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  • Madagascar
    2005
  • Costa Rica
    2006-2007
  • Mexico/Guatemala
    2009-2010
  • Ecuador
    2010

Act I : Madagascar

Chameleon and its habitat


Forth island in the world for its size, Madagascar was separated from Africa about 240 million years ago. Through geological periods, this geographical isolation fostered the development of the biodiversity with extraordinarily high rates of endemism. Madagascar became the kingdom of lemurs and unique heptofauna in the world, especially characterized by chameleons.

Cameleon

Nine months after its foundation, Exode Tropical makes his first photographic report in the rainforest. Chameleon and its habitat is a project aimed at the promotion of the wealth of the forests of Madagascar and public awareness raising on conservation issues on the big African island. Winner of the Youth Challenge 2005, this initiative was approved and funded by the French Ministry of the Youth and Sports.

This initial one-month journey takes us to the natural parks of Ranomafana and Andasibe Mantadia and allows us to begin our eco-reporting. At the end, an exhibition, a conference and school activities were organized. This first experience became a turning point for later development of Exode Tropical.

Act II : Costa Rica

Temple of Ecotourism


Only several million years ago new territories emerged on the surface of the earth. They form a natural bridge connecting two previously independent enormous continental masses: North America and South America. Over thousands of years an incredible number of species come across thus giving birth to one of the biggest biological corridors of the world: Central America.

Howler monkey

Costa Rica is at the heart of such bio-geologic turmoil. Today, this state, although representing not more 0,03% of emerged territories, shelters about 5% of all the species known on the earth. 25% of the surface is classified the protected area and thousands of visitors come every year to contemplate the country's natural wonders.

As Eco volunteers for a mission of conservation of wildlife or as voluntary reporters for the Ministry of the Environment, we photographed a representative sample of the biodiversity of the country. We approached local associations and national parks and asked them about rehabilitation and data collection on endangered species, about improving life conditions of animals in captivity, or conception of naturalist trips and educational materials.


Act III : Mexico/Guatemala

The Maya Forest


For almost 3000 years, Mayas reigned in Mesoamerica, making one of the rare civilizations having settled in the environment as inhospitable as the tropical forest. During the centuries the Mayas conquered this wild nature and their culture prospered. Famous for their tremendous cities, pyramids, their system of writing or knowledge of astronomy, they left us an extraordinary cultural heritage. Today, their civilization is destroyed, but their culture has not disappeared after all.

Tikal

In-between national parks and pre-Columbus ruins, this new expedition, biological and archaeological at the same time, takes us to the very heart of Mayan cradle, between Guatemala and Mexican regions of Chiapas and Yucatan. Since the decline of the Mayas, the nature has regained its rights while keeping the remnants of mysteriously disappeared civilization. Today, these two countries own some of the biggest tropical forests of the Central America. But unconsciously exploited, the forest burns slowly. For seven months we followed, photographed and filmed scientists, local communities and volunteers of the world to understand how hard these actors of the preservation are working to protect what remains of the Maya Forest.


Act IV : Ecuador

The Laboratory of Evolution


Wedged between Peru and Colombia, Ecuador is a real hotspot of biodiversity having many reasons to attract experienced adventurers. Just mention the Amazon forest, the Andes Cordillera or the Galapagos Islands and you will see the sparkling eyes of naturalists, photographers, climbers, divers or sailors. Full of legends and made famous in the world by the expedition of Charles Darwin, the Ecuador offers to the travelers a magnificent palette of landscapes and an opportunity to live unforgettable experiences in isolated communities of the modern world. 

grenouille arboricole

After 18 months dedicated to the rainforests of Central America, it was high time for us to get to know the biggest equatorial forest of the world. The Amazon of Ecuador covers all the East of the country. This region, called Oriente, is the richest on the earth for its biodiversity and is the refuge of numerous Indian ethnic groups (Huaoranis, Kichwas, Shuars). It is here as well that the drama of massive and immoral deforestation, mainly motivated by the extraction of oil takes place.
On the other side of the Andes, the magic of the Galapagos produces its effect and attracts millions of visitors. 175 years after Darwin, we have a chance to still walk on the land of huge tortoises and marine iguanas. However, things have changed since 1835. Mass tourism and introduction of invasive species threaten more and more the wealth of the archipelago.

Ecuador, the big laboratory of the evolution in the shadows of the Damocles Sword, instantly became the destination of the choice for the team of Exode Tropical: the opportunity for us to end in beauty our American expeditions.