BBC Wildlife Magazine - - Travel Special -

When you think of the wildlife of the Ama­zon Basin and its hin­ter­lands, what an­i­mals come to mind? A jaguar stalk­ing through the un­der­growth? Scar­let macaws squab­bling at a clay lick? Un­seen pi­ran­has swim­ming silently through a tea-coloured trib­u­tary?

Per­haps it should be none of th­ese. Peru’s na­tional bird, the An­dean cock-of-the-rock, is as un­likely an as­sem­blage of flam­ing or­ange and black as ever ap­peared at a cock­tail party. It largely in­hab­its the higher reaches of Ama­zo­nian cloud for­est, from Venezuela to Bo­livia.

The con­ser­va­tion or­gan­i­sa­tion Crees gives you the op­por­tu­nity to ex­pe­ri­ence the cock-of-therock lek (when males dis­play to po­ten­tial mates), and get in­volved in en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­grammes and sci­ence­based re­search. You might help to mon­i­tor fruit-baited but­ter­fly traps, or set foot­print and cam­era-traps for species such as tapirs, pec­ca­ries and even jaguars.


Watch a male cock-of-the-rock dis­play­ing at a lek in Peru.

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