Hummingbirds of Ecuador

15 - 23 Jul, 2017
Photo leader:
9 days, from 4950 USD

Applications closed

One of the great destinations for nature photography is the Amazon Basin with its incredible diversity of wildlife, birds, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies, and flowers. And of all the places in Amazonia you could go to capture this diversity, the cloud forests in Ecuador are unparalleled. The places you will explore on this photo tour are so rich in biodiversity and photographic opportunities that literally everywhere you look are pictures.  Join Jim for a tremendous learning experience in nature photography, flash, focus tracking, and dealing with challenging shooting situations with respect to depth of field, exposure, distracting elements, contrast, and composition. You will learn how easy it is to capture sharp pictures of hummingbirds in flight when you see the setups Jim makes, and you'll be overwhelmed by the amazing images you'll be able to take.
Day 1, Sat., July 15. Arrival in Quito.
Depart from home and arrive in Quito, Ecuador. You will meet a local representative at the airport as you exit customs and immigration, and you'll be transferred to the hotel. Meet Jim in the lobby of the hotel at 7pm for an orientation of the tour and to answer any photography questions you may have. This will be followed by a welcome dinner. Overnight Quito.

Day 2, Sun., July 16. Quito/Transfer to Mindo.
After breakfast we will visit a local market, a great place to make portraits of local people and to capture a flavor of Ecuadorian culture. After lunch, we have a private transfer (two hours) to the Mindo Cloudforest. Upon arrival and check in to our lodge, we setup our equipment and start photographing the stunning hummingbirds that are all around us. Overnight

Days 3 to 5, Mon. - Wed., July 17 - 19. Mindo Cloudforest.
Located in the Western foothills of the Andes Range, the Mindo Cloudforest is a paradise of glass frogs, anole lizards, butterflies, exotic birds, and hummingbirds. Our hummingbird setups lure many species to within just a few feet from your medium telephoto lens, and you'll see that this is the easiest wildlife and bird photography you've ever done. You'll be amazed by the outstanding pictures you take. Other feeders on the property of the lodge attract fruit-eating birds, and for these pictures you'll want a longer lens to fill the frame with the flamboyant colors and beautiful shapes of tropical birds. You will also have the opportunity to have up close and personal encounters with unique frogs, other amphibians, and reptiles. Overnight.

Days 6-7, Thur. - Fri., July 20-21. San Lorenzo/Choco Rainforest.
We will depart early this morning by private transfer (5 hours) to the Choco Nature Reserve. This is one of the global hotspots for biodiversity, it is the ideal place to photograph poison dart frogs, bizarre insects, lizards, butterflies, and lots of fantastic birds. Many of the species you'll see are found nowhere else on the planet. Mornings are often misty with low lying clouds and fog, and photographing the rainforest itself is magical. All of your photographic skills will be called upon here, from doing macro photography, using flash and even ring flash, following motion with long lenses, dealing with low light and exposure challenges, and using Photoshop to fix problematic backgrounds. Jim will help you navigate these challenges so you return home with mind-blowing images.

Day 8, Sat., July 22. San Lorenzo/Quito.
We drive back to Quito today (5 hours) and enjoy a farewell dinner in the old part of the city. It still looks like Colonial times being the best preserved, least altered historic center in the Americas, and it's a great chance to do some twilight and night photography. Overnight Quito.

Day 9, Sun., July 23.. Return flight.
We transfer to the airport today for our return flight home knowing that we've had a phenomenal experience both culturally as well as photographically, and that our pictures are absolutely amazing. When you go through your pictures at home, count the number of species you've photographed. You'll be surprised.
Tour cost:  $4950

Single supplement: $495

REFUND SCHEDULE INTERNATIONAL TOURS:
If you cancel 150 days before the tour departure, you will get a full 100% refund.
If you cancel from 149 to 120 days before departure, you will get 70% of your deposit/tour cost refunded.
If you cancel from 119 to 90 days days before departure, you will receive 50% of the tour cost refunded.
If you can cancel less than 90 days before departure, you will not receive a refund.

REFUND SCHEDULE U.S. DOMESTIC TOURS:
If you cancel 90 days before the tour departure, you will get a full 100% refund.
If you cancel from 60 to 89 days before departure, you will get 70% of your deposit/tour cost refunded.
If you can cancel less than 60 days before departure, you will not receive a refund.
Includes all lodging on a shared, double occupancy basis, all meals beginning with the welcome dinner and ending with breakfast on day 9, all land transportation including airport transfers, entrance fees into protected natural reserves, hummingbird set up equipment, services of a local bilingual guide, photo instruction and critiques.

Not included: International airfare, visa fees if applicable (US and Canadian citizens do not require a visa to enter Ecuador for up to 90 days), items of a personal nature, laundry, drinks at meals, and alcohol.
LOGISTICS:
Our itineraries are designed to take advantage of the best light and the best photographic opportunities. Participants should allow for flexibility due to changes in weather, traffic, local governmental policy changes, cultural events, or other logistical arrangements deemed necessary by Jim Zuckerman.

Whenever possible, our groups stay in comfortable, modern hotels. We select among the best available accommodations, but refrain from extravagance to keep the cost of the tour reasonable. Many wonderful photographic destinations are far removed from modern amenities, however, and where necessary we will be accommodated in rustic country inns, cabins or tented camps.

RESPONSIBILITY:
Jim Zuckerman and Killer Stock, Inc., act only as an agent for the passenger in regard to travel including, but not limited to, sightseeing, meals, lodging, transportation, and all other services whether by railroad, motorcar, motor coach, boat, ship or aircraft and they assume no liability for injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may be occasioned either by reason of defect in any vehicle or for any reason whatsoever, or through the acts or default of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger or in carrying out the arrangements of the trip.

They can accept no responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike, war, quarantine or other causes. All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the passenger, as trip fees provide for arrangements only for the times and locations stated. Baggage is at the owner’s risk entirely.

TRAVEL INSURANCE:
All tour participants are strongly encouraged to carry trip cancellation insurance as well as medical emergency evacuation insurance. No one likes paying for insurance … until you need it. For example, if you sprain your ankle two days before departure and you can’t walk without pain (or can’t walk at all), you would lose your entire investment in the photo tour if you ddn’t have insurance. Many things happen in life that we don’t expect, and it’s nice to know you have a safety net to protect you, just in case.

Likewise, if you get injured in a remote place and you have emergency evacuation insurance, help will be on the way immediately and it won’t cost an arm and a leg to transport you to a hospital.
General Enrollment Information for Photography Tours and Workshops by Jim Zuckerman Photography

1. RESERVATIONS
A deposit of USD$1000 will reserve a place for you on a tour or a workshop. Deposits and trip payments may be made by personal or business check. Full payment of the trip fee is due 120 days prior to departure date. If final payment is not received when due, we reserve the right to treat your reservation as canceled, as if in writing. Trip fees are quoted in US dollars and must be paid in US dollars. No partial refunds are made for unused portions or services of a trip for any reason whatsoever. Each trip is sold as a package only. This policy also applies to tour extensions and independent travel arrangements. Cancellation fees are not transferable.

2. HEALTH CONSIDERATIONS
Jim Zuckerman’s Photography Tours and Workshops are within the capabilities of average people in good health. If you have concerns about your own capabilities and/or fitness as it relates to a trip, please inquire with us before reserving a space. By paying a trip deposit, you certify that you do not knowingly have any physical or other conditions of disability that would create a risk for you or other trip participants. We reserve the right to request a doctor’s statement of good health. The company’s or trip leader’s judgment shall provide the ultimate determination of an individual’s ability to embark upon or to continue a trip. Once a trip has been confirmed, medical circumstances will not be considered as exceptions to our cancellation policy. We assume no responsibility for medical care or for special dietary requirements.

3. INSURANCE
All participants are strongly urged to purchase travel protection insurance.

4. TOUR COSTS
The costs of the tour include lodging in double room occupancy, meals as stated in the itinerary, transfer from the airport to the hotel and return, and all photo instruction. Not included are airfare or other transportation from your home to the trip staging location, airport departure taxes, insurance, beverages during dinners and bar expenses, tips and gratuities to local guides, phone calls, passport or visa expenses, laundry or items of a personal nature.

Single accommodations are available for a supplemental cost. You will be charged the single supplement fee if you desire single accommodations or if you wish to have a roommate, but one is not available.

5. LOGISTICS
Whenever possible, our trip participants are lodged in comfortable, modern hotels. We select among the best available accommodations, but refrain from extravagance. Some interesting photographic destinations are far removed from modern amenities.

Our itinerary is intended to be followed as closely as possible, but participants should allow for flexibility due to changes in weather, natural history or cultural events, or other logistical arrangements deemed necessary by tour leader.

6. RESPONSIBILITY
Organizers act only as agents for the passenger in regard to travel including, but not limited to, sightseeing, meals, lodging, transportation, and all other services whether by railroad, motorcar, motor coach, boat, ship or aircraft and they assume no liability for injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may be occasioned either by reason of defect in any vehicle or for any reason whatsoever, or through the acts or default of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger or in carrying out the arrangements of the trip.

They can accept no responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike, war, quarantine or other causes. All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the passenger, as trip fees provide for arrangements only for the times and locations stated. Baggage is at the owner’s risk entirely.
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