We traveled with legal authorization from the US department of Treasury to Cuba, which was extremely difficult to obtain. From the late 1990s to 2015, we needed to apply every year and wait several months before learning our fate. Fortunately, we did receive authorization each year we applied.

During the 8 years of the Bush Administration, and first term of the Obama Administration, we were, I believe, the only U.S. entity to receive authorization to conduct bird surveys in Cuba each of those years. With more than 200 groups to date prior to the pandemic, we have brought more U.S. birders to Cuba than any other organization in the world.