RI 11 PERU
The forest around Iquitos stands quiet after decades of hunting. Across the Amazon River, only 60km south, an area close to a million hectares remains vibrant with life, holding jaguars, tapirs and white lipped peccaries, and with a population density close to zero. The Yavarí Mirín and six other rivers are born in the low hills, and despite the 100 km distance, the geography creates a 600km of twisting rivers trip for fishermen to sell their catch of the day in the city.
Observations made by our scientists while exploring the headwaters, revealed endless flocks of macaws and parrots, as well as healthy populations of mammal species threatened in other Amazonian areas, including 13 species of monkeys, and game species consumed by locals. For other organisms groups the inventory was able to provide a glimpse of the megadiversity there.
The Yavarí region, once a bustling region with rubber traders, is now almost deserted and grower wilder every year, but this is attracting another wave of migration and logging initiatives. Thankfully a promising local alternative of extending the success of the Reserva Comunal Tamshiyacu-Tahuayo, combining community-based management with scientific research will benefit the forests and livelihood of a critically important area of Loreto.
Photo by Heinz Plenge