Birds, Macro, and More!

Ecuador

Feb. 22 to Mar. 4, 2022

We've designed this trip to maximize your shooting time and give you a diverse nature photography experience in Ecuador. We will photograph Ecuador's most amazing birds, hummingbirds, frogs, and lizards, as well as some great landscapes, all while learning new techniques. And, unlike other tours to Ecuador, you have 2 award-winning photographer leaders and a local naturalist/professional photographer guide with you full-time, making this a fantastic value!

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Date

Feb. 22 to Mar. 4, 2022

$

Price

$5,699

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Difficulty Level

Moderate

3

Available Spots

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View the itinerary below, read more about the tour, or sign up now!

About the Workshop

Birds, Macro, and More!

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About the Workshop

Birds, Macro, and More!

Leaders

Frank Pichardo

Frank Pichardo

Frank Pichardo is a Peruvian wildlife photographer and tour leader with a strong passion for nature, most of his experience in the field comes from his seven-year work as a naturalist guide for the prestigious lodges of Rainforest Expeditions leading people and teaching about the flora and fauna since 2009. Frank obtained his degree from the Tourism School in Lima, where he also became fluent in English and German. This was the beginning of a long term work in the ecotourism industry.

 

At the moment, he is part of Tropical Herping, contributing for the “Reptiles of Ecuador”, “Reptiles of Galapagos” and “Amphibians if Ecuador” books, joining also scientific expeditions into remote areas to understand better this group of animals, leading workshops and photo tours. Frank’s work has been featured in National Geographic and BBC Wildlife Magazine.

Follow Frank on Instagram -- @frank_pichardo

Greg Basco

Greg Basco

Gregory Basco is a professional nature photographer based in Costa Rica. After completing graduate degrees in political science and tropical ecology (his doctoral dissertation focused on the politics of ecotourism in Costa Rica), Greg worked in conservation before turning to photography full-time in 2006. His images have been awarded in the Veolia Wildlife Photographer of the Year and Nature's Best Windland Smith Rice competitions and have appeared in numerous magazines and books around the world.

 

His latest major project is the second edition of the large format printed book National Parks of Costa Rica in conjunction with Zona Tropical and Cornell University Press. His popular e-books include The Guide to Tropical Nature Photography, Lightroom for the Nature Photographer, and the upcoming Flash for the Nature Photographer.

You can see more of Greg's work at his website.

Gallery

Info

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Airport

You should arrive to and depart from Ecuador's Mariscal Sucre International Airport (UIO). Our driver will be waiting to provide your private transfer to our capital city hotel.

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Electricity

Electrical outlets are US-style. Those coming from Europe or Asia may need travel adapters. We will send more info after signup.

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Insurance

We strongly recommend you purchase trip insurance that includes trip cancellation and medical coverage while overseas.

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Medical

Though Ecuador does not require any vaccinations, we suggest you stay up to date on routine travel shots. Some countries may require that you have proof of yellow fever vaccination upon departing from Ecuador.

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Internet Access

All of our hotels have free WIFI. We will also have cell data coverage for most of the trip.

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Certified

All of our services are conducted by fully licensed travel, lodge, and transport operators. This is part of our commitment to providing a professional travel experience.

Camera Gear

Recommended gear

  • Tele lens 400 mm or longer

  • Camera body or bodies

  • Medium zoom lens, e.g., 70-200 mm, 100-400 mm

  • Macro lens

  • Wide angle lens

  • Polarizing/ND filters

  • Fast wide angle lens for night scenes

  • Cable release

  • Off-camera TTL flash cord

  • Telephoto flash bracket

  • Flash plus Better Beamer for birds and wildlife

  • Rain cover for camera

  • Small softbox or diffuser

  • Small pack or shoulder bag for daily shooting

View the full Itinerary +

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Day 1, Arrival/Quito

 

Arrival to Ecuador. Meet our representative at the Mariscal Sucre International Airport and transfer to our hotel in the heart of Quito's vibrant business district. 

 

Day 2, Cloud Forest

 

We depart after breakfast and arrive to our charming lodge in the middle of the cloud forest in the late morning. We'll check in and have lunch and then head out to a local house with great bird feeders for tanagers and toucanets! We return to our lodge in late afternoon for a dinner and rest; we'll have a busy day tomorrow!

 

Day 3, Cloud Forest

Today we have a full day with the multiple-flash setups for hummingbirds at the lodge. Booted Racket-tail abound, and the Velvet-purple Coronet is always a show stopper! In addition to hummingbird setups, we will be exploring the surrounding forest for colorful tanagers, woodpeckers, and even the crested quetzal. And as a special treat, we will be working with macro setups for cool frogs, lizards, and insects.

 

Day 4, Cloud Forest

 

We leave early this morning for a fantastic opportunity to photograph the beautiful plate-billed mountain toucan! This will be an unforgettable experience. After lunch back at our lodge, we continue on with more macro photography and multi-flash hummingbirds. And tonight, we have a special treat – dinner at our favorite local wood-fired pizza place.

 

Day 5, Cloud Forest to Rain Forest

 

After breakfast, we check out and head to a special destination to photograph the toucan barbet, the glistening green tanager, and a few other surprises. We have lunch on site, and then continue on to our next lodge where we arrive in late afternoon.

 

Day 6, Rain Forest

 

Today we have a full day at our lodge to photograph motmots, barbets, and hummingbirds. And we'll also be working with more great macro subjects throughout the day.

 

Day 7, Paramo

 

After an early breakfast we head to our next destination, the high Andean paramo. We'll arrive for lunch and check in to our beautiful hotel surrounded by natural hot springs. In the afternoon, we'll explore the lodge's cloud forest for a bit of landscape photography.

 

Day 8, Paramo

 

Today we have a full day to explore the area. We'll start with a visit to the paramo for landscape photography, alpine birds, and if we're lucky, the Andean spectacled bear. We then drive down the mountain for a change of scenery. We'll have one of the best lunches in Ecuador followed by a chance to photograph the torrent duck, the long-tailed sylph hummingbird and, with a bit of luck, the sword-billed hummingbird. We return to our lodge this evening where you'll have time for dinner and then a bit of time to relax in the hot springs if you choose.

 

Day 9, Paramo/Quito

 

Today we head back toward Quito, stopping en route at the city's charming historical center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We'll have lunch downtown and then check in at our city hotel. For those who would like, we will be available this afternoon to help you with image captioning or post-processing. Dinner is on your own tonight as there are a number of great restaurants in our hotel and right outside. You'll need to prep your gear this evening for a big day of photography tomorrow.

 

Day 10, Quito/Elfin Forest

 

We leave early this morning for a fantastic day trip – a visit to the highland home of the iconic sword-billed hummingbird! We'll spend all day there photographing the sword-billed hummingbird as well as shining sunbeam, great sapphirewing and some cool flowerpiercers and mountain tanagers. We return to Quito in the early evening to rest up after this busy day. Dinner will be on your own this evening as some people may have early airport transfers the next morning. There are a number of fast-food and finer casual dining options immediately surrounding our hotel.

 

Day 11, Airport

 

Private transfer to the airport for your flight home.

Itinerary includes

  • Lodging as specified in DBL occupancy

  • Meals as specified

  • Transportation w/private driver in spacious air-conditioned tour bus

  • Internal flights

  • Boat transport in Amazon

  • Private transfers to and from airport

  • Professional, full-time photo instruction from your leaders Greg and Lucas

  • Full-time guide services from local guide Frank Pichardo

  • Multiple-flash setups for hummingbird photography

  • Entrances and fees for all described activities

  • Taxes for all specified services

Itinerary does not include

  • International airfare

  • Dinner Day 1, 9, and 10

  • Alcoholic Drinks

  • Tips

  • Non-mealtime snacks and drinks

  • Single room supplement - $819

Sign-up Form

Name *

Are you registering for one person or more? *

 

Please provide names of additional people signing up with you, and please indicate if the additional people are photographers or not. We offer discounts for non-photographers on some trips.

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Booking a tour with us is easy!

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1. Register for your tour using the form at the end of each workshop page.

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4. Send us your traveler info form.

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2. Send us your reserve deposit.

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5. We will send you your final invoice.

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3. Book your international air travel.

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6. We´ll send you everything you need to know before you hop on the plane!