August 2003

The Birds of the Pantanal

Said to be the largest wetlands area in the world, the Pantanal is a treasure trove of wildlife and varied ecosystems.

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Sunset in the Pantanal
Hyacinth Macaw

Said to be the largest wetlands area in the world, the Pantanal is a treasure trove of wildlife and varied ecosystems. An enormous river basin and flood plain, the Pantanal, which means "swamp" in Portuguese, is roughly the Patek Philippe Replica Watches size of Great Britain, and spans portions of Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay, in an area east of the Andes and south of the Amazon.

I travelled here during the rainy season (which runs roughly from November through April) as part of an Earthwatch expedition which studies the region's bird life. If bird watching warms your heart, this place is close to paradise. There are hundreds of avian species here, including the rare and beautiful hyacinth macaw, and such unusual species as the ostrich-like rhea and the jabiru, one of the world's largest storks.

Brazilian ornithologist Reginald Donatelli has been monitoring the diversity of bird life in the Cheap Hublot Replica Pantanal for years. Aided by teams of Earthwatch volunteers, he captures birds in fine mesh mist nets, bands them, notes their vital statistics and then releases them. Working with Reggie in the field gave me an abiding appreciation for the Pantanal - a place still relatively untouched by man.

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