Maria Elena Muriel is a Keen professional Birder , she shared along the tour not only the birds but also the ecology and culture
An Inspiration to others:
Greetings! Maria Elena Muriel
You are receiving this email because you were listed as a source of inspiration by someone in the field of park, historic site, or museum interpretation.
Arkansas State Parks just held a four-day interpretation training workshop, made up of 22 employees with job titles including park interpreter, ranger, assistant superintendent, tour guide, museum program assistant, heritage gardener, and curator. We also had three guest auditors from several other state park systems. This class uses the Certified Interpretive Guide training curriculum of the National Association for Interpretation, plus material from our own State Park system. In one lesson, we examine the work of some “giants” who built our profession, leaders in interpretation, conservation, preservation, environmental education, names like Mills, Muir, Roosevelt, Mather, Tilden, Leopold, Carson, Audubon, Thoreau, Abbey, and so on.
Then we take time to name the names of those who came before us in this era, those who prompted us to follow this path, who set high standards of professionalism, who have—and continue to—inspire us to do the best job we can every day. We make a list together on a big flipchart, then post it in a conspicuous place for reference during training. Names tend to get added and the list grows throughout the week as inspiration strikes.
You were named, maybe by someone you know, or perhaps by someone who only knows about you through word of mouth, reading your books or articles, or hearing you speak at a conference. Often in this profession we don't get to see the harvest of seeds we sow. Today, see evidence that you've made a difference.
Thanks. Whether you know it or not, people are watching you and looking up to you. Keep up the good work.
Arkansas State Parks
Certified Interpretive Trainer, Certified Heritage Interpreter
Sierra la laguna , Baja California Sur
Birding the rim -- Testimonial & reviews
Birding the rim -- Testimonial & reviews
BRim- Birding sierra la laguna
BRim- Birding Sierra la laguna
160 Species, 6 endemics (Belding's Yellowthroat, Xantus' Hummingbird, Gray Thrasher, Cape Pygmy Owl, Baird's Yellow-eyed Junco and San Lucas Robin), 15 life birds.
The highlight, the Rim trip to the ski island biosphere Sierre de la Laguna was a 6 hour moderate to strenuous horse back ride up and down with easy hikes in between for an overnight camping trip in a magical place. Maria Muriel is an excellent birder who knows the region and logistics very well, and provides fantastic guiding to the locations where birds can be found. She is particularly good at guiding you to difficult destinations that would be otherwise unreachable. The birds were great, the guiding was excellent and experienced, the food and service exceptional.
Birding & snorkel with whale-sharks - B5
In early March, I booked a day trip with Birding Los Cabos that included bird watching, a pretty good tour Birding & whale-shark snorkeling There were only 2 other participants and we all had a very enjoyable day. Maria Elena was our guide and she is very knowledgeable about her subjects as well as very passionate about working to preserve the environment while providing her guests a remarkable experience. BirdingLosCabos contracts with a snorkeling shop in LaPaz for the whale-shark snorkel to work with sustainability and share part of the work with other locals of the region , the guides from that place were also good -- very concerned with making sure that all their guests, whether newbies or veteran snorkelers, had a safe and enjoyable trip. Overall, a good value and a wonderful day.
We would like to say a huge thank-you to Maria Elena Muriel from Birding-Los Cabos for arranging a day for our family that was a highlight from our stay in Los Cabos. Maria Elena picked us up early from our resort in Los Cabos and drove us to swim with the Whale Sharks & for some bird watching to keep my husband happy.
We stopped at a local road side restaurant for a traditional Mexican breakfast, which was fabulous & also a local family restaurant in La Paz for lunch, which was equally as good.Swimming with the whale sharks was incredible, also Maria Elena went out of her way to make sure we were always comfortable & she looked after us so well.
She has a huge knowledge of the history of the whole area and her commentary on the drive kept us well informed and entertained and made our journey go very fast. Her extensive birding knowledge and their locations kept my husband, who is a very keen birder, very happy & he also went out with Maria Elena the next morning for some intensive birding. We cannot recommend Maria Elena enough for those who want to enjoy the very best of the fauna & flora that Los Cabos & La Paz has to offer.
Visited May 2015
Birding endemics & mini -pelagic - B1A
Hola Maria Elena,
Thanks again for the great birding when we were in Los Cabos. If you send me some information on the types of trips you can arrange for birding groups from LA, I'll ask my Audubon chapter if there is any interest in trying to put a trip together.
We went back to the estuary the day after our outing with you, and saw Least Bittern and Verdin. Near our hotel, we also saw Rufous-crowned Sparrow, Northern Cardinal, Purple Martin, and Ash-throated Flycatcher. I added 18 species to my life list!
Birding for Cruise-ship passengers - B1C
Los Cabos, Mexico (2013)
We were very fortunate and blessed to have been able to secure four (4) excellent birding guides for various ports of call on our Panama Canal Cruise (Celebrity Century). Some ports of call were half-days (Mexico) and others were full days of birding (Costa Rica and Panama). The birding adventures made this Cruise very memorable and the birding were the highlights of our trip. Not only we were able to get off the beaten path and see the Natural Beauty of our ports of call, but we learned more about the areas we visited and gained a greater appreciation for the diversity of this wonderful world, known as Gaia.
Cabo San Lucas – December 23, 2013
We contacted Maria Elena Muriel of “Birding Los Cabos” through her Cruiser friendly web site. She normally does earlier tours for land tourists, but was very willing to adjust her own personal schedule to accommodate late arriving “Cruisers”. Our ship arrived in Cabo San Lucas at 11:30 am, but as we have to tender in Cabo – it wasn’t until 12:30 pm until we reached the shoreline. Maria Elena Muriel was super patient and waited for us for over an hour, until we reached the port.
As we were greeted, she immediately pointed out a yellow-crowned night heron that was roosting beneath the tender wharf. From there we knew we were going to have a great time, as Maria Elena Muriel’s passion for Los Cabos and the birds were quite evident upon our first greeting and sighting. From the port, we were taken to a small park within Cabo where we searched for the endemic Xantus’ Hummingbird. Although the Xantus did not make an appearance, we saw many different species (many of them lifers), including the very beautiful Costa’s Hummingbird which perched quite near us, offering us a lovely photo session. From the park, we went to a small inlet off the beach which is blocked from public access. However, Maria Elena Muriel was able to get us in and we were on the look out for the White Ibis. Unfortunately, no Ibis’ this trek, but several shorebirds were identified including the Western Sandpiper – a migratory from Alaska. From the inlet, we ventured off to San Jose to track down the endemics, Gray Thrasher and Belting’s Yellowthroat. The San Jose Estuary was a really nice park-like setting, easy walking and many, many birds! We did see the Gray Thrasher (gorgeous bird!) and we heard the Belting’s Yellowthroat singing his song, although he did not come out for a visual identification.
The entire afternoon was very well spent and we thoroughly enjoyed our visit with Maria Elena Muriel. We hope to return to Los Cabos one day and for sure, would recommend and contact her again for more birding!
Heather & Anthony BaskeyOntario - Canada
Visit her web site at: http://www.birding-loscabos.com/
Birding endemics & mini pelagic - B1A
This is one of those unexpected, very pleasurable experiences that make traveling so richly rewarding! I would never have thought that going on a tour that begins at 6:30 a.m. would yield such an amazing array of treasured memories. I would not have known about this tour had I not read a very informative post from a lady who frequently visits Cabo and had this tour listed among her Top 10 Favorite Activities; this post was in the Cabo san Lucas forum on TA. We did not book this tour until we arrived at Sirena del Mar on 13 Feb. Our concierge was not aware of the tour, but she readily located the website when I told her about the information I had found on TA. She contacted Maria by phone and set up our 5-hour tour for Tuesday, 16 Feb 2016. Maria picked us up promptly at 6:30 a.m., and we drove directly to the estuary in San Jose del Cabo. Watching the rising sun as we drove eastward was so beautiful. Early morning was the ideal time to visit the estuary since so many birds were active. Maria is an expert at locating birds and describing their current and projected locations. Since neither my wife nor I are experienced "birders," Maria was so helpful in educating us about all the birds that she encounters in Baja. We learned a lot about birds, the unique and precious Baja environment, and the ongoing struggles for maintaining appropriate natural habitats for these birds in such a rapidly developing place as Los Cabos. After visiting the estuary, Maria took us to two other nice sites in San Jose before returning to the marina in Cabo san Lucas for a wonderful tour around Los Arcos, where we saw 4 species of gull, brown booby, and peregrine falcon. The golden oriole that we were able to see quite clearly at least 3-4 times in San Jose was one of my favorites. We were blessed to be able to be guided by someone as knowledgable and hospitable as Maria. Do not be deterred by having to being this tour at 6:30 a.m. Take time to step outside of your usual vacation pursuits and broaden and enrich your understanding of this special place at the tip of Baja California.
This is ecotourism, not some drink-and-snorkel-and-drink-some-more or party-boat-to-the-arches or big-jeep-"adventures." I mean those things can be fun, but, this is birdwatching.
I went on the "birding endemics and mini-palagic 5 hour tour" which was great. Maria Elena Muriel picked me up about 6:45 from my hotel - a couple of other birdwatchers had already been picked up. There was just the three of us. (I believe they hold tours to less than 10 people, and usually less than six.)
We went in a small rental van to a couple of different locations at the estuary in San Jose and saw a couple of endemics (Belding's Yellowthroat, Gray Thrasher), plus a bunch of other birds, naturally. Maria brings a scope and extra binoculars for anyone without.
On the drive to San Lucas, Maria told us a lot about the history of Los Cabos - she is from Los Cabos and used to be a tour guide for cultural tours.
The "mini pelagic" part of the tour was a quick boat ride from the Marina to the Arches. Magnificent frigate birds, brown and blue-footed boobys.
The whole thing was $120 with tip and the best money I spent in Los Cabos. I'll probably go back next year for one of their multi-day birding (and maybe whale whatching) tours.
Visited July 2015
My wife and I are now making the effort of planning a birding trip on most all of our vacations. Today was a huge enjoyment with Maria Elena and her assistant Joanna. The "extra" on top of the expert birding knowledge was the lessons in the local history, culture and ecology ... as well as the influences that the rapid resort development is having on the environment. Great catches ... Gray Thrasher, Cactus Wren and Belding Yellow-throat warbler were tops. We would recommend Maria's trip for anyone ... do your family a favor and take the kids!
Visited October 2015
Cabo Pulmo - Birding & snorkel B10
Our two days spent with Maria Elena enriched our trip and exceeded our expectations. We spent the first day birding the estuary where we saw over 35 species including 3 endemics and then went whale watching and observed a number of humpback whales. Our second day included a snorkeling tour in the fabulous Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park. Maria Elena is an incredible guide with both natural and cultural expertise. We are so glad we spent two days with her and highly recommend Birding - Los Cabos. Visited January 2016
Birding Desert Specialties - B1D
We had a great trip into the desert with Maria of Birding Los Cabos. She was incredibly kind and a pleasure to bird with. She picked us up from our hotel and drove us to an area of desert . We found many Caracaras, Roadrunners, Thrashers and several other fantastic desert specialties. She had snacks and cold water for us as well. She is working for a great cause and does a fantastic job doing it! If you enjoy birds or just want to escape the craziness of Cabo San Lucas, give her a try.
Birding Wetlands- Desert & Sea , a day of birding - B2
We did the wetland desert sea trip with Maria Elena and added on a swim with the whale-sharks. Maria Elena picked us up at 5 am and dropped us off at 7:30 pm, so it was a nice, full day. We spent much of it up in the La Paz area, birding along the Malecon and some wetlands near town. We also birded in the desert between Cabos and La Paz. The added whale-shark expedition was excellent. We were able to swim very close to the sharks with an excellent guide. We saw close to 80 species over the course of the day, and thought that having Maria Elena as a guide was well worth the price.
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