Saturday, January 2, 2016

Ushuaia and Tierra del Fuego National Park, birding the bottom of the world

We docked at Ushuaia in the early afternoon but only for a short time as we had an early evening sailing out. It really was like nowhere we have ever been before, the bottom of the world. We were moored next to many expedition ships bound for the Antarctic (and wished we were on one of those!). We had teamed up with a couple of American birders to keep the guide price down (it was ridiculously high) but our guide, Marcelo, turned up late and then parked in the town so we lost the best park of hour due to his incompetence. As we had birded the whole trip, we had already seem all the commoner birds and there was just a few special birds we still needed so he was presented with a 'wanted list'. We don't think this went down well as from then on all he wanted to do was visit the bathroom and stop for coffee which was definitely not going to happen. Whilst looking for the Magellenic Woodpecker, Brook found a treerunner and Karen looked up and shouted 'condor'. The woodpecker remained elusive and we walked through wood after wood, feeling quite disappointed with ourselves until Karen shouted 'woodpecker' and there they were, a male, two females and a chick. Bingo ! These birds deserve their own posting for sure. Anyway, we were then dropped off in the town and made our way back to the ship with big smiles!  The worst guide of the whole trip to be honest.  

Ushuaia Rugby Club, the most southern rugby club in the world.

Austral Parakeet

Simon even had his train fix ! 

White-throated Treerunner 

A very high and distant Andean Condor

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