Brazilian Amazon

Anne Kilmer viceroy at
Sat Jul 18 05:59:23 EDT 1998

Hank Brodkin wrote:
> Jungletour at wrote:
> > Well, I can see the point that there are not enough serious amateur
> > entomologists interested in exploring the Amazon to make permitting,
> etc.
> > economically feasible, and therefore, setting up some easy form for
> permitting
> > is just not in the cards right now. (rest omitted)
> Jim-
> Respectfully, from one not very active ex Lorquin member, I would like
> to
> disagree.  There is a growing number of butterfly students who have
> eschewed the
> net for close focus binoculars and cameras with macro lenses.  Many, if
> not most
> of these people would very much like to go to Brazil, or elsewhere in
> the Amazon
> (Andean Leps are not too shabby either) to observe and photograph.snip
> Let's ask that question now:  How many of you at this site would be
> interested in
> a non-collecting butterfly study trip to the Amazon - with someone of
> the caliber
> of Jim Hanlon as the guide?
> Cheers!
> --
>              Hank Brodkin, Carr Canyon,

Do I get to be young and muscular? If so, Oh boy, yes! 
I have gathered, from years of listening to you guys bitching and 
moaning, that photographers are irritated by collectors who net the bug 
they are in the act of photographing. And, of course, vice versa. You 
figure you can get over that and share nicely? I've been admiring how 
nicely the non-collectors are treating the collectors in this thread. It 
is almost as if we have observed our common goal and are respecting each 
	I think we need to recognize the many worthy reasons why people 
collect, and find ways of accommodating them while focusing on habitat 
preservation. I hope that my butterfly gardeners here in Florida grow up 
to be thoughtful and patient, whether they collect or just try to 
attract them, as I do. 
	Seems to me, reading what you've written, that there are 
different classes of collectors, and that all can be accommodated to 
their mutual satisfaction.
	There are the people who just think butterflies are beautiful 
and want to hang them on their walls, keep them in handsome cases or 
whatever. Maybe they'd just as soon buy them at the safari camp, and go 
out photographing for the thrill of the chase. Or maybe they'd like to 
be allowed to net butterflies at a bug farm, like those trout fisheries 
I've mentioned. A U-pick for swallowtails. 
	There are the stamp collectors who want the rare ones so they 
can fill gaps. If they want to catch them, they'll have to hook up with 
a research facility and make academic noises, or pay large sums to visit 
 a preserve and buy a permit, and get all their bugs checked by experts. 
The money serves to keep the preserve safe.  If they just want the bug, 
they can buy it from a bug farm.
	Collectors who want the adventure and know what they're doing 
may hook up with a (local) university (which gets first pick of the 
bugs, and keeps all the types); go out alone and have their bugs 
certified by the university and released for export. And give the 
university a nice chunk of money for this service. Or get paid by the 
university, depending on their skill and expertise.
	  The "touristy safari" needn't be that bad. I have friends who 
lead such tours in South America and Costa Rica ... collecting plants, 
as it happens, but it isn't that different. You meet the natives, live 
rough, look at lots of neat stuff, and your seeds, plants etc. come back 
into the States on the leader's permit, after having been checked by him 
and by Customs. He doesn't take them where the rare bugs live. If they 
catch something he doesn't know, it goes to the university with which he 
is allied. (I see this as an income-producing sideline for a lot of you, 
may I point out.) 
	Jim Hanlon, bless his heart, attempted to discuss his safaris on 
this very list, some years ago, and was smacked down by someone who said 
he was advertising. I thought at the time, and still think, that he was 
peddling wonderful dreams and I loved them. 
	The world is shrinking so rapidly (or perhaps we're expanding) 
that we do great damage to the environment whether we are stomping 
around taking pictures or crashing through the bushes trying to net 
something elusive. The tour leader can aim people where they won't do 
too much damage. 
	I think our goal is to make it easy for lots of people to 
experience the unspoiled habitats where undisturbed wildlife abounds. 
There may be some contradictions here.
	We'll need more wild areas, to accommodate more collectors and 
photographers, and we'll get those by spreading our enthusiasm, which is 
splendidly contagious.
	Pick a school and hang out with the kids. If we all do that, the 
next generation will be better than ours. It seems to be heading in that 
direction now.
Anne Kilmer

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