Alejandro Nagy – Birding and Wildlife Professional Guide
So, here I am, doing what I love in the place with more birds of the whole wide world!!!
I was born in the city of Caracas in Venezuela, from French/Venezuelan parents, and brother of two younger ones. Because we were so close to the Caribbean and at the same time separated from it by a mountain range, we used to spend our weekends and vacations either at the mountains or by the sea. Whether it was camping and hiking or surfing, fishing and snorkeling, I was in constant contact with nature and wildlife, and started loving it.
After my childhood experiences, as I started turning to a teenager, I ventured with my friends to unknown natural frontiers. We would go on surfing trips to isolated beaches and fishing expeditions to remote rivers of the Orinoquia. Trekking on the high-Andean Páramo or hiking up Mount Roraima. Everywhere we’d go, the birds were always present but in a passive form. Until now.
College years were absorbing and driving me apart in every way from my connection with nature. So, I signed up for a full season as a field assistant for a survey on the avian knowledge and classification by a subgroup of the Yanomamï indigenous people in the Amazon jungle of southern Venezuela. I was back in joy, and in total contact with nature. This time, the birds were the main characters. After this experience, nothing was ever going to be the same. I got hooked real bad with birding and ornithology!
I started, then, my professional career as field assistant and official personnel to the William H Phelps Ornithology Collection in Caracas. This took me across the whole country and provided me with a vast knowledge of the different biomes and bird species found in one of the world’s Mega-diverse Nations. Throughout those years I participated in and carried out different projects; understanding bird populations, rediscovering species; conservation programs; bird-banding seasons; and co-authoring a number of scientific publications. My time as field assistant for one of Cornell’s top bird recordists, Curtis Marantz, tuned me in for a new passion, bird sounds. After compiling all these experiences, the world of birdwatching opened to my eyes. I started guiding for the Venezuelan Audubon and also at a cattle ranch and nature reserve in The Llanos (grassland plains). Soon, I was leading birding tours across the country for international companies. The circle was closed. I now knew what I wanted to do for a living.
Finally, after fifteen years of doing this in Venezuela, hard times came to my country. For various reasons, I ended up moving to Colombia in 2016. And, what could possibly be better for me than actually living in the country with more bird species in the world just next door, right? Well, to put the cherry on the pie, Manakin NT offered me a job position as a tour leader. So, here I am, doing what I love at the place with more birds in the whole wide world!!!