Braden Escobar Still Going Strong In Ecuador


Published: November - 2004

Remember Braden Escobar from Ecuador, the outfitter whose hunts in that country have been written up in these pages before? His company, called Ecuagringo, also got involved for a while in some cull hunts for feral donkeys and goats on the Galapagos Islands? They generated lots of controversy, you'll recall, before they were discontinued.

Well, Escobar dropped us a short note this past month pointing out that he is still very much involved in hunts on the mainland for red brocket deer and South American whitetail deer. Here is the gist of the note he sent us:

"In Ecuador we have two distinct types of tropical (South American) whitetail - the coastal and the mountain variety. Safari Club International does not recognize two species, but they are very different. The coastal animals are found in all the provinces that border the Pacific Ocean on Ecuador's west side, mainly in Manabi, Guyanas and el Oro. These deer are rather small compared to their North American cousins. A mature buck averages about 120 pounds, while a doe averages 90 pounds. These deer live in very thick brush. Hunting methods include hunting from a stand and the use of villagers to conduct drives.

"Mountain tropical whitetail deer are hunted at elevations from about 8,000 feet to 16,000 feet or more. They are much bigger than coastal deer, averaging 150 pounds. They also have considerably larger antlers. Hunting is usually done by horseback with overnight camping generally a must.

"The third big game animal I hunt is the red brocket deer. These deer are found on both the coast and in the mountains, but are mainly hunted along the coast. Red brocket deer are one of our most prized deer. They are very nocturnal and almost have to be hunted at night. Ecuador has produced some excellent red brocket trophies. The current No. 11 in the SCI Record Book, for example, was taken by one of my hunters in Ecuador.

"Most of my hunters have enjoyed 100 percent success.........(continued)

 
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