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, February 3, 2009

Monkeying Around - part I

The end of the week saw the EMs venturing out onto new ground again for a visit to a natural island in the middle of the Napo River (a tributary of the Amazon), owned by a local to the region called Hector. Before this, the first stop was a town created from the oil industry and now the last main outpost east before the wilderness of the Amazon unfolds. On the Sunday Hector showed everyone round the market, brimming with life, sights and smells. Local produce and amongst those bottles of murky coloured liquids claiming to cure everything! For those brave enough, there were ample treats in store especially the kebabs of barbequed grubs on sticks - a delicacy. EMs became all too aware of the delicate balance between conseravtion work in the area and the continued practice of poaching and hunting (either for meat or selling pets in the market).

Hector's has a small school on his island aimed at a handful of young children who otherwise would probably not enter the education system due to the difficulty of transport up and down the river. He is also trying to support and protect the local monkey population by giving them a safe haven on his island with a view to finding a spot to re-introduce them to the bigger terrain of rainforest. Whilst EMs were helping with some trail maintenance with some sterling machete action, they were privileged to view some of the nine species who are resident on Hector's island - Woolly (Lagothrix lagotricha), Pygmy Marmoset (Callithrix (Cebuella) pygmaea), White-fronted Capuchin (Cebus albifrons), Squirrel Monkey (Saimiri sciureus) and the Golden-mantled Tamarin (Saguinus tripartitus).