Southern Brazil

takes us through breath-taking landscapes along the Serra do Mar ‘Atlantic Hills’ through parts of the coast, and includes dense montane and coastal lowland forests, patches of Atlantic Rainforest as well as the impressive Araucaria (monkey-puzzle) Forest and natural grasslands of the high southern plateaus. There are also areas of mangrove and even coastal Pampa, all of which give access to.a wide variety of Brazilian specialities that occur in the south and are hard or impossible to see outside of this fabulous area. The small islands in the middle of the mangrove in Paraná provide a true spectacle where nearly a thousand Red-tailed Amazons and also hundreds Scarlet Ibis can be seen coming into roost, while the waters here also hold good numbers Guiana Dolphin, often called ‘Boto’. Then there are the Araucaria Forest from Urupema that attracts the migration of thousands Red-Spectacled Amazon to feed on the Araucaria seeds, and an amazing number of water and shore birds around Lagoa do Peixe National Park in Rio Grande do Sul in one of the biggest and most amazing wetlands in Brazil.

Hotspots & Wildlife: 

Lagoa do Peixe National Park: This national park in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, was created in 1986 to protect a huge wintering zone for migratory birds. With an estimated area of 36,721 hectares (90,740 acres), and stretching 35 kilometres (22 mi) long and on average 1 kilometre (0.62 mi) wide it is in many ways even more impressive than the famous Brazilian Pantanal. There are two fresh water lagoons in the northern section, and the park includes areas influenced by rivers and lakes, marine habitats, plus dunes, sandy fields, flood plains, reed beds and salt and freshwater marshes. The preservation of this natural ecosystem and the huge variety of flora and fauna make this a site of international importance and a registered Ramsar Site. Apart from the millions of migrants that this area protects it is also home to many other species such as Olrog’s Gull, Dot-winged Crake,  Greater Rhea, Maguari Stork, Roseate Spoonbill, Pinnated Bittern, Chilean Flamingo, Coscoroba and Black-necked Swans, Spotted Nothura, Rufous-chested Dotterel, South American Painted-Snipe, Giant Wood-Rail, Hudson’s Canastero, Curve-billed Reedhaunter, Bay-capped Wren-Spinetail, Short-billed Pipit, Masked Gnatcatcher and Glaucous-blue Grosbeak. Other creatures of interest include Broad-snouted Caiman, Geoffroy’s Cat, and the small rodent called Tuco-tuco.

Urupema: Urupema is a municipality in the state of Santa Catarina in the South region of Brazil and is often recognised as the coldest city in Brazil. The unique Urupema uplands, that include steppe and humid araucaria woods hold a wealth of interesting and localised birds, flowers and other wildlife. The Araucaria Forest often referred to as ‘Monkey Puzzle Trees’ attracts thousands of Red-Spectacled Amazons that feed on the Araucaria seeds during their migration. These forests also hold species such as Rusty-barred Owl, Araucaria and Striolated Tit-Spinetail, while surrounding scrub sees species such as Black-and-white Monjita, Yellow-rumped Marshbird and Saffron-cowled Blackbird. Several very special marshlands are the habitat for Giant Snipe, Lesser Grass Finch, Red-winged Tinamou, Long-tailed Reed-Finch, Greater Pampa Finch, Firewood Gatherer and even Sickle-winged Nightjar. In the low forested hills even more sought after birds include Rufous-tailed Antthrush, Speckle-breasted Antpitta, Mottled Piculet and Sharp-billed Treehunter. The whole area with its varied and special habitats makes this a must visit area for both birdwatchers and naturalists alike. Even flowering bushes in and around gardens can attract White-throated Hummingbirds and the superb Purple-crowned Plovercrest.

Barigui Park: Barigui Park In the native language means “River of the Thorny Fruit”. Currently with 1.4 million square meters, it is one of the city’s largest parks and also one of the most popular. The ancient property belonging to Mateus Martins Leme was transformed into a park in 1972 and now is a haven for wildlife. One of the main targets for birdwatchers here is the Canebrake Groundcreeper which although fairly elusive can often be found, and is considered near threatened due to habitat loss. In the same patches of forest in this park it is possible to see other birds such as Chestnut-backed Tanager, Mottle-cheeked Tyrannulet, Olive Spinetail, Grey-throated Warbling-Finch, Araucaria Tit-Spinetail, and the superb Purple-crowned Plovercrest which is often found feeding on red flowers. Often there are mixed species flocks working their way through the park and these include Olive-green, Sayaca, Black-goggled and the stunning Red-necked Tanager. In a small patch of lush grassy wetland the recently-described Marsh Tapaculo was discovered in 1998. This very skulking and localised bird is entirely restricted to this precise habitat within this region.

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SPECIES of interest

Lodges in Southern Brazil

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Places To Stay

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