Our Amazonia Team

Amazonia Expeditions was the first tourism company in Iquitos to provide equal opportunity to men and women in training and employment. We continue to provide opportunity to all, regardless of ethnicity, belief or sexual orientation. The high morale and dedicated work ethic that people note among our staff is a result of the owners’ commitment to have a respectful, pleasant, professional and productive working environment for the staff.

Dolly Beaver

Dolly Arevalo Shapiama is a native of the Amazon. Dolly is owner of the lodges, Tahuayo Lodge and Amazon Research Center, on the Tahuayo River. Her mother taught in a jungle village before moving to Iquitos city to provide higher education for her children. From a young age Dolly was passionate about charitable work. Dolly’s deep love of the women and children of the Tahuayo River communities motivated her to start the women’s Asociacion Manos Amazonica, as well as make substantial contributions to education (Chino Village High School; scholarships for continuing education in Iquitos) and medical care (Esperanza Clinic; paying for advanced care for Tahuayo residents in hospitals in Iquitos, Lima and the USA) and start the Angels of the Amazon foundation.

Paul Beaver, Ph.D.

Dolly’s husband Paul Beaver is owner of Amazonia Expeditions ecotourism company. Paul received his doctorate from the University of Chicago in 1976 and came to the western Amazon in 1980 to do zoological field research. In 1981 Paul started the Amazon’s first commercial adventure camping company, Amazonia Expeditions. Amazonia Expeditions now operates specialty travel excursions in wilderness and wildlife reserves throughout South America, as well as in Africa and Asia, but the primary focus remains the Amazon forest of the Tahuayo River basin. In 2015 Paul was honored by the University of Chicago for his contributions to conservation and humanitarian concerns with a presentation of the prestigious Alumni Public Service Award.

 

 

Meet Our Guides

Nixon Irarica Tello

Nixon was born and grew up in El Chino Village on the Tahuayo River. He studied primary and secondary school in the village. He has worked with Amazonia Expeditions since 2012, including working as field research assistant of Fredrick Tegner’s research on poison dartfrogs, Ludvig Orson’s research on harlequin toads and Rebecca Sheehan’s study of pygmy marmosets. After a year as assistant guide, Nixon was promoted to head guide in 2017.

Manuel Huayllahua

Manuel was born in Chino Village and studied at Los Andes Peruvian University. He has worked for several years with Amazonia and has two years field experience as a field assistant to primatologist Rose Hores as well as several summers as field assistant researching saki monkeys for primatologist Janice Chism. Manuel may be our best wildlife tracker and is skilled at wilderness camping and jungle survival training.

Melisa Lima Sangama

Melissa grew up in the jungle in the village of Yanashi, upriver from Iquitos, half way to the border with Colombia. She always loved the jungle and wanted to work in the jungle and so went to Iquitos to study, earning her degree in tourism in 2015. She then came to work for Amazonia Expeditions, training for a year as assistant guide, being promoted as head guide in May, 2017. Melisa is proficient with a machete and is skilled at fabricating items from jungle plants and is also a fine motorboat pilot.

Nelly Priscilla Pinedo Alvarado

Nelly grew up in various remote jungle villages as her mother was a teacher who moved around from one remote village to another. This gave Nelly a broader understanding of native cultures of the Amazon. As a young adult Nelly graduated from SENATI Institute with a degree in English and later worked as a translator for Doctors without Borders and then as a guide in another jungle lodge. She started with Amazonia as a trainee in 2011 and was promoted to head guide in 2012. Nelly has field research experience assisting with Rose Hores’ study of uakari monkeys. When not guiding she assists Dolly in her work for Angels of the Amazon. Additionally, Nelly has spent significant time in Africa, now serving as the trip leader for our Africa safaris. In her seventh year as head guide Nelly has never had less than a 5 star review.

Claudio Huayllahua Sánchez

Claudio was born and grew up in El Chino Village on the Tahuayo River. He studied primary school in El Chino and continued his education in Iquitos, earning a technical degree from SENATI Institute. He started working for Amazonia Expeditions in 2014 as a field research assistant with several biologists and as an assistant guide. Claudio was promoted to head guide in 2017.

Adrian Gomez Villacorta

Adrian comes from a small village on the Marañon River. His grandparents taught him skills to work and hunt in the jungle. After completing high school in Iquitos he studied English at SENATI Language Centre. He started as an intern then assistant guide with Amazonia, being promoted to head guide in 2014.

Andy Bicerra

Andy graduated with a degree in Biology from the National University. He has investigated aspects of wildlife ecology for FUNDAMAZONIA (Fundación Latinoamericana para el Trópico Amazónico), the Ministry of Environment and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Andy also conducted conservation education workshops in several native villages before coming to work for Amazonia in 2015. During his time working at Amazonia, Andy has published several scientific publications including one paper on the birds of the Tahuayo. In addition to working as permanent staff biologist for our lodges, Andy is also the trip leader for our yearly Ecuador and Galapagos trips.

Javier Anibal Alván Arévalo

Javier has worked at the Amazonia Expeditions lodges for 10 years, starting as a young teenager as an assistant in building repair, then moving up to motorboat pilot, then camping assistant and assistant guide, and after passing his guide exams with high grades was promoted to head guide in 2014.

Rafael Campos Sinti

Rafael grew up on the Tahuayo River in Esperanza Village. He learned about the jungle from his grandparents. As a young man he studied English in Iquitos at the American Computer Institute. After graduating Rafael began working as a guide for other Iquitos jungle lodges before finally winning an apprenticeship with Amazonia Expeditions then getting promoted to head guide in 2015.

Welister Perez

Welister grew up in the small community of Padre Cocha just outside of Iquitos City. He lived there for most of his life, and later worked at several jungle lodges before starting at Amazonia Expeditions. Welister has proven himself as both a talented jungle man and team player with an eagle eye for spotting wildlife. After several months of training with Amazonia he was promoted to a head guiding position in 2017.

Juan Walter Lomas

Juan was born and grew up in a small town near Nauta, a city south of Iquitos. Here he studied tourism at a local university and became an official licensed tour guide. Before starting at Amazonia in 2017 Juan worked at several other lodges in the region. Juan is now one of our head guides and has a special interest in improving his knowledge of 600+ birds in our region.

Ronaldo Ricopa

Ronald grew up in the town of Padre Cocha just outside of Iquitos City. In this area he worked at several rainforest lodges before coming to work with Amazonia Expeditions in 2017. Ronald has proven himself as a talented head jungle guide with sharp instincts and a special interest in medicinal plants of the region. In addition, his kind and humorous ways make him fun for family guiding.

Lander Juan Peña Ramirez

Lander was born in the remote jungle community of Santa Victoria. His boyhood dream was to become to best jungle guide in the Amazon. Lander studied at a local institute for several years where he learned basic English and the foundations of the being a tour guide. Later he worked for several years at other jungle loges as a guide, honing his skills as a survival camping guide. Lander came to work for Amazonia Expeditions in 2017 and along with a strong interest in birding and fishing is also one of our lead camping and survival guides.

Jhonatan Eliu Guevara Linares

Jhonathan studied tourism in Iquitos city and graduated with a degree in tourism in 2009. After this he worked at several lodges near Iquitos city where he worked as a guide and translator for several years. Jhonathan came to work with us in 2017 and has proven himself as an outstanding head jungle guide with a special interest in reptiles as well as a good knowledge of medicinal plants of the jungle.

Our Amazonia Team

Amazonia Expeditions was the first tourism company in Iquitos to provide equal opportunity to men and women in training and employment. We continue to provide opportunity to all, regardless of ethnicity, belief or sexual orientation. The high morale and dedicated work ethic that people note among our staff is a result of the owners’ commitment to have a respectful, pleasant, professional and productive working environment for the staff.

Dolly Beaver

Dolly Arevalo Shapiama is a native of the Amazon. Dolly is owner of the lodges, Tahuayo Lodge and Amazon Research Center, on the Tahuayo River. Her mother taught in a jungle village before moving to Iquitos city to provide higher education for her children. From a young age Dolly was passionate about charitable work. Dolly’s deep love of the women and children of the Tahuayo River communities motivated her to start the women’s Asociacion Manos Amazonica, as well as make substantial contributions to education (Chino Village High School; scholarships for continuing education in Iquitos) and medical care (Esperanza Clinic; paying for advanced care for Tahuayo residents in hospitals in Iquitos, Lima and the USA) and start the Angels of the Amazon foundation.

Paul Beaver, Ph.D.

Dolly’s husband Paul Beaver is owner of Amazonia Expeditions ecotourism company. Paul received his doctorate from the University of Chicago in 1976 and came to the western Amazon in 1980 to do zoological field research. In 1981 Paul started the Amazon’s first commercial adventure camping company, Amazonia Expeditions. Amazonia Expeditions now operates specialty travel excursions in wilderness and wildlife reserves throughout South America, as well as in Africa and Asia, but the primary focus remains the Amazon forest of the Tahuayo River basin. In 2015 Paul was honored by the University of Chicago for his contributions to conservation and humanitarian concerns with a presentation of the prestigious Alumni Public Service Award.

 

 

Meet Our Guides

Nixon Irarica Tello

Nixon was born and grew up in El Chino Village on the Tahuayo River. He studied primary and secondary school in the village. He has worked with Amazonia Expeditions since 2012, including working as field research assistant of Fredrick Tegner’s research on poison dartfrogs, Ludvig Orson’s research on harlequin toads and Rebecca Sheehan’s study of pygmy marmosets. After a year as assistant guide, Nixon was promoted to head guide in 2017.

Manuel Huayllahua

Manuel was born in Chino Village and studied at Los Andes Peruvian University. He has worked for several years with Amazonia and has two years field experience as a field assistant to primatologist Rose Hores as well as several summers as field assistant researching saki monkeys for primatologist Janice Chism. Manuel may be our best wildlife tracker and is skilled at wilderness camping and jungle survival training.

Melisa Lima Sangama

Melissa grew up in the jungle in the village of Yanashi, upriver from Iquitos, half way to the border with Colombia. She always loved the jungle and wanted to work in the jungle and so went to Iquitos to study, earning her degree in tourism in 2015. She then came to work for Amazonia Expeditions, training for a year as assistant guide, being promoted as head guide in May, 2017. Melisa is proficient with a machete and is skilled at fabricating items from jungle plants and is also a fine motorboat pilot.

Nelly Priscilla Pinedo Alvarado

Nelly grew up in various remote jungle villages as her mother was a teacher who moved around from one remote village to another. This gave Nelly a broader understanding of native cultures of the Amazon. As a young adult Nelly graduated from SENATI Institute with a degree in English and later worked as a translator for Doctors without Borders and then as a guide in another jungle lodge. She started with Amazonia as a trainee in 2011 and was promoted to head guide in 2012. Nelly has field research experience assisting with Rose Hores’ study of uakari monkeys. When not guiding she assists Dolly in her work for Angels of the Amazon www.angelsoftheamazon.com. Additionally, Nelly has spent significant time in Africa, now serving as the trip leader for our Africa safaris. In her seventh year as head guide Nelly has never had less than a 5-star review.

Claudio Huayllahua Sánchez

Claudio was born and grew up in El Chino Village on the Tahuayo River. He studied primary school in El Chino and continued his education in Iquitos, earning a technical degree from SENATI Institute. He started working for Amazonia Expeditions in 2014 as a field research assistant with several biologists and as an assistant guide. Claudio was promoted to head guide in 2017.

Adrian Gomez Villacorta

Adrian comes from a small village on the Marañon River. His grandparents taught him skills to work and hunt in the jungle. After completing high school in Iquitos he studied English at SENATI Language Centre. He started as an intern then assistant guide with Amazonia, being promoted to head guide in 2014.

Andy Bicerra

Andy graduated with a degree in Biology from the National University. He has investigated aspects of wildlife ecology for FUNDAMAZONIA (Fundación Latinoamericana para el Trópico Amazónico), the Ministry of Environment and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Andy also conducted conservation education workshops in several native villages before coming to work for Amazonia in 2015. During his time working at Amazonia, Andy has published several scientific publications including one paper on the birds of the Tahuayo. In addition to working as permanent staff biologist for our lodges, Andy is also the trip leader for our yearly Ecuador and Galapagos trips.

Javier Anibal Alván Arévalo

Javier has worked at the Amazonia Expeditions lodges for 10 years, starting as a young teenager as an assistant in building repair, then moving up to motorboat pilot, then camping assistant and assistant guide, and after passing his guide exams with high grades was promoted to head guide in 2014.

Rafael Campos Sinti

Rafael grew up on the Tahuayo River in Esperanza Village. He learned about the jungle from his grandparents. As a young man he studied English in Iquitos at the American Computer Institute. After graduating Rafael began working as a guide for other Iquitos jungle lodges before finally winning an apprenticeship with Amazonia Expeditions then getting promoted to head guide in 2015.

Welister Perez

Welister is a full guide

Juan Walter Lomas

Juan is a full guide

Ronaldo Ricopa

Ronaldo is a full guide

Lander Juan Peña Ramirez

Lander is a full guide

Jhonatan Eliu Guevara Linares

Jhonatan is a full guide

Erika

Our time in the jungle was an absolute highlight on our trip to Peru! Truly amazing! …Again, we had the most wonderful time. Almost more than words can say. The jungle and the Tahuayo Lodge hold very special places in our hearts and CAN NOT WAIT to return. Thank you again for offering such an amazing trip.

Renee

Our trip was INCREDIBLE. The lodge was great, the food was amazing, and the staff were all so friendly. We loved our stays at the B&B, the main lodge, and the ARC.

Tia & Paula

It was incredible and a trip of a lifetime Paul! My sister Paula and I had an amazing time and loved everything — your facilities and staff are top notch and I want to come back with my husband and daughters!!

What Our Guests

Have to Say…

Erika

Our time in the jungle was an absolute highlight on our trip to Peru! Truly amazing! …Again, we had the most wonderful time. Almost more than words can say. The jungle and the Tahuayo Lodge hold very special places in our hearts and CAN NOT WAIT to return. Thank you again for offering such an amazing trip.

Renee

Our trip was INCREDIBLE. The lodge was great, the food was amazing, and the staff were all so friendly. We loved our stays at the B&B, the main lodge, and the ARC.

Tia & Paula

It was incredible and a trip of a lifetime Paul! My sister Paula and I had an amazing time and loved everything — your facilities and staff are top notch and I want to come back with my husband and daughters!!