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Jaguars of Brazil's Pantanal
Photo Safari and Tour Brochure

2023 Photo Tour Dates

Dates: July 21-30, 2023
Price: $ 8695
July 31- August 9, 2023
Price: $ 8495
limited Single Supplements available


One of Our All-Time Favorite Tours!

jFour facts to consider before you read on:

1. We were the first US company to offer trips to the Pantanal specifically for jaguars.
2. We use several lodges to maximize your photography of all the wildlife species. The Pantanal is more than just Jaguars!
3. For the jaguars we are based on a first-class 'flotel' in the heart of jaguar country, allowing us early and late shooting and no long commmutes.
4. We are not 'jaguar centrix' in the sense that our only focus is on photographing jaguars. On a typical 4-5 day stay in 'jaguar land' we have between 15 and 25 jaguar sightings, and most of these are photo opportunities. But your portfolio will be filled with the other great mammals, birds, and reptiles found here for a complete experience.

5. MOST IMPORTANTLY, we know the wildlife. You are with either Mary or Joe, and not unaccompanied and wondering what's good and what's not. We know when there is interesting behaviour to be waiting for, when to wait and when to go. You are with experienced Naturalists when you are with us. An example is given further in the brochure (see About Your Leaders) or in any number of our trip reports.
Read an Interesting Interview with Joe


The complete brochure (below) has ALL the details. But here's a quick summation.

Featuring the Best Photographic Locations
We visit several different shooting locations en route to the Jaguar area.

and why we are unique
We attract serious and patient photographers and naturalists.
Our Unique Rotation System
We rotate participants through our boats, guides, and us.
We avoid cliques.
Participants get maximum time with us as your guides.

What you can expect from us
The most productive photo tour possible.
Accurate, informative natural history information.
Professional help in your photography - compositions, positioning, exposure.
Our Interpretation and Expertise
You can rely on our knowledge and experience to help predict behaviors and photo opportunities
Informal Lunch and Dinner Discussions on What You Saw and what it means
Driver-Guide Tip is included in the tour price.
FREE ebook on the Birds of the Pantanal

Jaguars and Wildlife of the Pantanal Photo Tour is limited to 8 participants

Price includes lodging with double occupancy, all meals,
and exclusive use of our jaguar-shooting boats
Price does not include lodging prior to official trip dates or transportation/flights to/from Brazil/domestic flights


At one of our lodges you'll have a great chance to photograph Ocelots.

Read on for:

Our Photo Safari
Cooperation and Expectations
Our Specific Locations

Birds and Wildlife
Trip Details and Prices


Read any or all of our previous trip reports.



The jaguar, the Western Hemisphere's largest cat, and the other wildlife and birds of the Pantanal of Brazil offers some of the most exciting and rewarding photography of all of the various photo tours and safaris that we offer. There is no better place in South America to photograph wildlife. This is an exciting, rewarding shoot, filled with diversity and almost continuous shooting.

jaguar on bank


Enjoy our Participant's Mammal and Bird Portfolios,
and Mary and Joe's Personal Portfolio. Check out our 2010 Portfolio, too, and for an even better idea of the bird photography, check the portfolio of one of our participants, Rich Miller.

caimengreen kingfisher


To get the absolute most out of these safaris, or any of our
offerings, consider taking one of our Complete Digital Nature
Photo Courses
, in Pennsylvania during the summer months!

Our Photo Safari

kWe'll be visiting three locations in the northern division of this vast wetland, the Pantanal, during the dry season when wildlife is concentrated in the remaining wetlands and along the permanent river courses. For more on these locations, please read on, after our subheading on Cooperation.

The Flotel Southwild Jaguar Flotel, Brazil - Natural World Safaris is the choice of most professional photographers visiting the Pantanal. There are spacious suites as well as cabins (Joe and Mary stay there!), with great food and the fastest access to jaguar country. Check the link -- there's been very misleading information presented on this.

At the lodges we'll be photographing a variety of wild life including brown capuchin monkeys, Jabiru storks, toco toucans, parakeets, caimans, howler monkeys, great potoos, and a variety of other birds, including kingfishers, hawks, herons, and other water birds. On our latest Photo Tour our group photographed at least 100 different species of birds, as well as at least 15 species of mammals.

We'll be photographing some of these species from land - on the grounds of the lodges, or from vehicles as we drive the ranch or Pantanal roads, while others may be filmed from boats. Jabiru storks can be photographed from the ground, but there is also an elevated platform where one can photograph both from an eye-level, treetop perspective.

Cabybaras are the world's largest rodent, a giant deer-like beaver, and are common, and favorite jaguar foods.


Most of the jaguar photography will be from our 10-passenger boats where we'll have only four photographers per boat (participants) each with their own row of seats giving everyone plenty of room. We use two boats, which increases our chances of finding unique subjects via radio contact, and our participants are always accompanied by either Mary or Joe, with our wonderful in-country guide always with us in one of the boats as well. You won't be in an unaccompanied boat- you'll have Joe or Mary and our in-country guide with you on every excursion, for spotting wildlife, photo instruction, and help.

Caiman doing the 'bubble dance' or 'dancing water' display, a courtship
behavior where water shoots up like a fountain from the caiman.



Brazilian Tapir; Howler Monkeys; Giant Anteater; Giant Otter

Our Specific Locations

cabybara and tyrantcaimen

The Pantanal, the world's largest wetland, can be divided into two sections - North and South, and each section requires a different entranceway and the two are not connected by road. We'll be concentrating our time in the northern section of the Pantanal where we'll be visiting three different locations to stay and to photograph.

The exact sequence in which we visit these three sites varies by the tour, but the following description will nonetheless give you an idea of what to expect.

aracariblack-collared hawkchevron parakeet

At one of our locations, we'll search for Giant Anteaters and Brazilian Tapirs. We've had great luck with Howler Monkeys, Capuchin Monkeys, Jabiru Storks, Hyacinth Macaws, and several other bird species.

A Yacare Caiman lunges defensively at a Brazilian Tapir on one of our Night Game Drives!

At another location, we'll divide our time between boat trips for riverine species and independent sojourns on land for terrestrial birds and mammals. On the river we've had great luck photographing eagle-like black-collared hawks and greater black hawks swooping down for fish, yellow-headed caracaras, three species of kingfisher, and various wading birds including the striking sunbittern. We've had great luck with Brazilian Tapirs here, and some of the best jaguar photography we've experienced, although jaguars are not to be expected on this segment of the tour.

On land, this location is truly special, having a spiral staircase tower where one can photograph the Western Hemispere's largest wading bird, the gigantic, black-headed Jabiru Stork at its nest. From the tower one can actually look down into the nest, and frame-filling shots of the nest are done with a 300mm lens! Larger telephotos can be used for tight shots of an adult or the young, but a 70-200mm zoom may be even more useful to capture the adults in flight as they return to the nest.

potooOne of the world's most cryptic birds, the great potoo, has roosted in the same tree for years and one can photograph this bird that mimics a stump quite easily. On the well-traveled track and trail that leads to the potoo we discovered fresh jaguar tracks several times. Using trail cameras I've photographed jaguars, ocelots, tapirs, brocket deer, tamanduas, and more on the trails at night.

This location has a wide variety of very habituated birds, including hyacinth macaws, toco toucans, chestnut-eared aracaris, crested caracaras, woodpeckers, woodcreepers, cardinals, jacanas, whistling herons, cormorants, yellow-fronted parrots and parakeets, and more.


capuchin w hand The lodge maintains several feeders where the toucans and cardinals and several other species visit, including the Glittering-throated Emerald Hummingbird and the oriole-like and blazingly colored Troupial.

The majority of our time, however, will be at our special jaguar flotel where we'll cruise the rivers looking for jaguars and other species. In addition to jaguars we should have great luck with giant otters, cabybaras, caimans, four different kingfishers, sunbitterns, hawks and kites, jacanas, flycatchers, and more.

Between these locations one could see or photograph at least nine species of mammals and at least 60 species of birds, and closer to 75 to 100 species of birds if you concentrated on doing so. Additionally, there are toads and treefrogs, and some lizards and, of course, large caimans. On several trips, photographing in both the North and South Pantanal, I photographed 17 species of mammals and at least 90 species of birds. As part of the tour, you will receive my ebook on the Birds of the Pantanal.


Special Ocelot Photography!

Participants will have at least one evening for possible Ocelot photography at a special bait station. One or more Ocelots regularly visit the station - 60% of the time on average, and we usually have the opportunity to try this a second time if we're not successful.



Birds and Wildlife

As stated above, there are scores of birds and many mammals and reptiles.

The mammals
we've seen on the last few trips include the following:
jaguar, ocelot, South American river or neotropical otter, giant otter,
agouti, cabybara, coatimundi, crab-eating fox,
brown capuchin monkey, howler monkey, marmoset, Brazilian tapir,
red brocket deer, marsh deer, various bats, yellow armadillo, giant anteater, southern tamandua.

fThe birds are truly too numerous to list here, but participants regularly photograph at least 60 different species, and some photograph over 100.

Participants will receive a free copy of my 100+ page ebook on the most commonly photographed birds of the Pantanal.

Reptiles and amphibians include:
spectacled caiman, yellow anaconda, green iguana, golden tegu,
caimen lizard, Tiger Rat Snake, and various treefrogs, frogs, and toads.


The Photo Tour begins and ends in Cuiabá, Matto Grosso, Brazil. From Cuiabá we'll travel by land into the Pantanal to our various destinations, until we board our boats for our stay at the Flotel where we will be based in true jaguar country.

In-country road transportation with the group, all meals, and lodging (double occupancy) is included. If you miss the flight to Cuiabá with the group (this flight is not included but Mary tells you what flight to make so that the group travels together), our Brazilian tour company will provide the land transportation to our location in the Pantanal, however, you are responsible for that transportation cost, as well as any lodging or food costs incurred. We recommend participants arriving in Sao Paulo early in order to make the connecting flight to Cuiaba.

Limited single supplements are available at all locations for an additional cost.

Tips for the boatmen and Brazilian guide are included, however participants usually add a little extra as a gratuity, although this is optional.

We will be staying at three different locations to maximize the full potential of the Pantanal. Although we will be moving from one lodge to another, full 'travel' packing won't be necessary as we'll be going by vehicle. Photography may occur at any time, either at the lodges or while in transit.

We rotate everyone through our two boats so that everyone has the benefit of our wonderful Brazilian guide (one of the best I've had anywhere in the world) and with Mary and with Joe, and with the various boatmen.

The Photo Tour/Safari is limited to 8 participants. Please contact our office immediately if you are interested.

Check out our book Jaguars and the Wildlife of the Pantanal

For an even better idea of what to expect, check out our trip reports:
Northern and Southern Pantanal 2022
Northern & Southern Pantanal 2018
Northern Pantanal 2017
Northern Pantanal 2016 #1; Northern Pantanal 2016 #2
or check out all of our previous trips HERE

Participants will also receive our 100+ page ebook on
the Birds of the Pantanal.

About Your Leaders

jMy wife Mary Ann and I strive to provide the most comfortable and thorough Photo Tour you will experience. We have been doing this together for 35 years, and I've been doing so for a few more years than that! We lead all of our photo tours and safaris, and we have been leading tours to the Pantanal for eight years.

I doubt if there is another American-based photographer, and certainly no husband/wife photo team, with the amount of experience that we have leading photo tours to the Pantanal. This fact is relevant because we know the wildlife, we know behavior, and we know what will make a great photograph.

hHere's a perfect example. This Crane Hawk is a species that resembles the Gymnogene, aka African Harrier Hawk, and hunts in exactly the same way. On several trips we've watched photo boats pass by, blandly noting that a hawk was perched in a tree and that there was nothing exciting. However, we know this bird's behavior, which is quite exciting as it hovers at a tree cavity or hangs tight to a tree trunk fishing for lizards or frogs. Knowing this, our photographers have had wonderful photos of this bird hunting and capturing prey -- something too many photo boats miss.

Both Mary and I are naturalists and photographers, and I'd hope you've seen our credits. These included Audubon, National Geographic, National Wildlife, Ranger Rick, Natural History, Living Bird, Birder's World, Wildlife Conservation, and most nature/wildlife calendars. We've had winning shots, including several first place awards in the prestigious BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Mary has written 29 children's books on natural history and I've written 15 how-to wildlife photography books.


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