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A winning proposition - for communities and for birds!

Hiring a local guide when you visit an exotic destination can be a win-win-win situation. You receive the services of a local expert - and you might get to see this Green Violet-ear Hummingbird (now known as a Mexican Violet-ear or Lesser Violet-ear). The guide has employment. And the birds thrive, because those communities have an economic incentive to protect the birds and their habitats.

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Full Transcript



Ecotourism – Supporting Communities

Written by Frances Wood

This is BirdNote!

[Mexican music]

Has the winter cold got you thinking about the tropics? Perhaps you’ve already decided to migrate south, as many of our birds have. Winter is a great time to travel into Mexico and Latin America or beyond, to go birding. And if you do, consider staying in an ecolodge or hiring a local nature guide.

Ecotourism allows visitors to enjoy the natural setting, but with a low impact on birds and other wildlife and with a minimum use of natural resources. 

[Ambient bird calls from the Amazon]

Local guides, including those that specialize in birding, are often listed in travel books or websites.  Or you can find them through hotels and nature preserves. Many speak English, and most are familiar with local birds and the best places to find them. 

Hiring a local guide can be a win for all. You win because you have the services of an expert who truly knows the area. Guides win because they gain employment. And the birds win because local communities discover an economic incentive to protecting the birds and their habitats.  

[Ambient bird calls from the Amazon] 

So head on down south and enjoy the birds, and support the communities that are helping to save them. 

To find resources to help you plan your eco-minded travel, begin at

[Mexican music again]


Mexican song composed and played by Nancy Rumbel. 

Ambient rainforest sounds from the Amazon provided by The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York. 

Producer: John Kessler

Executive Producer: Chris Peterson

© 2014 Tune In to     December 2016     Narrator: Mary McCann

ID#120605tourKPLU   (was tour-01)     ecotourism-01b


Conservation Int'l:

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