HJDS Travel Group

The Amazon Rainforest, The Place With The Greatest Species Diversity On The Planet

by on Feb.22, 2013, under Vacations

  • Sumo

The Amazon watershed stretches across 9 countries with 2/3 in Brazil, 1/8 in Peru and 1/10 in Colombia, while the rest of the total of 7,000,000 square kilometers is located in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana. The majority of the land is still covered with virgin rainforest.

The furthest sources of the Amazon river lie in Peru and Bolivia at a distance of about 6,500 km from the river mouth in the Atlantic Ocean. Because the lower Andes are rather hilly, the upper watershed of the Amazon have few lakes and creeks they are tough to navigate, making those areas little accessible from the water. []

While average temperatures are close to 26 C, the daytime temperatures on a warm day rise to the high 30s C. Rainfall falls all year round in most of the watershed, because it is primarily generated by convection: surface water evaporates and rises high into the sky, where it condenses and from where it falls back as rain. The snow capped mountains of the mountain chain of the Andes add more water to the region.

The number of species is the highest on Earth: Up to now, at least 40,000 plant species have been recorded for the Amazon area. Scientists have described between 100,000 |130,000 invertebrate species in Brazil alone. Some 2,000 type of birds and close to 430 type of mammals have been recorded, the majority of which are rodents and bats. Fishes are represented with almost 2,200 species, while amphibians add up to more than 425 species, and reptiles to nearly 380 species.

Based on a 2001 study, the Ecuadorian tropical forest has the Greatest diversity of species. Studies of the Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve revealed higher species variety than any other study in the world. However, for tourists, the differences in variety of species aren’t actually noticeable.

What is way more important is the existence of slow flowing creeks and lakes. When one walks in the tropical jungle, it is rather difficult to distinguish wildlife and plants, which mostly move about the canopy. The contrast between the light of the sky and the leaves can be so great, that the latter almost look black. From creeks on the other hand, the opening between the shores is enough to have the light fall onto the lower branches of the trees, while one still feels like being in the jungle, while birds and mammals is visible far better. Moreover, many water birds live along the shores of rivers and lakes. Only the Cuyabeno Reserve has slow flowing creeks and lakes. Hardly any other national park in the Amazon watershed from Venezuela to Bolivia offers this sort of jungle experience and wildlife visibility from the water! []

Only thirty minutes flying and 1 1 / 2 hour by bus over a good asphalt road, Cuyabeno, is South America’s most accessible Amazon reserve. That’s the reason travelers on Tripadvisor elected the Cuyabeno Lodge among the finest 25 destinations in all of South America and the greatest choice for Amazon tours.

Concerned about choosing the wrong area for your Amazon visit? Famous tropical ecologist Dr. Vreugdenhil shares his knowledge so you can find a great place for your Amazon holiday. He’ll tell you why the Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve would be a great destination.

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