05 June 2011

Back in the Field: ECUADOR...(5 June)

After days chained to my desk in Quito enough was enough. It was time to get back in the field. So Pablo Cervantes (my old Antarctica accomplice) and I headed out from Quito for a day trip into the high Andes. Leaving the smog of Quito behind we rose into clean crisp mountain air at a heady 3800m or so elevation. Before we even caught sight of Antisana's most prominent feature (its 5700m volcanic cone) birds starting popping up, and I felt at home once more. A bridge provided support for a colorful high Andean flycatcher, the Brown-backed Chat-Tyrant, and a fencepost held a blue sparrow-like bird that is common in the paramo of Antisana: Plumbeous Sierra-Finch.

We then continued higher and emerged up onto the paramo grassland plateau where some of the best scenery in the reserve can be found, and some of it star residents...

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