Camera traps and drones deployed in the tropical rainforests around our Ecolodge have provided fresh insights into the health of the tropical forests we maintain within our own Tambopata Ecolodge Private Conservation Area, and in the Tambopata National Reserve where we operate many of our most popular itineraries.
The deployment of camera traps throughout August and September 2018 enabled the filming and registering of several major species of Amazon rainforest fauna, and has provided fresh insights into ecological relationships and the demographic dynamic among the exceptional biodiversity sheltered within the forests and wetlands of the protected natural area we work to protect and conserve.
Our Tambopata Ecolodge Private Conservation Area is a conservation concession granted to us by the Peruvian government for an initial period of forty years, in acknowledgement of our commitment as an ecotourism company to the conservation of more than 527 hectares of untouched primary forest. Under that commitment, we are responsible for protecting both the flora and fauna of this important area of Amazon rainforest habitat.
In order to assess the success of our conservation work, measure impacts from areas of threatened forest that border our protected area, and monitor improvements over time in the health of the rainforest under our eco-management, we have undertaken to conduct periodic studies of the fauna and flora we protect. Negative impacts in many of the areas surrounding the Tambopata Ecolodge Private Conservation Area include those derived from non-sustainable activities such as farming and cattle ranching, as well as illegal logging, hunting and gold mining activities. We have assumed the task of continuing to protect the forests we manage from such existential threats, through the sustainable tourism model we have developed.
As part of our conservation work, we enjoy an ongoing collaborative relationship with the Madre de Dios Amazonian National University (UNAMAD), and the academic and conservationist Dr. Rolando Mishari Garcia Roca. Together with the university, we use camera traps and –more recently- unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, to study the fauna in the forests around the Ecolodge and to protect those same forests from incursions by anyone contemplating illegal activities that might threaten the natural world in this corner of the Amazon basin.
While our use of drones has facilitated our efforts to ensure the integrity of the forests we are responsible for, our deployment of camera traps has confirmed that major species populations within our forests have continued to grow.
A camera trap is a remotely activated camera equipped with a motion or infrared sensor, or which uses a light beam as a trigger. It is a non-invasive tool employed increasingly by conservation and ecotourism concessions like our own, to detect rare species and to assess population size and species diversity. During our camera trap study in August and September 2018, we were able to confirm the increased presence of several major species of fauna, including the endangered jaguar, giant anteater, ocelot, the extremely rare short-eared Amazon dog, red-brocket deer, margay, white-lipped peccary, and puma.
To view a selection of the videos we shot using our camera traps, click on the accompanying images.