Ecorana Environmental ltd., Blog at it's partner field staiton at the T.R.E.E.S

We are Ecorana Environmental, an eco-travel and environmental education company that specializes in creating and planning applied learning holidays for students, researchers, and ecotourists alike. Our team consists of travel and outreach specialists as well as research biologists and teachers who specialize in environmental education and conservation. We are well-versed in providing comfortable, safe, and exciting learning and travel opportunities to a range of clientele interested in environmentally and culturally conscious travel.Ecorana is poised to offer travel and education abroad opportunities in the diverse tropical country of Belize. Ecorana employs biologists who are well-trained in tropical ecology, herpetology, and ornithology, and as such, studies in tropical biology are the primary focus of our educational holidays. However, our team’s diverse interests and expertise allow us to plan all types of holidays ranging from wildlife ecotours to yoga retreats to West African drumming courses to ecological field technique courses. Wherever your interests lie, you can be guaranteed that Ecorana will be right there with you.Ecorana maintains values of environmental and cultural conservation and stewardship, hands-on education, and inclusive learning, and seeks to instill those values in all visitors to Belize. We work with many field stations and educational centers, scientists, educators, tour companies, tour guides, eco-lodges, and parks, both on the mainland and on the islands of Belize, to make sure you go exactly where you want to go and see exactly what you want to see and more!

One of our main partners is the Toucan Ridge Ecology and Education Society (T.R.E.E.S) and their field station in Belize. The objectives of this environmental education center are to host various cultural and environmental based student courses, workshops and event hosting in the heart of the beautiful Maya Mountains of Belize. We plan on providing our services to international students as well as providing opportunities for Belizean students.

For more information see our website at, or send us and email at or to go directly to the T.R.E.E.S website

Monday, December 2, 2013

Waterfall Rappel

There is a beautiful waterfall behind the T.R.E.E.S property in the Sibun Forest Reserve! We have hiked a couple of times to it but never more. This is where we found the Mayan mountain frog with the Save the Frogs groups (see old post).  As T.R.E.E.S has the access to the base of the waterfall trail on its premises guiding operations need to ask permission to use the trail.  Last week we were approached with Maya Guide Adventures to work together with other guiding groups to fix the trail that goes up to the waterfall. We are forming a small outfit that will provide assistance to go up to the waterfall trail and eventually into the Sibun Forest Reserve.

As they were going up to the waterfall in a few days with a group from the U.S it was agreed that we would go with them and repel the 400 ft. beast. So, last week we got all of gear ready and went up with them. It was a windy day and it had rained all night, so the waterfall was raging! We went up with Maya Guide Adventures, which I would highly recommend to anyone coming to the T.R.E.E.S station. Very professional and super safe!

The hike up to the waterfall is about an 1.5-2 hours steep hike in beautiful jungle setting. We then got our harnesses on and prepared to repel the famous waterfall.

I went first, then followed by Vanessa and Will. Both Vanessa and Will (our guide) never really rapelled but everyone had a great time. 300 ft. straight down rapel with cold mountain water rushing at you, it was awesome!

We can't wait to go up there again!

Mat going up the trail, never ends eh?

Chilly up at the waterfall - getting ready to go!

The famous waterfall

Will looking how the guides were installing the ropes

Will wathing as I am going down!

Mat going up the trail, never ends eh?

Here goes

Van getting mentally ready!
Vanessa getting ready to go down!

Vanessa going down

Vanessa going down

Vanessa going down

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

we are back!

After a couples months away from the station for a University Tour of Canada we are now back! We've made some really good contacts, recruited a few groups and a few interns. We are very happy with the outcome of the tour. We will continue next summer/fall with a tour of the french CEGEP and probably a tour of the Ontario Universities.

But we are now back and are very happy that the places looks so good; the pets are alive and well! We trusted that a friend of a friend of a friend that wanted to come to Belize and write up her latest book in the remote jungle of the tropics would be a good candidate. Sarah did a wonderful job and had a great time doing, no major mishaps and lot's of good memories for her. It was a great deal for everyone!

Big-O doing just fine

Since we have been back there has been lot's to fix, a couple of months without a handyperson on hand does mean that we were backlog with a few issues but we are now back on track. We are getting busy for a busy winter. We have a series of university groups and interns coming to the station.

On a lighter note, we have adopted a little Scorpion Mud Turtle for a couple of months. We have collected a SMT hatchling at the station last week. As mortality in young turtles is very high, we have decided to care for the turtle for a couple of months. This will increase its chance of survival in the wild and will allow us to study a little about this little known species. It helps that they are really cute!

Nestor the Scorpion mud turtle

Let's see, the bird migration has now started in full force. We are getting many of the North American migrants at the station. The black and white warbler, magnolia warbler, Common Yellowthroat, American Redstart and now back. It makes everyday really exciting, never know what you will be seeing.  

Ovenbird a tropical migrant from Canada and the US

Friday, September 13, 2013

Ecorana Tour 2014

Hello Dear readers, I am sorry we should of warned you, not many posts for a little while. We have been on a fall Family and University tour in Canada. We are going to a variety of English universities and colleges in the maritimes, Quebec and B.C to promote Ecorana which books tours, internships and programs as well as for T.R.E.E.S the field station. We are planning a french university and CEGEP tour next spring but we are currently working on translating the Ecorana site and material before we take off on this tour.

So far, so good, we have almost finished the Maritimes tour which has gone very well. We have had great weather and positive feedback. We are now getting ready for Montreal; McGill and Vanier College. We still do not have an in at Concordia, so if anyone has any suggestions don't hesitate to email us.

I will be posting picture soon of the tour!

Keep checking the blog, good stuff is coming soon I promise!

Here is a copy of our french and english promo posters, done by none other then Camille Zaroubi!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Groups at T.R.E.E.S

Dear readers, I am really sorry for the lack of postings on our blog. We have been real busy with finishing up the station and acquiring all of our permits. The good news is the station is fully operational, we are now officially open and have been receiving groups.

We received the UNB tropical ecology class, followed by teaching a class for I.S.I.S. I.S.S.I.S offers a variety of courses in Belize and we host as well as teach some of their classes. Lately we hosted a Marine Ecology class, part of the course was taught by Vanessa at the Station on freshwater ecosystems and then I brought the group to the Tobacco Caye Marine Station for the second part of the course. We had a great group of students and had a great time.

Finally we received Save the Frogs, an NGO that specializes in saving frogs. Sounds funny but a multitude of frog species are not doing very well. They brought a group to Belize on a frog specific ecotour. They found 3 new species of frogs at the station.

We are pleased with our spring summer season. We are now off on a couple month tour of North America to present in Universities, Colleges and Cegeps to get new groups for the next season!

So spread the word that T.R.E.E.S is now ready to receive guests!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Freshwater Snorkeling

A new activity at T.R.E.E.S - Freshwater Snorkeling! We took some of our friends (Kendra and Devin) that helped us make great little sampling nets to try out the new nets. We all brought our snorkels and went snorkeling in one of the swimming holes! It was amazing, we saw about 10 species that are common aquarium fishes back home. We still need to identify them but we know we had ; mollies, swordfishes, plathys, catfish and more!!! We are thinking we will now offer this as an activity at T.R.E.E.S!
Eva helping Devin try out the nets

starting the freswater snorkeling


Swordtails giving my arm a spa treatment

snorkeling in the swimming hole!

This one is still unidentified!!! Any guesses?

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Finally the Kitchen

It has taken us about 1 year now, but we have finally finished the commercial kitchen that will feed all our well anticipated guests.

I would like first to thank everyone that has made this great kitchen into reality. Brendan for the tiling, Chris and Clark for structure and Will and Erwin for the finishing work. Off course all the work that V and I had to put into it as well, cabinet, island, counters, etc.! Want to thank my uncle Pierre the Chef for helping us design the layout of the kitchen which is working out awesome!

You ready??? Here it is...
the original building we now call the kitchen

Chris and Clark working on new wall supports
new back wall added
New front wall
Now tiled with unfinished stove

Building the counters

new fridge and adding on the final walls

Cabinets almost completed

Final kitchen, complete with fume hood, commercial stove, only need to add the cupboard doors

Kitchen with island in middle

and the fridge, there it is the pride, at least my pride of T.R.E.E.S, I love this kitchen!!!

view towards the restaurant!

The Painter

T.R.E.E.S is officially opening is doors in early June! The site is ready and we have almost got all of the operating permits in order...this is it, we are almost open!!!

Diego starting to the draw the mural, he is being admired by group of volunteer students from Pro-World

We have decided to now switch the focus from construction to making the place a little more Hip! So Diego our amazing painter neighbour is working on a mural for the main outdoor client veranda. We have chosen to use one of the other T.R.E.E.S logos designed by Peter Diamond as the main image in the mural.

The artist hard at work

The completed toucan, Diego will now finish with some nice flower designs in the green
Diego changed it a little to add his own artistic style in the mural and it looks great! I will add another picture soon when the mural is complete!

Good work Diego!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

flower beds

Now that the construction phase is almost complete we have a little more time to make things look nice. My mother was here last week and we used her green thumb skills to redo all of the plant beds around the house! Looks awesome!It will take a couple of weeks before everythings bushed out good, but I will add other photos once we are there! Thumbs up!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

6 Weeks left before the Yoga Retreat!

There are only 6 weeks left before we offer the Yoga Retreat! Tell you friends, share our event pages on FB, tell your neighbour...

Ecorana Environmental is offering a 7-day all inclusive yoga retreat at the T.R.E.E.S facilities in Belize. Come deepen your Yoga practice while taking in the flavors of this tiny Central American country on the Caribbean coast. Tingle your senses with the tastes and sounds of the culture and nature that beautiful Belize has to offer!

For more information visit the T.R.E.E.S site:

Thanks to all our readers!