The women of the little town of Amazonas have long since taken control of the village. With the help of local NGO Minga Perú, those that were once abused, neglected or plainly ignored have overcame their fears and spoken up. So much so that they are now leaders in their communities and share their success with other women in the Amazon. The do not only produce and harvest food for their families, but they also sell the surplus to produce an economic income. And they do all this in a sustainable way, even helping the Amazon rainforest recover! A win-win situation and a remarkable story that we had the privilege to hear from them. In the afternoon, after toasting to the birth of the Amazon at the very confluence where it is formed, we cruised up the Ucayali River, where we are to spend the rest of our expedition until we reach the southern and wilder part of the Pacaya-Samiria Reserve.
After another delicious breakfast we went to a local village called Amazonas to learn about the traditional way of life and how it’s changing. While we were there a few dozen of the local children followed us around and posed for photos, we watched a demonstration about pressing sugarcane juice for drinking or fermenting, we learned about how to use traditional plants to make dyes, and we visited the local school house. After lunch we utilized the skiffs to explore two small streams and found even more rare birds including the white-headed marsh tyrant, slender billed and snail kites, a red and white spinetail, and a grey breasted saber-wing. We then went to the confluence of the Ucayali and Marañon Rivers where they form the Amazon River and had a champagne toast to celebrate the last night on the Amazon. On the way back to the ship we stopped at a small island and had a moment of silence to enjoy the sound of tens of thousands of canary winged parakeets flying across the water to roost.