Jungletour at Jungletour at
Sun Jun 1 06:06:57 EDT 1997

June has begun and it is late in the evening and I cant help but think about
the change that is taking place in the Amazon weather right now. The rainy
season is basically coming to an end which by all means does not mean that it
will cease to rain in the Amazon. It just means that it will rain less often
and not as hard. The rivers are at their peak in terms of water level height
and will begin the four to five month drop by as much as 30-40 feet. The
butterfly abundance is supposed to be excellent at the end of the rainy
season but I always seem to travel at the beginning of the rainy season
(September-November) which I know is also a good time for butterfly

I am organizing a natural history tour trip to the Peruvian Amazon which
departs on September 13, 1997, so anyone interested in joining along, please
check out my web page at

Every time I return from the Amazon, in this case last December, 1996, I seem
to want to get back into the wild tropics in much shorter intervals.
September seems so far away yet I know this trip is going to be one of the
best in terms of butterflies, moths and other interesting insects. There is a
fly for instance which is basically 50 times larger than our typical North
American house fly that inhabits the Part of the Peruvian Amazon which my
group will be visiting. It is not in abundance but one can not miss noticing
this dinosaur like insect by the loud buzzing sound that it makes. In fact,
when I caught my first specimen of this gargantuan fly, I was walking along a
beautiful jungle trail when all of a sudden I heard this terribly loud and
terrifying buzzing sound going on in the forest floor in front of me. Out of
sheer protection, I plopped my net on top of the unknown creature and brought
the specimen back to the lodge. My partner who is an entomologist was so
excited by this catch that he wanted to trade everything and anything for it.
This magnificent fly is truly another example of how the Amazon is really
like traveling to another planet or to a prehistoric period in history.
Butterflies of interest to me that will be flying in the jungles of Peru
include the Agrias beata stuarti (an all blue form) and the Agrias claudina
sardanapalus. There are also many forms of heliconiae, ithomiidae, morphos,
memphis (leaf butterflies), hairstreaks, callicores and cattagramas (Agrias
mimics or technically models), preponas, hesperidae (striped skippers),
papilios (swallowtails), and many others. The black lighting for moths and
beetles is also incredible at this location in the Peruvian Amazon.

The early 19th century explorers such as Henry Walter Bates and Alfred
Russell Wallace had to travel 30-40 days by boat to get to the Amazon. Now
all we need to do is save a little money, schedule a little time away from
work and wisk off for 5 hours of flight time (from Miami) to find ourselves
in this magnificent environment.

Rainforest Energy! from Jim Hanlon at Rainforest Adventures

E-Mail Address:    Jungletour at

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