Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris
Ecotourism & Conservation in Brazil
By traveling with Cheesemans’ to Brazil, you directly support the local community including the passionate conservationists who work in ecotourism. Our local operator has long-lasting personal relationships with the owners of the lodges and private locations you experience on our Brazil itineraries. In addition to helping nurture these grass-roots relationships, he works with the local lodges to facilitate sustainable environmental practices such as water and sewage treatments, waste separation and recycling, solar power for hot water showers, and more. Our local operator also supports specific conservation projects by promoting and sending visitors to them and by organizing groups to take part in scientific research and donation efforts. It is his passion and belief that tourism and conservation are not separate and thus symbiotic, and when done right, tourism is an effective tool to protect and preserve important ecosystems such as the Pantanal of Brazil.
Brazil’s ecotourism industry also gives local people sustainable job alternatives that help further conservation. For example, our operator’s company is locally owned and operated, and he chooses only hand-picked guides and leaders committed to environmental and cultural values. Consequently, they support multiple initiatives. With Cheesemans’, they work with Alexine of the Peccary Project to connect tourism to important conservation projects. They are also involved in the Tapir Conservation Project, Giant Armadillo Project, Hyacinth Macaw Project, and jaguar-specific conservation projects: Onças do Rio Negro and Onçafari. Ecotourism provides the framework for locals to develop and work in conservation-focused endeavors.
How Can You Make A Difference?
How You Can Actively Contribute
- Give a talk about your experience to a local wildlife or nature group or host a virtual webinar to reach a much wider audience!
- Post your experiences on social media so others can learn more.
- Submit a written, video, or audio testimonial for Cheesemans’ to share with future travelers.
- Support local vendors if you buy memorabilia to take home.
- Bring a reusable water bottle to refill rather than accepting plastic bottles. Filtered water is provided in the vehicles and lodges.
- Ask for the lodging to not replace your towels or bedding during multiple night stays.
- Turn off lights and fans when leaving your room.
- Bring biodegradable soap to save waterways. This can also help minimize plastic bottle waste by reducing the number of bottles hotels provide (although many hotels are switching to dispensers in the bathrooms.).
Organizations You Can Support
SOS Pantanal – This private, non-profit organization promotes knowledge management and dissemination of information about the Pantanal biome to governments, opinion makers, large enterprises, farmers, and small landowners in the region, as well as the general public, to increase awareness and trigger positive impacts for the conservation and sustainable development of the Pantanal biome. Their Brigadas Pantaneiras program is structuring rural fire brigades throughout the Pantanal with the objective of early fire prevention to limit the incalculable loss of biodiversity.
IPÊ – Instituto de Pesquisas Ecológicas – This non-government organization (NGO) works all over Brazil developing and disseminating innovative models of biodiversity conservation that promote socioeconomic benefits through science, education, and sustainable business. They undertake an integrated action model with respect for community traditions and emphasize the transferring of knowledge and research results. Pantanal region-specific projects include Sustainable Landscapes and the Lowland Tapir Conservation Initiative.
ECOA – Ecologia e Acão – Formed by a group of researchers in 1989, this NGO’s objective is to establish a permanent space for dialogue and to develop projects and public policies for environmental conservation and sustainability in both rural and urban environments. It also participates in events such as workshops to discuss emerging environmental laws, especially relevant to the Pantanal. Currently, the main lines of work are guided by the themes of community, climate change, conservation of pollinators, and funding agencies and their disbursements in the areas of infrastructure and energy.