SAVE THE FROGS! supporter Ruth Van Sciver visited La Selva Amazon Ecolodge in Ecuador in 2010. It was her enthusiastic recollection of her experience that inspired us to organize our 2018 SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour to La Selva. Here are some memories Ruth was willing to share:
“We stayed at La Selva Jungle Lodge for seven nights in January 2010 and had a wonderful, educational, and entertaining visit. Our nine person group consisted of two families with four boys, ages 6, 8, 9 and 14 plus my 77 year old mother. We all had a GREAT time and can’t wait to go back!
From June 8th-20th, 2017, adventurers from Canada, Mexico, the U.K. and the USA joined SAVE THE FROGS! for the 2nd Annual SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour. From frog-watching in the Amazon Basin to hiking in the Andes, our group was overcome by the remarkable biodiversity of Ecuador. The ecotour was simply wonderful and truly an amphibian extravaganza! Our group observed 37 species of frogs and toads, 3 species of salamanders and 2 species of caecilians! We trekked through rainforests, hiked up mountains, swam in beautiful waterfall pools and took in the magnificent nature of Ecuador. We experienced the culture and traditions of indigenous groups and they honored us with their incredible knowledge of the rainforest. We ate fabulous food, made new friendships and integrated with people of different cultures, spreading amphibian awareness as we traveled. United by a love of frogs and an appreciation of nature, our participants left Ecuador feeling inspired and connected with the natural world. Every SAVE THE FROGS! ecotour is wonderful, but this trip was truly special.
“I can honestly say it was the best trip of my life (and I’ve travelled a lot!)” – Melissa Steele-Ogus, 2017 Ecuador Ecotour Participant
Please read on to see the fantastic photos and stories from our time in Ecuador. We hope to see you on the 2018 SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour!
Your reservation on a SAVE THE FROGS! Ecotour is subject to our Ecotour Terms & Conditions (below) and the Ecotour Participant Agreement, Release and Acknowledgement of Risk. Please read these carefully and contact us if you have any questions. A SAVE THE FROGS! Ecotour Leader will get back to you as soon as possible.
In October 2015, I visited Ecuador for the first time. I spent my first ten days in the country traveling with amphibian biologist Chelsea Carson. We visited the Amazon, the Andes and the coast to develop the SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour. At the end of our travels, I interviewed Chelsea while overlooking the Pacific Coast at Tabuga in Ecuador’s Manabi province. We discussed Chelsea’s career path and how she went from being an undergraduate organizing Save The Frogs Day events to a Fulbright scholar researching amphibians in Ecuador and organizing ecotours. Chelsea teaches us about Ecuador’s primary ecosystems and the threats they face, and we learn about Chelsea’s research in the streams and agricultural areas of the Ecuadorian cloudforest. We also discuss the value of ecotours, both for the ecotourist and the local communities. And of course we talk about the SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour and the beautiful frog habitats we visit on the tour.
Chelsea Carson smiling with a glass frog in the Ecuadorian Amazon.
The inaugural SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour took place June 15th to June 26th, 2016 and was a huge success. Our group of frog enthusiasts explored the Amazon rainforest, the Mindo cloudforests, and the high slopes of the Andes. We found frogs, monkeys, lizard and colorful birds and insects. We ate fabulous food, made new friendships and integrated with people of different cultures, spreading amphibian awareness as we travelled. We hope to see you on the 2017 SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour!
Kaya Klop-Toker, a researcher studying the ecology of amphibians at the University of Newcastle in Australia, tells the story of the most memorable trip of her life. Her trip to the Ecuadorian Amazon (close to where we’ll visit on the SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour) was a life-changing experience. The sights and sounds are memories she’ll carry with her forever. Read on to explore the wonder of the Amazon.
This blue and red poison frog (Ranitomeya ventrimaculata) carries tadpoles on its back. They have been seen in bromeliads more than 100 feet above the forest floor.
Cloud forests are truly fascinating ecosystems that contain rich biodiversity and amphibian species found nowhere else in the world. This year during the SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour we will spend three nights in the remarkable cloud forest ecosystem of the Mindo Valley. The Mindo Valley is not just beautiful and pristine, but its history contains a unique story of conservation, ecotourism, and sustainable development. The dedicated individuals who live in the Mindo Valley started a movement to protect this incredible landscape because they are passionate about the many plants and animals that call this cloud forest home.
Photo of Pristimantis crucifer from Mashpi, Ecuador, courtesy of Jaime Culebras
People who like new experiences, adventures, and fringe explorations in wild nature love SAVE THE FROGS! Ecotours. SAVE THE FROGS! Ecotours are defined by lasting friendships, impressions, experience, and adventures, where you’ll meet like-minded people and have experiences of a lifetime. The 2016 SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour had people of all ages—from college-aged to senior—from a variety of backgrounds, brought together by a common love of frogs, wildlife, and adventure. The trip included many firsts for the participants, including rescuing an ocelot, ziplining through the canopy, even the first time out of the country or flying solo for some. Read the profiles below of some of the 2016 participants to get a feel of what it’s like to travel with SAVE THE FROGS! and learn about our upcoming ecotours here.
Photo of Pristimantis ornatissimus from Mashpi, Ecuador courtesy of Jaime Culebras, who led our group through the Mindo cloudforests.