In the province of Neuquén, it is possible to find a great diversity of bird species. This allows an interesting development of the “birdwatching” tourist-recreational activity.
Argentina holds approximately 1,000 species of birds, a great diversity compared to the total of 9,000 in the whole world. Many of them are located in this privileged place of the planet.
Thanks to its rich geography, which is divided into 18 eco-regions, our country has a natural wealth that contributes significantly to the global diversity. Seven out of those eco-regions belong to the Patagonian region.
In this sense, the most wanted bird species for lovers of this activity in Neuquén province are: giant woodpecker, choique, macá, condor, and torrents duck, among others, all of which can be found in the different tourist areas of the province.
There are diverse places where this activity can be practised in the province, apart from the 2 RAMSAR sites (Laguna Blanca National Park and Tromen Provincial Park) and 12 Important Areas for the Preservation of Birds (AICAs).
In the tourist area Patagonia of Lakes you can find species of interest, like condor, giant woodpecker, cabecita negra (black head), comeseo, mora eagle, and bandurrias, among others. These can be seen in the towns of Villa Pehuenia, San Martín de los Andes, Villa Traful, Aluminé, Piedra del Águila, Collón Curá area until Junín de los Andes, the natural protected areas of Batea Mahuida and Chañy, and Nahuel Huapi National Park.
In Thermal Patagonia you can watch different species of birds, among which the Andean gull stands out in Caviahue – Copahue and the natural protected areas of Copahue and Cuchillo Curá.
The Steppe of Dinosaurs holds some characteristics that turn it into an oasis for birds to rest and to live in a natural environment. The area of mountains and steppes with humid soils, rivers, lagoons, lakes and dammings is an adequate environment for different species to live together in harmony. Black necked swans, flamingos, ducks, and macas are some of the most common species in Neuquén Capital City, Vista Alegre and Zapala. It is important for the area to consider the existence of 4 AICAs: Laguna Blanca National Park, Auca Mahuida Natural Protected Area, Paso de los Indios and El Magrullo Natural Protected Area.
In Patagonia of Valleys and Volcanoes you can watch the brown Huet Huet, who lives in the Epu Lauquen Natural Protected Area. In Tromen Provincial Park lies the Los Barros swampland, where many aquatic birds nest, like common macá, silver macá, witch heron, baya stork, southern flamingo, black-necked swan, small short-necked swan, grey-headed cauquén, common cauquén, juarjual duck, big dabchick duck, ani duck, golden duck, and spoon duck. It is also the place where many migratory birds are concentrated on during summer, like pitotois, playeritos and swimming golden plover.