Bird Watching sights in Northwest Argentina
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Receiving 1000mm to 1800mm of precipitation a year, but with a defined winter dry season, Calilegua comprises a variety of ecosystems. The transitional selva (jungle), from 350m to 500m above sea level, consists of tree species common in the Gran Chaco, such as deciduous lapacho and palo amarillo. Between 550m and 1600m, the cloud forest forms a dense canopy of trees more than 30m tall, punctuated by ferns, epiphytes and lianas, often mist-covered.
Above 1200m, the montane forest is composed of conifers, aliso and queñoa. Above 2600m this grades into moist grasslands, which become drier as one proceeds west toward the Quebrada de Humahuaca.
The 230 bird species at home in…
The best places for bird and mammal watching are near the stream courses in the early morning or late afternoon. From the ranger station at Mesada de las Colmenas, follow the steep, rugged trail down to a beautiful creek marked with numerous animal tracks, including those of large cats. The descent takes an hour, the ascent twice that.