Hundreds of new species are still being discovered in the Amazon

01 July 2018 (2328 visits)

A scientific study conducted in the Amazon basin over the past two years has identified and recorded a total of 381 new species of plants and animals. Commissioned by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Brazil’s Mamiraua Institute for Sustainable Development, the report concludes that an average of one new species is identified every two days in South America’s tropical forests. The Amazon basin is shared by nine South American countries. Beyond this latest two-year study, more than 2000 new species of plants and animals were discovered by scientists between 1999 and 2015.


The species found during the two-year investigation and identified as being new to science include 216 new plant species, 93 species of fish, 32 amphibians, 19 reptiles, one bird, and a remarkable 20 new species of mammal.


The new species discovered during the latest study include the Western Striolated Puffbird (Nystalus obamai), the only bird on the list compiled since 2015, and named in honor of the 44th president of the United States, Barack Obama.  It was observed in the frontier zone between Brazil and Peru. Another bird species, Chico's Tyrannulet (Zimmerius chicomendesi), included in a similar study in 2013, was named after the environmentalist Chico Mendes, who was murdered in 1988.    


The Araguaian river dolphin (Inia araguaiaensis) is the first new dolphin species to have been identified in the past one hundred years, and appears to be endemic to the Araguaia-Tocantins river basin, in Brazil. Its population is believed to number just one thousand individuals, and scientists estimate that the species is around 2.8 million years old.


A new species of titi monkey was also discovered in southern Brazil’s Mato Grosso region. Named the “fire-tailed titi monkey” (Callicebus miltoni) after its reddish-orange tail, this previously unknown primate is also distinguishable by its unique ocher sideburns and light gray forehead.      


Clearly, even as vast swathes of the world’s largest rainforest are being removed each year by deforestation resulting from human migration, mining, hydrocarbon exploitation and agriculture, the fact that hundreds of new species of animals and plants are still being identified by scientists demonstrates that we still know very little about the primeval habitat we are destroying. Given that all the new species identified by the recent study were discovered in areas of the Amazon basin already subject to human activity, and in the vicinity of major rivers, it would seem reasonable to assume that species are being lost to the world each year before we have even had a chance to record their existence.

Click on image to enlarge:


Weather -

Check out the itineraries we offer:

rainforest EXPERIENCE

3 days (USD 494.00)

rainforest EXPLORER

4 days (USD 677.00)

rainforest ENCOUNTER

4 days (USD 761.00)

rainforest ADVENTURE

4 days (USD 932.00)

rainforest JOURNEY

4 days (USD 1148.00)

rainforest EXPEDITION

5 days (USD 1370.00)

What your rainforest visit means

In Peru ecotourism has helped make it possible to create national reserves and save the forests of the Amazon basin from destruction. By implementing our ecotourism-based conservation model (see our video), we are ensuring the forests will be around for future generations to appreciate. Pioneering projects like Tambopata Ecolodge, which was established in 1991, serve as a conservation model, by showing how responsible ecotourism can support conservation initiatives.
Follow us
neuro(drive).pro() /
Enjoy an upgrade to SUITE for the cost of a SUPERIOR room. This offer is subject to availability. To take advantage of this offer, click here and fill out the form, indicating your selected dates, and requesting this promotional offer.
Enjoy 25% off any room type, available for the Rainforest Experience or Rainforest Encounter programs. To take advantage of this offer, click on the program you’re interested in, enter your dates, and select the room type available, number of people, and the other options. The discount will be applied to the rates automatically.
The comfort of our guests is our priority; we do not operate camping itineraries from November 1st to March 31st.