Skip to main content


6 birds you can find in Ecuador's cloud forest

2024-02-08 18:37:05

Ecuador's cloud forest has more than 550 of the estimated 1,660 species of birds found in the country. The region is part of the Chocó Bioregion, which extends from Panama to northern Ecuador. Within the confines of the cloud forest, brightly colored birds appear at every bend in the trail. Read on for eight cloud forest birds you can find on customized tours in Ecuador.

Glossy Green Tanager

The bright green tanager is found in the rainforests of Colombia and Ecuador. They travel with mixed flocks of birds, foraging in both the upper reaches of the canopy and the lower branches of forest trees. They are often seen on cloud forest trails in Ecuador, sometimes hanging upside down from branches in search of small insects and fruits.

Photo taken from: Nick Athanas

Andean rooster on the rock

Found from Venezuela to Bolivia, the Andean cock-of-the-rock is one of the highlights for birders and travelers visiting the cloud forest. Its reddish orange plumage of the upper body is contrasted with gray and black feathers on the lower body. The bird gets its name because it builds its nest in rocky cliffs, rocks and caves. They are often seen in groups on birding tours that take you deep into the forest.

Silver-billed Mountain Toucan

The colorful yellow, blue, green and blue toucan is found from southwestern Colombia to southern Ecuador. The large-billed birds are often seen in pairs perching on the low branches of cloud forest trees on customized tours in the cloud forests of Ecuador.

Sylph de cola violeta

El Sylph de cola violeta es una de las muchas especies de colibríes que se zambullen dentro y fuera de sus perchas en los árboles y arbustos del bosque nuboso en busca de alimento. Obtienen su nombre de su larga cola púrpura, contrastada por el brillante plumaje verde, azul y amarillo de su cuerpo. A menudo se los ve desde los balcones de la cabaña del bosque nuboso, y se detienen en los comederos de pájaros antes de ser perseguidos por otros colibríes territoriales en el área.

Photo taken from: Vince Smith

Russet-crowned Warbler

Found from Colombia to central Brazil, Red-crowned Warblers are another common species seen when exploring the cloud forest. These small, yellow and olive-green birds form eight subspecies, divided by white or yellow bellies. All birds have an orange crown and a narrow black stripe.

Photo taken from: Nick Athanas

Crested Quetzal

More commonly seen than other quetzals, including the golden-headed quetzal, the crested quetzal is often seen in the lower elevations of the cloud forest. Walking the trails in the reserves and refuges around Mindo, the bright green, red and black birds are seen on tree branches early in the morning, feeding after the sun rises.

Photo taken from: vil.sandi