LA PAZ (Compass)

Lat:00o00´S/00o00´W ha topography msl 
Protected/registered status 
Best Time for visit (27th-29th January, 2006)


Birding Site Guide

Direct buses leave the main terminal in La Paz about twice a day. It takes 6-7 hours and costs Bs23-24. One bus leaves at 6am and the other around midday. Buy tickets from window number 31. Call Louis on 72542520 for bus information. Returning to La Paz, buses leave the plaza in Inquisivi at 1pm or at 7 and 9pm. There is accomodation in Inquisivi. Simply ask where when you arrive. I stayed at a place for Bs10 (Bs3 extra for a hot shower). A couple of simple restaurants on the plaza serve lunch and dinner (Bs5). The main reason for visiting Inquisivi was to see the endangered endemic Bolivian Spinetail. A road winds down from town (2,500m) to a river below (2,150m). A path goes straight down crossing the road many times. Walk downhill from the plaza and turn left where the path hits the road. You will pass a hospital on your left. The bushes near here have Yellow-bellied Siskin. Follow the road round the first bend and take the first (short-cut) path on your left. There are 17 of these short cuts (some long, some very short) before you get to the river. The first ones pass through Eucalyptus plantations where I saw Green-cheeked Parakeets (a new race with yellow in the wing). After that, there is low scrub where I saw Band-tailed Seedeater and White-wionged Black-Tyrant. More than half way down the dry forest starts although the upper part is more disturbed and cutting trees for charcoal continues. The 11th (or 7th from the bottom) shortcut is long and has good birding. I saw Bolivian Spinetail about halfway down this path calling before 7 in the morning. Also Sooty-fronted Spinetail, Bran-coloured Flycatcher and Tropical Parula. The 13th (or 5th from the bottom) path is good for hummers including White-bellied Woodstar. The best area for the Bolivian Spinetail was the bottom (17th) shortcut. Mitred Parakeets and Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle were seen flying in the valley on the way down. It takes about 1 hour to walk to the bottom and walking back up is longer and very tiring. A bus came back up at 9:45am or camping at the bottom is also possible. Interesting birding areas occur above town but I didn't have time to visit them. I saw 52 species including 3 lifers.

Species seen 

  • Darwin's Nothura Nothura darwinii Possibly seen
  • Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
  • Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle Geranoaetus melanoleucus
  • Roadside Hawk Buteo magnirostris Heard only
  • American Kestrel Falco sparverius Seen between La Paz and Inquisivi
  • Andean Lapwing Vanellus resplendens Heard only
  • Rock Pigeon Columba livia Introduced species
  • Band-tailed Pigeon Patagioenas fasciata
  • Eared Dove Zenaida auriculata
  • Picui Ground-Dove Columbina picui
  • White-tipped Dove Leptotila verreauxi Possibly seen
  • Mitred Parakeet Aratinga mitrata
  • Green-cheeked Parakeet Pyrrhura molinae
  • Green Violet-ear Colibri thalassinus
  • Blue-tailed Emerald Chlorostilbon mellisugus Photographed
  • Fork-tailed Woodnymph Thalurania furcata Possibly seen
  • White-bellied Hummingbird Leucippus chionogaster
  • Speckled Hummingbird Adelomyia melanogenys Possibly seen
  • Tyrian Metaltail Metallura tyrianthina Possibly seen Photographed?
  • White-bellied Woodstar Chaetocercus mulsant Possibly seen
  • Andean Flicker Colaptes rupicola Seen between La Paz and Inquisivi
  • Rufous Hornero Furnarius rufus
  • Sooty-fronted Spinetail Synallaxis frontalis
  • Bolivian Spinetail Cranioleuca henricae Endemic Endangered Photographed
  • Olive-crowned Crescent-chest Melanopareia maximiliani Heard only
  • Mouse-colored Tyrannulet Phaeomyias murina Possibly seen
  • White-bellied Tyrannulet Serpophaga munda Possibly seen
  • Pearly-vented Tody-Tyrant Hemitriccus margaritaceiventer
  • Bran-colored Flycatcher Myiophobus fasciatus
  • Smoke-colored Pewee Contopus fumigatus Photographed
  • Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans
  • White-winged Black-Tyrant Knipolegus aterrimus
  • Blue-and-white Swallow Notiochelidon cyanoleuca Photographed
  • House Wren Troglodytes aedon
  • Chiguanco Thrush Turdus chiguanco
  • Creamy-bellied Thrush Turdus amaurochalinus Photographed
  • Red-eyed Vireo Vireo olivaceus
  • Rufous-browed Peppershrike Cyclarhis gujanensis Photographed
  • Tropical Parula Parula pitiayumi Photographed
  • Brown-capped Redstart Myioborus brunniceps
  • Sayaca Tanager Thraupis sayaca
  • Black-and-rufous Warbling-Finch Poospiza nigrorufa
  • Ringed Warbling-Finch Poospiza torquata Photographed
  • Double-collared Seedeater Sporophila caerulescens Photographed
  • Band-tailed Seedeater Catamenia analis
  • Rufous-collared Sparrow Zonotrichia capensis
  • Golden-billed Saltator Saltator aurantiirostris
  • Black-backed Grosbeak Pheucticus aureoventris Photographed
  • Bay-winged Cowbird Molothrus badius
  • Dusky-green Oropendola Psarocolius atrovirens Photographed
  • Yellow-bellied Siskin Carduelis xanthogastra Photographed
  • House Sparrow Passer domesticus Introduced species

Other Fauna 
A total of -- species of mammals. 

There are -- recorded species of amphibians and reptiles. 


Author: Charles Hesse