About SouthWild

After a combined 55 years of field research in South America, in 2010 professional conservation biologists Charles Munn and Mariana Valqui created the ecotour company "SouthWild" to consolidate and to scale-up the successful conservation tourism that they experimented with and perfected since the late 1980's in Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, and Ecuador. Only by expanding truly conservation-based tourism can responsible travel "move the needle" to protect major tracts of our increasingly-threatened biosphere.

About us

SouthWild operates conservation tourism in Brazil, Peru, Chile, Argentina and Ecuador, and is in the process of expanding in all of them, but the main emphasis for SouthWild for the next few years will be Brazil, due to the ecological miracle that Brazil has undergone since 1990. This miracle is the result of cessation in 1990 of all hunting in most of central and southern Brazil and in large parts of the Brazilian Amazon. After 22 years without hunting, large, spectacular animals are now visible in Brazil better than anywhere else, at any time in history. These species include Giant Otters, Giant Anteaters, Brazilian Tapirs, Green Anacondas, Maned Wolves, large macaws, and, of course, the mighty Jaguar.

SouthWild Brazil's flagship program is SouthWild Jaguar, originally known as the Jaguar Research Center, and this Jaguar conservation tourism program operates now from the Jaguar Flotel . Since 2006, we have been guaranteeing viewing of Jaguars. By October 2012, our Jaguar teams at our two locations in north-central Pantanal had more than 3,200 hours of direct Jaguar observation in 3,700 sightings. At the same time SouthWild Brazil now is offering guaranteed, close-up viewing of very habituated Giant Otters, Pumas, Brazilian Tapirs, Maned Wolves, flocks of 60-100 Hyacinth Macaws, and unique, hammer-rock-wielding capuchin monkeys that appear regularly in BBC, National Geographic, and PBS TV documentaries.

As macaw researchers and authors of the cover story of the National Geographic cover story on macaws, we pioneered and now guarantee short-range photography of wild Hyacinth, Scarlet, Red-and Green and Blue-and-Gold Macaws. SouthWild also offers selected, seasonal locations for camp- or lodge-based wildlife spectacles that are the finest in the Amazon of Peru and Brazil and in the low and high Andes of Peru, Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina.

Finally, we now feature unique wildlife safaris along the rugged Pacific Coast and Andes of Peru and Chile, and a new comfort standard in Inca Trail treks and, of course, the archaeology and wildlife of Machu Picchu, the fabled "Lost City of the Incas".

Charles Munn

Mariana Valqui

Our team

CEO and Founder: Charles Munn, Ph.D President and Co-founder: Mariana Valqui, B.Sc. Peru Manager: Patricia Miranda Cusco Office Manager: Karla Fernandez Brazil Manager: Mariana Valqui Mato Grosso Jaguar Program Director: Charles Munn Sales Team: Patricia Andrade, Claudia Pacheco, Charles Munn, Mariana Valqui, Patricia Miranda, Pilar Estrada Operations: Giannina Rojas, Maria Elena Fernandez, Alice Sucksdorff, Pilar Estrada, Lucy Torres Administration: Marcelo Santos, Fisher Souza, Delia Mamani, Nelly Condori Lodge Permanent staff: Odair Mendes, João Pereira, Joceil Lima, Joanna Mendes, Jovita Leite, Francisco Lima Senior Jaguar Boat searchers: João Batista, Joceil Correa Inca Trail porters (Peru): Lucio Condori

2010 Inaugurating our Lima office

The Inca Trail team

SW Brazil team on cuiaba

Patricia Miranda

Claudia, Giannina and Patricia

Joanna, Claudia and Jovita in a Vegetarian cuisine workshop

João, Jaguar scout and boat driver

Giving back

We believe that a company contributes most to a community by creating a large number of high-quality jobs. Viable companies produce sustainable jobs and increasing numbers of jobs that pay a living wage. SouthWild specializes in developing nature tourism in remote wildlands that are blessed with outstanding wildlife but are not sufficiently appreciated by the outside world. New wildlife destinations take time to grow to sustainable levels, so SouthWild also operates well known sites such as Machu Picchu to help subsidize our development of conservation-based tourism to new wildlife destinations.

Conservationist work by Charles Munn and Mariana Valqui

*Financed and helped create the 1.4-m-hectare Babuaja Sonene National Park and Tambopata National Reserve, Perú. • Financed and helped create the 1.9-m-hectare Madidi National Park, Bolivia. • Financed land-titling of 1.5 m hectares to indigenous Amerindian tribes in the Peruvian Amazon. • Founded and financed Peru Verde conservation group to experiment with better ecotourism for conservation. • Founder of the multinational, co-operative effort "Conservation Group for the Flamingoes of the Andes" (GCFA). • Continuous assistance, financing, and training of Amerindian communities in the Peruvian Amazon: arpillera production and land titling.


Arpilleras are patchwork artwork made by local and indigenous women in Peru and Brasil that depict the wildlife of the beautiful Amazon and the Pantanal and the spectacular wildlife that lives there. Buying the arpilleras helps support any of the 80 ladies and their families that currently produce arpilleras. The arpilleras are available through the SouthWild offices. Please consider purchasing arpilleras as a souvenir. They cost between 35 and 80 USD depending on their size. Each arpillera is unique and comes with a hand written description. If you are interested in selling arpilleras, please let us know. We have some guests who like to order a specific theme (macaws, coffee harvest, Andes, etc). To meet the ladies who produce these colorful items, you are invited to visit the workshop in Pocone, Brazil, on your way in or out of the Pantanal. As the production shop in Peru is located in Sepahua, far out in the Peruvian Amazon, to understand the Peruvian effort, it is best to meet with Ms. Noris, the arpillera master teacher and coordinator, who runs a similar workshop in the outskirts of Lima.

Conservation, Science and Education with Corbidi

SouthWild supports and works in collaboration with Corbidi, a Lima-based nonprofit conservation group. This support includes internships and travel opportunities for Corbidi students and sponsorship of thesis fieldwork of three ornithology students per year. Please contact us if you would like more information about sponsoring the fieldwork of an eager university student. Upon request, we can arrange a visit to Corbidi's headquarters in Lima, where you will meet several students at work and see their superb museum collection of Peruvian birds.

Cynthia Sánchez Figueroa, Peruvian Student was awarded a SouthWild student scholarship.




Las marcas de hambre, llamadas en inglés "fault bars", son bandas o puntos translúcidos debido a alteraciones en el crecimiento de la pluma y se presentan en las plumas de cualquier ave. Estás pueden incrementar la probabilidad de ruptura parcial o total, y así debilitando la estructura de la pluma. Este trabajo busca iniciar el registro y descripción de datos e información sobre marcas de hambre en nuestro país, evaluando su prevalencia, abundancia, tipo y nivel de gravedad en 38 especies de aves neotropicales del norte del Perú depositadas en la colección de CORBIDI. Además, de relacionar las presencia, frecuencias y niveles de gravedad de las marcas de hambre en las plumas de vuelo con información disponible de tipo de dieta, sexo, formas de desplazamiento y de descanso de las especies. Esta información básica nos permitiría en el futuro comenzar a plantear y probar hipótesis y experimentos sobre las posibles causas que las originan, así como las estrategias adaptativas para reducir el costo de la presencia de marcas de hambre en las plumas.

SouthWild Inca Trail Porters

On the SouthWild Inca Trail we work with porters from various Andean communities. Ten percent of SouthWild's Inca Trail profits support the communities and families of our porters.

The High Andean Flamingo Conservation

Mariana Valqui is a founding member of the Conservation Group for Flamingos of the High Andes (GCFA), which consists of a network of scientists and students who monitor the conservation situation of flamingos in Argentina, Peru, Bolivia and Chile. Since the creation of GCFA in 1997, that group has conducted several simultaneous censuses throughout the South-Central Andes, thus producing the first global population counts for the threatened Andean and James Flamingos. The GCFA also is promoting legislation for the creation of conservation units in key breeding locations of these colorful, endangered flamingos.


Wildnis mit Samtfoten

GEO SAISON / German Download PDF

This week´s dream: jaguar spotting in the wetlands of Brasil

LEISURE / English Download PDF

Jaguar showroom

LIFE & ARTS / English Download PDF

The Velvet Hour

PLACES / English Download PDF


Lear´s Macaw/Survey of Glaucous Macaw Habitat

English Download PDF

Blue-throated Macaw Conservation in Beni, Bolivia

PSITTA SCENE / English Download PDF

The Golden Conure Survival Fund

PSITTA SCENE / English Download PDF

A Journey through Brazil

PSITTA SCENE / English Download PDF