WHY URUGUAY?
 
 
   
  COMMENTS
Armand Barilotti, USA
  Armand Barilotti, USA
 

"A dream come true, the chance to see and collect cichlids for myself in the wild while traveling in a country I had only briefly visited before.  I was a bit nervous about meeting up with the group and the tour guide at the airport.  I shouldn’t have been, because once I saw the smile from a super tan Felipe, Pedro and Mateo (Felipe’s young son) I felt right at home.

The hospitality of the Uruguayan people is extraordinary, and Felipe and his family are no exception. Right after picking us up from the airport, he showed us around his home and got us settled in. That night we were even invited to his birthday party and got to eat and hang out with his family! Throughout the entire trip both Pedro and Felipe made me feel right at home in their country. Uruguay is a wonderful place to collect fish and memories!

The Uruguayan people know good food and wine! Every meal I had was amazing and often filled with steak! It didn’t matter where in the country we went, Felipe always had a delicious spot to eat picked out for us. Or if there was nothing around, he and Pedro would break out the parilla and grill up some steak, chorizo and fish. And if it couldn’t get better, Felipe’s wife, Helen, is an AMAZING chef! Every meal she prepared us had me asking for seconds even if I was full.

Felipe is a world class collector with an extensive knowledge of the flora and fauna of his country. As I mentioned earlier, this was my first experience collecting fish in the wild and Felipe made it is easy for me to learn the various ways of collecting fish. He also was able to answer my questions regarding any of the fish we collected. My only recommendation is to learn to throw a cast net before you go, since it takes a bit of practice to learn. I learned how to throw one from a YouTube video prior to the trip and it definitely made it possible for me to catch some of the more elusive species like Crenicichla celidochilus, C. minuano, and G. balzanii. Not only does Felipe show you how to catch fish, he shows you how to keep them healthy and ready to be shipped home. Also the methods we used for collecting ensure that the fish stocks will be intact for future generations.

It’s been almost 6 months since I left Uruguay and every couple of weeks I dream about the fish we collected or just hangin’ with the group in Uruguay. I will be returning in the next year or two and I would recommend anyone looking for a similar experience to go on down to Uruguay and join a fish collecting expedition with Felipe and Aqvaterra!"

 

  Other comments
 
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