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Newsletter | Sep 14, 2010 | 0 Comments

Newsletter #107

Newsletter # 107

Golden-winged Cacique

Blue Dacnis

White-eared Puffbird





Recon Mission #2 in Brazil



Usually all my “recon missions” are successful in one way or another, as they help me discover new areas, new critters to learn about and photograph, see first-hand accommodations & staff, meet new people who would be involved in future tours….all this in an effort to be able to honestly evaluate a new destination as part of my tour packages and workshops. It also helps to be able to photograph some of the wildlife along the way. This takes time and money to do, but I find it is the only way I can be completely forthright and honestly and fairly recommend a new destination. The ‘pot is always sweetened’ if I am able to photograph something special, as was the case on this trip a few weeks ago. I can now add the much-sought-after, elusive, beautiful/handsome Brazilian Jaguar to my image library. I spent four days on the Cuiaba’ River searching from early morning to dusk, and was rewarded with three sightings on different days. I was also fortunate to come across a family of Giant Otters and watch them as they played, fished, ate, groomed and played some more. Living in Florida and possessing my own boats has me very, very spoiled with the wildlife I am able to photograph there. Since this area of Brazil is very similar to Florida’s flora & fauna (except jaguars), I didn’t shoot many of the birds that were feeding along the shore line in large numbers.



I drove along the Transpantaneira Highway visiting a number of lodges along the way as part of my in-depth ‘reconning’. The road itself is a wildlife mecca. It is about 92 miles of dirt road with 126 single lane wooden bridges along the way, and dugout trenches on either side usually always filled with water and wildlife. Caiman, Black-capped Herons, Ibis, Limpkins, Egrets, and oodles of Capybara are easily seen and photographed just a few feet away from the car.



My travels took me to the beautiful southeast coast area of the state of Sao Paulo, where ocean and mountain views are breathtaking. Tucked in the Atlantic forest, I discovered a few special lodges that have feeders for some of the 86 species of hummingbirds that inhabit various areas of Brazil, Tanagers, Warblers, Sparrows, Puffbird and many more—too many to list here. The lodge owners and managers were eager to please, and happily moved feeders to be camouflaged for better photography, adding branches for natural perches. Needless to say, this was another mini-paradise!



I also spent time on the Christalino River, which is bordered by the Amazon jungle and was able to clearly view and photograph the shy, illusive Tapir (a large pig-like mammal which is related to the rhino and the horse, and has a short prehensile-type trunk for a nose). These odd looking mammals are endangered due to hunting and habitat loss. Various species of parrots, hawks, kingfishers, and numerous others were not far from my lens’ reach.




For the most part, I consider my ‘recon mission’ fruitful. However, there were areas and accommodations I do have to rule out as either being substandard in some of my basic requirements, which are; safety for client & equipment, healthy, fresh food, clean rooms & bedding, electrical charging/outlets available, plus transportation to various areas.


I’m off to China this upcoming Saturday and will return on the 29th of October. This does not give me a chance to put together an exact package for Brazil, which will take place in June. I have confirmed and reconfirmed that this is a perfect time for our needs weather-wise, wildlife-wise, airline pricing-wise (tourist/high season in Brazil begins around the 27th or so of June) etc. Hopefully by mid-to-the-end November, I’ll have everything in place.


I’d like to take a moment to mention the Kennedy Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival is coming up again in January 26th – 31st. This Festival is not to be missed for the wealth of information gained, great opportunities to go birding or photographing with some of the top ‘pros’ in their respective field of expertise (I’ll be conducting two in-the-field workshops), view new equipment on display at many of the booths, view fine artwork, arts & crafts, look at books on various topics, and much more. On Saturday afternoon, I will be giving a slide-with-music, 50-or-so minute presentation I’ve titled “Born Free”. Come, sit back and enjoy a visual trip around other parts of our world.

One of my tour participants, Mike, is selling his 70-200 2.8 IS lens for $1,500.00 including the case. I can vouch for the care and condition of his equipment as I, myself, bought some camera gear from him. This lens is in perfect condition and is selling at a very fair price. If you are interested, you can call Mike at (954) 814-5955 or e-mail him at

In the meantime, for those of you who photograph, “Keep Your Aperture Your Priority” & your battery charged! For those of you who just enjoy the greater outdoors and wildlife, safe travels!!!



If you are interested in any of my tours, click on their corresponding link below:



Photo Researchers, Editors, and Publishers:

As stated in previous newsletters, at no obligation to you, send me a “want list” of images you are looking for that may coincide with a trip I’m about to take, or have recently taken, and I’ll do my very best to seek out that subject and shoot it with your request in mind. This may save you some expense, give me a specific mission and possibly a sale of that image. It’s a ‘win, win situation’!

A quick reminder that my library of 35mm original slides houses approximately 75,000 images, and my digital library presently holds over 100,000 (and growing-hourly)!

My website holds an in-depth Stock Shop for your quick review:

Photographic Accessories

The Better Beamer Flash Extender

For telephoto lenses from 300mm on up

only $45.00 each

More Info

Specifications & Functions

  • Reduces battery drain
  • Weighs 2 1/2 ounces
  • Easy to use
  • Fits in your shirt pocket
  • Flash reaches greater distances (about 500 ft.) w/smaller aperture
  • Fresnel lens stays in place with sturdy side-arms
“Keep Your Aperture Your Priority”

Brock Deer

Blue-throated Piping Guan

Velvety Swamp Snake
This newsletter is (c) 2005 Joanne Williams Photography.
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