A capybara on the shore in the Pantanal, Brazil.
Two Wildlife Conservation Specialists on the Road
Jeff Flocken, CI's Director of Education and Outreach and Julie Scardina, Animal Ambassador for SeaWorld/Busch Gardens, are traveling to the Pantanal region of Brazil to investigate on-going conservation efforts in this amazing wetland. With the help of their Brazilian and U.S. colleagues, they will be relaying information about their adventures.
The Brazilian Pantanal and the Cerrado
Our reporters will explore the Pantanal, which is the world's largest wetland, covering more than 365,000 square kilometers. During the rainy season, the region experiences extensive flooding, connecting a vast array of swamps, lagoons, backwaters and oxbow lakes. Jeff and Julie will also travel to the neighboring Cerrado region, a unique grasslands and savannah ecosystem that is highly imperiled. The Pantanal and Cerrado are home to an incredibly diverse abundance of wildlife including caiman, capybaras, peccaries, jaguars, maned wolves, deer, toucans, tapirs, puma, giant anteaters, rhea and hyacinth macaws.
Assessing Exciting Conservation Efforts
Over eight days, Jeff and Julie will observe exciting and creative conservation initiatives taking place in the Brazilian Pantanal and the Cerrado, and report what they find to you. Additionally, they will work with their colleagues back in the United States to supplement their daily dispatches from the field with exciting information about local species, Brazilian environmental professionals, scientific research tools and relevant conservation issues.
Daily Dispatches Posted over 10 Days
Daily dispatches start with the day Jeff and Julie land in Brazil, and end with the day they leave the country. Since they will be there in the height of South America's rainy season, they anticipate getting very wet on a regular basis - this, on top of the heavy humidity common to the tropics, will make for a challenging trip to the field.
Reporters On the Go
Our reporters will explore via plane, boat, car, canoe, horseback and even tractors to find out what is being done to protect this amazing region. Working with their Brazillian colleagues who are hosting the visit, Jeff and Julie plan to interview and observe as many professional conservationists and researchers as they can find. It is an ambitious agenda, but hopefully, Jeff, Julie and you will all emerge with a better understanding of what goes into protecting a valuable ecosystem like the Pantanal.