These large-nosed avian pearls live at surprisingly high altitude; I have seen them as high as 2800 meters and as low as 1800 meters. My first encounter with this bird was very memorable at the edge of the Mindo-Nambillo Reserve near the road that goes from San Tadeo to Bellavista.
The second time I photographed this bird was at Recinto 23 de Junio at the high ridge to the east of the town. The birds were actively calling and seem unconcerned with all the noise that came out my camera.
The next time I managed some nice photos was at the highest altitude place where I have seen them at the Mountain of Ali which is accessed from the community of Yunguilla. This mountain is the beginning of one of the most interesting trail that begins at high altitude at 2650 mts (approximate) and drops all the way down to 1600 masl ending at Santa Lucia and Maquipucuna Reserves.
This post has been submitted to Bird Photography Weekly #135. Go check it out!
Love these birds, Renato. I certainly won’t forget finding my first Plate-billed Mountain Toucan in your company! And let me add that this handsome birds are Choco endemics found only in a specific region of Ecuador and Colombia.
simply gorgeous birds… can’t wait to see them… eventually!
Fantastic, wonderful birds. I think I also saw my first ones around Mindo. How lucky you are to live in a country where they can be seen!
We have not seen one in the wild, but we will one day!
We saw a sad old Toucan in the London Zoo over 20 years ago and it had been there for years and it looked really miserable….it brought tears to your eyes.
Dear Clare and Grant: It is amazing to see these birds here in the wild; they are very vivacious and aware to all their surroundings and sounds. They are also very responsive to calls since they mostly travel in pairs; I wonder if they mate for life. These babies are very special.
Hey Pat, as always you have seen most of these birds. I think you are also very lucky to have seen them. I hope you can come back to Ecuador some day and we can do a little birding together.
Hey Jan: It sounds like you are coming to Ecuador some day, well eventually, and I hope to meet you too!
Mike: did you know that we missed these birds with Corey? He will just have to come back again to see them.
Now that sounds like a plan!
Great shots of the Plate-billed Mountain Toucans Renato! That last photo is ultra-cool! I hope I can get down to Ecuador some day!
@Corey & Renato: that sounds like a definite plan, esp because someone who shall remain nameless owes me another trip to see my Cock-in-the-Rock, not to mention a chance to meet Maria!!
Great pics Renato!
Beautiful Renato. We just saw them in Tandayapa at about 7,000 ft. To me they are the most beautiful of all the toucans. Excellent shots…
Thank you all for your comments. I am still hoping to meet some of you yet!