Guided outings in Tipiliuke & National Parks in Northern Patagonia
The Patagonian Lake District in which Tipiliuke is located is comprised of several distinct habitats, providing a home for a wide variety of bird species.
In the east, the steppe provides a semi-arid habitat with shrubs and bushes. Dry in the summer and cold and snowy during the winter, its vegetation is highly adapted to the semi-desert environment. Resident species of birds include the Lesser Rhea, locally known as “choike” (Pterocnemia pennata), Crested-Tinamou (Eudromia elegans), several raptors including the Black-chested Buzzard Eagle (Geranoaetus melanolaucus) and the Burrowing Parrot (Cyanoliseus patagonus).
The forests contain a variety of species of beech trees which dominate the slopes of the Andean mountains, which are similarly dry during the summer but receive heavy snows during the winter. Resident birds include the Magellanic Woodpecker (Campephilus magellanicus), Southern Pigeon (Columba araucana), Southern Fire-crown (Sephanoides sephanoides), ground-dwelling birds known as tapaculos belonging to the Rhinocryptidae family, the White-crested Elaenia (Elaenia albiceps) and the Austral Parakeet (Enicognathus ferrugineus).
There are also various aquatic areas, covering lakes, ponds, rivers or springs and wetlands. These provide hotspots for spotting birdlife, including many species of ducks, grebes, coots, swans, geese, cormorants and gulls. Some examples include the Black-necked Swan (Cygnus melanocoryphus), Ashy-headed Goose (Chloephaga poliocephala), Wren-like Rushbird (Phleocryptes melanops) and Yellow-winged Blackbird (Agelaius thilius).
We are lucky enough to have an excellent local birdwatching guide, Florencia Mancini. Florencia is a biologist and university lecturer, who lived in the United States and Ecuador as a child. Moving to our local town San Martín de los Andes in 1999, she is an active member of a local non-profit, non-governmental conservation organization (Asociación Conservación Patagónica). Florencia has worked for several environmental education programs, including leading birdwatching expeditions with schools.
We can arrange birdwatching trips with Florencia both within the estancia and further afield, in the neighbouring national parks.
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