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  1. gdhunter

    Birdwatcher's Diary master lists

    As noted in another thread, Birdwatcher's Diary has now been updated to run on at least the current iOS (not sure about other platforms). But the master lists available from Stevens Creek for download are not updated to any version of the latest taxonomy. Has anyone had any success creating an...
  2. gdhunter

    eBird outage

    Have been unable to reach eBird for the last five or six hours. Browser error message: "Can’t connect securely to this page. This might be because the site uses outdated or unsafe TLS security settings. If this keeps happening, try contacting the website’s owner." No problem reaching other...
  3. gdhunter

    NW Ecuador coastal extension

    Planning a trip to Mindo for two couples, with a brief (one night) coastal diversion. The geography of Playa Atacames/Playa Same looks promising for a bit of birding. My impression is that the former is perhaps better known for beach parties and nightlife, and I've had little success reaching...
  4. gdhunter

    Zamora or Mindo?

    Two couples (the guys are birders, the spouses a bit less so but still interested). Original plans for a B&B in Macas fell through. The B&B proprietor is well-acquainted with the folks who managed Copalinga in Zamora before turning it over to the Jocotoco Foundation. Exotic Birding...
  5. gdhunter

    backtrack from Macas

    A trip early 2019 heretofore planned for Macas requires a reroute. The family with the currently aborted Macas B&B has offered helpful tips, but I'm broadening the scope a bit. Have been to Ecuador only once (Nov 2015) focusing primarily on the eastern lowlands near Misahualli, the foothill...
  6. gdhunter

    Macas & surroundings - early 2019

    We're formulating plans for a trip to Ecuador that will center around a week or so at Casa Upano on the outskirts of Macas. It's a B&B operated by the daughter of someone we know, and apparently somewhat off the beaten path in terms of birding itineraries. The most significant patches of...
  7. gdhunter

    Birdwatcher's Diary RIP?

    For years I've used the Steven's Creek app Birdwatcher's Diary to tally my daily field sightings. Am using an iPod Touch 4G so haven't been able to fully update, but the app has flawlessly fulfilled its purpose. Daily lists can be archived at Dropbox with a simple output choice. A couple of...
  8. gdhunter

    birding with Ridgely

    Robert Ridgely needs no introduction to anyone interested in Latin American birding, and I've just learned from Xavier Muñoz about two 10-day tours (one in November 2016, the other in March 2017) led by Muñoz & Ridgely, devoted primarily to Fundación Jocotoco's southern Ecuador reserves...
  9. gdhunter

    new books to Cuba

    Today's local newspaper reprinted a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial about the concern expressed by the American Bookseller's Association and others that the prohibition against exporting books to the island has not been lifted. Am not sure how serious the problem really is, but wonder if...
  10. gdhunter

    guided birding - a few thoughts

    My observations aren't unique to Ecuador but were refined during my November 2015 trip to that country. We didn't retain one guide for our entire trip, and we didn't retain a guide during every day of our trip. Not one of the three of us can claim to be familiar with the avifauna of South...
  11. gdhunter

    BATV Darien episodes

    James Currie's "Birding Adventures" television series (currently airing in the U.S. on Discovery America) may have just offered its best episode yet, the first of two documenting a stay at Canopy Camp in the Darien. Some superb HD videography of (among other things) nest-level Harpies (almost...
  12. gdhunter

    Mcmullan & Donegan field guide availability

    The second edition of the McMullan & Donegan Field Guide to the Birds of Colombia has been until very recently been (according to Amazon) unavailable. At least as of today (Feb 7, 2015) it's being reported as available from Conservation Allies LLC through Amazon...
  13. gdhunter

    Cardinalidae ID guide or monograph

    I'm a bit surprised to find no Helm ID guide or similar work covering the cardinals, grosbeaks, saltators and allies. Am I missing something? Gary H
  14. gdhunter

    forthcoming Ecuador field guide

    NHBS (http://www.nhbs.com/title/182406/birds-of-ecuador) and other (mainly British) booksellers are still estimating December 2015 for the release of Birds of Ecuador: Helm Field Guides by Restall & Freile. In response to my recent inquiry, Bloomsbury Publishing (of which Christopher Helm is a...
  15. gdhunter

    Restall & Freile field guide

    NHBS (http://www.nhbs.com/title/182406/birds-of-ecuador) and other (mainly British) booksellers are still estimating December 2015 for the release of Birds of Ecuador: Helm Field Guides by Restall & Freile. In response to my recent inquiry, Bloomsbury Publishing (of which Christopher Helm is a...
  16. gdhunter

    new edition of Garrigues/Dean

    Amazon is offering the apparently newest edition of the Zona Tropical The Birds of Costa Rica: A Field Guide by Garrigues & Dean (publication date 12/4/2014): http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0801479886. Am not sure how Amazon Marketplace sellers could already be offering used copies, though...
  17. gdhunter

    Volcan Sumaco Opus page

    I've originated an Opus page (http://www.birdforum.net/opus/Volcan_Sumaco/Cordillera_Galeras) devoted to the Volcan Sumaco/Cordillera Galeras region, including information I've gleaned from (among others) the Wildsumaco Lodge checklist, various trip reports, and an interpretive reading of...
  18. gdhunter

    Birds of Jatun Sacha Biological Station

    According to the checklist (revised 2008) compiled by Bonnie Bochan, a monograph (to be titled The Birds of Jatun Sacha Biological Station) with "information on abundance, status, habitat preference, habits, seasonality in movement and vocalization, migration and breeding patterns, as well as...
  19. gdhunter

    more places or longer stays?

    I'm convinced every temperate zone birder contemplating a trip to the American tropics should read Steven Hilty's Birds of Tropical America (1994, part of The Curious Naturalist series). Each chapter is full of revelations about the promise and challenge of tropical birding. A critical point...
  20. gdhunter

    Opus article - Upper Rio Napo

    I've just started a new Opus article covering the Upper Rio Napo. I did so not to suggest any expertise or personal knowledge of the area, but rather to encourage contributions from those who do know the area well or who have at least spent time birding there...
  21. gdhunter

    online bird checklists - Ecuador

    As I research a forthcoming Ecuador birding trip, I've come across a few online checklists that are hopefully reasonably accurate indicators of the avifaunas associated with specific destinations (all of which are in the northeast and northwest). They haven't always been easy to find, and I'm...
  22. gdhunter

    Tena vs Coca

    In the message just posted, I expressed the intent of our group to spend approximately two weeks in northeastern Ecuador (as defined in Navarrete's online guide at http://www.birdsinecuador.com/en/chapter-4). I envision two nights after arrival in Quito, acclimating to a higher altitude in...
  23. gdhunter

    independent birding in Ecuador

    I've been entrusted with the planning for a short (approx. 2 weeks) trip to Ecuador focusing on the northeast region (well described in Chapter 4 of Navarrete's online guide at http://www.birdsinecuador.com/en/chapter-4). The group will consist of 4-5 (perhaps as many as six) birders, some of...
  24. gdhunter

    compact Ecuador guides

    Finding the Fieldbook of the Birds of Ecuador for sale in the USA seems to be practically impossible, though I am communicating with one Ecuador tour operator who may be able to send a copy during a forthcoming visit to the States. I've also had no success finding the Spanish-language Vol 2...
  25. gdhunter

    Tena lodging options

    I'm putting together a 2015 independent birding tour for a few friends, and will undoubtedly be seeking advice in this forum. The first two weeks or so are likely to be devoted to the temperate (and paramo) zones around Papalacta (including days at Guango Lodge), the subtropical zone around...