Scheduled to meet at 5:10 AM to board the boat for the half hour ride to the Tambopata Blanquillo Macaw Lick.
Watched the sun rise, shining on the tree tops.
|Sunrise on treetops|
|Brynne in the plantation|
We passed a catamaran blind which used to float on the river in front of the clay lick, but now it was high and dry at a spot where the opposite riverbank used to be. We still had a short walk to the present blind, built across a field from a narrow stream along the clay cliffs.
|View from the current blind|
|In the viewing blind|
|Bee in the hot chocolate|
|Breakfast buffet table in the back of the blind|
Hundreds of Blue-headed Parrots (800-1,000) were flying around in a big circle,
|Blue-headed Parrot swarm|
and then flying off again,
|Parrots flying off|
to settle back in the top branches of the surrounding trees. Bit by bit they made their way to lower branches and closer to the clay cliffs. They were described as nervous, and any little disturbance could send them flying off to settle in the topmost branches again. We did see Red Howlers in a far off tree, and other birds including Blue and Yellow Macaws. A few pairs of Red and Green Macaws appeared in top branches. We used the scope to check out the birds, and tried some digi-scoping (putting our cameras up to the scope to take photos). Percy had scoped the red howlers for us, and another woman was using our (Rob’s!) scope to take photos of the howlers. Then the woman’s guide took the scope and said she would focus on the macaws.Huh! Never did get to see the howlers on scope.
The Blue-headed Parrots finally gave up and left in one huge swoosh.
|Parrots speeding by|
More Red and Green Macaws arrived and they began the same system of flying off in an arc, then settling on the topmost branches, then at mid-height,
|Red and Green Macaws|
|Just above the clay cliff|
|Macaws on the cliff|
|Photo by Rob|
|On the clay cliff|
|Macaws flying off|
After lunch most of us had a siesta, but I borrowed Percy’s plant guide to try to identify plants of which I had taken photos. At 3:00 PM, all of us except Brynne met to bird around the Manu Wildlife Center, then to start on the trail to the canopy tower. There was a brief shower, but by the time we reached the tower, the sun had come out. We waited for the group on the tower to descend the spiral staircase,
|Canopy tower staircase|
|Canopy tower is a tree!|
|View from the upper platform|
|Tamiko at the lower platform|
Returned to the Wildlife Center before it got dark.
Caught up on the bird list before dinner. Our dessert today was the traditional chicha morada, a sweet pudding made from purple corn with apples and cinnamon.
Next: Day 9 Sacred Valley.