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Birdspotting

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Bird Watching
Suriname is one of the least travelled countries in the world, perched on the continent’s north eastern shoulder between Guyana and French Guiana, and arguably the most beguiling small nation state in the entire Americas with a vast array of avian life. The trip offers an overview of the potential for hosting bird watching tours into the Amazonian basin of southern Suriname in three main centers of operation, using rustic accommodation in stunning river and rainforest settings alongside indigenous tribal people.

RALEIGH FALLS AND VOLTZBERG
Part of the Central Suriname Nature Reserve and can be reached by airplane to the South-west of the country in less than 1 hour or 5 hours by bus over land through the Hannover savannah. We depart from Witagron on the Coppename river, upstream, by dug-out canoe with outboard engine towards our base camp at Fungu island where we will, if lucky, spot swallows, herons and kingfishers underway or even a green ibis and a Trapstaart swallow. The airstrip is an excellent location for bird watching in the early morning where you will surely spot toucans, macaws, parrots and often also the Blue-throat Goean. Along the route to Voltzberg, 1½ hour, more than 20 different types of ant birds can be found as well as the largest nesting ground in the Guianas of the ‘Cock of the Rock’, a beautiful bright-orange colored bird which can be spotted from end November till April.
Approximetely 60 suprisingly tame male birds are commonly active in this area in the mating season and can also be spotted in the other months; about 450 bird types in total are known in this area.

(Click here for bird list)

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BROWNSBERG NATURE PARK
Is managed by the Foundation for Nature Preservation in Suriname and lies in one of the most northern hilly landscapes in the interior. Brownsberg can be reached by bus in less than 3 hours from the capital city Paramaribo. The plateau is primarily flat and varies in height from 450 to just over 500 meters. Near the guest houses three view points have been created from which you can enjoy a fantastic view over the Van Blommenstein hydro lake. The park also has a few waterfalls at the end of a forest trail, unintentionally created there by the gold diggers at the end of the 20th century. Close to the Leo Falls you can also see the traces thereof. Certain bird types that cannot be found under 400 meters in the hills such as the White-throated Manakin, the Scarlet Tanager and the Olive Green Woodpecker are often spotted birds just like the 350 other bird types along the footpaths with clear signposts. The rare and beautiful Red and Black Cardinal, often spotted in this area, and the Maskerparula, the Fancy Tanager and the Scherpsnavel can also be found here. In the bushes near the main building you can see at least 10 types of humming birds can be seen especially if the flowers are in bloom. The Clusia tree near the Tapir view wit hits ripe fruit attracts many Honey Creepers, Tanagers and Woodpeckers. The spectacular Harpy eagle can also often be found here but can hardly be seen. The Harpy eagle can also be found here but is difficult to spot; two pairs have been spotted close to Palumeu.

(Click here for the bird list)

PALUMEU
Is a pioneer settlement in the Amazon rainforest in the South-east of the interior, a long since established Amerindian camp near the confluence of the Upper Tapanahony and Palumeu river, approx. 180 miles south of Paramaribo. About two hundred Trio and Wajana Amerindians, the inhabitants of this area, have managed to maintain their ancient-old lifestyle. Tour groups are accommodated in five wooden holiday cabins with a view over the nearby river. 270 types of birds are known in this area among which the rare Karmazijnvruchtenkraai. Jungle hikes, fishing in the river, trips by dug-out canoe and a climb to Poti Hill for a unique view over the Southern landscape, towards Brazil, all belong to the many possible activities in this area.

(Click here for bird list)

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OVERBRIDGE
Is a beach resort situated on the Suriname river, approx. 1 hour (48 km) from Paramaribo. The holiday cabins (cabanas) offer an inviting comfort which you would not expect so far outside the city with excellent sanitary facilities, modern furniture and other luxury comforts. The distance of 7.5 km from the main road (Afobaka road) is excellent for bird watching. The Green Ibis, Least Grebe, Collared Plover, Spix’s Guan and Yellow-tufted woodpecker are only a few of the approximately 300 bird types that can be found in this area. A visit to Overbridge is a perfect start for bird lovers to discover the magnificent bird life found in the interior of Suriname.

(Click here for bird list)

PARAMARIBO

Interesting locations for bird watchers in and around Paramaribo are the ‘Cultuurtuin’, a park close to the city centre that consists partly of a former botanical garden, a replica of the Bogor Garden in Indonesia. The garden contains various old trees from South-east Asia and in the early morning over 50 different bird types can be spotted here; ‘Weg naar Zee’ is one of the few places that give access to the Atlantic Ocean near the capital city and the road towards it brings you through swampy fields and mud banks where thousands of coastal birds migrate to each year. The Snail Kite can also be found here just like small egrets, schaarbekvogels and Terns. The fascinating Red Ibis is also spotted here often. Peperpot is a deserted coffee plantation where various birds can be found such as the rarely spotted Ashen Great Nighthawk.

(Click here for bird list)

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AWARRADAM
Is situated on a small island in the Gran Rio near the rapid with the same name. To reach Awarradam, we fly to Kajana in 50 minutes from where the trip is continued another half hour by dug-out canoe on the river. This is the living area of the Saramaccan Maroons. We see their agricultural plots along the river. The many hunting trails they made can now be used by us to get into the forest. There is an abundance of birdlife with numerous Parrots, Toucans, Tangare’s, Houtkruipers, Bladreinigers and Ant Birds of which more than 20 types can be found. The peculiar singing of the remarkable Capuchin bird is heard here. The Sreaming Piha is very common in this area. His penetrating call is almost constantly heard. There is a fairly good chance that you will spot the spectacular Royal Flycatcher. And the clear and miraculously beautiful singing of the Musician Wren will surely fill you with wonder. The Green Ibis is commonly found along the river where we also spot a few types of Kingfishers and Swallows. On the island itself some bird types can easily be spotted on the crown roof such as Parrots, Honey Creepers and Tanagers that come there to find food in the fruit bearing trees. If certain trees are blooming, we can also spot humming birds. The beautiful Crimson Topaz is also spotted here.  The bird populations at Awarradam are still not all properly known yet but first implications let us assume that over 300 types can be found. Until now almost 200 types have been spotted.

(Click here for bird list)

 
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