How to obtain the Brazilian fishing license

Due to a significant amount of bureaucracy, it is almost impossible for foreigners to obtain a fishing license in Brazil. However, we can assist you with the process if you intend to fish in the state of Amazonas ( Please note that fishing licenses are currently only available for the state of Amazonas. For the other states, we have already sent a request to the Ministry of Tourism and they have not yet defined what to do.

Is the yellow fever vaccine mandatory?

Although no control requires you to get the vaccine, it is highly recommended that you get the yellow fever vaccine when you come to the Amazon Rainforest. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that you get the vaccine at least 10 days before traveling.
In 2017, the WHO defined that a single dose is sufficient for lifelong immunization against yellow fever.

Which are the recommended personal belongings for my fishing trip?

Here is a list of recommended materials for your fishing trip:

01)     Fishing license

02)     Yellow fever vaccine 

03)     Sunscreen 

04)     Mosquito repellent and "anti-itch" cream 

05)     Personal hygiene supplies (toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shaving cream, comb, etc.)

06)     Prescription drugs

07)     First aid kit (aspirin, Tylenol, Advil, gauze, cotton, band-aid, tape, glove, scissors, needle)

08)     Kit for rehydration in cases of vomiting and diarrhea (sugar and salt to make the homemade serum, rehydration fluids such as Gatorade or Hydrafix), and remedies for stomach sickness). 

09)     Sore throat remedy, cold/flu medicine, eye drops 

10)     Polarized sunglasses ( and don't forget your prescription glasses or spare contact lenses if you use them ) 

11)     Rain gear 

12)     Sunshield hat 

13)     Cap/hat

14)     Several short and long sleeve shirts, light clothing, preferably white cotton with UV protection (highly recommended), socks, underwear, etc 

15)     Jacket and pants 

16)     Shorts 

17)     Sandals 

18)     Rubber boots 

19)     Fishing gloves 

20)     Flashlight 

21)     Knife for personal use and nail scissors 

22)     Multipurpose pocket knife 

23)     Matches and lighter 

24)     GPS, mirror, and whistle 

25)     Tacklebox 

26)     Photographic / video camera 

27)     Cell phone 

28)     Passport and ID (protect on zip-lock bag) 

Note: Check the weight of your luggage as there are weight limits on flights, especially if your trip includes small aircraft. In this case, the weight limit is normally 40 pounds per person divided as follows: one 10 lb. carry-on piece of luggage and one 30 lb. checked bag - a soft duffle bag with no rigid bottom (except for rod cases). (If you have only one soft duffle bag it must be no bigger than length: 30in; Width: 22in; Height: 11in). 

Fishing tackle: selection, use, settings and hints

1 Rods

When selecting a fishing rod, it is important to consider its capacity, which is usually described in pounds and is directly related to the size of fish you want to catch. It should also be compatible with the type of reel or spinning reel that will be used. For spinning reels, use rods with large rod guides, and for reels, use rods with smaller rod guides.

It is important to have balanced equipment when selecting your rod, spinning reel, or reel, i.e., to use equipment with similar capacity. The capacity of the spinning reel or reel should be similar to the capacity of the rod and similar to the capacity of the line to be used.

The length of the rods should be evaluated according to the type of fishing to be practiced. For fishing on boats, the length usually varies between 5 feet and 10 inches to 6 feet and 5 inches. For fishing at the seashore or on a river bank, use rods that can be 16 inches in length or even more. But don’t forget to follow the rules of a good balance between the rod, the reel or spinning reel, and the line.

Another important point about rods: never try to test the capacity of the rod by flexing the end of the rod with your hand. This can break the rod. For this test, use the assembled rod by pulling through the line, as the rod resistance is distributed across all guides. The more guides the rod has, the better its performance and capacity.

2 - Baitcasting reel Settings

Take a look at this video:

3- Spinning reel drag adjustment:

Take a look at this video:

4 Final recommendations

Here are some tips to improve your fishing experience:

a. Assemble your fishing gear carefully and do not hesitate to redo them if something is not 100%. Constantly review your material when you are fishing, especially after catching a fish. Check the status of rods, lines, knots, swivels, etc. If unsure, don’t be lazy. Cut, tie, and redo.

b. Whenever in doubt about the condition of the fishing line, replace it with a new one. You will only find that the line is not good when you lose a fish.

c. When catching a fish with force greater than the capacity of the line, it is normal for the fish to take the line. That is when having a balanced set makes the difference, by having the adjustments done correctly. Always keep the rod in the position where it is flexed to cushion the “fish’s strong pull”.

d. Never give up. Be persistent and the reward will come in the form of a beautiful fish.

e. And last but not least, talk, ask, and plan your fishing with the fishing guide. They certainly have more experience than you and can be of great help.

Peacock bass tactics and techniques

Like largemouth bass, peacocks often prefer “structure” of some sort. Rocks, fallen logs, and sand bars are hiding places for baitfish, so this is where the peacocks will usually be lurking. Of course, you should always heed the guide’s recommendations on where to cast.

Peacock bass usually swims in pairs or small schools in search of their prey, often attacking other fish with fury. When this situation occurs, cast your bait as quickly as possible over the peacock bass. The faster you do this, the greater the chance of catching one. Peacock bass are voracious and highly competitive. Always cast a bait or fly very close to any hooked fish. There is certainly another peacock bass nearby (attracted by the commotion). If the attack does not bring results, continue fishing in the vicinity.

Novice anglers often pull the hook too quickly when fishing with bait or flies. Peacock bass often only lightly hit the bait when it is cast and only bite it when it passes by for the second time. It is difficult to remember this at first, but do not pull the hook on the first attack. Lower the tip of the rod and hold on as tightly as possible. Large peacock bass have very tough skin around their mouth and tend to cling to the bait or fly firmly.

If the fish does not take the bait on the first attempt, keep moving the bait. If you are patient, the fish will return and hit the bait two or three more times. If the fish loses interest quickly, cast a half-water bait or even a jig. This usually incites a new attack.

Never underestimate the strength of a large peacock bass. If the fish heads towards some type of structure with logs, rocks, or rocks, apply lateral pressure to the rod and try to “guide” the fish in another direction. If the fish manages to take refuge in this area, do not give up. Keep the tip of the rod always high and the line loose enough to take advantage of last-minute escapes.

And don’t forget about friction regulation. If you keep the friction regulation (also called star or drag) too tight, the line will likely break or the fish will come loose from the bait.

The color of the fly or bait does not seem to be as important as the tone. On a sunny day, use light-colored baits or flies.  Dark tones are better in low-light conditions.

How does the water level affect the peacock bass fishing?

Share this:
It took me some time to learn and even some failed fishing trips to the Amazon basin early, in the beginning, to assimilate the concept. Why? Simply because I failed to understand that nature, as the one I am enjoying now, in its purest form, has its dynamics and logic. Certainly, it does not always coincide with your needs or expectations, and certainly, it does not adapt to them. It is rather the other way around.
A successful fishing trip to the Amazon basin can be measured in many ways, but the core of the trip is having fun, and fun is to fish as many peacocks as you can and catch them as big as they get. Having said that, the next question is what should I consider to maximize my chances of having fun.
Everyone I respect having some experience to share in this kind of sport-fishing coincides with:
The key factor to a very successful peacock bass fishing trip to the Amazon basin is fishing with adequate water levels.
If the water levels are too high, water is in the jungle, and your peacocks are in the jungle too, feeding, meaning you won´t catch a thing. If water levels are too low peacocks are inactive and seeking the deep to simply evade the predators.
Proof of how high the water levels reach off-season is the fact that the ants don´t build their nests at ground level, they build them on the tree branches. 
The first time you arrive in the jungle you feel an overwhelming sensation of humility and insignificance upon the vastness of this raw landscape teaming with wildlife. The basin is enormous, and considering Manaus as the center, water levels will be optimum downriver at the beginning of the season in August e.g. the Marmelos River, and impossibly high upriver e.g. Itapará River which finds its optimum moment in January/February. Each month in the Season has a determined area with optimum water levels in a pattern that repeats itself season after season with some variations that may be caused by known climatic influences like the La Niña current.
All things considered, it is essential that wherever you go in the Amazon basin to fish, it presents adequate water levels. Most serious outfitters fish on third-level tributaries of the Amazon, some in public places and some in privately leased rivers. All try to avoid overfished and depredated areas, which unfortunately are more and more common each day. Each of these rivers enjoys adequate water levels for our purposes only for 8 to 12 weeks per season (Peacock bass season runs from late July to early March – about. 32 weeks).

Seasonal flooding is characteristic of many tropical rivers. However, few compare to the so-called igapo (swamp forest) and varzea (flooded forest) of the Amazon River Basin, where large tracts of rainforest are inundated to depths of 40 feet during seasonal flooding. The lowest flood stage occurs in August and September, while the highest stage occurs in April and May. Tributaries that drain the Guyana Shield flood in June, while the tributaries that drain the Brazilian Shield flood in March or April. Since the peak rainy seasons are out of phase, the peak discharges of the left bank (Guyana Shield) and right bank (Brazilian Shield) rivers are somewhat offset, having the effect of moderating high and low water levels on the mainstream, but tributaries can have extreme variations. Rain and snow that fall in the Andes and other highland areas reach the Amazon through its tributaries and produce the high-water season. Deforestation of the foothills and upper basin may have caused a shift in rain levels during certain times of the year resulting in irregular high and low river levels. Flooding has important functions for the surrounding forests including eradicating pests, enriching soils with nutrients from whitewater rivers (especially varzea forests), and dispersing seeds.

The contrasts between the low and high-water seasons in some areas of the Amazon Basin are extreme. Low water leaves vast islands and sand bars exposed and river banks high above water level. Smaller tributaries may become so shallow that travel by dugout canoe is barely possible only when travelers push the canoe. Creeks and streams, which are raging torrents when rainstorms come, may dry up altogether. Low water is a time of trouble for most Amazonian fish and a time of plenty for predators like arapaima, large catfish, dolphins, and jaguars. With the dramatic decrease in water area, fish become trapped in tiny lakes and river shallows and are easy targets for predators. In the floodplains, which during high water are a continuous stretch of water, bodies of water are reduced to floodplain lakes. These floodplain lakes are packed with fish and predators, and dissolved oxygen levels are sharply reduced. During a few weeks each year, massive die-offs are caused in these pools when cold Antarctic air passes over parts of the Amazon, cooling surface waters and causing them to sink to the bottom. The bottom of floodplain lakes is often a decaying anaerobic layer of organic sludge. As surface waters sink to the bottom, methane and hydrogen sulfide from the bottom push toward the surface causing tremendous die-offs. Vultures crowd by thousands to feed on carcasses. Many fish have adapted to the lack of oxygen by developing structures that enable them to take atmospheric oxygen from the air. Most famous are the lungfish of South America, Africa, and Australia, but many catfish, labyrinth fish, and loaches also can directly use atmospheric oxygen. The best-known predator of floodplain lakes is the arapaima or piracucu, one of the world's largest freshwater fish. The species attains a maximum of 16 feet, though today such large individuals are extremely rare because of overfishing. Today conservation efforts are focused on restoring this magnificent species. The anaconda is also an apex predator in floodplain lakes.

High water is the time of the flooded forest when water levels rise 30 to 40 feet and flood the surrounding forest and floodplains, linking river branches as one massive body of water. The higher water level makes the lower canopy accessible by boat. Many tree species depend on the floods for seed dispersal through animal or mechanical (floating downriver) means. It is a time of abundance for most herbivorous fish which can feed on the fruit and seeds that fall from fruiting trees. The Amazon is home to the vast majority of fish species dependent on fruits and seeds. One famous fruit-eating fish is the tambaqui, a large fish that crushes fallen seeds with its strong jaws. The tambaqui waits beneath trees that are dropping seeds, congregating especially under its favorite, the rubber tree Hevea spruceana, which is widely scattered in the flooded forest. Humans take advantage of the tambaqui and other fish that wait for fallen seeds by imitating falling seeds using a pole with a seed attached by a line. When the fish is attracted within range, the hunter harpoons it. In Amazonian folklore, it is said that the jaguar hunts such seed-eating fish using its tail to mimic the "thud" of falling seeds. The high-water season is a difficult time for fish predators. The increased water area gives potential prey a larger range and predators must rely on their fat stores from their heavy feeding during the dry season. Many omnivorous species eat mostly seeds and fruit during this period. 
High water also means difficulty for ground-dwelling plant and animal species. Many ground dwellers migrate to more elevated areas, while some species move up into the trees. Understory plants and shrubs may spend 6-10 months underwater where they are thought to continue some form of photosynthesis.

Research published in 2005 found that flooding in the Amazon causes a sizable portion of South America to sink several inches because of the extra weight and then rise again as the waters recede. Scientists say that this annual rise and fall of Earth's crust is the largest ever detected, and it may one day enable researchers to calculate the total amount of water on Earth.

How is the communication with my family in case of emergency?

Please note that due to weather conditions and remote location, communication may sometimes be a problem. It is important to inform your family of these limitations and remember to leave your emergency contact number(s) in case of any emergency.

Travel Insurance

We encourage all visitors to prepare their own personal or travel insurance for damage or loss of luggage, accidents or loss of connections. Fishing Brazil Adventures will not be responsible for any loss of luggages or conecting flights and or accidents.

The Client is well aware of the fact that it is impossible to enumerate all the risks and perils that this tour package or this particular kind of travel may involve. The Client shall bear all risks and perils, whether they be listed or not herein. The Client, either jointly or severally, exempts “Fishing Brazil Adventures Ltda” from any kind of liability or liability for any loss, body injury, death, property damage, accident, delay or change in the itineraries, or unforeseen event beyond their control.

Fishing and your health

Fishing is an activity that can bring many benefits to health and well-being. In addition to being a form of physical exercise, fishing can help improve cardiovascular health, muscle strength, flexibility, breathing, and posture. Fishing can also be a great way to relax and reduce stress, as well as provide an opportunity to spend time outdoors and interact with other people. Fishing can help develop patience and self-confidence, as it requires waiting for the right moment to catch the fish. Finally, fishing can be a fun and rewarding activity that can be enjoyed and practiced by people of all ages.

Passport and visa information

Brazil has different VISA requirements according to the country where you were born. For some countries, a Brazilian visa is not needed or only required if you intend to stay in the country for a certain period (usually more than 90 days). For other countries a VISA is mandatory. Therefore, check with the Brazilian Embassy or Consulate closest to your residence whether or not you need a VISA.

If you need a VISA, you must obtain your Brazilian visa in advance at the Brazilian Embassy or Consulate. There are no "airport visas" and immigration authorities will refuse entry to Brazil to those who do not have a valid visa when required.

To obtain a visa you must contact the nearest Brazilian Consulate General (your passport cannot expire within six months of entrance into Brazil and must have at least 2 blank pages, both sides). Do not forget to get this Visa or check to make sure that your current visa is valid. There are countless nightmares about foreigners arriving in Brazil without one.

NOTE: If you have a valid Brazilian Visa (check the dates on the visa) in an expired passport, you can use both passports (renewed and the expired one with a valid visa to enter Brazil).