We have left Belem and flown to Manaus and on to Tefe. Then a motorised canoe to Mamiraua an eco-lodge in the flooded forest area. Our cabin floats in a bend in the river and we are constantly seeing the huge caiman (crocs) cruising passed our abode. The area is at the end of the dry season and water levels are at all time lows so the fish and animal life is concentrated around the river. The area will get a 12 to 15 metre rise in river levels after the rains and then the jungle is half under water with the animals living in the tree tops and swimming between branches. The high water marks on the trees seem un-believable.
Our excursions reveal an assortment of monkeys and sloths high in the trees with assorted birds and butterflies but not watching our feet had a lucky escape for the leader with a venemous Fer-de-lance snake just inches from his feet. We were fortunate to have our visit coinciding with scientists capturing and monitoring of the pink river dolphins that are protected in this area. Their young are breast fed for two years. Manatee were also just returning to the area but we didn´t catch a glimpse of these rare fish. Big cats jaguar black and spotted hunt here too. The reason for the reserve was the endangered- red faced, bald headed, long white haired Uakari monkey, but we didn´t see one, so might have to return one day.
With piranah fish and caiman in abundance, swimming was off the activities menu, and we just dripped sweat all day and night. Everything feels damp and I think that will be so for the next 6 weeks. Not much rain yet but the one downpour and thunder storm sofar made us realise that wet mud roads will be ìnteresting`on the bikes. Wildlife photos here.
Gareths scrapes and bruises are healing well.