Time Out São Paulo

Avistar – Brazilian Bird Fair

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Avistar – Brazilian Bird Fair

Admission R$150; R$100 (reductions)

Date 17 May 2013-19 May 2013

Open 9am-6pm

Avistar – Brazilian Bird Fair website

Avenida Professor Fonseca Rodrigues 1655, Alto de Pinheiros

Telephone (11) 3023 0316

Bird-watching has little of the popularity here that it does in Europe or the USA, where millions of people regularly settle down for a nice spot of spotting. They’re often caricatured as a dull breed bristling with notebooks and binoculars, and there’s some smoke to that fire, in the form of the tedious, trainspotter-like box-ticking some of them like to indulge in.

So what’s refreshing about Avistar, the biggest bird-watching fair in Latin America, is wandering around the feira and being embraced by the infectious enthusiasm of those who are, far from pedantic data-collectors, essentially, simply lovers of nature.

Brazil has an extraordinary avian biodiversity, approaching 2,000 species, which makes it a mecca for foreign bird-lovers. And it may come as a surprise to those in this urban jungle that, even here within São Paulo’s city limits, you can see over a quarter of them in the wild, from monkey-eating eagles to black-beaked toucans, and from ruby-throated hummingbirds to devil-eared owls.

This eighth annual ornithological extravaganza takes place, as ever, in Parque Villa-Lobos – a former rubbish tip turned park exemplar. Avistar’s gallery of the best avifauna photographs of the year is the result of a hotly disputed contest, with often remarkable results. At the fair, everything from books, bird-watching holidays and equipment will be on sale. Meanwhile, a series of workshops and talks (in Portuguese) running throughout the weekend, on everything from bird photography to conservation, should bring something of interest to the beginners and twitchers alike.

By Time Out São Paulo editors
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