Hiding on the Shores of an Amazonian Tributary

When we stayed at the ecolodge in the Amazon Jungle while we were in Ecuador, we canoed on a tributary of the Amazon river every day. The plants that line the water are very dense with a variety of reeds, branches, and hanging vines. The entire time we were in the jungle, including while in our canoes, we had to constantly scan the foliage around us as you never knew when you would see some of the many different animals that live there. The animals are very adept at camouflaging themselves amongst the leaves and branches, so mostly you spent your time looking for any kind of movement and then the guide would stop the canoe and we would use binoculars or zooming in on the camera to find what animals were hiding in the trees. We had to look up into the trees as well as the edges of the water because in addition to the birds, monkeys, and sloths that were in the trees, there were anaconda snakes, large black caiman, and river otters that love to hide in the reeds along the shore. Here are a few of the photographs that we took as we canoed to and from our ecolodge in Ecuador.

Stinky Turkey Along the Shore
Large Black Caiman
First Glimpse of River Otters
Not Always Finding Animals
Hiding in Plain Sight
There was a Baby Caiman Hiding in the Reeds
River Otters Hiding in the Shadows
Scanning the Shoreline
Trees in the Jungle

Seeing Wildlife in the Country of Panama

Although Panama is a narrow country, it is also a very biodiverse country with oceans and rainforests. There are so many fascinating animals that live in Panama and we were fortunate to see many different varieties during our time there. Seeing animals in their natural habitat is certainly a highlight of visiting any country like this and we took several tours specifically hoping to see some of the nation’s wildlife.

Three-Toed Tree Sloth
Seabird Overhead
One of the Monkeys in the Trees
One of the Many Species of Birds
Anteater in a Tree in Panama

We kept our eyes on the tree limbs above our heads to see the different varieties of monkeys, sloths, and birds. We also saw a tree-climbing anteater as well as a somewhat cute rodent called an agouti. The tarantula spider that climbed out of the tree above our heads when we stopped to eat lunch was interesting and yet creepy at the same time.

Agouti in the National Park
Adorable Baby Monkey
Tarantula Joining Us for Lunch
Getting a Butterfly to Pose Isn’t Easy
Monkey Relaxing in a Tree

We have been fortunate enough to see a wide variety of wildlife in various parts of the world, but we have to admit that Panama provided us some of our most interesting encounters. It is important to have your camera handy and having a telephoto lens often helps too, but when you get as close as we were able to get, it isn’t required.

Birds on the Shoreline
Lizard Trying to Hide
We Saw Several Tree Sloths Curled Up in a Ball
Sad Looking Monkey
Vulture in the Tree

You Don’t See That Everyday

Between travel and hiking, you inevitably come across things that you just don’t see everyday. We have been fortunate enough to have seen a good variety of wildlife, but most of it has been the typical deer, elk, birds, etc. Occasionally, though, we have come across some animals that have made us stop and say to ourselves how lucky we were to see something that is a little more unique. Some of it is just because we have put ourselves in position to see something special, but a lot of it is really just a matter of luck. When we look back at all of the various wildlife we have seen in their natural habitats, we realize how lucky we have actually been.

Baby Monkey on a Branch

Wild Turkeys

Sea Lions Playing at Pier 39 in San Francisco

Vine Snake

Mountain Goats

Barbary Monkey

Unique Bird in Bolivia

Another Monkey in a Tree in Ecuador