Ecuador Birds & Wildlife Photo Tour
November 2-11, 2023
Ecuador is one of only 17 MEGADIVERSE countries in the world. What that means is that Ecuador contains a huge number of species compared to most other places on earth. This small South American country can boast over 1600 bird species including an incredible 130 species of hummingbirds.
We’ll photograph hummingbirds, tons of other species of birds, mammals and insects, flowers, and anything else that we can find. We’ll spend time with professional nature guides who will lead us right to the birds and animals and we’ll sleep and eat all meals at wonderful eco-lodges the entire time.
Nov. 2, 2023
Fly into Mariscal Sucre International Airport (UIO) in Quito, Ecuador arriving sometime during late afternoon or early evening. Our hotel has a free airport pick-up service for your transfer to the hotel. We meet at 6pm in the evening at the designated hotel in Quito, Ecuador.
Drive to our first lodge. Access to amazing feeding platforms where bird activity is non-stop. Work with Don on single-flash hummingbird set-ups.
We’ll get up early for a special naturalist-guided photo session with rare Antpitta birds. Then you’ll have all day at the lodge and surrounding areas to explore with your camera, to learn more bird techniques with Don, to eat 3 hearty meals and to simply enjoy being in Ecuador.
After breakfast and more photography at the lodge feeding platforms, we’ll pack up and drive to our second lodge, located in a high elevation (9000 feet) cloud forest. Here, sightings of the amazing Sword-billed Hummingbird are common. All-day photography of the diversity found around this lodge.
Morning will be spent either with hummingbirds in the garden area, or walking along the river for Torrent Ducks and other species. After lunch we drive to our third lodge. This place is at a lower elevation and can have hundreds of birds buzzing around at any one time. The action here is non-stop and you’ll be happily exhausted once it comes time for meals and sleep.
Today we’ll have the chance to learn multi-flash hummingbird photography techniques – all equipment provided (except 1 flash unit for your particular camera). Other opportunities at this lodge include numerous tanagers, jays, mammals, insects, jungle scenery and much more.
We’ll get up well before sunrise today for a short drive to a special bird refuge and the chance to go with local guides searching for Andean Cock of the Rock sightings, as well as rare Antpittas and other birds. Brunch will be served at this wildlife refuge, followed by a jungle walk searching for diverse wildlife and then we drive back to our cozy lodge for dinner and perhaps a group meeting to share images.
Today we keep our schedule flexible and you may repeat anything or re-visit places on the lodge’s grounds that you want to see again. Multi-flash setups will be available again for those that want. Nectar and fruit feeders will be buzzing with activity and you could feasibly spend your entire day
photographing at these spots. Other options include going for a jungle walk, image review/critique sessions, or relaxing as you wish.
We’ll spend the morning doing more single flash hummingbird photography, or going for one last jungle walk. After lunch we begin driving toward Quito to the hotel near Quito’s airport.
Nov. 11, 2023
Final breakfast, then we transfer to the Quito airport for our flights home.
- 9 nights accommodations.*
- Airport pick-up and drop off.
- All ground transportation with professional driver throughout the tour.
- All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) from lunch on November 3rd to lunch on November 10th.
- Entry fees into all photography sites.
- Time with local guides and wildlife handlers/experts who will lead us to the best wildlife photo opportunities.
- All guided photo sessions including multi-flash hummingbird set-ups (all equipment provided).
- Group and/or one-on-one critique and photo sharing sessions.
- In-depth wildlife photo instruction and leadership from professional photographer Don Mammoser.
- Tons of fun and a true small group tour with a maximum of 6 participants.
*Accommodations/tour prices are based on double occupancy. For those not traveling as a couple or with a friend, the single supplement will apply.
- Air fare from your hometown to Quito, Ecuador and return (airport code UIO).
- Meals while in Quito.
- Alcoholic drinks.
- Tips to local guides and drivers.
- Passport or visa fees (visas are not required for citizens of USA or Canada).
- Travel insurance.
- Gifts and items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry etc.