A Travellerspoint blog

Napo Wildlife Center

by: Madeline

Yesterday we got back from the rainforest where we saw numerous different species of animals and plants. My favorite animals were the squirrel monkeys who would jump from a tree to another so high up in the air that it seemed like if the fell they would go splat, but of course they never did. There were also a lot of different types of birds including hawks, parrots, parakeets, stinky turkeys (my favorites), alarm birds and humming birds. When we went night monkey spotting we not only saw the nocturnal monkeys but bats as well. Our guide told us that almost all of the plants in the forest use chemicals as protection from herbivores so any animals that eat the leaves use clay licks as antidotes. We also saw some plants that shamans use to “cleanse” the body of sick people in their tribes. So, those are some of the good things about our trip. The few bad things were the mosquito bites, the bus ride, and that I got a horrible stomachache right before a two and a half hour hike. But all in all the trip was worth it.

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Posted by RTMM 16:09 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

The Caiman Did Not Eat Us

by: Ryan

After a 30 minute plane flight, a 2 hour bus ride, a 2 hour motorized canoe ride, and a 2 hour rowing canoe ride we were at the Napo Wildlife Center in the Ecuadorian Amazon. We saw so much wildlife it was amazing. I will explain my favorite part and I'm sure that the rest of the family will do the same in future posts.

While we were at the wildlife center, we went on several canoe rides and nature hikes. During these treks we saw many birds (of all shapes, sizes, and colors), snakes, seven different species of monkey, caiman, and a lot more. My favorite activity was the nighttime caiman spotting. This adventure called for us to get into a canoe and paddle around the lake in the pitch dark, while shining a spotlight all around the water's edge. When the guide saw the red eyes of a caiman reflecting back at him, the paddlers would slowly advance until we were about one yard away from the caiman. We then had time to look at the caiman and take plenty of pictures. I have to admit that it was a little scary at first because it seemed like the caiman would jump right in the boat, but after a while it was apparent that they had no desire to eat us, so we all relaxed and enjoyed the activity.

Well that is just a small part of our jungle adventure, I am sure the others will have more to say.

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Posted by RTMM 15:13 Archived in Ecuador Comments (1)

The Adventure Starts Tomorrow

by: Ryan

After taking it easy in Quito for a week, the real adventure starts tomorrow. Now, I am not saying that Quito has not been exciting. We have taken a few more excursions out of the hotel (maybe Madeline will give details, she is much better at that then I am) but when I think of South America I think of the Amazon jungle and tomorrow that is where we are going. Stay tuned for some more stories and pictures to come.

Posted by RTMM 06:19 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

El Jardin Mall

by: Madeline

Today we went to the mall in Quito. We took a cab from our hotel to the mall and it cost only $3.00. At the mall we went to a restaurant called Crepes and Waffles. Maya and I got nutela (chocolate spread) crepes, my mom got a really delicious chicken crepe, and my dad got a kind of stew in a bread bowl just like back home. I tried at least one piece of each of my family members food (except Maya's since we had he same food) and since my plate was drizzled with chocolate sauce every thing that I tried had some chocolate sauce on it. Yummy!

I miss my friends but at least we e-mail a lot. I also really miss my guinea pig Brownie. I wish that I could see how he is doing and I would also love to hold him but I am having a lot of fun here also. Hopefully I will be writing a lot because my mom made me bring the wrong math books here so I can't do any math. The other thing that we did was to do 4 days worth of laundry in the bath tub and now it is hanging all over our room. And when ever one of us wants to use the bathroom (for any reason) we feel like we are going through a jungle of wet, cold clothing. That's all for now.

Posted by RTMM 07:22 Archived in Ecuador Comments (1)

Lying Low In Quito

semi-overcast

by: Ryan

The first couple of days in Ecuador have been uneventful. Other than the tour to both equators (Madeline explains this excursion in her post) we have stayed around the hotel where we swam in the pool, ate, and just relaxed. Part of the reason for lying low was that I have had some adverse reactions to the increase in altitude. Quito's elevation is approximately 9,300 feet above sea level and I am prone to altitude sickness. It is good that we flew into Quito first because my symptoms are mild and the remainder of the trip will be spent at much higher altitudes. So for the next few days we will all take it easy and hope that my body adjusts to the altitude.

Posted by RTMM 11:14 Archived in Ecuador Comments (3)

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