The Amazon is a land of superlatives. Words like "biggest" (world's biggest river), "most" (most water contained) and "greatest" (greatest biodiversity) are what applies here. The basin contains over 1000 named tributaries with a drainage area of almost 3,000,000 square miles (this incorporates Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Suriname, Guyana, Brazil, and Venezuela).
The Amazon basin is an exceedingly diverse combination of specific niches within one giant ecosystem. Wildlife, insects, birds, fish and vegetation vary greatly depending upon soil type and proximity to fluctuating water levels. The Amazon's overall watershed encompasses 1/5 of all the world's fresh water. There are over 3000 separate species of fish in the Amazon basin. Depending on the area, there can be as many as 15 different species that will take a fly or lure. Most of the Amazon's wildlife is shy and elusive. Although quite common, tapir, capybara, paca, jaguar, peccary and ocelot are all mostly nocturnal. This is not to say that you won't sometimes catch glimpses of them (usually swimming across the river), but generally it is hard to get a good look at them. Monkeys are quite common, but they quickly scamper back into the canopy, so you usually only see them momentarily. The bird life is much more cooperative. Macaws, parrots, parakeets, toucans, weaver birds, eagles, osprey, kingfishers, herons, jabiru storks, and a host of migratory species are a common sight throughout the fishing day. For more information see our website at www.AcuteAngling.com.
LANGUAGE -- Brazil is the only Latin American country where Portuguese is spoken as the native language. Grammatically, Portuguese is similar to Spanish, but the spoken language and word pronunciation is very distinct. Although individuals fluent in Spanish can generally communicate with a Brazilian native, easy conversation will be difficult. All camps have a full-time bilingual camp host.
CURRENCY -- The U.S. Dollar and the Brazilian Real fluctuate significantly, so we won’t list approximate exchange rates. Brazilian hotels and most shops readily accept credit cards, so there's usually no need to exchange money. If you do wish to exchange money, we recommend you do so in the U.S. -- you'll get a much better exchange rate. Hotels are notorious for having exorbitant exchange rates.
ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES - Brazilian liquor, beer, quality wines and soft drinks are provided in all of our operations at no charge. You are , however, welcome to bring your favorite beverage, if you wish. Import allowances in Brazil restrict import of liquor and tobacco, so keep them to a minimum (one carton of cigarettes or 25 cigars, and 2 liters of alcoholic beverages maximum).
GUIDES -- The guides in all our operations are hard working individuals who aim to please. Anglers are usually impressed by the lengths to which they will go to help fishermen enjoy their trip. Don't be surprised to see your guide slip into the water to untangle a fish hung up in structure. They do not speak conversational English very well, but they are quite proficient at fishing English. They will be able to help you select the right lures/flies and also show you how to fish each species in the correct manner. The single best piece of fishing advice you will ever receive about peacock bass and the Amazon is - Follow your guide’s advice. They are experienced and know the fish and fishery extremely well.
GRATUITIES -- Gratuities are discretionary and are not included. Just as with restaurant staff in the U.S., Brazilian employees receive a steady salary, however, tipping is also an important adjunct to the staff’s income. Remember that a guide's tip is based upon performance and is by no means obligatory -- knowledge, enthusiasm and commitment, should be rewarded accordingly (at the same time, although this will simply not happen with our guides, apathy and laziness should be reflected by a low tip). Elsewhere, the customary tip in restaurants and hotels is 10%, but most of the time this is automatically added to your bill.
WEATHER -- Tropical temperatures prevail in the Amazon with mid-day temperature ranging as high as 85 -100 F. Generally, there is little wind and an intense sun throughout the day, so please be mindful of dehydration and overexposure to the sun. At night, the temperature slowly drops to 70-75 F. Although you will be fishing during the dry season, there are occasional rain storms (you’re in the middle of the world’s largest rain forest after all), so please bring along a lightweight, packable rain suit (pants included) to avoid a cold and uncomfortable boat ride.