The End of an Era

After over 6 years of intensive research and community development work in and around the Yachana Reserve, GVI Amazon is coming to a close. We have finished our final research project (look forward to our Road Effects paper, coming soon!) and are handing over the project to our partner, The Yachana Foundation. They will continue to maintain and monitor the reserve, using it as an hands-on science education center for students -- we're very excited to see what fabulous things this next generation of scientists find! For more detail on GVI Amazon's closure, and our accomplishments over the years, please read on...
GVI Amazon Closure Statement

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

And so starts the next 5 week stage…

10-week expedition members returned from their mid-phase break to Banos, with the feeling of hot water to once again become nothing but a pleasant memory! 5-week members negotiated the stunning off-road bus journey to Tena and then to Comuna Los Rios for an excellent introduction to the surrounding areas, topped of with the canoe ride through rainforest territory down the Rio Napo.

Training week came and went in a flash, finding our feet in camp, with bird calls, tropical ecology and more importantly, on the numerous treks into primary rainforest (and not always in the day time)!

The tour of Yachana Lodge and High School uncovered one of the most amazing views this side of the equator, with the Napo, surrounding rainforest and distant mountains. However, this spectacular scenery was forgotten when the locals came calling for the weekly football match…our determination and enthusiasm were not reflected in the 3-0 loss, but the fact Ecuadorians are fitter, stronger and all-round faster was omitted from the match report!

The first day of expedition field studies was hugely successful, with the butterfly survey uncovering 6 new species for the reserve. The results of the survey means the effort to actually catch them is well worth it!

Also, amphibian night surveys began with the aim to check species for chytrid, a fungal disease of amphibians that is already affecting many tropical parts of the world, adding to the importance the ongoing work has in the Yachana Reserve.

The coming week is sure to be just as eventful as we move away from training, so more information about activities will be forthcoming…

Hasta luego!!
Stuart McPherson