Bullfinch, La Selle Thrush, Antillean Siskin, Golden Swallow, Hispaniolan Palm Crow, Hispaniolan Parakeet, Hispaniolan Pewee, Antillean Piculet, Hispaniolan Crossbill, Hispaniolan Spindalis, and with some luck the rare Bicknell’s Thrush.
As always, we will give special attention to owls and other night birds, and the Dominican Republic is home to the endemics Ashy-faced Owl and Hispaniolan Nightjar and to Least Poorwill and Northern Potoo.
During our visit we will also encounter several North-American migrants such as Magnolia Warbler, Black-and-white Warbler, Palm Warbler, Black-throated Blue Warbler, American Redstart, Cape May Warbler, and Ovenbird. The blue coast of the Dominican Republic will yield coastal birds and aquatic species like Brown Pelican, Magnificent Frigatebird, Brown Booby, Royal Tern, and the beautiful White-tailed Tropicbird. Coastal lagoons and estuaries will provide, among others, Northern Shoveler, Blue-winged Teal, American Wigeon, American Flamingo, American White Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, Great, Reddish, and Snowy Egrets, Tricolored Heron, Western Osprey, American Coot, and Belted Kingfisher.
We invite you to peruse our comprehensive nine-day itinerary and join our local bird guides and Birding Ecotours leaders on a memorable tour to the Dominican Republic. This tour can easily be combined with our Jamaica and Cuba itineraries for a more complete Caribbean birding extravaganza.
Birding Ecotours can also tailor-make custom birding trips to target several species in the Lesser Antilles, organize special interest tours, or offer a special tour to Haiti to look for the endemic and sought-after Grey-crowned Palm-Chat if your goal is to see all the four Phaenicophilidae in the world.