Most Amazonian animals
are extremely shy and difficult to spot,
especially by day as the majority is
nocturnal. However, look carefully along the
trail and you will soon discover the clues
that animals leave behind in passing; foot-prints,
foraging scrapings, a scat or two.
When walking near the Gallocunca stream (Trail
1), peer along the muddy banks for the
footprints of Otters, Caiman, Brocket Deer,
Tapir and wild boar (Peccaries).
To spot animals by day try to make as little
noise as possible and stop frequently to
listen. More often you will be able to
locate an animal by its call or by the sound
it makes running across the ground or
overhead in the branches than by sight alone.
Towards the end of each trail, along the
river bank near the lodge, is an area of
secondary forest. This type of forest is
fairly recent (having been cut down for
agriculture some 20 years ago) and is
dominated by a few fast growing species of
tree such as Balsa, Cecropia and Apeiba (the
monkey's comb). The undergrowth here is a
little sparser and the sun's rays penetrate
directly to the forest floor. Large patches
of Bamboo and Heliconia (Bird of Paradise
flowers) are well adapted to this forest
type and flourish here.
At night the forest takes on a whole new
dimension. The lamentations of millions of
insects brings the night alive, and armed
with a powerful flashlight it is possible to
catch glimpses of eye shine from the many
nocturnal animals; spiders, tree frogs,
Night Monkeys, arboreal Porcupines and if
you are lucky the ubiquitous Giant Bamboo
Rat, more often heard than seen!