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Worldwide Birding Tours - Birding Ecotours





Staff detail

Dylan Vasapolli

About Staff

Senior Tour Leader and South African Office Manager

Dylan Vasapolli grew up in the suburbs of Johannesburg and fortunately, due to a very supportive mother, was able to experience the joys of the then largely still wild surroundings on a regular basis. From a young age the beauty of birds was instilled in Dylan, and it would go on to shape his life. Turning annual ‘family holidays’ into pure birding adventures was one way how he and his family went about this. The warm, coastal forests of KwaZulu-Natal province (South Africa) were a regular stomping ground, and in recent years he has expanded and largely covered the bird-rich nations of Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique, Malawi, Panama, Peru, Israel, the United States, and Romania and also of the Caribbean,.

An impressive repertoire comprised of experience beyond his years, a figurative ‘golden’ ear when it comes to picking up the faintest of bird calls, raw skill when getting clients onto tough species, and a sense of perseverance rivaled only by a select few all add up to his highly credible reputation as one of Southern Africa’s most respected birders and an invaluable part of the Birding Ecotours team.

Dylan’s passion for all things feathered ranges far and wide, but his heart and soul lie in both Africa and the Neotropical regions of Central and South America. But he also has a deep-rooted love for pelagic birding and ‘tube noses’ the world over. He regularly leads some of our pelagic day trips off Simons Town (Cape Town, South Africa), where he not only showcases his fantastic birding skills but also his remarkable photography skills, another major passion.

When Dylan isn’t busy guiding he is either finishing off a degree in Nature Conservation through the University of South Africa (UNISA), engrossed behind a few field guides, or readily exploring his local patch – a wetland basin within an extensive band of grassland, finding such skulkers as Red-chested Flufftail and White-bellied Korhaan. Dylan is also an avid contributor to the second South African Bird Atlas Project and regularly sets out for a day’s birding with the sole aim to record data on the birds seen in areas not often visited by others in order to contribute to citizen science.

Together, Dylan and Jason form the managerial powerhouse that runs our South African office out of Johannesburg/Pretoria.

Testimonials

Recommendation for Dylan Vasapolli:

We had an absolutely wonderful weekend at Ezemvelo.  Great company, good weather and Dylan.
What a good guide that young man is!!! He certainly knows his birds, and tries very hard to make everyone happy. He really goes out of his way. He’s such a gentleman, he’s going to go far. By the way four adults and one Blue Crane chick were seen on the weekend. Also a Black Stork, which Dylan was so pleased to see, and a couple of Honey Buzzards.

Bev Carstens, Johannesburg, South Africa, January 21, 2014

Chris,

Our trip was wonderful! Dylan was great. Top notch birder and guide. Patient, kind, thoughtful, understanding. Best birding ears ever! He found us so many great birds! My count is 430, more than I had expected for the entire trip! Great views as well. He worked hard to get the birds and get us in position for photos. My best decision was hiring Birding Ecotours.

Cheers, more later. Off to Vic Falls now…
Bob

Bob and Terrie Davis, Idaho Falls, Idaho, USA

We went out to Marievale with Dylan to (re)connect with some South African birds after some years away from SA. It was a wonderful experience. Dylan was charming, helpful and incredibly knowledgeable about the birds. We saw over 50 species in a morning and learned a lot about the birds. We would highly recommend Birding Ecotours for an excellent birding experience.

Linda Jacobson, Toronto, Camada

Hi Chris,

Just a quick note today to let you know that mom (Eleanor) and I had a fantastic day with Dylan. First of all it was a great comfort to meet someone at the airport from the area who knows how to go about things. Dylan provided us with a splendid introduction day to the common bird families and antelope (plus a mongoose) at Rietvlie which was exactly what we needed after being cooped up on a plane for so long! We had a splendid day talking about all sorts of things. You guys are doing everything right -Bravo! Your website came up first in a Google search, Chris, you got back to me right away, and Dylan followed up with answers and then read perfectly what we needed. Thank you so much! I will most definitely recommend you to anyone coming to this part of Africa. Keep up the good work! Dylan, thank you! I look forward to coming back some day.

Kim Hartquist, Rochester, New York, USA

Hi Dylan, Chris,

I just wanted to email and say how much I enjoyed the day yesterday in and around Suikerbosrand – Dylan was a fantastic guide, unbelievably knowledgeable, very helpful (and patient!) and good company. We saw much more than I expected, and the flufftail was the icing on the cake! I would go out of my way to recommend you guys and Dylan in particular – thanks again for a thoroughly enjoyable day.

I will be in touch when I return to South Africa – even if just to set eyes on that pesky grass owl. . .!

Cheers,

Liam

Dr Liam Morrison, UK

 

Tours Coming Up

Photo and Birding Tour South Africa: Western Cape, with extension to Kruger National Park 2018

Duration: 11 days
Date Start: September 01, 2018
Date End: September 11, 2018
Price: Main tour: R50,562 , Kruger NP extension R26,889
Details: South Africa’s Western Cape Province is scenically stunningly beautiful and hugely varied – from rocky sea cliffs and impressive mountains rising straight out of the sea to everything from moist t

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Mammal and Birding Tour South Africa: Drakensberg and Zululand 2019

Duration: 9 days
Date Start: April 10, 2019
Date End: April 18, 2019
Price: R51,337 per person sharing.
Details: KwaZulu-Natal is one of the richest places for mammals and birds in South Africa. On this ‘Birding Tour South Africa’ adventure we first sample the impressive Drakensberg, which has lots o

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Mammal and Birding Tour South Africa: Drakensberg and Zululand 2018

Duration: 9 days
Date Start: April 10, 2018
Date End: April 18, 2018
Price: R47,534 per person sharing.
Details: KwaZulu-Natal is one of the richest places for mammals and birds in South Africa. On this ‘Birding Tour South Africa’ adventure we first sample the impressive Drakensberg, which has lots o

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Birding Tour Zimbabwe and Mozambique 2018

Duration: 15 days
Date Start: November 21, 2018
Date End: December 05, 2018
Price: US$4801 per person sharing assuming 6-9 participants, US$5642 per person sharing assuming 4-5 participants, US$6534 per person sharing assuming 2-3 participants
Details: Zimbabwe and Mozambique combined show the highest diversity on the planet in terms of 30 different avian orders represented. They also share with coastal West Africa and Tanzania and Uganda the second

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Birding Tour South Africa: Zimbabwe/Mozambique pre-trip 2018

Duration: 8 days
Date Start: November 14, 2018
Date End: November 21, 2018
Price: 6 - 8 participants R26,479 per person sharing, 4 - 5 participants R31,462 per person sharing
Details: This wonderful tour through less-traveled but very bird-rich north-eastern South Africa will have us explore such renowned hot birding spots as Zaagkuilsdrift, Magoebaskloof, and Mapungubwe National P

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Birding Tour South Africa: Kruger National Park and Escarpment October 2018

Duration: 9 days
Date Start: September 30, 2018
Date End: October 08, 2018
Price: R56,870 per person sharing
Details: This is a tour for those who want the ultimate African mammal safari experience while also seeing a huge diversity of birds, a disproportionate number of these birds being very brightly colored, chari

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Birding Tour Bulgaria: Winter Birding Wonderland 2019

Duration: 8 days
Date Start: February 04, 2019
Date End: February 11, 2019
Price: €1600 per person sharing (6 – 7 people), €1993 per person sharing (4 – 5 people)
Details: This tour encompasses the best of Bulgaria, and indeed eastern European birding during the winter months. While winter birding lacks the sheer diversity of the spring tour, it brings with it the vast

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Birding Tour Bulgaria: Winter Birding Wonderland 2018

Duration: 8 days
Date Start: February 04, 2018
Date End: February 11, 2018
Price: €1510 per person sharing (6 – 7 participants), €1880 per person sharing (4 – 5 participants)
Details: This tour encompasses the best of Bulgaria, and indeed eastern European birding during the winter months. While winter birding lacks the sheer diversity of the spring tour, it brings with it the vast

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Birding Tour Bulgaria and the Romanian Danube Delta: Birding Adventure 2019

Duration: 17 days
Date Start: May 11, 2019
Date End: May 27, 2019
Price: 6 – 8 participants: €3498 per person sharing, 4 – 5 participants: €4017 per person sharing
Details: This ‘Birding Tour Bulgaria’ adventure encompasses the majority of species-rich Bulgaria, along with the mighty Danube Delta in neighboring Romania. It offers a good chance of finding a nu

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Birding Tour Bulgaria and the Romanian Danube Delta: Birding Adventure 2018

Duration: 17 days
Date Start: May 11, 2018
Date End: May 27, 2018
Price: 6 – 8 participants: €3300 per person sharing, 4 – 5 participants: €3790 per person sharing
Details: This ‘Birding Tour Bulgaria’ adventure encompasses the majority of species-rich Bulgaria, along with the mighty Danube Delta in neighboring Romania. It offers a good chance of finding a nu

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