Brazil Jaguars – The Pantanal
At A Glance
mammals, birds and photography.
Cuiaba – Pantanal – Cuiaba
Warm to hot (the river can be cool in early mornings)
Road travel by minibus, plus a special open truck for night drives in the Pantanal, comfortable hotels & lodges, all rooms with private facilities
Jaguar, Giant River Otter, Brazilian Tapir, (Maned Wolf), many other mammals plus 200+ species of birds.
There can surely be few Neotropical mammals that hold the appeal of the Jaguar yet some tour leaders with several months (or even years), experience in Central and South America have only seen one or two. Although they have traditionally been considered a forest species it is now apparent that Jaguars are equally at home in open country and the Pantanal has become the place to see them. This is our revised itinerary, spending slightly more time in the Pantanal.
After our two recces during which we saw a total of six Jaguars our inaugural tour in 2004 was a roaring success with no less than four Jaguars seen for prolonged periods at close range. All of our departures since have enjoyed prolonged close views of Jaguars. The first of the 2007 tours came home again with stunning views, two animals in full sunshine on the river bank whilst the second group watched in disbelief as a pair courted and then mated in front of them. Our 2008 departures yielded superb prolonged views again, six Jaguars on the first, two on the second. Our 2009 trip enjoyed no less than seven close encounters with a Jaguar! Our first 2010 saw 44 species of mammal, including four different Jaguars and finally adding Puma and cub to our ever growing multi-year list. The second 2010 trip also enjoyed another four Jaguars including animals hunting and a pair mating, plus another Puma at only 25 metres range, Ocelot, Margay and four Maned Wolves to produce a total of 41 species of mammal! Our 2011 trip enjoyed great views of two Jaguars, one of which was on view for over two hours. Our 2012 group enjoyed 8 – 9 Jaguars. In 2013 Mark and team enjoyed a staggering 14 Jaguar encounters! The Transpantaneira also holds a range of other cats; Ocelots have been seen on both the recces and most of our departures since, Jaguarundi, Oncilla and Margay have also been seen on some tours over the years too. A wide range of other mammals also occur in the area and we hope to see Giant and Neotropical River Otters, White-lipped and Collared Peccary, Marsh and Red and Grey Brocket Deer, Giant Anteater, Southern Tamandua, South American Coati, Crab-eating Fox, Crab-eating Raccoon, Azara’s Agouti, Black-striped Capuchin, Black and Gold Howler and Black-tailed Marmoset. We also hope to see Brazilian Tapir which is usually relatively easy to see in the Pantanal as the flood waters recede. The Pantanal also offers excellent birding and we can expect to see 100+ species in a day including Hyacinth Macaw, Golden-collared Macaw, Sunbittern, Sungrebe and a range of herons and storks including Jabiru and perhaps an Agami. Caiman are abundant and we can expect hundreds in the pools along the road. Snakes including Yellow Anaconda are also possible.
We will spend long hours in the field including dawn and dusk to maximise our chances of seeing Jaguar and other cats, and will spend long hours spotlighting at night in our purposely converted truck. The itinerary in the Pantanal will be kept as flexible as possible to enable us to concentrate on finding any key species that we want to see. We will use boats at Porto Jofre to further maximise our chances of seeing Jaguars. There will however be plenty of opportunity to rest and catch up with your sleep during the heat of the day. Our revised itinerary includes an extra day in the Pantanal plus less time travelling on long road journeys throughout. The best just got better, future participants will enjoy even more time in the field, wildlife watching! (Please note that this is primarily a mammal tour, birds come second. We will see lots and lots of birds but these are not tours for big species lists, we will not be looking for little brown jobs!)
Depart London Heathrow late evening.
Late morning connecting flight to Cuiaba and drive to Pixaim and overnight.
Morning boat trip for otters. Afternoon drive to Porte Jofre for three nights.
Boat trips from Porto Jofre.
Drive to Pousada Jaguar and overnight.
Drive to Araras Ecolodge for three nights.
Days 8 & 9:
Full days wildlife watching.
Last morning in the Pantanal, drive to Cuiaba for flight to Sao Paulo and on to London. (or extend your stay in Brazil)
Arrive London Heathrow early afternoon.
Potential mammal list for the 2015 & 2016 Pantanal Tours – includes species seen on one or more of the 2004–2013 tours:
Gray Four-eyed Oposum
Various species of bat including Greater & Lesser Fishing Bat
Black and Gold Howler
South American Coati
Neotropical River Otter
Giant River Otter
Red Brocket Deer
Grey Brocket Deer
200+ species of birds.
Please note: All itineraries are subject to weather, local conditions and final approval by the relevant authorities.
Dates: 7th – 17th August 2018
Leaders: Regina Ribeiro plus local guides.
£5835 per person sharing a twin room.
£895 - Single supplement
£1000 - Deposit
Group size: 8 plus leader and guides.
Price excludes: Travel insurance, laundry bills, drinks, other items of a personal nature, gratuities.
Accommodation is in tourist class hotels with private facilities.
In the Pantanal temperatures will be high possibly in the 30s during the middle of the day. We will normally spend this time resting.
Mosquitoes can be a problem in the Pantanal and appropriate precautions should be taken although there is no malaria in the areas we are visiting.
All the previous trip reports including 2015, some with photos, are available on our website or on request from us.
5th – 15th October 2016 & 2017