I have always been interested in animals. At four years old, my grandfather would take me to the Buenos Aires Zoo almost daily, since that was my favorite pastime.
Later on, I would avidly collect every book or magazine article about them I could lay my hands on, and during my holidays at the ranch I used to keep a “mini-zoo”.
Photography was the tool that allowed me to establish a much more intense link with the animal world. It made me dedicate all my holiday and spare time to travelling to wildlife areas, and to share my images and experiences with others by writing articles for magazines – both local and international.
Soon I was recruited by the tourist industry to guide nature-oriented tours or photographic safaris. This meant an end to my training as an industrial engineer, but working for Lindblad Travel – a company specialized in thematic tours – was a “passport to adventure”.
It allowed me to visit natural areas of all continents and seas –even some of their most remote corners – in quest for wildlife. Not only was I able to capture it on film but also to learn about the conservation methods applied in the different national parks and reserves. Also, I found mentors among some of the world’s most significant naturalists and conservationists who came in our “tourist-expeditions” as guest lecturers.
As a consequence of this, thousands of my photographs have illustrated books and magazines of Argentina, Spain, Great Britain and the USA. Besides writing many articles in both popular and specialized magazines of those countries I have been the editor or co-author of several books – some of which are depicted in My Books section of this page.
In 1967 I received the “Wildlife Photographer of the Year” award (from Animals Magazine, forerunner of BBC Wildlife magazine) and in 1996 I was recognized as the pioneer of Argentine wildlife photography by the Academy of Visual Arts Foundation and the photoclub Buenos Aires, by awarding me with their first Silver Pyramid to a “life-long career in nature-photography”.
Dedicated to spreading among people the interest and knowledge about wildlife and to the conservation of nature, besides organizing and conducting eco-tourism operations, I also became a frequent lecturer for many local institutions and guest speaker at national and international congresses. And I took part on the making of several wildlife documentaries for TV – acting as scientific adviser to the teams of the BBC., Survival/Anglia and Radiotelevisión Española in Patagonia.
Then, for six years I conducted the TV-cycle “The Marvelous World of Animals” (Channel 13 of Buenos Aires) among other endeavors in the local TV.
But as I enjoyed the world´s wildlife spectacles I felt the need to do as much as possible to ensure the survival of the sites, ecosystems and species which provided such spectacles, beyond promoting their conservation through the media. And I was fortunate enough to be given the opportunity for making more substantial contributions on their behalf. As a founding member and director general of the Fundación Vida Silvestre Argentina, chairman of the board of the National Parks Administration of Argentina and chief-adviser to one of my successors, I have had the privilege of playing a major role in the creation, establishment or design of many new national parks (Quebrada del Condorito, Talampaya, Bosque Petrificado, Copo, San Guillermo, Monte León) and other natural reserves (Campos del Tuyú and Urugua-í).
Several other non-governmental organizations – Fundación Iberá, Fundación Hábitat y Desarrollo, Aves Argentinas (Birdlife International’s local partner) – have entrusted me with responsibilities that allowed me to perform additional services to the conservation of biological diversity. Also, acting as an adviser of the Fauna and Flora Preservation Society, a member of the Species Survival Commission and as vice-chairman of the World Commission of Protected Areas of the World Conservation Union (IUCN.).
I have written many technical documents on the selection and management of protected natural areas, strategies and policies for the conservation of biological diversity.
My work in conservation has been distinguished by awards from the Asociación Ornitológica del Plata, the Argentine Society for the Protection of Animals and the Wildlife Conservation Society (which chose me as “Wildlife Conservation Fellow”)