Ways of Living Nature
With over 1000 species of birds and many professional birding agencies and guides, there´s a lot to discover in Argentina.
These are some of the hotspots and species you shouldn´t miss during your trip.
Lugano Lake and Costanera Sur and Norte Ecological Reserves
Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires
If you are living or visiting Buenos Aires City, just a few blocks away from the downtown area, you can find the Costanera Sur Ecological Reserve, a place filled with trails, viewpoints and lakes, where you will see herons, black-necked swans, wattled jacanas, Southern screamers, cardinals and over 300 other species. As a bonus, the Reserve offers one of the best views of La Plata River.
The Lago Lugano Reserve, in the southern area of the city, and the Costanera Norte Ecological Reserve are two good places to spot some birds in Buenos Aires.
Iberá Wetlands and Mburucuyá National Park
These are two places you cannot miss if you want to observe birds in Argentina. They are everywhere! There are more than 400 species, including their stars: the strange-tailed tyrant, the black-and-white monjita, the yellow cardinal and the Iberá seedeater, which cannot be found almost anywhere else. You will also find Maguari storks, jaribus, roseate spoonbill, kingfishers, Southern screamers, scarlet-headed blackbirds and many more species.
Plan your trip: Iberá Route
Pre-Delta and El Palmar National Parks and Delta in Entre Ríos
The Palmar and Pre-Delta National Parks are easy places to visit and walk around. You will be amazed to see plush-crested jays, white woodpeckers, rufescent tiger herons and many other species from the Espinal and the Delta ecoregions.
The areas of Ceibas and Villa Paranacito, on the delta in Entre Ríos, are popular places for experienced birdwatchers because in there they can find some rare species like the straight-billed reedhaunter and the saffron-cowled blackbird.
The best option is to visit these places with a specialized guide who knows the area and can help you find these birds.
Punta Rasa and Samborombón Bay
Thousands of migratory birds choose this region on the coast (just where La Plata River meets the sea) to feed and rest. From September to March, you can see flocks of plovers, curlews, terns and many other species.
In the nearby grasslands and lakes, you can find some Pampas bird species like the greater rhea, the tinamou, the black-necked swan and the burrowing owl.
Plan your trip: Punta Rasa
Ciervo de los Pantanos National Park
Less than an hour away from Buenos Aires City, you can visit this national park with viewpoints, trails and panoramic spots to watch some birds. This national park has lakes, wetlands and riparian forests, where more than 250 species live. Two of its most popular species are the diademed tanager and the straight-billed reedhaunter.
Plan your trip: Ciervo de los Pantanos National Park
Mar Chiquita Lake - Ansenuza National Park
Over 300,000 flamingos chose this salty lake (the largest in Argentina) to nest, creating a unique spectacle to see. The most common species is the Chilean flamingo, but you can also find Andean and Jame's flamingos. Apart from flamingos, over 300 species inhabit this area.
Plan your trip: Ansenuza National Park
Quebrada del Condorito National Park
If you want to see the Andean condor face to face, this park is the right place. Several viewpoints will take you near them and you can see them flying close-by.
You can also find black-chested buzzard-eagles, long-tailed meadowlarks and several endemic species of Argentina, such as the Olrog's cinclodes.
Plan your trip: Quebrada del Condorito National Park
Iguazú National Park and Moconá, Urugua-í, Teyú Cuaré and Salto Encantado Provincial Parks
The Atlantic Rainforest is one of the best places to observe birds in Argentina. There are around 500 species, including toucans, hummingbirds, manakins, black-fronted piping guans, great dusky swifts and ornate hawk-eagles.
A piece of advice: It is not easy to go birding in the jungle. It is best to do it at dawn or dusk, and if possible, go with a specialized guide who will help you see a lot more.
This huge reserve on the Paraná River invites you to discover the wild side of Santa Fe. Among wetlands, streams and gallery forests, you can see Southern screamers, herons, storks, kingfishers, scarlet-headed blackbirds, great black hawks and other birds of prey. As a bonus, you will also see black-and-gold howler monkeys, capybaras and yacare caimans.
Plan your trip: Jaaukanigás
El Rey and Baritú National Parks (Salta), Calilegua National Park (Jujuy) National Parks - Potrero de Yala Provincial Park (Jujuy)
Four amazing destinations to discover typical species of the yungas and Chaco forest, among stunning rainforest scenery.
Some must-see species are the red-legged seriema, the golden-collared macaw, the Amazonian Motmot, the red-faced guan, the black-and-chestnut eagle, the slender-tailed woodstar, the crested oropendola and the giant antshrike.
If you can, stay the night and camp out so you can go birdwatching early in the morning.
Los Cardones National Park
Well known for its desert landscapes and its cardon forest, this park is one of the best destinations to see birds from the prepuna, puna and high Andes, such as the Rufous-bellied Mountain Tanager, the Sandy Gallito (endemic to Argentina), the Chilean Flicker (one of the emblems of the park), the Andean condor, the Ornate Tinamou, the Puna Tinamou and the Puna Hawk.
Find more information on when to go and how to get there in the unmissable Los Cardones National Park
Laguna de los Pozuelos Natural Monument
In the heart of the Puna, this huge lake is ideal to see species that are unique to this region, such as the Andean and Jame's flamingos, the giant and horned coots, the Andean avocet, the Andean goose, the caracara and the Puna teal. As a bonus, you can also find vicugnas.
Plan your trip: Laguna de los Pozuelos Natural Monument
Los Sosa Provincial Reserve
Close to San Miguel de Tucumán, you can follow the scenic route 307 down to the Río Sosa Gorge and across the jungle up to the Calchaquí Valleys. The views along this road are breathtaking, and if you pay attention and stop now and then, you will see torrent ducks, rufous-throated dippers, red-tailed comets, slender-tailed woodstars and many other typical species of the yungas.
Some tips: In Tafí del Valle and El Infiernillo, you can find endemic species of Argentina like the Moreno's ground dove and the Tucumán mountain finch.
Plan your trip: Valles Calchaquíes of Tucumán and Quebrada Los Sosa
Chaco and El Impenetrable National Parks - Loro Hablador and Fuerte Esperanza Provincial Parks
If you want to observe birds from the Chaco region, these are the best parks to see them. In Chaco forests, you will discover turquoise-fronted Amazons, Chaco chachalacas, black-legged seriemas, Chaco owls, crested gallitos, black-bodied woodpeckers, and many other species.
Pilcomayo National Park and La Estrella Wetlands
If you want to see a lot of birds, especially aquatic birds, Pilcomayo and La Estrella are the best places to go. During specific seasons of the year, you can see huge flocks of jaribus, American wood storks, roseate spoonbills, herons and neotropi cormorants fishing in the wetlands.
In the gallery forests and grasslands, you will also see tyrants, orange-backed troupials, great black hawks and many species more.
Bosques de Telteca Natural Reserve
Two hours away from Mendoza, among carob tree forests and huge sandy areas, you can discover some typical species of this wooded ecoregion, such as the crested gallito, the Chaco rufous-legged owl, the yellow cardinal, and if you are lucky, the Chaco eagle.
Plan your trip: Bosques Telteca Natural Reserve
El Cóndor Beach, San Antonio Bay and Las Grutas
If you want to see the largest colony of parrots in the world, you need to visit El Cóndor. On the cliffs facing the sea, there is a giant breeding colony of burrowing parrots. In spring and summer, you can see thousands of couples nesting.
Close to El Cóndor, San Antonio Bay is the ideal place to see oystercatchers, plovers, terns and other beach and migratory birds, especially from September to March.
Valdés Peninsula, Tombo Point and Dos Bahías Bay
Between September and March, thousands of Magellanic penguins choose these coasts to nest. Their colonies are a unique and noisy spectacle worth seeing. On the beach and in the sea, you will also find cormorants, oystercatchers, giant petrels, gulls and migratory birds.
In the steppe, you can spot crested tinamous, Patagonian mockingbirds, lesser rheas and the Patagonian canastero, a species that only lives in Argentina.
Lanín, Lago Puelo, Nahuel Huapi and Los Alerces National Parks
Chubut, Río Negro, Neuquén
The incredible landscapes of these parks are ideal to discover species that can only be found in the Patagonian forests of Argentina and Chile, such as the Magellanic woodpecker, the chucao tapaculo, the black-throated huet-huet, the ruby-topaz hummingbird, the thorn-tailed rayadito, the Des Murs's wiretail and the Austral parakeet. Birdwatching in these parks is a one-of-a-kind experience.
Laguna Blanca National Park
Neuquén is famous for the big lake after which it was named. The lake serves as home of the black-necked swan (symbol of the park), who live together with Chilean flamingos, plovers, grebes and many other aquatic species. Besides, it is a great place to get to know the native birds of the Patagonian steppe, such as the lesser rhea and the seedsnipe.
Plan your trip: Laguna Blanca National Park
Lihué Calel National Park and Parque Luro Provincial Reserve
These are two of the best destinations to discover birds from the Pampa grasslands, the calden tree forest and the Patagonian steppe.
The main species inhabiting these areas are the Chaco eagle, the yellow cardinal, and in Lihué Calel, the crested gallito, which is the symbol of the National Park.
Los Arrayanes National Park
Attached to Villa La Angostura, this national park is ideal for touring a unique landscape in search of birds of the Patagonian Andean forest such as the Thorn-tailed Rayadito, the White-throated Treerunner, the Austral Parakeet, the Ruby-topaz Hummingbird, the Grey-hooded and Patagonian Sierra Finch and the Dark-bellied Cinclodes.
Find more information on when to go and how to get there in the must-see Los Arrayanes National Park.
Copahue Provincial Park and Epulauquen Protected Area
Declared an AICA (area of importance for the conservation of birds), the Copahue Provincial Park is a proven nesting site for the spectacled duck, a singular species of Patagonia.
The Lagunas de Epulaufquen Protected Area, with about 140 identified bird species (among which are the Austral Parakeet, Chilean Flicker, Thorn-tailed Rayadito, White-throated Treerunner, Andean Condor, Mountain Caracara, Black-chested Buzzard-Eagle and a rarity in Argentina, the Chestnut-throated Huet-huet). It has a trail and bird watching booth. It is northwest of the Department of Mines in the north of Neuquén, 44 km from the town of Las Ovejas and 132 km from Chos Malal along provincial routes 43 and 45. The tourist season is from November to April.
Deseado Estuary and Pingüino Island
On Pingüino Island, you can visit the only breeding colony of rockhopper penguins that allows visitors in Argentina. Around the island, you can also see other marine species, such as the red-legged cormorant, the giant petrel and the Magellanic penguin. Some tips: near Santa Cruz Estuary, you can find Magellanic plovers, beach birds and, in winter, hooded grebes.
Plan your trip: Puerto Deseado and Penguin Island
Tierra del Fuego National Park, Beagle Channel and Costa Atlántica Reserve
Tierra del Fuego, Antártida e Islas del Atlántico Sur
The Tierra del Fuego National Park and the Beagle Channel are two amazing places to discover geese, striated caracaras, snowy sheathbills, Magellanic woodpeckers and black-browed albatrosses.
If you like penguins, you have to visit Martillo Island, where you will not only see Magellanic penguins but you will get to know the only colony of gentoo penguins in Argentina and, from now and then, you may also spot a King penguin.
Near Río Grande, the Costa Atlántica Reserve is perfect to see huge flocks of migratory birds arriving each spring from the Northern hemisphere, like the red knot.
Mar Chiquita Reserva
Dunes, mountains, pastures, beaches, crabbeds, marshes, wetlands, streams and the albufera —a lagoon that communicates with the sea through a narrow channel— await you.
On its trails you will be able to see resident and visiting birds all year round. Cocoi herons, american oystercatchers, great grebe, brown-and-yellow marshbird and several more nest in the area. In summer, birds such as terns, plovers and hudsonian godwits arrive from the northern hemisphere. And from March to September, species such as the snowy sheathbill, the blue-and-yellow tanager and the south american tern migrate from Patagonia.
You can visit this reserve traveling the circuit from La Plata to Miramar through the bay of Samborombón.
Private Natural Reserves
Buenos Aires, Córdoba, Corrientes, Entre Ríos, Jujuy, Misiones, Salta, San Luis, Santa Cruz
In many parts of Argentina, you can visit private natural reserves that combine birdwatching with other ecotourism activities. In many cases, they also offer accommodation, cuisine and other personalized activities. This are some of the reserves that are part of www.reservasprivadas.org.ar
Buenos Aires: Paititi Reserve, El Destino Natural Reserve, Nahuel Ruca Reserve
Chaco: Los Chaguares Reserve
Córdoba: Cerro Blanco Reserve, La Constancia Reserve, Abracaral Native Reserve, Naguan Tica Reserve
Corrientes: Esteros de Cambá Trapo Reserve, Guasú Kua
Entre Ríos: La Aurora del Palmar, Senderos del Monte
Jujuy: Ecoportal de Piedra
Misiones: Posada Puerto Bemberg, San Sebastián de la Selva, Osonunú Natural Reserve, Curindy Reserve, Margay Reserve, Club del Río
Salta: Del Huaico Reserve
San Luis: Tierra de Oro Reserve
Santa Cruz: Estancia Los Huemules Natural Reserve
More info: Discover Argentina´s private reserves