Orlando Hoyos was born and raised in Yanamono, Peru, a
small ribereņo village on the banks of the Amazon
River. He was the third of thirteen children of Antonio and Ildaura
Hoyos. His father was a part-time river trader and a trapper who
often went deep into the Amazon jungle to hunt animals. Orlando
began to accompany his father on these trips when he was only
six years old and learned the ways of the jungle from him. His
knowledge of the plants and animals of the selva comes
from these early years.
When Orlando was a teenager, he moved to Iquitos, a now-bustling
city, fifty miles upriver from his small village, and began working
for a tourist company at a jungle camp. Starting as a housekeeper
and a waiter, he next became a barman. Most of the tourists at
the time were from the United States, and many of them attempted
to converse with him. He became frustrated with his inability
to communicate with his customers, so he became determined to
learn English. On his day off he went into Iquitos and saw a book
in a libreria, titled Aprenda Ingles En Quince
Dias (Learn English in Fifteen Days). He knew this was the
book for him! Well, many frustrated weeks later he realized that
learning English wouldn't be quite that easy. Fortunately, the
tourists were always helpful, and he eventually learned English
from talking and practicing with them.
With the ability to speak English, Orlando became one of the
guides in the Peruvian Amazon. He drew on his father's early teachings
and began to show others the rainforest. He often guided biologists,
ornithologists, and other scientists from various universities
in the United States; and from them he learned the English and
Latin names of the plants, birds, and fish which he already knew
in Spanish. In 1985, Orlando married an American teacher, Nancy,
and moved with her to the U.S. They live and work in Boston, but
are fortunate to spend eight weeks every summer back in the Amazon
The Crew: A Family Affair
Orlando's wife, Nancy, fell in love with the Amazon jungle on
her first trip there in 1984. After more than 20 years of exploring
many of the tributaries, and reading as much as possible about
the rainforest, she shares her passion for this endangered area.
Beker is one of B/F Jacamars boat driver, as well
as Orlandos younger brother. He lives with his family in
the small caserioof Santa Isabel, down river from
Iquitos. He brings a solid knowledge of the jungle's medicinal
plants and the uncanny ability to find wildlife.
Esther is our cook and Orlandos oldest sister. She is able
to create fabulous and varied meals for us on the expeditions.
We promise that you'll leave asking for her recipes!
and Teresa Gutierrez
Alonias and Teresa are Orlando's sister and brother-in-law. They
and their four children live on the protected land at Amazon Kingfisher
Lodge in Yanamono. You will be spending time living with this
local family and sharing their daily lives which will make your
trip an unforgettable experience into another culture and another
way of life.
The crew also includes one or two more local people who assist
in the service and comfort of our guests.
Our Company / Our Mission | Letters
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