Birdies at the Amazon Golf Course
By Adrian Walker

Wildlife tends to abound on golf courses across the world with Australian golfers being familiar with kangaroos, some North American courses boasting bears (a distinct hazard) and one in Southern China named the Wild Elephant Golf course for obvious reasons. This occurs because golf courses offer a wide range of habitats from roughs to water hazards plus the long grassy fairways, all havens for wildlife of different types. The Amazon Golf Course is no exception and this handicapped hacker recently spent time at the course not with a set of clubs, but a more civilized pair of binoculars.

Birds are found all over the course, particularly in the palm filled wetland adjoining the clubhouse and here a visitor can sit upstairs in absolute comfort and watch an array of feathered residents. Jacanas with the attractive lemon upperwings are commonly seen here along with Herons, Kiskadees and the rare Limpkin, a large wading bird at the extreme limits of its Peruvian range here.

Hawks patrol the skies with 6 different species being counted during my visit including the uncommon Black faced Hawk. Pigeons, Doves, Woodpeckers, Flycatchers and Parrots are also common on the course. Look for the turquoise green, dumpy tailed Pacific Parrotlet here too.

In all, I saw nearly 50 species in a short space of time with others of note the Red Chested Blackbird and Lineated Woodpecker with its fine red head and crest.

A perfect day for the Iquitos visiting birdwatcher would involve a morning trip by Motokar to the Amazon Golf Course, a stroll around the treed fringes of the course followed by a relaxing cold beer of soft drink upstairs with the fine views of the wetland. Later a 15 minute bumpy ride to Nina Rumi should follow where eateries providing excellent views across the Rio Nanay with further new birds to delight and boats that can take you home to Iquitos.

Good birding and enjoy Iquitos.

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