domingo, 20 de dezembro de 2009

Ed and Cindy´s tour

Few of the many picutures took by Cindy and Ed from Illinois during their tour in the pantanal. Images say for itself.

Here's my Northern Pantanal Trip Report:
We spent a week in the N. Pantanal in early Sept. Amazing place and all the more so because of Julinho of Pantanal Trackers. He picked us up at the airport late in the evening when we arrived in Cuiaba, delivered us to our hotel and made sure we got checked in OK. What follows is a brief day-by-day about accommodations & experiences followed by a summary.
Day 1: Our adventure started early the next morning with the drive from Cuiaba to Porto Jofre, taking our time and seeing all the wildlife along the way. By the time we reached our destination for the day we had seen about 70 species of birds as well as caiman & mammals. By the time we arrived at the lodge, our minds were on information and sensory overload! The lodge at Porto Jofre (a very fine fishing lodge actually) was very nice - comfortable room with air cond. & stocked mini-bar, excellent food at the restaurant, pleasant and accommodating staff and a great setting as well.
Days 2, 3, 4: These (long) days were spent on the river looking for jaguars and whatever else nature set before us. We had 4 jaguar sightings - one we watched laze about the river bank for about an hour, another we watched walk along the bank for 30 minutes or so. . Then, 2 other sightings, one at night which was really incredible. We camped for two nights with a local family which was a very special experience and then back to Porto Jofre for a night. By now we had seen many more birds & other creatures (more in the summary).
Days 5, 6: Drove to Pousada Rio Claro for 2 nights. Wildlife along the drive, night spotting, hikes. We enjoyed the lodge and were able to see the giant river otters while we were there! Rio Claro offers horseback riding as well as a number of different excursions. Rooms are comfortable and have air conditioning. There is a pool and the food was good. From here we went to the Araras Lodge tower one evening to watch the sunset and look for wildlife - did some night spotting on the return trip to Rio Claro.
Days 7, 8: Drove to Pousada Piuval for 1 night. The lodge is comfortable - air cond., pool. The food was delicious. This was a bonus day for us as we had planned to go to Chapada dos Guimaraes, but it was closed so we spent an extra day in the Pantanal - a great choice! We only wish we could have spent more time there. The evening of day 8 had us back in Cuiaba.
Summary: A trip to the Pantanal is an extraordinary experience. We were astounded not only with the variety, but the sheer number of birds as well as the mammals we saw. All totaled, we saw about 120 bird species. Besides birds, we saw the jaguars, crab eating fox, giant river otter, marsh deer, red brocket deer, brown capuchin monkey, howler monkey, marmoset, capybara, caiman, anaconda, collared anteater (its back, sleeping in a tree), coati, agouti, neotropical otter, green iguana, other lizards AND a rat in the claws of a barn owl on a night spotting excursion. We also saw tapir tracks and might have spotted it if we hadn’t been running on empty and declined another night spotting trip. I’d like to say again that Julinho made this trip really special. His heartfelt passion and respect for the Pantanal and its creatures and ecosystem are admirable and his knowledge is outstanding. He pioneered the jaguar sighting trips and his commitment to responsible treatment and respect for these magnificent creatures sets him apart from some of the others we (regrettably) had occasion to observe. And on top of that, he was a pleasure to be around for those 8 days!
Pantanal tips: Expect early to bed and early to rise for the best wildlife viewing. Take your guide’s advice on excursions, timing, where to go - he knows the Pantanal and the wildlife - you don’t. You probably know the rest but...... Take insect repellent (we treated a set of clothes with permethrin) , sunscreen, rain poncho, dry pack if you have one, water bottles, flashlight, LOTS of digital camera cards & extra camera batteries, binos, backpack, (forget a suitcase full of clothes, take your gear). Our camera battery charger can operate on 110-240V & we didn’t need a plug adapter but check your voltage requirements - most places had both type of outlets and they were marked but not all. Make sure you don't go past Pocone without everything you will need - you won't find a shop or drugstore beyond.
One last thing... If every morning you need to shave or apply makeup or wash & style your hair, or can’t spend 10 or so hours in a small boat and enjoy having lunch on a river bank with caiman nearby, this is not the trip for you - you should choose another destination and/or trip. If this is the trip for you, you are in for a wonderful adventure!!
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sábado, 12 de dezembro de 2009

National Geographic Documentary

For those inthe US, Dec 12 National Geographic Channel is broadcasting the documentary about one of the most important naturalist George Schaller, that I had the honor to participate during the part of the show about the pantanal and jaguars.

quinta-feira, 26 de novembro de 2009

Tour report

Check´s Claudia Pozzoli report from Italy of my last jaguar tour of the year.

quinta-feira, 5 de novembro de 2009

Marion and John

Black collared antear spotted along the transpantaneira parkway.

Green Iguana

Giant otter taking a sunbath

Marion and John with Maria and Carmindo, another happy and sucsseful tour

September tour

This is one of the 10 jaguars spotted in this tour, took alot of work, patience and persistence.
Los 3 amigos, Shaun Bacon and Graham from Australia and Carmindo at his place on the Pirigara river, we camp for 10 days searching for jaguars

Some spotted I have to push the boat.

Shaun getting shots of a jaguar that was resting under the shade. We were sitting there for about 6 hrs

Giant otters

quarta-feira, 26 de agosto de 2009

Ian and Jo´s tour

Male and female posing for us
Another female of 4 spotted during this tour

After 2:30 hours observing a jaguar and tosting under the 40°c sun, a break for lunch and a refreshing swim in the 3 Irmãos river.

Ian, Jo from UK and ms. Anaconda that we saw along the transpantaneira.
Check Joana´s report.

sexta-feira, 14 de agosto de 2009

Rudy´s dream

Rudy Edlund from Buffalo(USA) told me that getting a picture of a jaguar was his dream, I´m very glad his dream came true, this guy was taking a good rest in the end of the day.
This is the first jaguar we spotted resting at Cuiabá river bank, we watched this jaguar for about 4:30hrs, took us patience, luck and persistence, it paid off.

Me and Rudy the last day in Porto Jofre, thanks you for trusting my judgements, everything was just great.

quarta-feira, 5 de agosto de 2009

Tour with Julien and Kim

I just finished a tour with Julien and Kim from Luxemburg. This is one of the jaguar we spotted while patrolling his territory, we followed this guy for about 30 min
Julien at work. Check his page: This is another male spotted at first day taking a rest at the beach, it is very important to keep some distance, this way we are able to have more time with them, cats like space, in my jaguar tours I´m very concern about it, to respect their space.

In the end of the tour I took Kim and Julien for a flight over the pantanal, with us was my great friend Lilito the best bush pilot in the pantanal that owns the plane and give me the honor to fly it.

quarta-feira, 8 de julho de 2009

July tours

These are some pictures of a tour with a couple from England around Porto Jofre area, we are all together for dinner at Carmindo and Maria´s place, that night we had buffalo meat.
Claire giving a little break and having fun driving the boat along Cuiabá river

This is the jaguar we spotted along the Cuiabá River, great moment!

Me and Robert. We all had an incredible time.

sábado, 9 de maio de 2009

These are pix´s from a tour with Jason(uk) and his future wife(I´ll wait for the wedding invitation) Sara (DK).
Slowly the pantanal is getting dry, mammals and birds are getting ready for the season, jabiru storks are mating and getting the nest ready, after a hot day, hanging out at the natural pool, at night buffalo bbq for dinner.

sexta-feira, 1 de maio de 2009

Latest tour

This is my latest tour with a very nice couple, Kelly(UK) and her husband Damien that is Irish.
High density and High dew point caused this unusual but beautiful image in the morning at the pantanal.
We went out for a night safari we spotted this commom reptile but in a rare albine form, it is a forest racer, they are not poisoned but when bothered came became agressive, she and Kelly where having a nice chat.

A better view of the forest racer

Damien trying to impresse Kelly

quarta-feira, 25 de fevereiro de 2009

February tour

These are some pictures from my latest tour with Aindreas and Sandra from Ireland, it was great, we had a lot of fun, we had some rain but most of the time the weather was great Aindreas having lasso lessons

Julinho and Sandra

On the top of the jeep during night safari Aindreas and Sandra A group of Howler monkeys spotted form the top of the tower