Join A Trip

Thinking of your next trip?  Here are some mammal-focussed trips that are looking for people to join them.  If you are planning a trip and looking for company, or looking to team up with others somewhere, then please post on the forum or get in touch.

If you are running a commercial mammalwatching tour  then please email me for rates and options.

Anyone can list a trip here. They are not necessarily recommended or approved by mammalwatching.com, especially if I don’t know the people involved. So please do your own research before signing up: two weeks in a rainforest with someone you don’t get on with will not be fun ….

The following trips are looking for people to join.

 

Lynx Safari – Lapland, March 21

Organiser – Wild Sweden

10% Discount off list price for mammalwatchers .

Wild Sweden are now planning for our first tryout trip, scheduled for March 2019 to see a Lynx. March means mating season for Lynx, which makes it even more interesting. That’s the only time of year when they make calls and in that way we may be able to hear if they are in the area.

This trip is actually much more than just lynx.

  • Excellent chances to see the Northern lights
  • Photograph wild Reindeer and Moose in a snowy landscape
  • We will travel with likeminded people in a small group
  • Learn how to snowshoe and use Nordic skis
  • Two nights at guesthouse and three nights in a remote wilderness cabin

The location is not easy to reach. It is a valley in the North-Western parts of Swedish Lapland with no road access. You will arrive at Luleå airport or by an overnight train from Stockholm to Jokkmokk. We will then drive by car for a few hours, then go with snowmobile on a sledge for another couple of hours.

We will finally reach a fantastic little mountain cabin where we will spend some days together. We will all help out to cook our meals together. In daytime we will search for tracks and watch for Lynx through binoculars and spotting scopes.

At night we will hope to see Northern Lights, a common sight in this area.

March in Swedish Lapland also means you have a good chance to see other impressive wildlife. We hope to see Moose, Reindeer, Mountain hare and Ptarmigan.

Each day we will explore the valley on nordic skis slowly in a small group, keeping an eye out for the tracks and signs and hoping for a sighting. Even if we’re not lucky with lynx, the location in itself is stunning and just being out there will be an adventure.

We can’t promise we will see a Lynx, but we will certainly try our best. Many people have seen Lynx at this place. Reindeer herders talk about it, researchers and wildlife experts have done Lynx research here, journalists and TV-teams have been here to see Lynx. But we will definitively need some luck. Lynx avoid people and are well camouflaged.

Caspian Seal Trip (Kazakhstan), April or May 2019

Kazakhstan, April or May, 2019
Organiser – John Fox

I’ve finally found some decent info on where to see this mammal and would like to try for it in April or May, 2019.

They gather and molt in large numbers in late March and April around Komsomolets Bay (also known as the Dead Kultuk) in Kazakhstan, in the northeast part of the Caspain Sea. It is a very remote area with some oil wells, a Kazakh naval base, and not much else. Don’t know if a long boat trip would be required, very little online information is available.

I have emailed Machiel Valkenburg at http://rubythroatbirdingtours.com/ He thinks he can arrange logistics to visit the area and see Caspian Seals. This is a bit of a high end type tour company but I am leery of going with someone who might not really be able to pull it off.

Of course, everything else is on the table while there including birds, geologic features and cultural/World Heritage sites. Would welcome some company and to share expenses.

Level of Difficulty: Easy (maybe?)

Wild Saiga Watching, near Astrakhan, Russia, May 2019

Organisers – Karina & Andrey

We are two zoologists studying behaviour of critically endangered saiga antelopes (Saiga tatarica) in Stepnoi State Nature Sanctuary in Russia.

This is likely the best place in the world to see saiga antelopes up-close. Steppe wolves (Canis lupus campestris), corsac (Vulpes corsac) and red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and steppe polecat (Mustela eversmanii) can be seen at the waterhole. Long-eared hedgehog (Hemiechinus auritus), steppe polecat (Mustela eversmanii), midday gerbil (Meriones meridianus), great jerboa (Allactaga major), northern three-toed jerboa (Dipus sagitta), thick-tailed three-toed jerboa (Stylodipus telum), little ground squirrel (Spermophilus pygmaeus), etc. can be seen.

To support the sanctuary we are starting a research volunteering project. Very small groups of visitors (up to three persons) will join us for a week-long field trip. While staying at ranger’s station in the middle of the sanctuary, guests will be able to observe and photograph saigas from the hide and record some simple data (sex/age composition of groups) for saiga population monitoring program. Looking for three persons to join us for a trip in May 2019. This is a great time when saiga females visit the hide area with calves and males often fight playfully. Later in summer, it is very hot there and saigas are less active during the day. The trip includes seven nights in Stepnoi and nine nights altogether (two nights in Astrakhan city – on arrival and before the flight back). We will provide full guiding from the airport to airport and oragnise all accommodations and transportations.

UPDATE The dates are now May 21 – 29, 2019

Level of Difficulty: Easy

Peruvian Primates: Yellow-tailed Woolly Monkey, Emperor Tamarins and more, May 2 -13  2019 – NOW FULL

Organisers – Fiona Reid and Jon Hall

An 11 day trip to Peru in early May focusing on some fabulous primates and whatever else we can find.  Our small group will divide our time between Owlet Lodge in the Andes and Los Aimgos Research Station close to Manu National Park. And, guess what, there are some seriously good mammals in both places!

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Estonia: May and September 2019

Organiser – Estonian Nature Tours

Estonian Nature Tours is running two tours this year concentrating on Mammals and Birds. They are offering a 5% discount to mammal watchers. Tour dates of the year 2019 are Fri 3rd May – Fri 10th May and Fri 6th Sep – Fri 13th Sep

Highlights

Mammals: Racoon Dog, Red Fox, Elk, Roe Deer, Flying Squirrel (in dusk 80% quaranteed), Wild Boar (difficult! African swine fever), Brown Bear (99%), European Beaver (95%), tracks and droppings of Lynx and Wolves etc.

Birds: Bittern, Long-tailed Duck, Black Stork, peak spring migration of waterfowls, Ural Owl, Pygmy Owl, Golden Eagle, Lesser Spotted Eagle, White-tailed Eagle, Black Grouse, Capercaillie (probably), Corncrake, Great Snipe, Whimbrel, White-backed Woodpecker, Three-toed Woodpecker, Grey-headed Woodpecker, Citrine Wagtail, Savi´s Warbler, Penduline Tit, Golden Oriole etc.

Level of difficulty: Easy

Javan Rhino Expedition, June-July 2019

Organiser – Royle Safaris

Royle Safaris is now opening our Javan Rhino Expedition for 2019. We have managed to special permits that allow our group to enter the core region of Ujong Kulon National Park. We will be camping inside the park and basing our search along a little known river deep inside the park. This river has had more sightings (4-5) in the past couple of years than any other location inside the park for many years.

Level of difficulty: Moderate/Hard

Andean Cat Search, July in Chile

Organiser – Lennart Verheuvel

After a succesfull trip in the Western Sahara, Janco and I are going a littlebit more far away this time: Lauca National Park in Chile. With the recent successes of Jon and Ben in mind, this looks like the place to see Andean mountain cat and Pampas cat appears to be possible too. We  will be going this July for about two weeks.

If anybody is interested please contact me for more details. Any extra par of eyes makes probably a difference over there! Bear in mind though that in Chile it will be winter this time of year so it will be colder then in December. So if you’re up for some hardcore mammalwatching please contact me at lverheuvel AT live DOT nl!

Level of difficulty: Moderate (mainly because of the altitude)

Gabon, August 2019

August 17 – 31

Organiser – Fiona Reid

I am leading a group to Gabon in August 2019 (Aug 17-31 in Gabon) – basically following a similar itinerary to the one Jon and co. did, in hopes of seeing a similar host of great mammals! Please read Jon’s report for details on the country, accommodations and of course all the mammals they saw. I’m taking a slightly smaller group – max 8 including me, we have a night camping in Akanda, and a whale-watching trip from Libreville on the last day. Other than that, and inclusion of all meals in the trip cost, the itinerary is much like Jon’s.

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Gabon, August 2019

August 13 – 26
Organiser – Chalo Africa
This is a trip for adventurers, who don’t expect smooth sailing every day. It is a country for explorers who want to see something new, something different. It is a place for the intrepid Africa enthusiast who will be thrilled by the sight of a red river hog in a wallow, or a glimpse of a wary lowland gorilla in a forest clearing.
For all of you who have read Jon‘s trip report, our trip also covers Lopé and Loango plus the legendary Langoué Baï in Ivindo NP, rediscovered by Mike Fay during his 2000 Mega Transect. The trip is timed to coincide with the gathering of humpback whales off the shores of Loango, as well as encounter the large troops of the fabulously colorful Gabon mandrill in Lopé NP. In addition, we will also be tracking a group of habituated lowland gorillas.
Level of difficulty: Moderate

Tibet Snow Leopard Expedition, September 2019

Organiser – Himalaya Journey
In September 2019, Himalaya Journey will lead a one-of-a-kind 2 week expedition focusing on sighting and photographing the elusivesnow leopard, along with wolvesHimalayan brown bearsblue sheepWhite-lipped deermusk deergazellemarmotsfoxes,Pallas’s catslynxespika, as well as many birds of prey like Himalayan griffon and Bearded vultures. More than 60% of the world’s total wild snow leopard population live on the Tibetan Plateau, with many of them located in the sparsely populated Yushu Tibet Autonomous Prefecture, the area that this journey will be exploring.

Leading this journey is veteran Himalayan guide Jamin “Lobsang” York. Originally from the US, Jamin lived 15 years full-time in Tibet and speaks both Tibetan and Chinese languages. He is also a certified Wilderness First Responder with an emphasis on High Altitude Medicine. His expert knowledge and research on Tibetan history, culture and religion has been used by Animal Planet, The Discovery Channel, National Geographic and most recently by BBC for their 4 part series The Mekong River with Sue Perkins. He will be giving lectures each day on different aspects of Tibetan history and culture as well as monitoring the health of each client.

Joining Jamin is expert Tibetan wildlife guide Rinchen Tsebtrim, a native of Yushu Tibet Autonomous Region. Rinchen is fluent in English and studied eco-tourism from Columbia University in the US. He has led dozens of snow leopard expeditions the past decade. Some of his past clients include BBC, Wildlife photographer Vincent Munier and Disney. In 2016, Rinchen worked for 6 months on the snow leopard section for Disney on their Born in China documentary 

Level of difficulty: Moderate/Hard

Borneo’s Rare Mammals Tour, September 2019

Amazon Cruise with the Amazon River Dolphin Conservation Foundation, October 12 – 22, 2019

Organiser – Suzanne Smith & the ARDCF

A trip planned for October 2019 for up to 20 people with plenty to see and do at an affordable price. Amazon River Dolphin Conservation Foundation is a registered 501c3 non-profit organization. While our work focuses on the endangered Amazon river dolphin, we will explore the region in search of other rainforest wildlife. We will try to see as many species as possible. During previous trips, we have encountered tucuxi (another river dolphin species), red howler monkeys, titi monkeys, red rumped agoutis, white faced sakis, white fronted capuchins, giant river otters, Amazon tree rats, black howler monkeys, pied tamarins, long-nosed bats, squirrel monkeys, fishing bats, three-toed sloths and much more.

Level of difficulty: Easy

Borneo, October 2019

Organiser – Tomer Ben-Yehuda

19 full days of mammal exploration at Tawau Hills, Deramakot, Kinabatang River, Danum Valley and Mt. Kinabalu, looking for all the rare, bizarre and interesting mammals of Borneo. The prime targets will be of course the clouded leopard (10 nights at Deramakot dedicated for the task), marbled cat, sun bear, bay cat (extremely difficult, but found at Tawau Hills), Hose’s civet (also very difficult but found at Tawau and Mount K), flat-headed cat, western tarsier, and anything else we can find

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Andean Rare Mammals, 1 -11 November 2019

Organiser – Royle Safaris

The trip visits the higher altitude habitats of Ecuador in search of some of the most sought after South American mammal species. This trip focuses on 3 different areas, the cloud forests around Bellavista (where Olinguito is a prime target), Papallacta (where mountain tapir is the main species) and Cayambe Coca National Park (where the wonderful Andean (spectacled) bear is our number one target).

Along the way we expect to see species such as Andean white-tailed deer, Andean white-eared opossums, Andean rabbits, kinkajous and Andean foxes and we hope to see some rarer and more elusive species such as northern oncilla, colocolo, northern pudu, western mountain coati and many more species. Many of the species are very elusive and so we cannot guarantee any of the rare mammals, but we will have expert local guidance in each location as well as our own zoologist escort (Martin Royle), who has worked in the Ecuadorean highlands with the Andean Bear Project in the past. What we can guarantee is significant effort put into trying and see as much as possible.

As well as daytime effort we will also spend a good amount of time after dark looking for species. We will have high quality optical equipment for long distance spotting, a thermal imaging scope and animal caller all to help us in our efforts.

For anyone interested in extending this trip to explore other great areas of Ecuador (such as the Amazon or Galapagos Islands0) we can also make these arrangements and provide tailored itinerary for this. We have a great team of local guides in Ecuador and can provide itineraries specialising in mammals, birds, herpetofauna, marine wildlife, botany and photography.

Level of difficulty: Moderate

Amur Leopard and Siberian Tigers: November and December 2019 Trips 

Organiser – Royle Safaris

  • Amur Leopard Photography Tour (this is the location where all of the attached pictures were taken) – 19th – 27thNovember 2019
  • Siberian Tiger Photography Tour – 12th – 20th November 2019
  • Siberian Tiger Winter Tracking Tour – 27th November – 6th December 2019
  • Combined Amur Leopard Photography Tour & Siberian Tiger Photography Tour – 12th – 27th November 2019
  • Combined Amur Leopard Photography Tour & Siberian Tiger Winter Tracking Tour – 19th November – 6th December 2019

Level of Difficulty: Easy

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