Gerhard Rehmann | Thursday, February 06, 2014
Richard, the chief investigator, gave us an interesting lecture on the history of the Amazon basin and the ecology of the Varzea, the areas that are regularly flooded.
There was a rich offer of activities to take part and we were free to choose among them as best we could.
You would start the day before dawn, go up the river on a canoe and watch the colourful parrots cross the river.
After a healthy breakfast you might switch to a bigger boat and count river dolphins.
If you're happier on solid earth, go for a 'transect' i.e. walk a few miles through the jungle and record every animal you see.
As for fishes, you may go fishing and count species and number of your catch. Yes, Piranhas may well be among them.
Have you ever tried to count a thousand? Here you will count several thousands of birds on the river bench.
Late in the evening, after a splendid sunset, you may either watch the milky way as clear as you never saw it before.
Or you go on another canoe excursion and try to spot alligators on the river banks in the light of a torch.
On your free afternoon, you might visit the neighboring village or experience a spectacular tropical thunderstorm.
One of the most exciting excursions was a night walk into the jungle, but be careful: the most beautiful caterpillars might be the most poisonous, too.
The staff is very knowledgeable and if you're lucky, the indian guides give you some insight into their traditions. I even was treated with an indian ceremony to 'clean my soul'.