Amar Aves was founded by Miguel Amar Uribe of Mexico Kan Tours, a pioneer in responsible and authentic travel in Tulum. Together, over the last 10 years they have been offering birdwatching tours to various places within the Yucatan Peninsula, departing from anywhere between Playa del Carmen and Tulum.
Aware of the many benefits that birdwatching can generate for the conservation of ecosystems, its contribution to increase the quality of life of people in local communities and for the delight of birders and travelers with an interest for birds, nature and culture, the creation of the new branch specifically dedicated to birdwatching was an obvious development.
Amar Aves´ vision is to promote the Yucatan Peninsula as an excellent option for bird watching in the world, and is strongly passionate about participating in the conservation of the different ecosystems and of their inhabitants (with or without feathers!)
Amar Aves offers the traveler a wide array of activities designed for those who enjoy having birds fill their lives with color, sound, inspiration, and knowledge. It is also for those who enjoy observing, listening, taking photos, and registering new species on a life list, or for those simply looking to discover the wonders of the Yucatan Peninsula through its birds.
From a couple of hours´ tour close to your hotel to a multi-day trip, as part of a group or in private, adapted to your itinerary and other must-see sites, Amar Aves is the one-stop shop to design the perfect alternative experience with birds as the main focus.
Meet your guides
Miguel Amar Uribe
Miguel Amar Uribe grew up in Veracruz, Mexico before moving
to the United States for secondary school and university. The Yucatan Peninsula became his home in 2007 when he began exploring his interest for nature, the people and the history that characterizes this part of Mexico. This soon inspired Miguel to become an interpreter guide of nature and culture as a way to promote the conservation of the natural and cultural heritage of the Yucatan and its inhabitants, and birdwatching proved to be an excellent option to do just that.
His passion for birds began in 2009 when his work as a guide took him to the Sian Ka´an Biosphere Reserve in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico, which he says proved to be his best "university". At first, the birds attracted his attention for their varied appearance, their shapes and colors. He soon became passionate about identifying the birds he observed which brought him a strong sense of familiarity and belonging to this land.
His initial interest focused on bird behavior and ecology: their migratory, reproductive, nutritional habits amongst others. These days an aspect of birdwatching he enjoys most is the ability it gives him to connect to life and nature. Birds to him have become a reference point and guidance to live in consciousness close to the essence of life.
During his 10 years’ experience working for Mexico Kan tours, a responsible tour agency in Tulum, Miguel has been a strong advocate for the interconnections that exist between birds, culture and the environment and has hence participated in the development of birdwatching tours for the company. In late 2019, Amar Aves was born to provide more tour options that combine his passion for birds with a mission providing travelers with all the benefits that travel can offer without putting stress on habitats which are so important for diversity and the livelihood of the people.
“I once heard that the world could be saved with more birdwatchers. Even if that was said as a joke, I have no doubt that this world would be a much better place to live in if more people enjoyed, experienced and understood life from one of its most amazing and beautiful manifestations: Birds.”
Jorge Machado Castro
Jorge’s roots lie in the green mountains of Chiapas, Mexico where he was born and raised. Deep in the hilly jungle, he discovered as a young boy his love for birds. Since then, his feathered friends have been his spiritual guides, and have led him onto his professional path as a birder.
For almost 30 years, Jorge has lived in the state of Quintana Roo, during which he has developed great knowledge of the region and extensive experience as a guide. For nine years, Jorge was in charge of the training and activities of fellow guides at an ecological center in the Sian Ka’an nature reserve. He has participated in scientific bird banding in Sian Ka’an, took part in nature documentaries, and won several bird and nature photography competitions. Jorge also contributed his knowledge and prized photographs of many bird species to the book "Sal a Pajarear" by Barbara MacKinnon, considered by many the field guide bible of the Yucatán peninsula for birders.
Jorge, who calls himself a tree hugger, is a very passionate person about all things in nature. These days he is very active promoting the conservation of the area, working as a certified guide for various companies (including his own) that adhere to responsible practices in tourism. He is also a teacher in the educational program for nature guides with the Razonatura association of which he is one of the founding members. Proud of his heritage, Jorge as a spiritual guide, helps people connect with the sacred using the Mayan wisdom of his ancestors.
"In the many years I spent with birds, not only have they touched me with their diverse beauty and key role for our planet, but have also been messengers on why I am here: if I can plant a seed in people to start caring or to care even more for birds and nature through what I do, I know I’ve left a valuable heritage on this earth."
Edier is a native Mayan speaker who grew up in the community of Señor, Quintana Roo. His interest in tourism began from the age of 15 when he heard people speak English, which sparked a great desire to share his culture and knowledge of the surrounding nature with people from other parts of the world.
Upon entering the University to study Alternative Tourism, he took part in a birdwatching class. After working on a project focusing on endemic birds, he fell in love with the unique Yucatan Jay. During his first field trip he was able to observe the bird in its natural habitat and realized that it was even more beautiful with its bright blue colors than he thought it was. From then on, the interest to learn more about birds arose, which soon turned into a passion. He decided to do his university thesis on the bird diversity of his community as a potential place for birdwatching tours.
Edier has since participated in various projects which has given him valuable experience recognizing the diversity of bird species on the peninsula: teaching local children about the environment and birds, working with biologists recognized in the Peninsula of Yucatan for their great work, monitoring birds at specific sites in search of the rarest species as well as taking part in several bird marathons. More recently, Edier has worked as a certified guide for the federal government in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, where he has taken international travelers on birdwatching tours.
As a native of the area, Edier has an incredible connection with his surroundings and even at his young age, he is gifted with an almost superhuman sensitivity to find birds.
Edier Ay Peña
"I am passionate about sharing insights into my language and culture, through the incredible diversity of birds that hide in our jungle; let me be your guide and take back with you a little of my culture"
Joel was born in Mexico city but grew up in Villahermosa, Tabasco. He spent most of his childhood enjoying holidays and weekends with his family, always camping and exploring new beautiful natural sites and having the chance to learn about plants and animals. This inspired him to study biology at university in Monterrey. In parallel to his studies, he started working as an undergraduate research assistant in the Ornithology Lab of his university, as well as working for an ecotourism company.
As a wildlife biologist, he has participated in several research and conservation projects such as bird diversity in natural protected areas, nesting ecology, bioacoustics and behavior research. He is very interested in the sustainable development of communities, and is strongly committed throughout his tours to involve the local people for local guidance and services such as food and lodging. Joel is an official nature guide certified by Mexico’s Secretary of Tourism, a certification that recognises the safety, quality and professionalism of his tours.
“Birds are my job, my hobby, my passion, and my goal is to offer our visitors with the most memorable experiences in Mexico, so… let's go birding!