Old Nono-Mindo Road: June 5, 2010

Descending the northwest slope of Volcan Pichincha from Yanacocha Reserve, Aimee and I took our faithful Toyota Landcruiser on a final expedition, winding along the old Nono-Mindo Road towards the Tandayapa Valley. We had missed the Black-Breasted Puffleg at Yanacocha earlier in the morning but decided to stop by Verdecocha Reserve, where it has also been observed. Unfortunately, we learned at the entrance gate that visits are only by reservation and that the rare hummingbird is hardly ever seen at the feeders and only occasionally found further up in the reserve. Cruising along the Alambi River, we stopped periodically to try for the Beautiful Jay (the lower part of this road passes through excellent temperate forest now protected as part of the Ecoruta, or Paseo del Quinde). Almost no birds were calling this late in the morning, much less the distinctive Beautiful Jay, but we did find a pair of dapper White-Capped Dippers feeding in the river.

Notable birds seen: White-Capped Dipper.

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