Birding Tour Bhutan: The Himalayas and Black-necked Crane 2018

Duration: 12 days

Welcome to our Birding Tour Bhutan. Known as the land of the Thunder Dragon, Bhutan is a quaint, quiet, and scenically spectacular country with a strong conservation ethic rooted in ancient Buddhist traditions. Vast areas of unspoiled forest still cover the Himalayan foothills that spread over much of the country. On clear autumn days we enjoy snow-capped peaks as well as fabulous architecture, while we search for a suite of sought-after birds. November is particularly good for birds often missed on spring birding tours to this country – notably Black-necked Crane (no guarantee, of course, but we usually find it) and the Critically Endangered (IUCN) and enigmatic White-bellied Heron. Birding Bhutan in November also means being treated to abundant, fabulously exciting mixed flocks that contain the likes of laughingthrushes, yuhinas, fulvettas, and other incredible Oriental bird groups. We also expect to find some fabled Eastern Himalayan birds that can be encountered year-round, such as Beautiful Nuthatch (among other nuthatches), the tricky Ward’s Trogon, the unbelievable Fire-tailed Myzornis, Rufous-necked Hornbill, Yellow-rumped Honeyguide, Ibisbill, Himalayan Monal, and other vivid pheasants, including the aptly-named Blood Pheasant, and a chance at the dazzling Satyr Tragopan. The tragopan is more likely on our spring tour, but we nevertheless stand a small chance in November of a sighting of this Himalayan special. Other highlights are Wallcreeper, spectacular sunbirds, parrotbills, striking and gorgeous forktails along the fast-flowing rivers – plus a plethora of other tantalizing jewels.

In addition to this host of fabulous birds we expect to also find a host of fascinating mammals, including golden langur, black giant squirrel, yellow-throated martin, yak, and many others.

Beautifully crafted dzongs (the word means “fortress”, but these days they are indeed mostly fabulous monasteries) and temples, such as the famous Tiger’s Nest Monastery, dot the awe-inspiring landscapes.

We begin our tour with a flight arriving in Paro in the west, and we gradually make our way eastwards through a range of habitats such as pine and spruce forests, subtropical broadleaved forests, bamboo, alpine scrub, rivers, and many others.

This tour can be combined with our Bhutan Extension: Kaziranga, India’s Grasslands, and Nameri Tiger Reserve, November 2018 (November 15 – 22, 2018) tour.

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