This week’s visit to Brazil started at the Jardim Botanico, but had to wait until the afternoon before kick-off. Boat-billed Flycatchers were evident here today as never before.
The jardim was full of excited children again on school trips. Keen to be out of the classroom the kids screamed and squealed and the teachers had to shout over the top to maintain any semblance of order. Luckily, the gardens are big enough to find a quiet area and I banked to the right from the entrance (which can be seen by cutting and pasting the Google Earth coordinates; 23 38 21.71S 46 37 38.07W) onto a small lawn which played host to Rufous-bellied Thrush, Pale-breasted Thrush and Shiny Cowbird.
The lake was quiet, but a few Neotropic Cormorants perched with wings out while a House Wren picked through the lichen on a tree and a Social Flycatcher watched on.
The hot-spot of the day came behind one of the administrative buildings where 15 species were ticked as I leaned against a corner of the structure. Posers included the Streaked Flycatcher and Bananaquit, with Orange-headed Tanager and Green-winged Saltator being slightly more stand-offish.
From the green houses, a set of steps lead up to the right into the forest. There was not much happening here today except for the Red Howler Monkeys which began howling as I reached the trees and kept up the din for over an hour.
The small seep has grown over since my last visit three years ago. The bathing birds that I had hoped for were not there, but a Rufous-bellied Thrush was feeding a tiny chick in a nest. In the forest edge above the lawns, Sayaca Tanagers screeched and Golden-crowned Warblers called.
I caught a quick glimpse of a chicken-sized bird in the small marsh above the top pond and crept round to get a decent view of the Slaty-breasted Rail that can often be seen skulking around the gardens.
The boardwalk featured more monkeys and a couple of Dusky-legged Guan which is always a target bird on a visit to the gardens. Red-bellied Toucans flew over and a Yellow-legged Thrush poked its head out from a tangle.
Bird list for Jardim Botanico, Sao Paulo
Dusky-legged Guan (Penelope obscura) 2, Neotropic Cormorant (Phalacrocorax brasilianus) 4, Great Egret (Ardea alba) 2, Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus) 20, Slaty-breasted Wood-Rail (Aramides saracura) 1, Common Gallinule (Gallinula galeata) 4, Southern Lapwing (Vanellus chilensis) 3, Picazuro Pigeon (Patagioenas picazuro) 6, Ruddy Ground-dove (Columbina talpacoti) 5, Plain Parakeet (Brotogeris tirica) 6, Squirrel Cuckoo (Piaya cayana) 2, Sapphire-spangled Emerald (Amazilia lactea) 1, Red-breasted Toucan (Ramphastos dicolorus) 1, Cattle Tyrant (Machetornis rixosa) 3, Great Kiskadee (Pitangus sulphuratus) 8, Boat-billed Flycatcher (Megarynchus pitangua) 6, Social Flycatcher (Myiozetetes similis) 5, Streaked Flycatcher (Myiodynastes maculatus) 2, Piratic Flycatcher (Legatus leucophaius) 1, Blue-and-white Swallow (Pygochelidon cyanoleuca) 25, House Wren (Troglodytes aedon) 7, Yellow-legged Thrush (Turdus flavipes) 4, Pale-breasted Thrush (Turdus leucomelas) 8, Rufous-bellied Thrush (Turdus rufiventris) 60, Creamy-bellied Thrush (Turdus amaurochalinus) 1, Golden-crowned Warbler (Basileuterus culicivorus) 8, Bananaquit (Coereba flaveola) 15, Orange-headed Tanager (Thlypopsis sordida) 2, Ruby-crowned Tanager (Tachyphonus coronatus) 3, Sayaca Tanager (Thraupis sayaca) 20, Palm Tanager (Thraupis palmarum) 4, Green-winged Saltator (Saltator similis) 1, Rufous-collared Sparrow (Zonotrichia capensis) 5, Shiny Cowbird (Molothrus bonariensis) 5.
To get to there, take the Metro to Conceicao (just before Jabaquara at the end of Linha 1 or Azul (Blue) Line). Take a taxi from here to Jardim Botanico, Parque do Estado, Cursino (10 mins, Reas15 (@ 2.60 = £1)). The gardens are open daily from 09.00 until 17.00, but are closed on Mondays.
If you are unable to find a taxi for the return, there is a bus stop just outside the main gate. Most buses pass close to a Metro station. Make yourself familiar with the Metro Logo and look for it on the side of the bus. Better still bring the number of a recommended taxi firm.
For previous posts from Sao Paulo Botanical Gardens, follow the links below;
Visit the dedicated Central and South America page for more posts from Sao Paulo, including Ibirapuera Park Parque Ecologico do Tiete and Cantareira.
Birding, Birdwatching, Sao Paulo, Brazil