This week we finally finished the new Howler monkey cage, its been alot of hard work but it looks great and we put the monkeys in their and they seem to like it alot We alos released the baby turtles that hatched last week, it was really nice to see the run so fast towards the water. My activities this week Monday: i went into town to Puerto Maldonado Tuesday: Building the foundations for another new cage with Ronald and Baptist followed by a swim in the creek then had animal feeding with Anthony and Pauline, it involves weighing out the different types of fruit or meat they eat and putting it in the appropriate bowls. You then go into the cages to feed them, the Howler monkeys are now my favourite, they look a little mean but have great personalities. Off to Amazon Planet again in the evening as its Oscars birthday, no doubt a late night again!
Wednesday I am working on the new Howler monkey cage this morning with Raoul, Margaux and Pauline, we have a little tidying up to do then we get to put the monkeys in their new cage which is cool, its taken a lot of hard work so its good to see it finished. Got to play with the Howler monkeys aswell, they are sooo cool, if you stroke them for a few minutes your hands turn orange from their fur which was a little strange. Then turtle feeding in the afternoon Thursday Animal feeding again in the morning then releasing the turtles in the the afternoon Friday Went to a near by island to clear a path and make a trail using machettes, very hard work (especially with a hangover) but you get to see all sorts of strange bugs like the Harlequin Beetle below. Went swimming in the afternoon and had a mud fight which was good fun
Staff member Raoul gave up salsa dancing lessons friday night which went well considering i have two left feet!
Seen alot of snakes this week, one went accross the path in front of me, it was about 6-7 foot long! i hope thats the nearest i get to one! ttfn
So after a heavy weekend In puerto Maldonado we headed back to Taricaya on the boat, the weather took a turn for the worse in the way of a storm and the lightning and rain was relentless, we all got soaking wet. Later Sunday evening we headed down to Amazon Planet, a tourist lodge further down the river for fair well drinks as Melanie was leaving in the morning, yet again ended up getting in at 2 am! Was a really good evening though as I got to know a lot of the staff better specially the two from Essex.
So Monday’s first job was to go to the turtle farm and check the eggs to see if any had hatched yet but none had and it would probably be a couple of weeks until they do. We then had to collect sacks of sand from the other side of the river and bring it back to camp so it could be used to build the new monkey enclosure, it took about 2 hours was very tiring especially as most of us had hangovers! I went for a swim in the river after to cool off.
In the afternoon I had to clear leaves from the butterfly farm, it was easy work and didn’t take long. Setting up nets to catch birds by the swamp in the morning at 4.30 so an early night.
So me errin and Rachel left for the 30 trek in the dark through the rainforest to set out nets across the swamp to catch and measure what types of birds are in that part of the rainforest. We caught 5 birds and all were really brightly coloured and tiny, it took about 4 hours in all and then had to carry all the equipment back in the midday heat. I slept for the afternoon and then we went to check on the baby turtles that had just hatched, they are really tiny. We are heading down to Amazon Planet for drinks again tonight as it’s Gail’s last night tomorrow.
First job today was tree mapping, we followed a trek through the rain forest looking for four types of tree used by locals for making cloths and other things and plotted them on a gps so information could be gathered about how far there seeds travelled ect. We got to see a lot of interesting things such as a walking tree, it has roots coming out the trunk about 3 meters up that extend to the ground that enable it to move so it can find a clear path through the canopy, we also saw a lot of tarantulas. In the afternoon me and waki had to repair the netting that runs along the side of the bridge that leads to the canopy platform that’s 42m high, was a fun afternoon.
Today was bird watching in the canopy, a relaxing way to start the day and we saw a lot of parrots and a family of howler monkeys asleep in a tree. Midday we were cutting down trees with machetes which we the put in the new monkey cage so they had something to swing from. Played with the jaguar on the way back for a little while, definitely my favourite animal here along with the trumpet bird (trumpy). Trumpy is a very rare bird, they are normally only found in quiet parts of the rainforest but he used to be someone’s pet and comes up to you while your in the hammock for a stroke and a scratch under the chin (see video). In the afternoon we cleared the ground of grass in the bird enclosure, again using machetes. Had spaghetti, boiled potatoes, and an egg in some sort of green sauce for dinner :- /
will post pics and vid to facebook as still cant get them to go on
So i finally arrived at Taricaya and with my backpack too which was a huge releife. it was a little overwhelming at first but everyone here is really friendly and made me feel at home straight away.
i havent sussed out how to upload pics or vids on here yet but by next weekend il have it sorted and post them then.
The camp itself is really nice but the huts are really basic and full of bugs all the time (4″ crickets and grasshoppers, tarantulas ect) as i expected, as after all it is the jungle, Just have to remember to shake anything you pick up before wearing it.
The camp has many animal mostly monkeys but tapirs, wild cats, a Jaguar, parrots and many more, it also has an owl that turns up in the evenings which you can feed and stroke and a trumpet bird that likes to be stroked under the chin which is cool.
The work is varied, some really physical like building new enclosures and collecting building materials, cleaning out animal cages which is good because you can play with the animals, the baby spider monkeys are my favourite. i will post videos of this next week.
Glad to be back in the town tonight for a comfortable bug free nights sleep and a nice meal tonight before going back to Taricaya Sunday afternoon.
Speak to you all next week
Made it Lima so far (which is more than I can say for my backpack, it didn’t even make Madrid!), was sat next to a fat bloke for the 11 hour stretch and had someone behind me who I can only assume had whooping cough but I’ve managed to brag a first class seat for the next 3h stretch just hope I see my bag again!
Well after well over a year trying to make it happen its finally here, i leave tomorrow!
im still trying to get to grips with the blog setup so bear with me.
The first part of the trip is in Peru where i will be doing wildlife conservation in the Amazon rainforest. its really deep in the rainforest (2 hours by boat to the nearest village) and as remote as you can get. i will be posting updates with pics and hd videos on fridays and saturdays when i make the trip back to the village at weekends.
Il post more details about the project il be working on and more about me when i get a moment as im packing at present.