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Guango Lodge - BirdForum Opus

Photo by Steve Herrmann (Ecuadorrebel)
Entrance to Guango Lodge

South America, Ecuador


Note: This is a summary of the birding opportunities in the area and not an endorsement for the lodge.

Lat: 0 22' 39" S Long: 78 04' 25" W

Guango Lodge is a property owned by Cabañas San Isidro and was opened in the year 2000. It is located at 2,700m (9,000 feet) altitude amid humid temperate forest. Guango lodge is about 1 ½ hour drive from Quito and just 20 km from Papallacta Pass on the eastern slopes of the Andes. The numerous trails that traverse the property provide a wealth of avifuana. There are numerous feeders around the facilities that constantly attract a variety of species of both hummingbirds and flowerpiercers.


Notable Species

Andean Guan, Gray-breasted Mountain-Toucan, Turquoise Jay, Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager, Lacrimose Mountain-Tanager, Buff-breasted Mountain-Tanager, Hooded Mountain-Tanager, Gray-hooded Bush-Tanager, Black-headed Hemispingus, Black-capped Hemispingus, Black-eared Hemispingus, Slaty Brush-Finch, Mountain Velvetbreast, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Tourmaline Sunangel, Golden-breasted Puffleg, Glowing Puffleg, Mountain Avocetbill, White-bellied Woodstar, Gorgeted Woodstar


Tawny-breasted Tinamou, Osprey, White-throated Hawk, Cattle Egret, Sickle-winged Guan, Greater Ani, Barred Parakeet, Andean Pygmy-Owl, White-throated Screech-Owl, Rufous-banded Owl, Andean Potoo, Band-winged Nightjar, Rufous-bellied Nighthawk, Rufous Spinetail, Flammulated Treehunter, White-bellied Antpitta, Slate-crowned Antpitta, Fawn-breasted Brilliant, Chestnut-breasted Coronet, Black-billed Mountain-Toucan, Red-crested Cotinga, Spillmann's Tapaculo, Paramo Tapaculo, Rufous-crowned Tody-Tyrant, Slaty-backed Nightingale-Thrush, Swainson's Thrush, Grass Wren, Barred Fruiteater, Paramo Seedeater, American Redstart, Citrine Warbler, Oleaginous Hemispingus, Black-backed Bush Tanager, Common Chlorospingus, Grass-green Tanager, Beryl-spangled Tanager, Paradise Tanager, Andean Siskin


Birds you can see here include:

Roadside Hawk, Broad-winged Hawk, Plain-breasted Hawk, Black-and-chestnut Eagle, Torrent Duck, Andean Guan, Spotted Sandpiper, Band-tailed Pigeon, White-throated Quail-Dove, Chestnut-collared Swift, White-collared Swift, Pearled Treerunner, Montane Woodcreeper, Streaked Tuftedcheek, Tyrannine Woodcreeper, Strong-billed Woodcreeper, Equatorial Antpitta, Chestnut-crowned Antpitta, Chestnut-naped Antpitta, Sparkling Violetear, Speckled Hummingbird, Shining Sunbeam, Buff-winged Starfrontlet, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Great Sapphirewing, Purple-backed Thornbill, Tyrian Metaltail, White-bellied Woodstar, Buff-tailed Coronet, Mountain Velvetbreast, Collared Inca, Green-fronted Lancebill, Lesser Violetear, Tourmaline Sunangel, Glowing Puffleg, Golden-breasted Puffleg, Mountain Avocetbill, Long-tailed Sylph, Gorgeted Woodstar, Crested Quetzal, Masked Trogon, Gray-breasted Mountain-Toucan, Crimson-mantled Woodpecker, Bar-bellied Woodpecker, Powerful Woodpecker, Barred Becard, White-banded Tyrannulet, Tufted Tit-Tyrant, Black Phoebe, Rufous-breasted Chat-Tyrant, Black-capped Tyrannulet, Tawny-rumped Tyrannulet, Smoky Bush Tyrant, Torrent Tyrannulet, Rufous-breasted Flycatcher, Rufous-headed Pygmy Tyrant, Cinnamon Flycatcher, Smoke-colored Pewee, Rufous-tailed Tyrant, Chestnut-bellied Chat-Tyrant, Pale-edged Flycatcher, Dusky Piha, Turquoise Jay, Inca Jay, Black-billed Peppershrike, Brown-capped Vireo, Great Thrush, Glossy-black Thrush, White-capped Dipper, Blue-and-white Swallow, Brown-bellied Swallow, Pale-footed Swallow, Rufous Wren, Mountain Wren, Plain-tailed Wren, Black-crested Warbler, Blackburnian Warbler, Spectacled Whitestart, Canada Warbler, Russet-crowned Warbler, Glossy Flowerpiercer, White-sided Flowerpiercer, Masked Flowerpiercer, Chestnut-breasted Chlorophonia, Red-hooded Tanager, Scarlet-bellied Mountain-Tanager, Blue-and-black Tanager, Black-capped Hemispingus, Superciliaried Hemispingus, Black-eared Hemispingus, Black-headed Hemispingus, Gray-hooded Bush Tanager, Blue-backed Conebill, Capped Conebill, Plushcap, Hooded Mountain-Tanager, Lacrimose Mountain-Tanager, Buff-breasted Mountain-Tanager, Fawn-breasted Tanager, Gray-browed Brush Finch, Chestnut-capped Brush-Finch, Pale-naped Brush-Finch, White-rimmed Brush-Finch, Slaty Brush-Finch, Rufous-collared Sparrow, Northern Mountain-Cacique, Hooded Siskin

Other Wildlife

Puma, wolf, fox, rabbits

Site Information

History and Use

Guango Lodge was opened in 2000 by Cabañas San Isidro. It has since become a popular stopping point for birders visiting Papallacta and the Amazon Basin.

Areas of Interest

Papallacta Pass is about 20 km (12.5 miles) from the Lodge. This is a great area for observing the high altitude/paramo bird species.

The village of Papallacta, about 10 km (6 miles) from Guango lodge has small hotels and hosterias as well as restaurants where one can eat typical food. Also, Papallacta is noted for its hot-springs. Termas de Papallacta offers a resort and spa; a great place to spend the day for non-birders.

Trout fishing is also possible in the Papallacta River and at some of the mountain lakes in the higher altitudes.

Access and Facilities

Guango Lodge is easily reachable by private car or by bus from Quito. Travel east on the Inter-oceanic highway through Cumbaya, Tumbaco and Pifo. Continue east up through the mountains towards Baeza. You will travel through Papallacta Pass and then descend towards the Amazon Basin. About 10 km (6 miles) after the village of Papallacta you will cross the Guango River. Slow down as the lodge will be about 100 meter ahead on the right, just around the bend.

Entrance fee is $5 to observe the birds at the feeders and to walk the many trails. Morning coffee is included in this fee.

The property has 7 different trails that ascend and descend to different altitudes. The trails vary from easy to moderate in ability. They can be slippery, especially when there is rain. The paths are well maintained and steps have been added to aid in steeper climbs.

Around the main lodge area there are numerous hummingbird feeders that attract not only hummingbirds but a variety of other nectar seeking species such as flowerpiercers. These feeders are well maintained and the birds are quite active.

The lodge has several cabins and a restaurant. There are also t-shirts, ball caps, and other items for sale.

Tours and day-trips can be arrange from the lodge.

Contact Details

Quito Office: Luis Cordero E10-55 y 12 de Octubre Edificio Sancho Arias, oficina 301

Phone/fax: 593-2-2906769 or 2909027 Weekends and emergency: 093581250 - 099246899 Email: [email protected]

External Links