Colombia has the greatest diversity of birdlife on earth according to the latest global study by Birdlife International.  With 1878 species identified at the last official count, that makes Colombia home to around a fifth of all bird species found on the planet, of which 91 species are found only in Colombia.  This is around three times more than in the whole of Europe!   

The mangrove forests around Bocas del Atrato have been identified as one of the new destinations within Colombia for bird lovers. More than 67 species of birds have been observed in the area, a list that continues to grow as new species are identified here.   

Here are some of thebirding highlights:

  • The top of the list is without doubt the endemic Sooty-capped Puffbird, which can be seen quite easily in the mangroves alongside the boardwalk, or along the creeks close to the village.
  • A recent addition to the bird list of the area is the rare and almost endemic Saphire bellied Hummingbird (Lepidopyga lilliae), which has been identified in the village and in the mangroves along the mangrove boardwalk from the village.
  • A visit to Cienega de Matuntugo, a system of three lagoons surrounded by native plants including mangroves, waterlilies and terra firma forest offers great chances to see Northern Screamer (Chauna chavaria) often in large numbers.
  • The mudflats in ‘La punta del Atrato’ as well as those at the mouth of Caño Cobao offer very good sightings of a variety of shorebirds, and with luck the beautiful Roseate Spoonbill (Platalea ajaja)
  • For those visiting towards the end of October and during November, the chance to see thousands of migratory Turkey Vultures (Cathartes aura ) roosting in the mangroves around Bocas del Atrato, and in the morning flying together across the Gulf of Uraba is quite something to behold!