Chile - Batuco Wetlands

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5 years 6 months ago #71005 by nkgray
nkgray created the topic: Chile - Batuco Wetlands
Spent a few hours this morning at Santiago's Marievale, the Batuco wetlands, just a mere 28km out of central Santiago. Added some 15 new species taking my Chile list to 64 species, and rocketing me past 900 species outside of southern Africa. As with any wetland there was a good mix of action - aerial, on the water and in the grass/reeds.

If you can imagine the drive to the Bus-stop hide at Marievale, one the most likely suspects before you get to the wetland area is the African Pipit. Well the first bird I photographed today was the Correndera Pipit.



Also in the grassland was the Stonechat-sized Austral Negrito, this one a female.



Flocks of Yellow-winged Blackbird are constantly on the move over the damper areas of the grassland.



as are the Grassland Yellow-Finch - these I think females.





Where Marievale has its Red-knobbed Coot, Batuco has Red-fronted, Red-Gartered, and White-winged Coots. I saw the latter but was unable to get a photograph. Where Marievale has its African Rail, Batuco has the Plumbeous Rail



Marievale has its Yellow-billed Ducks, Red-billed and Hottentot Teals, Fulvous and White-faced Whistling Ducks and Southern Pochards. At Batuco I saw a couple of distant pairs of Red Shoveler, these in company with a pair of White-tufted Grebe



as well as Yellow-billed Pintail......



...and Chiloe Wigeon



The migratory Andean Goose have started arriving from the high (very high) Andes to spend the austral winter in the lowlands away from the snow.



The Coscoroba Swan is not a true swan. Rather it looks more like a large goose, but is most closely related to the Whistling Ducks.





Marievale has White-throated Swallow and Brown-throated Martin skimming over the water for insects. Here it is Chilean Swallow.



The most common wader at Batuco is the White-backed Stilt - those with white crowns and foreheads are adults, those with black heads are juveniles.





Here the stilts are in company with the only other waders I saw, Yellowlegs, which I had believed would have moved north again already. I had thought that they were all Lesser Yellowlegs



However, if you look closely at that photo, the two at the back do look a bit different. In flight, though, the differences become more obvious. Look at the two birds at the bottom of the next pic, and the one furthest right. We actually have a mixed flock of Lesser Yellowlegs and Greater Yellowlegs.



If you are not convinced, take a look at a close-up of the 2 birds on the right of the photo. The Greater is obviously bigger and has a distinctly longer, thicker and slightly upturned beak.



The common Lesser Swamp and Little Rush Warblers of Marievale have their counterparts at Batuco too. First, here is the Wren-like Rushbird.



Then, one of those birds that you see in the field guide before you go to an area, and you just have to see it 'in the flesh'. For me it was the Many-coloured Rush-Tyrant. This little gem, only 10cm in size, certainly lives up to expectations.







Finally, a couple seen away from the wetland. I also saw my first hummingbird, the only one of the central Chile lowlands - the Green-backed Firecown, but was unable to photograph this hyperactive little chap.

Chimango Caracara



Great Shrike-Tyrant




Neil

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5 years 6 months ago #71031 by docandy
docandy replied the topic: Re: Chile - Batuco Wetlands
Lovely pictures and comparative storyline Neil! :D

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5 years 6 months ago #71038 by Margaret
Margaret replied the topic: Re: Chile - Batuco Wetlands
Thanks Neil, It increasingly looks like you might become a good travel agent for birders. Thanks for sharing. Michael

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5 years 6 months ago #71039 by Doug
Doug replied the topic: Chile - Batuco Wetlands
Wow!!!


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I am here: http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=-25.950928,28.137171
Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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5 years 6 months ago #71099 by John Young
John Young replied the topic: Re: Chile - Batuco Wetlands
Mesmerized!!!! Thanks for sharing Neil, and a nice comparative story line to a site we in RSA know quite well..

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5 years 6 months ago #71221 by arty
arty replied the topic: Re: Chile - Batuco Wetlands
Unbelievably good sightings and great pics once again.rather envious i am. <!-- s:biting: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/biting.gif" alt=":biting:" title="Frustration" /><!-- s:biting: -->
Look forward to your next post.

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