Welcome, again, to the latest from warm, wet and very humid, Colonia 24 de Mayo – here in the Pastaza region of Ecuador.

Sadly we bade farewell to Geni and Graham this month – however, the very good news is that they are in training for the Edinburgh Charity (Half) Marathon to be run next May (2018). They are planning to raise funds on behalf of ourselves, Fundación Fauna de la Amazonía, and so watch this space for the opportunity to sponsor them. We will pass on details as soon as we have them, for this. Every penny, cent, euro, etc raised for us is put to good use, so please keep this in mind if you are ever thinking of undertaking any sponsored activity, or indeed if you would like to raise funds for us in any other way.

Seen on or very close to, the land this month were:

A Royal Ground Snake (Liophis reginae);

A N Other Ground Snake (unidentified);

A Fitch’s Anole (Anolus fitchi) (Lizard species);

A Coppery-Chested Jacamar (Galbula pastazae) This bird is listed as a ‘threatened species by the International Unit for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and is rarely seen;

An unidentified tree frog species.

These were seen amongst the usual wide array of other animal and plant life to be found in the area, which we are helping to protect and are encouraging/assisting the re-growth of native plants to provide food and shelter for such-like species.

This month, one of our neighbours reported seeing a large group of somewhere between twenty and forty Woolly Monkeys (Lagothrix lagothricha) on the edge of the forest not too far along the road from our land. This size of group used to be a relatively common sight here – however, they, like many other endemic species are threatened with extinction due to habitat loss and hunting. One or two individuals have been seen on the forest edge on our land in the past; it is great to hear that sizeable groups still exist. Indigenous communities have the right to hunt such animals for food, and in doing so often kill mothers with young  – which then, sadly become community pets, and, or, are sold on the ‘black market’ similarly, as pets.

The oil companies are still assessing the area for the ‘trial’ oil well (which, of course will do nothing for the protection of the area!). However, at the moment no seriously heavy engineering works have started, although some ground clearance has begun.

On the land, general maintenance has continued and some paths have been reclaimed from the forest’s self-sustaining prolific regrowth!

And, thanks to Pete and Andreas for the photos this month!