Sunday, February 17, 2019

from great to small

Condors weren't the only birds inhabiting the "dry" paramo above the treeline in the Andes, there were a lot of little birds too.

Brown-backed Chat-tyrant is a small flycatcher of the last thickets.  This one ventured all the way out to the ground.

Plumbeous Sierra-finch is one of the most common birds of the barren open country.

Followed perhaps by Stout-billed Cinclodes.  I don't know where the finch nests, but the cinclodes excavates burrows.

Equadorian Hillstar is still a bird I would like a better look at.  Most of the birds I've encountered have been fairly distant females.  Here an immature male interacted with a female up the slope.  Full adult males have purple heads.

Another high-elevation hummer is Black-tailed Trainbearer, though it seemed to prefer areas where there was at least some brushiness.

Same for Blackish Flowerpiercer.

Finally a look at some giant dock-looking weed.  The seed head was probably 2 feet tall and the entire thing 6 inches across.  It'd be the stuff Downy Woodpecker dreams are made of.

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