FEATURED PHOTO

Pale-billed Antpitta - Grallaria carrikeri
Pale-billed Antpitta
Grallaria carrikeri
San Lorenzo, Amazonas, Peru.
A rare and local bird restricted to high Andean temperate forest in northern Peru. Photographed with a Canon 5D Mark IV camera and a Canon 100-400mm f4-5.6 IS II lens, handheld, on 21 September 2019.You can find previous featured photos here.

Welcome to antpitta.com. I use this site to share my photographs of wild birds. I have uploaded over 5000 photos of more than 3400 bird species. Most photos are from the Neotropics, though I add photos from elsewhere around the world when I get the chance. I have been continually improving my gear and skills over the years. Many of the older shots are not the best quality, but I am always striving to improve them. Photos are hosted on my Flickr site, and a complete index of bird species is here.

Use one of the links below, or scroll down a little to see my blog and a selection of some recent favorites.

Neotropical Birds - explore by family
Complete Index - use this if you are looking for a particular species (it takes a few moments to load)
Other stuff from around the world - photos from areas outside of the Neotropics, including mammals and herps
See recently-added photos


Latest updates and blog:

26 November
: Here are a couple of shots from my recent trips to Southeast Brazil.

Brazilian Ruby
Brazilian Ruby


Brazilian Tanager
Brazilian Tanager


9 October: Pale-billed Antpitta was my 35th antpitta species photographed, so takes the headline spot for the time being. It could likely be habituated to come in to worms if a reserve was ever created to protect it. Hopefully some day it will be discovered in a more accessible location, since the trail up to the current spot is very tough and the forest up there is rapidly being cleared. The other endemic antpittas along the eastern Andean slopes in northern Peru are all coming into worms now in two different reserves. Chestnut Antpitta and Ochre-fronted Antpitta used to be a lot harder to see.

Chestnut Antpitta
Chestnut Antpitta

Ochre-fronted Antpitta
Ochre-fronted Antpitta


8 September
: I only had a few days between trips, so only managed to process some of the photos from my latest trip to Southeast Brazil. A couple of favorites are below, and at least at the moment the "recent uploads" album on my Flickr site has all of them.
Giant Antshrike
A male Giant Antshrike from Southeast Brazil. It is the largest member of the antbird family

Saffron Toucanet
Saffron Toucanet is amazingly common and approachable at Trilha dos Tucanos in Brazil.

19 August: Despite my lack of recent updates, I've been reprocessing quite a few older photos so they look better on high resolution screens. While doing that, I've been adding some "new" shots that I had overlooked or never gotten around to uploading, like the Black Curassow and Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher below. I've had only one short tour over the last couple months, to northern Colombia, and a nesting Santa Marta Parakeet was perhaps the most interesting photo to come from that trip. I leave this morning for a photography tour in Southeast Brazil followed almost immediately by a birding trip to Northern Peru.

Black Curassow
Black Curassow from Guyana

Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher
Ruddy-tailed Flycatcher from western Ecuador

Santa Marta Parakeet
Santa Marta Parakeet from northern Colombia, nesting in the top of the palm stump


7 June
: I've been adding more photos from Jamaica this past week. I've made Jamaican Tody the headline photo this month, it's an amazingly cute bird. Here are some other favorites. Streamertail is a common hummingbird all over Jamaica, where it is called the Doctor Bird. It's also the national bird. Jamaican Woodpecker and Jamaican Spindalis are two more beautiful birds that are found almost everywhere on the island.

Streamertail
Streamertail


Jamaican Woodpecker
Jamaican Woodpecker


Jamaican Spindalis
Jamaican Spindalis


30 May
: I just spent a week in the small island nation of Jamaica. May is one of the rainiest months, but that also made it pleasantly cool and cloudy. Birding was easy and we saw all the endemic birds without much difficulty. Here's a shot of the endemic Crested Quail-Dove, which we frequently saw walking along quiet, forest-fringed roads.

Crested Quail-Dove
Crested Quail-Dove


22 May: Even though I haven't been posting any updates lately, I have re-uploaded hundreds of photos at high resolution. It's a very slow process! I have also had good trips to Mexico and Taiwan over the last couple of months. I'm about to leave for a short trip to Jamaica, but thought I'd share a few shots from Taiwan before I go.

Swinhoe's Pheasant
Swinhoe's Pheasant is one of Taiwan's spectacular endemics


Gray-chinned Minivet
A male Gray-chinned Minivet


Vinous-throated Parrotbill
Vinous-throated Parrotbill from Taiwan

2 March: I've added the shots from my Colombia trip in February, and here are a few of my favorites:

Gold-ringed Tanager
Gold-ringed Tanager is a Colombian endemic and a very striking bird


Red-ruffed Fruitcrow
Red-ruffed Fruitcrow is amazingly common and approachable at the Otun Quimbaya sanctuary


Cauca Guan
The endemic Cauca Guan is also easy to see at Otun Quimbaya


Cloud-forest Pygmy-Owl
This Cloud-forest Pygmy-Owl perched right next to the road in Montezuma for about 20 minutes.


22 February
: Bicolored Antpitta is one of the harder antpittas to photograph at the Rio Blanco Reserve in Colombia. It does not come to the feeder every day (this was my fourth try counting two different visits) and there is very little light to work with. A full-frame camera and  some noise reduction in post processing helped a lot though, and I'm pretty happy with the result. That's antpitta number 34 for the site (or 35 if you count the "gnatpitta"). (Edit 24 Feb: In a remarkably short time, this shot has become my most viewed photo all time on Flickr with more than 15k. Totally unexpected, but I heartily approve since antpittas are awesome!)

Bicolored Antpitta
Bicolored Antpitta


31 January
: I haven't been adding anything new to this page, but I have been doing other work behind the scenes. In November I upgraded my screen to a high-end 4k screen designed for photographers. It was revelation! Everything looks sharper and vivid, and the level of detail is phenomenal. The downside to this is that all the old photos I had uploaded at only 800-1000 pixels wide just don't look very good anymore. But the future is clear, and soon almost everyone will have high-res screens. So I have started to slowly reprocess and reupload my photos at their maximum useable resolution. It's a huge undertaking, which I probably won't finish for years, but I've made a good start this month. While doing this, I found some shots that I had never previously uploaded, which can be seen at my photostream here. I'm leaving today for a three week trip to Colombia, so hopefully will have some new material to share when I get back.

30 December
: Happy holidays! I've just added a few more shots from Peru, including the nice Spotted Rail that is now the temporary "featured photo".

Amethyst Woodstar
A male Amethyst Woodstar feeding on Verbena flowers

Black-billed Seed-Finch
Black-billed Seed-Finch, a scarce and very local species

Black-bellied Tanager
Black-bellied Tanager is endemic to northern Peru

1 December: My last tour was in Taiwan, and it was a hybrid birding/photography tour ("birding with a camera"). I've finished loading all the shots onto my Flickr site, click here for the gallery. A few favorites are below:

White-whiskered Laughingthrush
White-whiskered Laughingthrush is a Taiwanese endemic found at high elevations


Steere's Liocicha
Steere's Liocichla, endemic to mid-elevation forests of Taiwan


Taiwan Fulvetta
Another endemic, Taiwan Fulvetta


17 November
: I've had a lot of tours lately without much time between them, so have a lot to catch up with. Here are a few shots from an Ecuador tour November (and I've changed the featured photo to a Long-wattled Umbrellabird from that trip).


Rufous-capped Thornbill
A Rufous-capped Thornbill spreads its wings in temperate cloudforest in Southern Ecuador


Golden-crowned Tanager
Golden-crowned Tanager is a spectacular inhabitant of temperate cloudforest in the Andes.



3 October
: I have a short amount of time between trips, and have been uploading shots from Peru, including the Yellow-faced Parrotlet in flight that will be the featured photo for a while. Before my tour, I finally visited the remote Flor de Cafe (better known as Plataforma) in northern Peru to see the famed Scarlet-banded Barbet and the newly-described Cordillera Azul Antbird. My photos of them are rather mediocre, but I was very happy to at least see them. The antbird was especially difficult as several former territories have been deforested, and it was also very dry during my visit, which I think may have cause them to vocalize and respond less than normal. I finally found a pair of the antbirds with the help of a local guide named Eugenio who had found some new territories for them.

Cordillera Azul Antbird
Cordillera Azul Antbird

Scarlet-banded Barbet
Scarlet-banded Barbet


21 August
: I finally finished moving all my photos over to Flickr, and have updated all the links and indices. I reprocessed some of them while doing that, making them larger and removing watermarks. Many more also deserve this treatment, but it is a lot of work and I probably only will do it for the best/most interesting shots. I've also caught up on uploading all my recent shots as well as a bunch of shots from the US that I had never gotten around to posting. A put a selection of them below.

Black-bellied Antwren
Black-bellied Antwren from a recent trip to the Pantanal in Brazil

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
Scissor-tailed Flycatchers were very common during the few days I had in High Island, Texas in April.

Red-handed Howler
These Red-handed Howlers seemed surprised to see us! From Cristalino Jungle Lodge in Brazil

Jaguar rolling around on the beach
I had one of the best Jaguar sightings I've ever had in the Pantanal.

American Pygmy Kingfisher
We got very close to an American Pygmy Kingfisher from a boat in the Pantanal



31 July
: I had a great trip in Brazil visiting the northern Pantanal and Cristalino Jungle Lodge. We also had a bit of time in Chapada dos Guimarães, where I got what was perhaps my favorite bird photo of the trip. We came across an antswarm at the side of the road in gallery forest where there were at least 20 White-backed Fire-eyes actively feeding completely in the open. It was a remarkable concentration of these birds, which I normally just encounter in pairs that are often shy and hard to see.
White-backed Fire-eye
White-backed Fire-eye


10 July
: My recent travels have taken me to more northerly climes, including Belarus and Alaska. Alaska in June is stunning, and I am glad I finally made it there. It probably won't be the last time! I've just finished adding the best photos to my Flickr account (here). Along with the Spectacled Eider at the top, here are a few other favorites:

Willow Ptarmigan
Willow Ptarmigan

Pacific Loon
Pacific Loon

Sabine's Gull
Sabine's Gull

Semipalmated Sandpiper
Semipalmated Sandpiper


23 May
: I am changing the way I license photos for non-commercial use. I am making all my photos available under the generic Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license. Click here and scroll to the bottom for further info. I am also going to stop watermarking images in the future.

8 May
: After a short trip to Texas, I've had time to finish uploading my shots from Suriname. While the Spotted Antpitta may have been my favorite bird, I think my favorite shot is a Painted Tody-Flycatcher, which I just added as the Featured Photo. Some of the other decent shots are below:

Guianan Warbling-Antbird
Guianan Warbling-Antbird at Fredberg, which is a forest reserve with a simple eco-lodge; birding in this area was superb!

Cinereous Becard
A male Cinereous Becard on the outskirts of Suriname's capital, Paramaribo.

Arrowhead Piculet
Arrowhead Piculet is Suriname's sole endemic bird; it is easy to find around Paramaribo.

Blackish Antbird
The nominate race of Blackish Antbird is perhaps deserving of a split - it is a Suriname specialty.

Rufous Crab Hawk
Rufous Crab Hawk is a species of coastal mangroves in northern and eastern South America.

Blood-colored Woodpecker
Only two bird species are endemic to the Guianas, and both are woodpeckers - this one is Blood-colored Woodpecker.

22 April: I'm starting to upload shots from Suriname from a few weeks ago, click here for more recent shots. Here are a few noteworthy ones. Pale-bellied Mourner is not a particularly beautiful species, but it is very hard to find and it was a lifer for me. It is not frequently photographed. It was in a savanna area on white sand soil near the village of Powaka (sometimes spelled Powakka). Gray-winged Trumpeters (and trumpeters in general) are usually shy, hard to see, and even harder to photograph. Many birders who are trying to see all the world's families find trumpeters to be one of the hardest to get, despite their huge range. You can't just go to a stakeout and play a call and have one fly in. You usually have to spend a huge amount of time in the rainforest hoping to get lucky. Well, I finally visited a place where I think trumpeters are just about guaranteed, Brownsberg Nature Park in Suriname. The trumpeters here, for whatever reason, seem to have lost almost all fear of humans, and you can get very close to them! Sometimes they even wander through the park HQ clearing... and yes, they are wild birds. Brownsberg was my favorite place in Suriname. The forest was pristine and absolutely beautiful. It's up on an escarpment at 500 m., so it is not quite as hot as the other places I visited in the country. There is accommodation on site, which was somewhat basic but totally fine for me, an on-site restaurant, and even communal kitchens if you wanted to bring your own food. I saw some really great birds there including Red-and-black Grosbeak and White-fronted Manakin.  I heard a White-throated Pewee, but it was way down a steep slope. If I had been alone, I may have gone after it, but I was leading a group so I really couldn't chase it.

Pale-bellied Mourner
Pale-bellied Mourner

Gray-winged Trumpeter
Gray-winged Trumpeter

White-fronted Manakin
White-fronted Manakin
Red-and-black Grosbeak
Red-and-black Grosbeak

17 April: I've finished adding 32 new photos from my short trip to Trinidad. Here are a few of my favorites:

White-necked Jacobin
White-necked Jacobin enjoying a sudden morning rainstorm


Blue-chinned Sapphire
Blue-chinned Sapphire feeding in Verbena at Asa Wright.


Barred Antshrike
This Barred Antshrike seemed almost tame, allowing close approach.


9 April: After a few days in Trinidad and two weeks in Suriname, I am now back home (a day late thanks to American Airlines). Trinidad was nice, but the birding in Suriname was terrific. The accomodation and food not so much, but the place has tons of potential and it was a memorable trip. I have lots of photos to post, but I have started by replacing the headline photo with a Spotted Antpitta. It was perhaps my favorite bird I saw there (even though not a lifer), and my 33rd antpitta species photographed. I saw it with the tour group two days before, but wasn't able to get a shot. Then, during a mid-day "siesta" during the heat of the day, I chased after it in earnest. It took me 45 minutes, and the bird led me well off the trail into the rainforest, but the hunt was successful in the end, and it was truly exhilarating to nail a photo of such a difficult bird. Normally I am very reluctant to go far off trail in remote rainforest like this, but there was a huge student group that was staying at the lodge while we were there, and they were so loud that it was easy to use them as a navigation aid!

20 March
: One last batch from Guyana before I leave for my next trip. It was especially nice to finally get a decent shot of Collared Puffbird. It's one of my favorite puffbirds, but I don't encounter it very often. Guianan Streaked-Antwren also posed nicely for the camera. All my posted shots are currently at the top of my photostream.


Guianan Streaked-Antwren
Collared Puffbird

Guianan Streaked-Antwren
Guianan Streaked-Antwren


18 March
: More shots from Guyana today, including the featured photo of Guianan Cock-of-the-rock. Golden-collared Woodepcker and Guianan Toucanet are specialties of the Guianan region. Blue-backed Manakin is more widespread, but this is the best shot I've gotten of one so far.


Golden-collared Woodpecker
Golden-collared Woodpecker

Guianan Toucanet
Guianan Toucanet

Blue-backed Manakin
Blue-backed Manakin


2 March
: I spent most of February in Guyana, the first time I had been there since 2006. It was a really nice trip with great birding and a fun group. We saw most of our targets, and I even got a few lifers. It was a birding trip, not a photo trip, so I only brought my 100-400mm lens this time, but I still managed to get some nice shots. Here are a couple of them, but I still have a bunch more to go through. Sun Parakeet was probably my favorite bird of the trip. This beautiful species is restricted to northern Brazil and adjacent Guyana. It is seriously endangered, apparently largely due to trapping for the cage bird trade; BirdLife International estimates the total population to be 1000-2499, and in decline. There is a small population near Karasabai in Guyana, which has become known as one of the most reliable places to see it. We found them very quickly at a known stakeout. Spotted Puffbird was surprisingly common at Karanambu Lodge, and we saw several at very close range.


Sun Parakeet
Sun Parakeet

Spotted Puffbird
Spotted Puffbird

9 February: One last quick update before I leave today on a trip to Guyana. I added my last new shots from Ecuador last year in the form of Spangled Coquette and Gray Tinamou, both of them from Copalinga Lodge. I've also started adding some mammals shots, though there are more buried away in my archives that I will have to dig out at some point.


Spangled Coquette
Spangled Coquette

Gray Tinamou
Gray Tinamou


25 January
: Continuing a theme, White-throated Screech-Owl was one of my favorite shots on an Ecuador trip back in November. I'd tried many times to photograph one previously with no luck. It's larger than most other screech-owls reaching up to 27 cm/11 in.

White-throated Screech-Owl
White-throated Screech-Owl, Tapichalaca Reserve, Ecuador.

White-throated Screech-Owl
White-throated Screech-Owl, Tapichalaca Reserve, Ecuador.


23 January
: It seems a bit crazy it took me so long to see one of these, but I have spent most of my birding life in tropical climes... I drove up into Pennsylvania on Saturday to see it and luckily it was easy to find.

Snowy Owl
A female Snowy Owl near Fleetwood, Pennsylvania, USA.


19 January
: A couple of shots from the upper reaches of Itatiaia National Park in Southeast Brazil: the endemic Green-crowned Plovercrest and very scarce and local Black-capped Piprites.

Green-crowned Plovercrest
Green-crowned Plovercrest

Black-capped Piprites
Black-capped Piprites

17 January: I couldn't believe it when this Rufous-tailed Antthrush crossed a road right in front of us on my last Brazil trip. Normally (along with every other antthrush), it is usually very shy and pretty much never comes out in the open.

Rufous-tailed Antthrush
Rufous-tailed Antthrush

16 January: Bay-chested Warbling-Finch is endemic to the highlands of southeastern Brazil. Recent genetic studies showed that this species was not closely related to other warbling-finches, and a genus was erected for it, Castanozoster.

Bay-chested Warbling-Finch
Bay-chested Warbling-Finch.

14 January
: Some from Southeast Brazil today; I changed the "featured photo" to a nice shot of Eye-ringed Tody-Tyrant, and added improved shots of a number of species like Purple-crowned Plovercrest, Violaceous Euphonia, and Pileated Parrot.
Purple-crowned Plovercrest
Purple-crowned Plovercrest from Intervales State Park.

Violaceous Euphonia
A male Violaceous Euphonia near Jonas's feeders in Folha Seca.

Pileated Parrot
Pileated Parrots were feeding in a fruiting tree near our lodge in Intervales State Park.

8 January: Here are a few more shots from Cristalino Lodge in Brazil, including two species I had never photographed before.


Paradise Jacamar
A Paradise Jacamar catching an insect along the Cristalino River.

Cryptic Forest-Falcon
Cryptic Forest-Falcon is very hard to track down; this is the first one I have ever photographed.

Black-collared Swallow
Black-collared Swallow is a highly localized species, found only found along fast-flowing rivers. They may be seasonal at Cristalino.


4 January
: I saw tapir calf for the first time during my Brazil trip back in September. I alerady thought tapirs were incredibly cool animals, but the young one truly blew my mind!

Brazilian Tapir
Brazilian Tapir with a calf along the Cristalino River



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