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Looking at monkeys in Tambopata

Looking at monkeys in Tambopata

After Bolivia I went to Peru. First two weeks to a language school in Cuzco to learn Spanish and after that three weeks to the Tambopata park in order to see as many animals as possible. I went to volunteer for the organisation Fauna Forever. My goal was to see at least one species of cat, but sadly I did not succed. Fortunately there were many other beautiful mammals, for example the different species of primate in Tambopata!

At the place where I stayed I was able to see five species of monkeys. Every morning we woke up with the sound of howler monkeys en when you would walk through the rainforest during the day and would hear the leaves rustling you would know what was up: a group of monkeys passing by! It wasn’t so easy to take a good picture, but three weeks is a pretty long time and I was able to take some nice pics home.

The Red Howler Monkey is the largest primate in the area. The male has a harem consisting of a couple of females and the lot of them make a lot of noise. Often however they stay right at the top of the trees which makes taking good photo’s difficult. Once however I was in luck to see one up close and that was enough!

The Brown Capuchin Monkey is smaller than the howlers and lives with a number of peers together in a group. Together they cause all kinds of mischief in the forest. These monkeys eat almost anything. Also bird nests and eggs fall victim to their appetites when they encounter them. If they get the opportunity they will even catch birds and eat them!

Dusky Titi Monkeys often live only as pairs. They have a partner for life and take good care of each other!

Still the Bolivian Squirrel Monkeys must be my favourites. They are rather small and can sometimes live in huge groups. I encountered once a group of about forty monkeys! They often have an understanding with the capuchins. The capuchins often move at a higher level through the trees and keep an eye on the sky while the squirrel monkeys keep an eye on the bottom and make sure no jaguar sneaks up on them. These monkeys are fast, but I was fortunate enough to encounter one that didn’t mind posing for a minute!

Finally there are the Saddle-backed Tamarins. These monkeys are the tiniest and also live in rather large groups. The special thing here is that there is a women, the matriarch, in charge. These are also very nice monkeys to look at!



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