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Medio Putumayo

Jaguar crossing river blurred

February 2016

The Algodón and Quebrada Mutún are Putumayo Rivers tributaries, located 200 km north of Iquitos towards the Colombian border. Their waters meander a roadless and endless carpet of green where jaguars, harpy eagles, giant otters and black caimans roam freely. The local Indigenous people see this area as an infinite source of animal fecundity (sachamama) providing enough resources for their livelihoods.


The Medio Putumayo Algodón region once was a massive wetland called Pebas, which eventually flooded east with the Andes rising, and was filled with Cretaceous sandy sediments. Over time river meanders and faults exposed patches of the saltiest soils in the area composed of clay and sand, that are consumed by many animals traveling from great distances. The inventory, uncovered for science a diversity of frogs, snakes, lizards, new species of fish, plus a massive peat deposits representing an important stock for carbon.


The Huitoto-Murui, Bora, Maijuna, Kichwa, Ocaina, Secoya, Tikuna, Kukama, and Yagua people living here endured successions of economic booms including the Casa Arana atrocities in its quest for rubber, and remain deeply connected to the landscape. These 415,000 has. Can be added to already protected areas in the region, and would consolidate the Gran Paisaje Indígena, or Great Indigenous Landscape, into a vibrant cultural and biological corridor of 3.5 million hectares.

Photo by Ana Rosa Sáenz Rodríguez

Full Report

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