Central America and Caribbean birdwatching guides and tours recommended by Birdingpal
If you are you an independent birdwatcher, who does not care for large group tours, then Birdingpaltours is for you
Our tours are flexible, safe and the use of a local guide lets you participate in the planning
A local guide knows all the hotspots and you get the most out of your trip
You select the date and length for a trip to suit youself
If your time is limited, well design a tour to fit your needs
A professional Birdingpal guide can customize your tour, and you will see the birds you want.
Your guide is also your travel companion, who will make sure you experience the native people, scenery, culture, history and food, first hand.
You will enjoy the advantage of all the attention you get in a small group, for the same price or perhaps even less, than you will pay if you travel with the large tour groups from other countries
Remember, the next time you travel, you do not have to miss the birdwatching if your partner or travel companions are non birders; a local guide is flexible, and will easily accommodate other needs too
Hiring a Birdingpal guide will boost the local economy and help protect birds other wildlife and their habitat
Victor Joseph, your local Birdingpal guide
Bachelors of Science in Biology (emphasis in Zoology). Minor in Chemistry. Ref. Dr. Floyd E Hayes, Department of Biology, Pacific Union College, 1 Angwin Ave., Angwin,CA 94508, USA; tel.: 707-965-6401; fax: 707-965-7577; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Degree earned from Andrews University Berrien Springs, Michigan, 1997
Matriculation completed at Caribbean Union College now University of the Southern Caribbean, Maracas Valley, Port of Spain, Trinidad.
Diploma in Agriculture earned at Eastern Caribbean Institute of Agriculture and Forestry (ECIAF), Centeno via Arima, Trinidad; 1986-1988
Teacher and Caribbean Examiner of Integrated Science. Nesting Seabird Monitoring field worker on the North Sound Islands and other offshore islands including Redonda, Environmental Awareness Group of Antigua.
At the end of September we used Birding Pal Victor Joseph for a guided bird day in Antigua. As well as being a very nice guy, his knowledge of the island, the birding spots and the local birds was immense. Can heartily recommend him to other enquirers. Dr & Mrs R Manifold, RSPB Wigan UK
On the 27th of Dec 2011, I had the great pleasure of being guided by Victor Joseph for a day of birdwatching on Antigua. Victor was most knowledgeable about the island, especially the bird life, including habitat, special calls, song and where to find the birds. I had a big list of Caribbean endemics, that I had never seen before and throughout the day Victor managed to find them all. It was a most enjoyable day and I would highly recommend Victor in the future for anyone birding on Antigua.
Yours sincerely, Bill Lindley, London, Ontario, Canada
For birding in Antigua please send a message to Victor.
Carolyn Wardle, your local Birdingpal guide
As one of the first Bahamas Ministry of Tourism certified ecotour guides, Carolyn has been offering birding tours with Bahamas Outdoors Limited on New Providence, Paradise Island and other Bahamian islands since 1997. Originally from England, she has lived in Nassau since 1964 so is totally familiar with the islands and can share much knowledge about the natural history of the archipelago.
The location is Nassau on the island of New Providence, offering half and full day tours to see the endemic Bahama Woodstar and many regional specialties including the Red-legged Thrush, Thick-billed Vireo, Western Spindalis, Bahama Mockingbird, La Sagras Flycatcher and many others. New Providence is the only place to find the introduced Cuban endemic Cuban Grassquit outside Cuba.
One day or overnight tours to Andros gives a good chance to find the endemics Bahama Oriole, found only on Andros, the Bahama Swallow and the Bahama Yellowthroat. Also on Andros are the Cuban Emerald and Great Lizard Cuckoo.
2 or 3 day tours can be arranged to Abaco for the Bahama Warbler, Bahama Yellowthroat, Bahama Swallow, the Abaco race of the Cuban Parrot and the West Indian Woodpecker.
We have just returned from a wonderful trip to the Bahamas, visiting Andros and New Providence Islands during our stay. Many thanks to Carolyn Wardle from Bahamas Outdoors for taking us around the islands and helping us locate many of the endemics that the Bahamas has to offer. C Taylor, New Zealand
We thanked Carolyn for a wonderful outing. And I'll use this space to recommend anyone wanting an insider's tour of the Bahamas Outdoors to contact Carolyn Wardle. We found her to be a delightful host, excellent birder, knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna, and a person with more energy than the two of us. Thank you, Carolyn! Jerry, Michigan
For birding in Bahamas please send a message to Carolyn.
Erika Gates, your local Birdingpal guide
I was born in Germany and moved to Grand Bahama Island 43 years ago. Have been in the Nature Tour Business for over 20 years, conducting kayak, biking, snorkel, Jeep and ATV tours with a team of 60 staff members. I have restored and operate the Garden of the Groves, a 12 acre tropical Garden with over 60 species of resident, migratory and Bahamian Speciality birds recorded.
Certified Bahamas Birding Guide, Author of many bird columns and reports on birding and birding events. She also wrote "Natives of Grand the Bahamas" - a Guide to Vegetation and Birds of Grand Bahama. in 2010 Erika received the Lifetime Achievement Award for her outstanding contribution in Bird Conservation on Grand Bahama Island by the Society for Conservation and Study of Caribbean Birds (SCSCB). In 2000 she was the recipient of the Cacique Award presented by the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism to an individual that has consistently provided visitors with an outstanding sustainable tourism experience. Erika will be happy to be your guide for your best Grand Bahama Birding experience. If you decide to bird on your own she will mark the best birding sites for you so you can find your Bahamas target species during your stay.
We spent our first day on this beautiful island with Erika - and we had an amazing time birding, touring the island and learning about the island's natural resources. She is a great resource and we added at least a dozen birds to our "life list". We will be talking about this trip for years to come - thank you Erika! Michelle and Scott Hoffman, Big Bear Lake, California.
For birding in Grand Bahama Island please send a message to Erika.
Ryan Chenery, your local Birdingpal guide
I have been leading birding tours in Barbados since 2004 and can honestly say that I have enjoyed each one. It is an excuse for me to get out of the office, explore the island in search of winged visitors and to check in on the well known haunts of secretive residents. I am very much a people person and enjoy trading birding adventures with my clients. Although Barbados is small, it is exactly this lack of size which provides birders with a wonderful opportunity to explore every significant habitat on the island in a single tour! From mangrove swamps and salt marshes in the South to the last remaining tropical rainforests and open grasslands in the North, there are myriad species of resident and migrant bird species just waiting to be found. And to think that one can do this while soaking in the scenic splendour of this idyllic tropical gem bordered by the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean.
I was fortunate enough to spend a morning birding with Ryan on the south and east side of Barbados on March 15, 2012. In the space of a few hours we found 43 species in habitats varying from shoreline to wetland to wooded areas. Ryan is a native Barbadian and knows his island well. Not only is he an experienced birder but a charming host and is knowledgeable on many subjects. I learned a lot about Barbados while visiting areas off the beaten track. I would highly recommend Ryan to anyone seeking a guide on this Carribean island.
We had an excellent day's birdwatching with Ryan in mid-January 2011. It was the first day of our first trip to Barbados, although I had done a reasonable of birdwatching in the Caribbean and Canada before. He and his fiancee (now wife), Alex, picked my wife and me up from our hotel as arranged and then took us up to the north of the island, and we spent the day working our way down the eastern side. We covered a broad range of habitats - forested gullies, some of the unspoilt wetlands, coast, grassland, and saw the local specialities (local sub species of Bullfinch and Yellow Warbler, both hummingbirds, Caribbean Coot, Black-bellied Whistling duck) and several migrant shorebirds - we saw 34 species in the day (of which 8 were new for me). Ryan certainly knows both the birds and the island well, and he and Alex were great company too. Overall it was a great way to see the birds (and get a good feel of the island too), and I'd thoroughly recommend Ryan as a
John Hobbs, Norfolk, England
For birding in Barbados please send a message to Ryan.
Hector Bol, your local Birdingpal guide
I was first introduced to birds by Elizabeth Mallory of Manomet Bird Observatory, now Manomet Center for Environmental Sciences; this was in 1989.
From 1991 to 1996 I studied and got my degree in Natural Resources Management from Instituto Tecnologico Forestal in Durango, Mexico. I never stopped birding and I am very familiar with that northwestern corner of Mexico.
In 2000, I returned to my country, studied and obtained a license to guide in Belize; I have been a guide since 2001.
In August of 2004, I became one of the few guides certified to lead tours inside the ATM cave.
In August of 2008, I was part of the International Intern Program held at the Joppa Flats Education Center in Massachusetts; this was part of a program set up by Mass Audubon and the American Birding Association.
In October of 2008, I became certified as a mist netting and bird banding assistant. This one week course was done through the Institute for Bird Populations and the Belize Foundation for Research and Environmental Education.
I have continued during all this time to learn more and to lead birding tours in my country.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Hector.
Geddes Hislop, your local Birdingpal guide
Geddes Hislop is a Wildlife Biologist living on Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands. Originally from Trinidad & Tobago, he developed an interest in the rich variety of wildlife on his island home from an early age. Today he has a degree in Wildlife Biology and several years of experience in wildlife field research and environmental education in Trinidad, Tobago and Grand Cayman Island. His Cayman attributes include interpretative development of the Q.E II Botanic Park and Grand Caymans famous Mastic Trail.
Being an educator at heart, Geddes shares his knowledge with all levels of interest and frequently works with everyone from kindergarten students to professional photographers and field scientists exploring the "outdoor laboratory". He owns and operates Silver Thatch Excursions- a (land-based) ecotourism service operating on Grand Cayman since 1996. This ecotourism award-winning business grew from a passionate love of nature and the outdoors, after realising the need for a professional interpretative service to enrich a visitors exposure to Caymans natural and historic heritage. Nature-watching, hiking, ecology and culture- particularly ethno-botany & zoology (cultural uses of plants & wildlife) are his areas of top interest, but birdwatching is his favourite!
Geddes currently works as a curator of terrestrial exhibits and education programmes, and conducts birding tours on weekends and select weekdays, searching for his self-designated Cayman Big 7 among other local and migratory birding prospects.
This is a testimonial for Geddes. You could not find a more competent guide. He is knowledgeable about birds history culture current events, and more. Hire him. You won't be sorry. M K O'Neil. beachwood ohio USA.
For birding in the Cayman Islands please send a message to Geddes.
I met Geddes several years ago on my first trip to Grand Cayman. I'm an avid birder from the United States and wanted to see the local birds, plus the birds that summer with us at home. I contacted Geddes and we discussed which birds were highest on my wish list to see. Geddes brought me to many sites on the island and I saw all the birds on my list! Geddes will customize your walk depending on your preferences of what birds you want to see (woods birds, shore birds, etc.). He is very knowledgeable and you will have an enjoyable experience. Whenever I am visiting the Cayman Islands I go out on a bird walk with Geddes and always see unique and special birds. I would highly recommend Geddes for a birding tour. Kathy Gellman, Connecticut, United States kathryngellman(AT)optonline.net
Orestes Martinez (El chino de Zapata), your local Birdingpal guide.
Bi'logo naturalista y nativo de la Cienaga de Zapata, 40 a'os de experiencia como gu'a naturalista especializado en aves, Ha publicado diferentes art'culos relacionados con especies en peligro de extinci'n, habitad, reproducci'n y otros, en la revista 'El pitirre' de la Sociedad de Ornitolog'a Caribe'a', en la 'Ciencias Biol'gicas de la Universidad de la Habana. Ha guiado por m's de 40 a'os a miles de ornit'logos y Cient'ficos que han visitado la naturaleza cubana.
Ha cursado diplomado sobre Educaci'n Ambiental para el desarrollo sostenible de la isla de Cuba tiene diferentes postgrados de conservaci'n y estudios de las aves, ha participado en varias reuniones internacionales sobre Ornitolog'a en diferentes pa'ses . Y ha recibido varios reconocimientos internacionales por distintas organizaciones conservacionistas: National Wildlife Federation, WWF y reconocimiento nacional por el consejo cient'fico debido a su actitud por la conservaci'n de la flora y la fauna de Ci'naga de Zapata y otras partes de Cuba, actualmente lleva voluntariamente un Proyecto de Educaci'n ambiental relacionado con las aves, con ni'os de diferentes escuelas de la Cienaga de zapata.y otros programas de conservacion y educacion ambiental.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Orestes.
Note: The internet in Cuba is often very slow, so please have a little patience for us to reply. Thank you.
Angel Martinez, your local Birdingpal guide.
Angel Martinez: Tec. En proteccion Forestal, Nativo de la Cienga de zapata, actualmente trabaja como Gu'a Especialista en el Parque Nacional de Zapata, a guiado por 30 a'os a cientos de Observadores de aves que han visitado la region, a cursado varios Pos- grados de conservacion sobre las aves, haci como cursos de Ecoturismo y tambien a presentado trabajos en diferentes publicaciones especializadas, colaborador del Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales de Cuba, trabaj de forma voluntaria en trabajos de Educacion Ambiental en las escuelas de la Cienaga de Zapata, tiene varios reconocimientos por su apollo a la Coservacion de la naturaleza.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Angel.
Note: The internet in Cuba is often very slow, so please have a little patience for us to reply. Thank you.
I only went out with Orestes (El Chino). He is an extremely hard-working and good-humored guy who knows his birds very well. We were together for a week, the longest I have been with any local guide. I stayed at a fantastic casa particular El Chino
arranged for me. Next to his house, right on the beach, lobster for dinner every night! I got every bird I wanted. In fact, in terms of expectations and species seen, this was my most successful trip ever. I got 4 more lifers in Cuba than I thought I
could get at best (they were early returning migrants). Knud Rasmussen. Toronto, Canada
Just a note to tell you that we used the services of "el chino" last week for a day in Cuba and were extremely satisfied with
his expertise. I wish we'd been able to spend more time with him, and indeed hope to return to Cuba in the near future and do just that. Thanks for a great website. Regards, Mary and Dave Lord, Canada.
Angel Martinez, our local guide in Caleta Buena, is an experienced birdwatching guide and led birding trips every day to see the Blue Headed Quail Dove among with other extraordinary birds. His brother, El Chino, also helped with accomodations in a bed and breakfast that were excellent and right on the beach. I couldn't have asked for a better guide and service. We had a wonderful time in the Bosque de Zapata on the south side of the island of Cuba. It was very easy to get to from Havana where we rented a car.
Kate Wallace, your local Birdingpal guide
Kate has been guiding in the DR since 1997, when she completed her time of service in Peace Corps. Her camp in the Sierra de Bahoruco, Villa Barrancoli,is located to give access to the higher elevations of the mountains, where almost all of the endemic birds of Hispaniola (31) can be found. She is the local guide for Victor Emanuel Nature Tours. She specializes in tours designed to meet the interests and time of visitors.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Kate.
Robert Broz Moran, your local Birdingpal guide
My name is Robert Broz, I an originally from northern California where I studied Horticulture and owned a small landscape garden company that operated from San Francisco to San Jose. I move to El Salvador in 1994 working in social development projects as an agricultural consultant, English teacher and agronomist for more that 8 years. I am currently the project director for an educational program financed through the Quaker (Society of Friends) Meeting in Palo Alto California. For the last 7 years my wife and I have been involved in tourism here in Suchitoto, El Salvador and since 2007 we have owned and operated a small hostel, restaurant and tour company.
After finding BirdingPal, I thought what a wonderful way to promote El Salvador and offer myself not as an expert birder but as someone who has an enormous interest in improving my birding skills and as someone that El Salvador and its people extremely welll. I am more than happy to offer my skills and knowledge both as a Birdingpal as well as a local birding guide.
For birding in El Salvador please send a message to Robert.
Our biggest regret in visiting Suchitoto is not staying there longer. Robert and his lovely wife showed us such an amazing time. First off, Robert is a wealth of information about the town, its history and surroundings. The day before our tour with him, he gave us a rundown of the town’s artisan shops, recommendations on where to eat, and other information on how to get around on our own. Suchitoto is brimming with art galleries and youth art projects. Because Robert is so involved in the community, he was able to tell us about the galleries and their projects. The next day, we opted for the Cinquera tour because we were interested in learning about the civil war and modern political structure. He even introduced us to a guerilla fighter in the war. That evening, his wife taught us how to make pupusas at their restaurant. The entire experience was a blast, and he completely customized his services for us. If you make it to Suchitoto, you have to stop by and see him. Just ask at your hotel for Robert the Gringo, and they’ll likely have him on their speed dial.
Stephanie Flores and Joel Lackner, January 2010, Sacramento, Calif. USA
We began planning a trip to from the USA to El Salvador with adventure travel in mind. Finding a reliable guide proved to be one of the more difficult tasks. After contacting several potential guides, we decided to hire Robert of "El Gringo Tours". From the moment he picked us up in his four wheel drive at San Salvador airport he had a friendly professional demeanor that put us at ease. Amazingly, Robert knew almost everyone we encountered in El Salvador and he was obviously respected as a result of the years of community service and charity that his family has been involved in. From the mountains of La Palma, to the festivals of Juayua... from the night life of Suchitoto, to the guerrilla museums in Perquin... we were in constant friendly contact
with the local communities. If you are traveling through El Salvador, your journey will be enhanced by giving Robert a call. If you do, say hello to his wonderful wife for me... they invited us into their life and were very generous.
Jamison Daniels. Tennessee, USA
Anthony Jerry Jeremiah, your local Birdingpal guide
As a Forestry professional with a Wildlife Conservationist specialty, I offer my services as a Bird-Watching Guide in Grenada. I have acquired great knowledge and experience working with the Grenada Dove and Hook- Billed Kite, two of the islands flagship species. This interest also extends to the wider Caribbean region. I started operating as a guide in 1997, but had always been fascinated by birds from boyhood days. Grenada is a tri-island state of 133 square miles, has a bird population of approximately 150 species and visiting this most naturally attractive island in the Caribbean is always a rewarding experience. I continue to share this experience with visiting biologists, researchers and birding enthusiasts. Interpretation of other natural and cultural features is also available for your interest. Private excursions preferable for individuals and small groups are my prime offering. I am available for tours preferable on weekends Sat/Sun arrangements must be made for weekdays Mon.-Friday.
Personal transportation is provided for your safety and comfort. Tel: 1-473-440-0393. Mobile: 1-473-416-0191. Or 1-473-533-7767 you can Feel free like a bird to call me before or on arrival. Fees are negotiable based on time and distance on tour. So
dont let price be a deterrent to your visiting opportunity. Appreciate hearing from you any time.
For birding in Grenada please send a message to Jerry.
I spent a short day birding with Anthony "Jerry" Jeremiah. Jerry worked out a very efficient itinerary that started at the Mount Hartman Dove Sanctuary. Alone 200 of the Grenada Doves remain, and Jerry found one. We moved on to a forest at the edge of the sea. Here we had numerous species of small birds, including a tiny baby Antillean Crested Hummingbird. We reach a large pond where I finally saw Caribbean Coots. We then drove up into the hills and despite the Hurricane Ivan damage we saw many birds including Lesser Antillean Tanagers. Jerry then took me behind the airport to a series of small ponds, primarily to see Little Egrets. Jerry was more excited to see a Wilsons snipe, a tough bird to find in Grenada. We ended at gated hotel [Jerry is their resident guide] where Green Heron used a piece of bread to attract fish close to its beak. Overall we saw 42 birds and one mammal in six hours. Jerry is a knowledgeable birder and bird finder. He worked hard to get us to the right place at the right time. He was a pleasant companion, who, as a bonus, provided a concise commentary on island life as we travelled about. I would recommend him highly as a bird guide to any one visiting Grenada. Cheers, Roy John, Canada r.john(AT)rogers.com
Knut Eisermann and Claudia Avenda'o, your local Birdingpal guide
Knut Eisermann (resident in Guatemala since 1997) and Claudia Avenda'o (Guatemalan biologist) are tour leaders specialized in
birding tours in Guatemala. Both have been researching birds in Guatemala since 1997. They produced recently an update on the distribution and status of the birds of Guatemala, published by Lynx Edicions (Annotated checklist of the birds of Guatemala). Both are coordinating the identification of Important Bird Areas (IBA) in Guatemala, a project of the Ornithological Society of Guatemala and BirdLife International. They have recently established Christmas Bird Counts at Tikal and on Atitl'n Volcano, involving local institutions, nature reserves and Guatemalan birders. Claudia and Knut have successfully supported the development of birding sites like Los Tarrales Reserve and Chelemh' Cloud Forest Reserve, including professional advise,
teaching local birding guides and publicity.
Knut and Claudia speaks Spanish, English and German.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Knut and Claudia.
Until recently, I'd never thought too much about birding Guatemala. Our trip with Knut has convinced to return as soon as possible and see more of this fascinating country. Experiencing the Mayan culture and the fabulous birds in the mountains is something I'll never forget. Having traveled with other birding companies, I'd have to recommend Knut and Claudia over the
others for personal service and effort given to show us every possible species. A truly remarkable experience.
Howard King, Riverside, CA, USA. redhillbrd(AT)aol.com
Knut and Claudia are amazing.....we told them what we wanted to see and they planned a perfect itinerary. We saw almost all of our target birds! Can't wait to do another trip with them!
Lori Conrad, Hermosa Beach, CA, USA.
Knut and Claudia did a great job for us and was outstanding both in terms of the birding and the logistics of the trip. Knut Eisermann and Claudia Avenda'o, are deeply knowledgeable about the avifauna of Guatemala, are great birders and organized everything without a hitch. They are working hard surveying the bird life in Guatemala, developing birding and eco-tourism through local lodges such as Los Tarrales and Chelemh', and exposing Guatemala as a first rate birding destination with marquee species that may be found more easily in Guatemala than in any other area. We would heartily recommend them for anyone interested in birding in Guatemala.
Jeffrey F. Peters, Weston, MA, USA. petersjfr(AT)yahoo.com
We were 6 senior Danes, however still quite venturous and with great love for nature, some of us especially keen on birds. We found Knut and Claudia on the internet, which we never regretted. We got the most excellent service with regard to planning a trip quite according to our wishes and with their professional advice. More than 300 birds were seen during the 17 days we spent in Guatemala. Knut has a talent for spotting, hearing, and recognizing everything. Claudia joined us during the trip to Monterrico, because of the small boats where we had to split up in two groups. The tour with Knut and Claudia was quite exceptional, not only because of their professional competence and their ability to take care of our well-being, but also because of their great sense of humor which meant that we enjoyed their company so much.
Kirsten Geertz-Hansen, Farum, Denmark. kirsten(AT)farum-dn.dk
Knut and Claudia are a long time Birdingpal guides, well known in their own country and by myself or birders from around the world. Knud Rasmussen Birdingpal.
Alex Alvarado your local Birdingpal guide
I am Alex from Copan Ruinas, 29 years old. I started my birding experience a few years ago working for a nature reserve located in Copan on Western part of Honduras. After getting involve with my first mornings into the mountains, i decided to spend my time watching this beautiful creatures. I have been scanning the whole country except the eastern part at La Moskitia, which is the most remote part of the country. My tours can be around southern wetlands of Choluteca, Lake Yojoa and adjacent areas, Pacific highlands, North coast at Lancetilla, Pico Bonito, Cuero y Salado, Celaque, Copan, Olancho, La Tigra National Park and the Aguan Valley. Some especial birds which required the right habitat are available to watch in my tours according to the areas, where we stay. If you visit the archaeological city of Copan, I can do morning trips in tropical rainforest or dry open woodlands.
For birding in Honduras please send a message to Alex and Malcolm.
Malcolm Glasgow your local Birdingpal guide
I am a 61 year old Englishman living in Honduras and a self taught birder. Nature and travel were always my major interests and
I became specifically interested in birds in India in the early 90's. At the time I was working half a year in France and spending half a year travelling, mainly in India where I learnt my birding and have seen 535 species. I have birded in Great Britain, France, India, Thailand, Laos, Chile, Peru, Belize and Honduras. My world list numbers 1,446 species. I first visited Honduras in 2006 and fell in love with the Lago de Yojoa area, a birding hotspot with 447 species available. In 2007 I settled
in the village of Los Naranjos and became the tourist guide at D&D Breweries lodge. So far I have seen 456 species here. I am a member of the Honduran Ornithological club.
Wolde your local Birdingpal guide
Wolde is highly entertaining and great fun to be with and totally in love with Jamaica. He has an excellent knowledge of endemic birds in Jamaica and can where they can be found. He is dedicated to protecting and promoting the marine and terrestrial environment with particular emphasis at Bluefields on the South Coast. Here he has actively encouraged a wide range of other groups and organisations to become involved in conservation projects in local coastal and wetlands areas. He has also worked closely with the Government and local fishermen to establish a Fish Sanctuary in Bluefields Bay. In April 2009 Wolde won the prestigious Jamaica Tourist Board, 'Tourism Service Excellence Award' for the South Coast Resort Area. He also received a national award for his company for Training Excellence.
In addition to his birding skills, he has a keen interest in local archaeology and history and has participated in a number of digs for Taino artifacts. If you are really lucky, he may give you a demonstration of his African drumming skills!
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Wolde.
Deceita your local Birdingpal guide
Deceita loves to share her corner of Jamaica and its superb birding with our visitors and loves meeting people. She has a great love of all aspects of natural history with a special fondness for birds. She knows just where to find them on her extensive patch of the island. She studied farming at Knockalva Agricultural School and will just as readily enjoy talking with you about folklore and Jamaican history or point out fascinating plants in the forests. She is well versed in herbal remedies for a wide range of common ailments and will demonstrate how to collect and prepare herbal teas. Deceita is a very active Secretary to Bluefields Bay Fishermens Friendly Society and is one of the main drivers in their successful fish conservation programme.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Deceita.
Veda your local Birdingpal guide
Veda lives, eats, sleeps and dreams birds. Day and night she is on the case ' even in church she is watching to see if one will fly into the building. She is fun to be with and will spot the birds with ease and give their common and local names and recollect many stories about them. Without doubt, her favorite bird is the Northern Potoo which with its superb camouflage seems to play hide-and- seek at its day time roost with even the most observant visitor. She will enjoy teasing you to see the large elusive bird right in front of you. You will be amazed. Whether at Bluefields, Catadupa, or in the remote wilderness of the Cockpit Country she will be the first to get you 'on the bird'! Veda is a key leader of the Bluefields Peoples' Community Association anti-litter eco initiative to educate and keep Bluefields and its environs in pristine condition.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Veda.
Vaughan your local Birdingpal guide
Vaughan is a keen naturalist and ornithologist. He enjoys making sure that visitors get to the hottest birding spots to ensure they have the best possible birding holiday on the island. Over the years, he has helped put western Jamaica back on the map as a one of Jamaica's 'must visit' birding areas for international visitors wanting to find our endemics. He has an extensive knowledge and records of species that can be observed in the region. He is an Executive Member of Bird Life Jamaica with more than 30 years experience in Jamaican ornithology. He is editor of, 'The Broadsheet', the long established and highly respected, Bird Journal for Jamaica. He also has contributed a wealth of information and drafted the sections on Bluefields and Black River IBA's for the 2008 publication, 'Important Bird Areas in The Caribbean,' the BirdLife International book on Caribbean IBA's. He provided data for Ann Sutton's 'Birds of Jamaica', 2009 and BirdLife International's publication 'Water Birds Conservation for the Americas.' He is a keen photographer with a particular is interest in photographing butterflies and has images of several species not previously photographed. He has planned and led walking expeditions in a number of locations including the Arctic of Northern Norway, Canada, Malaysia, as well as the mountains of Scotland and throughout Europe.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Vaughan.
My wife and I have just returned (Nov 2010) from a Jamaica vacation, which included our 3rd tour with this wonderful group. Wolde, Veda, Deceita and Vaughan are top-notch birders and considerate hosts. Their tours are well-planned, and they are highly skilled at finding birds, especially the endemic species. We have been very pleased with our experiences, and have booked a 4th tour for 2011.
Owen, USA obuck61(AT)hotmail.com
In February 2010 we spent seven wonderful days in the company of Wolde, Vaughan, Deceita and Veda. In that time we saw all 28 of Jamaica's endemic birds as well as several Greater Antillean endemics. They were always so punctual and so accommodating to our needs. Their birding skills were on a par with anything that we have seen in operation anywhere in the world. Not only were they experts in finding birds by call but their knowledge of the history and culture of Jamaica seemed almost limitless. The whole experience of being on their tour was truly outstanding.
Bob & Kathleen, Bedford, UK
I have just returned from a very successful trip to Jamaica where I was very lucky to see all 28/28 endemics. Whilst I realise that I was lucky with the weather and the birds the rest was purely down to the unstinting effort and knowledge of Vaughan and the team. It was birding with a smile on your face! In this day and age is there anything you want more!
Birdingpal Paul Gaffan, Suffolk, UK
Maria and I were both happy with the trip and the outstanding service. Wolde, Veda and Deceita were entertaining and fun to be with but at the same time business like, making sure everything was taken care of and everything we asked for was achieved. I know they really enjoy birding, but they put in some extra long days when they didn't have to. They know the birds and where to find them and what they sound like.
I know Carol communicated to you our appreciation for all you did for us in Jamaica. But more than that we appreciate what you are doing for birdlife and conservation in that country---and the key we observe around the world is training and helping local people to see amidst their difficult and oft poverty struck lives--value in preserving local habitats both economically short term and spiritually long term.
I have been on several other professionally-led birding tours, including Dominican Republic and Peru, with established international birding tour companies. I particularly liked that it was local people leading the tour, not people who had traveled in from somewhere else. Owen B
"In March of 2014, I took a 6 day birding tour of Jamaica with RAJ. It was simply wonderful! Our leader, Veda, was extraordinarily skilled at locating the birds and making sure that everyone had a good look at each bird. All endemics were located and well seen. Veda was also attentive to all administrative details and very aware of the well-being of each guest. And, of course, traveling with a local guide, we got to go to the best jerk restaurants and eat at small spots along the coast where there were no other tourists. I highly recommend RAJ for a birding trip to Jamaica."
Gonzalo Horna, your local Birdingpal guide
Former owner and manager of Sierra Llorona Panama Lodge, Gonzalo has been birding central Panama and adjacent low and highland
areas since 1997. Attending groups and individuals he has mastered the needs and logistics to make a birders journey a successful one. He created and implemented a unique Birding by Boat day tour to explore the fresh water avifauna (and related birds) difficult to see while normal hiking secluded areas. Has being actively involved with the Embera Quera indian community located at the Panama Canal basin (Caribbean site) helping them develop a tourism program with emphasis on birding. In the government conservation programs he have served at national levels. Also he is a very active member of the Panama Audubon Society (PAS).
His wide ranging interests include butterfly, mammals, insects, good food & cooking.
Friendly, fun and knowledgeable, Gonzalo (54 years old) is always ready to take you birding any time any place in Panama.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Gonzalo.
Our birding trip with you was great. You were knowledgeable about the individual birds and where to find them, as well as being a most gracious host. Our accomodations in Achiote and Gamboa were excellent. We enjoyed the rural atmosphere and food in
Achiote and, well, Ivan's B and B was wonderful. Please give Ivan and his family our regards. While birding in both Achiote and Gamboa was excellent, Marlin would have liked to spend more time in Achiote than in Gamboa. On leaving you, we went to the
Canopy Tower. That evening we birded at the munitions depot where we saw a Rail. The next day we spent most of the morning in
the tower, then. Future birding at the tower included most of the places, we had been at with you, we decided to join another couple and go to the Canopy Lodge. We were there three days and two nights. Each day were birded all morning (and then some) as well as three to four hours in the afternoon, seeing many different birds at that higher elevation.
Thank you for giving us such a wonderful tour of the Panama city area and such a comprehensive overview of the history of
Panama, as well as the opportunity to see the workings of the Panama Canal lock system.
All in all, it was a memorable adventure and birding trip and you helped make it special.
Marlin and Anita Jones, Iowa marlinjones28(AT)gmail.com
Gonzalo, Thank you so much for your expert guidance!
David Jordet, New York, 2008. sailbirder(AT)yahoo.com
We all really appreciated the time and effort that you put into showing us the birds of the Gamboa and Achiote Road areas.
Barbara, Kathleen, Don, Howie, Dave, Dennis, Carol, Rob, Melissa, Miriam and Eva Callahan, 2008. "The -noisy- group! evamsc(AT)verizon.net
Gabriel Lugo, your local Birdingpal guide
Fulltime birdwatching guide. Since I live in the north-central coast of Puerto Rico (close to San Juan), I can guide you to the best places for birding all over the island: forests, rain forest, dry forest, coasts, mountains, salt flats, marshes, ponds and grasslands, north, south, central, east, west with just one objective: give you the best experience enjoing our beautiful birds.
Excellent knowledge of Puerto Rican, Caribbean and Migratory birds. I'm available for groups and photographers too.
Should you only need a guide for a day please send a message to Gabriel.
Gabriel is a superb guide: easy communication, reliable, knows where the birds are and how to "get on" them. In 2010, we saw all of the Puerto Rican endemics and some "gravy" birds in four days with him. If you wish to confirm this directly with me, do not hesitate to ask. David O. Matson, Suffolk, Virginia. d.matson(AT)charter.net
Greg Pereira, your local Birdingpal guide
Greg started doing tours in 1988 while working at his Parents hotel, the Ocean Terrace Inn.
While growing up on St. Kitts he would constantly be enjoying the islands natural wonders as his family did allot with the sea and spent many weekends during the school brake, camping out in the south east peninsular. This grounding in nature at a young age became his springboard into a viable business today as he turned what was a hobby into a career.
On his days off he would use the hotels pickup to take its guests up into the mountains on Rainforest and Volcano hikes. Then with the advent of Cruise Ships coming to our Federation in the 1990s' Greg quit his job at the hotel and started doing tours full time. Greg has always bought Land Rovers to do his tours and made his first purchase in 1991. Today he runs five specially modified Land Rovers and offers four different specialised tours.
Greg and his talented team of professionally certified tour guides have won awards form the Tourism Board for their work over the years. Greg is a founding member of the St. Christopher National Trust and is a member of the Central Forset Reserve National Park Committee.
We recently visited St. Kitts for the first time, and had many wonderful experiences. One of these was the Rainforest Hike with Greg's Safaris. Deon(sp?) was our local guide for our party of four. He was extremely knowledgeable about the plant and animal life that we encountered, as well as the history of the island. He was a very pleasant hiking partner, and the snacks that he provided at the end were a nice finish to a great day. I would recommend Greg's Safaris to anyone wishing to see beautiful St. Kitts up close. Chris and Sharon Bell, USA
For birding in St. Kitts & Nevis please send a message to Greg.
US Virgin Islands
H Freyn, your local Birdingpal guide
We do a scenic walk in Magens bay beach, St. Thomas Virgin Islands through an old Danish sugar plantation and coconut groove. It is a Nature preserve. Then we get on hands free peddle kayaks and tour around the bay. Our peddle kayaks are user friendly, if you can walk, you can do this. We do target people that otherwise would not do kayaking, and being hands free has been an attraction to bird watchers because they can freely use their camera as we explore.
We only do small groups of min, 2. Max, 7 people, for Birdpals we would only book private tours of two people minimum.
The price is U$D100.- per person, the duration of our tour is from two to three hours, depending on the guest and how far would they want to explore on the bay. Since it would be a private tour we can accommodate it to fit their personal taste, and price it accordingly if this is something that you think would be suitable. For repeat customers we can do other beaches and routs around the island, but Magens bay is our first offer and choice.
For birding in US Virgin Islands please send a message to H.