Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Posted by Bejat

Noah and his girlfriend, Charne, made it to the station yesterday. Noah has been to the station as a research assistant in the past. He worked for Dennis Guillot on a project researching Spider monkeys for her PhD. I am very excited for Shawn to have assistants consistently throughout his project. This will also allow me to do more recordings, find new species we are missing that should occur here and video amphibian behavior. As usual I will be painting and photographing this amazing forest, unlike any other in the world for its biodiversity. We are also working on a documentary based on field research within Yasuni National Park. Every day, even every step, delivers a new discovery.

As the new day dawns we are awoken by the Orapendulas and their water drop like call. The Dusky Titis will sometimes grace us with their duet, which is incredibly loud and unique. Today was a spectacular day. I caught a boat to the lake and walked out the Maquisapa trail to paint in the morning and spent the afternoon in a little canoe painting and observing the Pygmy Kingfisher, Oscars with babies, Arowana, Arapaima, Hoatzins, and much more. It was so unbelievably hot, but the sun and heat on the lake was beneficial for drying my paper. I got some awesome footage of an Amazon Land Tortoise digging in the dirt while a huge Morpho butterfly flitted around and joined him to get what appeared to be some sort of succulent something from the soil.

I went up into tower 2, one of the canopy towers with a 360 degree view, but it was so damn hot I just got a good look and came back down. It was lunchtime and I thought I might eat lunch up there, but I was wrong, very wrong. It hasn’t rained in a few days, so it is exceptionally hot, but I can handle it, I’m a Texas girl. I don’t know how Shawn can handle being up in those trees for hours on end in all that heat surrounded and covered with insects, especially sweat bees. He seems to love it, maybe more for the challenge than anything else. He has incredible patience. He puts himself into this meditative state and gets the job done.

The lighting in the forest has been amazing for landscape photographs. My favorite bridge on these trails is the Numa bridge (pictured above). It hangs over a stream which feeds into the Tiputini River. Made from an immense fallen tree, it has become covered with lichen and many species of fern, coating it with various hues of green. Beautiful!

No comments: