Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Monkey Mania!

We all said goodbye to Adam today. He is leaving Laguna Blanca to visit Iguazu Falls in Argentina before returning to Canada.

The day was overcast but again looked good for migration. I noticed a few Mississippi Kite which were kept low by the cloud near the base and decided to keep an eye on the Lagoon. A Barn Swallow was the only bird of note until a small bird whizzed across the front of me whilst I sat near the edge of the lagoon. “Hummer!” Poised with SLR in hand I waited for the birds next move, which was as fast as its first! But I was ready snapping away as it searched for nectar. I sent a text to Jo (a) so he could gain some experience of a “Twitch!!” but he did not get to me in time. (b) so that I could test out my Paraguayan phone. This will keep me in touch with the base when I’m out in the field.
(Glittering-bellied Emerald)
I went out with Becca and Sean an hour or so before dark on monkey watch. The idea was to locate a sleeping site so we could re-located them the next day. I was not too hopeful of seeing them when we set out but if you don’t look you certainly won’t have a chance of seeing them.

We were in the forest for a good half an hour when the trees started to sway...was this the wind? Well there is not much around...Then contact calls were heard...We could be in luck here!!... We all crept around and the chattering between the Capuchins got louder and the tree were almost bending over in places!! Then bingo!!.. 1,2,3,4 monkeys ran along a branch between two trees...5 then number 6 stopped briefly to look around before number seven cleared the gap... The excitement was too much but we had to stay composed so that the Capuchins would not get spooked! A whole fourteen minutes later and this breathtaking experience was over! We left them to settle for the night with a view to returning early the next morning.

I am not sure how many times I have looked for these monkeys since I have been here but the briefest of views, calls and sometimes only movements in trees have been my total product until this evening! Was it worth the suspense/the wait?! Too right it was! The walk back to base had all of us chattering away like excited children! Woo hoo!

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