Tambopata, Peru

The country of Peru is incredibly rich in culture, history and biodiversity.

There are two main areas of rainforest to visit in Peru. In northern Peru, on the Amazon River, the Iquitos region has both lodges and comfortable Riverboats from which to experience the rainforest. The Tambopata region, in southeast Peru, has several great lodges and is known for the amazing “colpas” or parrot clay licks where hundreds of macaws congregate daily. Carol has worked in the Peruvian rainforest for 35 years and can organize the perfect trip for you and your group! An extension to Cuzco and Machu Picchu can be added at the beginning or end of your rainforest trip.

The Tambopata trip takes you to one of the most spectacular wildlife viewing spots in the Peruvian Amazon Basin – the Tambopata National Reserve clay lick, one of the largest in the world, which attracts dozens of macaws and hundreds of parrots every day. The birds arrive to the large riverbank in such a raucous and colorful spectacle that they inspired a National Geographic cover story. They visit the riverbank to ingest the clay, which contains minerals important to their diet.

The Tambopata National Reserve is part of the 30 million hectare Vilcabamba Amboro Conservation Corridor and diversity within the Reserve abounds, with 1300 species of birds, 32 parrot species, 200 mammal species, 1200 butterfly species, and over 10,000 species of vascular plants. As you travel upriver into the remote regions of the Reserve, you’ll have exciting opportunities to view wildlife along the river, such as capybara families, caiman, geese, macaws, and other large animals.

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The Galapagos Islands - June 5-15, 2017

Located 600 miles west off the coast of Ecuador in the Pacific Ocean, the Galapagos archipelago, also known as the "Enchanted Isles" consists of 13 main islands, 6 small islands and numerous islets. The islands are of volcanic origin and are considered young in geologic terms with the oldest island, Espanola estimated at 3-5 million years and the youngest, Fernandina only about 700,000 years old.

Visitors to the Galapagos have unparalleled wildlife experiences and encounters that are unique to these islands and unforgettable to those fortunate enough to visit. A sea lion may plop down next you on the beach or come face to face with you while on a snorkeling outing. A Hood Mockingbird may land on your head or shoulder or even rummage in your backpack in search of water. You may find yourself stepping over lava lizards which are unconcerned with your presence. Boobies will display to each other mere feet from you while you video their elaborate courtship rituals. A Green sea turtle may glide under you while you’re snorkeling. An enormous giant tortoise will graze nonchalantly in the wild while you snap close up photos of it. The wildlife of the Galapagos Islands is truly remarkable in its lack of fear of humans and as a visitor, you will be enchanted like never before!

Galapagos Islands Trip - June 5-15, 2017

Pantanal, Brazil - August 17-25, 2017

Ten times the size of the Florida Everglades, and stretching across Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay, the Pantanal is the largest wetland area in the world! Although it's not as well known as the Amazon Rainforest, this rich seasonal floodplain is home to a staggering number of birds and wildlife! The Pantanal is a “wetland wonderland” and has been called the "Serengeti of South America" for good reason!

The Pantanal is known for the richness of its fauna, including 325 species of fish, 159 species of mammals, 93 species of reptile, 1,132 species of butterflies and 656 species of birds! The iconic animals that inhabit this wetland are the jaguar, hyacinth macaw, giant river otter, tapir, giant anteater and anaconda! In the past, we have seen all of these species on one trip! On a Vet-Ex trip, we'll spend three full days on boats looking for jaguars on the river banks and we have been rewarded grandly with 11 sightings of jaguars on one trip! If you're a photographer, you will be in photo heaven with the multitude of photo opportunities. If you're a bird watcher, you'll be amazed at the sheer numbers of birds seen daily! And if you're neither, you'll most likely become both a birder and a photographer on this trip!

Points of Interest

Pantanal Trip - August 17-25, 2017

Panama/Costa Rica

Come with us to the heart of Central America and see one of the greatest engineering feats ever completed, the Panama Canal! Travel from San Jose, Costa Rica, to Cartagena, Colombia, via the Panama Canal, stopping at amazing highlights along the way. Immerse yourself in the natural wonders along the coast of Costa Rica and Panama on a voyage aboard the brand new, state of the art, luxurious expedition ship, the Pearl Mist.

Venture into the rain forests of Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica. Highlights in this park include hidden coves, white sand beaches and lush tropical foliage. Search for monkeys, frogs, sloths, and brightly colored birds - the park boasts 109 species of mammals and 184 species of birds.

Explore Corcovado National Park where you can experience the rich biodiversity of the tropical rainforest. Here we will search for 4 species of monkeys, as well as coatis, a relative of the raccoon, and many varieties of birds and insects. We'll watch for dolphins and other marine life in Drake Bay as we take a leisurely boat ride to the ranger station.

In Panama, we'll visit Coiba Island, the largest uninhabited tropical forested island in the Americas. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this untouched rainforest is home to the Coiba Island Howler Monkey and is a haven for birdlife that has largely disappeared from the mainland.

Examine the fascinating lock system that made the Panama Canal one of the greatest engineering achievements of its era.

Swim in the sparkling waters of the Perlas Islands, where we have the opportunity to see beautiful coral reefs and exotic marine life such as sting rays, sea turtles, star fish, dolphins and whales! The Perlas Islands are a picturesque group of over 200 islands which have a rich history of swashbuckling and hidden treasure!

Before reaching Cartagena, we will stop at one of the most popular destinations in Panama, the San Blas Islands. This archipelago of more than 370 islands and cays is home to the Kuna, a self-governing tribe of indigenous people who are famous for their colorful cloths called molas. We will have two days to explore the islands and meet the local people. The white sand beaches and crystal clear water provide a magical atmosphere where we will have plenty of time to swim, rest under a palm tree or soak up the sun!

There is still time to sign up for this wonderful cruise! There are only a few staterooms left and we are offering a special 30% discount until we are sold out!

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Amazon Rainforest - October 22-28, 2017

Our Amazon Rainforest trip will be held in the small South American country of Ecuador which boasts one of the highest rates of biodiversity, despite its small size! We will spend our time at a first-rate rainforest lodge that has a canopy tower, a canopy walkway, a butterfly house, a beautiful lake to swim in and many trails to walk. Each tastefully appointed room has a private bathroom with hot water, ceiling fans, 24 hours electricity and a balcony with a hammock. There is frequently wildlife, such as monkeys, right outside your room and the birdwatching is fantastic! Meals are buffet style and delicious! There is a bar with a tower lookout where you can watch birds while enjoying a cold beer after a hike in the jungle! You'll have three full days immersed in the rainforest and each day we’ll embark on two outings, consisting of interpretive rainforest walks, visits to the canopy tower, the canopy walkway, a parrot clay lick (weather depending), and the butterfly house. People will be divided into groups of 6-8, each group with a naturalist guide and a native guide. CE Lectures will be given after lunch and after dinner each day.

The days will pass quickly as we immerse ourselves in learning about the ecology of the tropical rainforest, with an emphasis on conservation and preservation of this biodiverse and fragile habitat. Night hikes will also be offered to those wishing to look for frogs, snakes, insects and other nocturnal creatures. In addition, we will have special daily activities for our “Young Jungle Explorers” and we encourage families to join us on this wonderful trip!

Wildlife Veterinary Conference, Amazon, Ecuador - October 22-28, 2017

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Polar Bears of Churchill

Canada has 10 provinces and 3 territories and the small remote town of Churchill is in the province of Manitoba, on the western shore of Hudson Bay. The population of Churchill, which is only 900 people year round, booms during “polar bear season” when over a six week period from early October to mid November, 10,000 visitors arrive to watch the most famous inhabitants of the region, the polar bears! Because there are no roads into Churchill, one must arrive either by train or plane.

From a wildlife standpoint, Churchill is special because it’s located at the transition zone of the arctic tundra and the boreal forest biomes, thus having plants and animals from both types of habitats. Wapusk National Park is just south of Churchill and is home to one of the world’s largest known polar bear maternity denning areas. The word Wapusk is a Cree Indian word meaning “white bear”. Churchill is also one of the top three places on the planet to see the Northern Lights! The best time to see the Aurora Borealis is between January and March, but we sometimes see these colorful dancing curtains of light on our polar bear trips in October and November.

In early October, the polar bears begin arriving to the Churchill area to await the freezing up of Hudson Bay, which typically happens mid November. The main food prey of polar bears is the ringed seal and the bears spend most of their time out on the ice hunting the seals. The ice forms earliest near the mouth of the Churchill River where it flows into Hudson Bay and the polar bears have been congregating here for millennia.

Carol has been guiding polar bear trips in Churchill for 17 years and Vet-Ex will be offering a trip in early November, 2017. If you have never seen a polar bear in the wild, then this is the trip for you as we usually see between 35-50 bears on each trip, many up close and personal from the tundra buggy!!

Photography Workshop

Dates and location coming soon!


Antarctica trip

Antarctica, the "great white continent" is a place that most people only dream about visiting - but we at Veterinary Expeditions want to make this a reality for you! Those who join a Vet-Ex cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula will have the opportunity to explore one of the last truly untouched wildernesses on the planet while also learning in depth about the creatures that call this rugged place home!

Visitors to Antarctica are treated not only to spectacular scenery, but also to once in a lifetime experiences that will live on in your memory forever! Your senses will come alive as you listen to the noisy penguin rookeries we'll be visiting or watch a humpback whale breach or cruise around vivid blue icebergs in the comfort of a zodiac. Antarctica is a land of dark, rugged, rocky peaks contrasting with the pure white snow and ice and the clear bright blue waters of this southern wonderland.

While crossing the Drake Passage, we will be on deck to spot whales and majestic seabirds as they soar alongside the ship. On the Antarctic Peninsula we will cruise around icebergs of all shapes and sizes by Zodiac, walk along beaches covered with thousands of penguins, kayak amid abundant marine life, or climb to a rugged vista for an amazing view.

We anticipate making two Zodiac landings each day while in Antarctica to hike and experience close encounters with wildlife. There will be ample opportunity for amazing photography, both from the ship's decks and from land while we are on a shore excursion. In keeping with the nature of an expedition, the schedule will be flexible, allowing us to take advantage of the unexpected - watching whales perform off the bow whenever they should appear, even it it's in the middle of a lecture presentation!

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The name Botswana evokes visions of wild Africa and it is here in the Okavango Delta of Botswana where one can experience the true raw beauty of untouched wilderness and all the creatures that still inhabit this remarkable land. If your dream is to go to Africa, then this is the country you must visit! Botswana is landlocked between Namibia to the west, South Africa to the south/southeast and Zimbabwe to the northeast. It has the largest inland delta in the world, the Okavango Delta, which opens up into the Kalahari Desert. Being a very dry country, the waters of the Okavango Delta are literally life-giving and form a wondrous habitat where wildlife viewing is at a premium! A Botswana safari is truly a trip of a lifetime!

Vet-Ex can custom build a Botswana safari to fit your special interests. The upscale safari camps that we use have open-sided, extended landrovers for optimal viewing and photography and are limited to 6 people per vehicle so everyone has a window seat and an empty seat between them for their gear. Our typical safaris will either begin or end at the amazing Victoria Falls and will also visit the northern Linyanti region of Botswana where elephants and predators are abundant. Carol has lived and worked in Botswana, knows the country well and is uniquely qualified to plan an outstanding safari for you. She also guides several safaris per year and will guide private safaris on request.

Most safaris are between 10-12 days long with two days at Victoria Falls and the remainder of time divided between exclusive safari camps in three different regions of Botswana to optimize your experience. To inquire about booking a safari to Botswana, please contact us at

Botswana Safari - TBD and on individual request

Madagascar - 2017

About 200 miles off the southeast coast of Africa lies the magical island of Madagascar. From chameleons to lemurs to strange birds with stranger names, Madagascar is a naturalist’s paradise!

Much of the plant and animal life on Madagascar is endemic, found there and nowhere else on Earth. While on a tour to Madagascar, you’ll have an unsurpassable opportunity to experience the unique diversity of life found on this island. Itineraries are arranged so you’ll visit very different habitats, thus maximizing your natural history experience . From the wonderful Perinet Reserve in the eastern rainforest with the stunning black and white Indri lemur to a trip south to the spiny forest where ring-tailed and sifaka lemurs are unafraid and go about their day unfazed by your presence, you’ll be amazed by the bizarre wildlife at every turn! Photographic opportunities abound throughout the trip as you visit enchanted rainforests, hike along huge sandstone formations in Isalo National Park or visit the dry deciduous forest of Ampijoroa in the west where one can encounter the beautiful Coquerel’s sifaka.

Carol has been guiding trips to Madagascar since 1995 and can organize a private tour for you and your group at any time. Vet-Ex utilizes superb in-country guides which enhances the overall experience even more! For more information, contact us at

Madagascar 2017 - Stay tuned!

South Africa Safari

Located on the southern tip of the great continent of Africa, the country of South Africa is world renown as a great safari destination. As one of the most geographically varied countries on the continent, South Africa encompasses habitats that range from the Kalahari desert, to rugged mountains, to fertile plains of the highveld and the wide open savannas.

In June 2016, Vet-Ex is offering an unforgettable wildlife adventure that includes visiting three of South Africa's best game viewing areas where we will stay in 5 star accommodations, while experiencing the best of the African wilderness!

Our first destination is Phinda Game Reserve, located in the subtropical northern KwaZulu Natal region of South Africa, which is in close proximity to the Indian Ocean. Abundant wildlife which thrives in that region, paired with the incredible variety of birdlife makes this a nature lover's dream. The area is well known for its excellent Big Five game viewing and exceptional sightings of the elusive cheetah and rare black rhino!

Our second safari stop brings us to Thornybush Game Reserve, a private game reserve adjacent to the famous Kruger National Park. This private reserve is home to an amazing array of species: 147 mammals including the "Big Five", 114 reptiles, 507 birds, 49 fish, 34 amphibians and 336 species of trees! While at Thornybush, we will enjoy game viewing from an open 4x4 vehicle with professional guides and trackers who enthusiastically share their extensive knowledge of the bush. Photograph wildlife to your heart's content each and every day! Bush walks are also available for those who want to experience a walking safari!

The trip finishes at Shamwari Game Reserve in South Africa's stunning Eastern Cape. While at Shamwari, in addition to our morning and afternoon safari game drives, we will have the opportunity to visit the Born Free Big Cat Sanctuary, the Ian Player Rhino Awareness Center and The Wildlife Rehabilitation Center. One of South Africa's most experienced wildlife veterinarians, Dr. Johan Joubert, calls Shamwari home and we are extremely fortunate to have Dr. Joubert as our Guest Lecturer for this trip. Dr. Joubert has a life-time of experience working with African wildlife and not only will we learn from him through his lecture presentations, but we will spend time in the bush with him, which is sure to be both exciting and educational! Come earn CE credits while having the time of your life!

For more information, please contact us at

Rwanda Gorilla Trekking - July 7-17, 2017

Set off on a once-in-a-lifetime journey into the lush cloud forest mountains of Rwanda to encounter mountain gorillas in the wild. Spend two days tracking gorillas in the forests of Parc National des Volcans.

The terrain can be rough and at times muddy. Although the hike is physically demanding the beauty of the forest and surrounding scenery make the trekking worthwhile. Once we locate the gorillas, all fatigue is forgotten, as this experience is often described as being the most profound natural history experience in the world! To be within feet of a Silverback male Mountain Gorilla and his family is very humbling and incredibly exciting!!

On Vet-Ex trips, each person will have two porters to help carry your gear and help you up (and down) the mountain!

For more information on this trip, please contact us at

Rwanda Gorilla Trekking/Tanzania Safari - July 7-17, 2017

Tanzania - July 7-17, 2017

Tanzania in East Africa is famous for its national parks such as the vast savannas of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater where more than 25,000 animals live!, It is also home to the highest mountain in Africa, Kilimanjaro, and is the setting for many documentaries about the legendary wildlife spectacle, the seasonal migration of 1.5 million wildebeest!

Every trip to Tanzania offers exceptional wildlife viewing, including sightings of predators, such as lions, leopards, and cheetah, as well as iconic species like elephants, giraffes and rhinos. You can also expect to see large herds of plains game such as zebras and antelopes. While on safari in Tanzania, it is near impossible to not be moved by the sheer beauty and magnificence of the country and it's wildlife.

Veterinary Expeditions will periodically offer Tanzania safaris, either as a stand-alone safari or in combination with a gorilla trekking trip to Rwanda. As with any of our trips, we will create a custom trip for specialized groups by request. For more information, contact us at

Rwanda Gorilla Trekking/Tanzania Safari - July 7-17, 2017