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

Friday, March 12, 2010

This Morning, Today, Earlier....

The fear of my Tesco cheapest erratic alarm clock not waking me up in time for my BTEC practical assessment sent my natural alarm clock into overdrive, seeing me wake @ 3:50am instead of the intended 5:00am.

Unable to get back to sleep and plagued by uncertainty about exactly which avian species are to be found in disturbed habitats, next to roads, near a recently logged area...... I prepared for my practical, albeit only in a confused, sleep deprived angst.

Mistnetting was a-go-go.....perhaps a little too early. When asked if I wasn’t a little concerned about bats whilst I opened the nets @ 6:00am instead of 6:15am I returned a nonchalant reply and only seconds later we caught a bat.

Post bat-episode the day picked up. We landed a Swainson’s Thrush (Catharus ustulatus), two Straight-billed Hermits (Phaethornis bourcieri), a beautiful juvenile Blue-crowned Manakin (Lepidothrix coronate), a scale-backed Antbird (Willisornis poecilonotus) and a Great-billed Hermit (Phaethornis malaris), who’s little hummingbird heart was so distressed and beating so fast that we had to release him before we took many measurements (but not before we admired just how truly great his bill was).

In between processing the birds we caught, we slowly came to life after such an early start...... listening to the White-throated Toucan (Ramphastos tucanus) nearby, reading, talking about the world, politics, life..... and not eating the inedible granola I had TOILED over on Sunday night!

In all – a day with few dramas, six good, but not exceptional captures and a vague sense of achievement...... BUT I STILL DON’T KNOW IF I’VE PASSED!

Amelia Wheeler - GVI Amazon volunteer, Feb-Mar 2010