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Hey Kids, become an Amazoniac today!

Can piranhas really eat a horse in five minutes flat?
What's that thing that looks like a bear hugging a tree?
Do parrots actually think when they talk?
And what's the deal with the rainforest anyway — is it actually wet all of the time?

You can find the answers to these and a gazillion other equally Earth shattering questions by poking around on this site. You'll have fun and feel like you're actually there in the jungle, immersed in all kinds of strange sights and sounds. Check out some of the video and audio clips, or jump right into the games. Post a message. Or chat with e-pals from other parts of the U.S. or from schools in Peru. Have a question? See what Dr. Duke has to say.


Birds of Two Worlds

The Osprey

The Osprey is a large hawk-like bird that is always found near water. It feeds exclusively on fish, which it plucks out of the water with its feet. The bird then carries the fish away-always facing it head first-to a ledge or platform to eat.

During the northern summer, Ospreys nest on platforms throughout the northern hemisphere. In the United States, osprey nests can be found along the seacoasts and near lakes and rivers. In many places, man-made platforms have been constructed for them in likely nesting sites.

The birds build their nest using twigs, seaweed, corn husks and other debris from nearby. The finished nest can be very big and very messy. Ospreys will use the same nest site year after year, adding new material on top of last year’s nest. If you search along the sea coast or shoreline during the spring and summer, you may be able to find an osprey nest.

Once the nest building is finished, the female lays her eggs, usually three to a brood. Both she and the male take turns incubating the eggs until they hatch. Even after they’ve hatched, the nestlings depend on their parents for weeks afterwards to feed them.

With the arrival of the northern autumn, ospreys migrate south to Central and South America where they live from October until about April. In Peru, ospreys can be found during these months in the Amazonia lowland region and along flood plains.

Ospreys have a striking look. They are almost as big as eagles. When seen in flight, their bodies appear mostly white, while their long wings are streaked with black and white. At close range, you can see a dark line that runs through the eye to the back of the head.



Green Iguana (Iguana iguana) Green Iguana (Iguana iguana)

Iguanas live in tropical rainforest areas, generally in lower altitudes in areas near water sources, such as rivers or streams. They spend most of their time high in the forest canopy, about 40-50 feet above the ground. Full-grown green iguanas are usually between four and six feet, although they have been known to grow up to seven feet long. This includes the tail, however, which can make up about half the body length and, in addition to its green color, has black stripes. Green iguanas, not surprisingly, are green in color, but can be found in many different shades ranging from bright green, to a dull, grayish-green. Green iguanas lay many eggs, but only 3-10 babies actually survive to be adults. It takes green iguana eggs about 8-10 weeks to hatch, then takes baby iguanas about 2 years to become mature adults.

See past Critter Corners!


Antonio Montero Pisco Antonio Montero Pisco
Shaman and Curator of ACEER Gardens, Peru

I was raised by my grandparents in the Peruvian Amazon village of Kokama since I was 4 years old. My grandfather was a powerful shaman, a brujo. My early life was like that of any Amazonian child, learning to paddle a dugout canoe, to make nets to fish, gather food, and study the healing properties of plants.

When I was 9, my grandfather took me deep into the jungle and left me alone for 30 days to learn from the forest. During this time, I was scared, and lived solely off the sap of the giant Ceiba tree, the most powerful tree in the forest. But learn I did... how plants heal, how to prepare them... how to be a shaman. I have been a shaman ever since.

In 1991, while working high atop a forest tree, I was startled to see on the trail below a gringo walking barefoot! It was my first introduction to Dr. Jim Duke who was in the Amazon studying medicinal plants and promoting a new conservation organization, the ACEER Foundation. This first encounter began a decades-long friendship. Jim Duke and I are spiritual brothers in an effort to save the rainforest.

In 1995, I accepted a full time position with ACEER as curator of their gardens, first along the Río Napo and more recently in the south at the new ACEER-Tambopata at Inkaterra.

I wait to teach you about these powerful plants.

Please come to the rainforest!

Lourdes García Mayta Lourdes García Mayta

I am Lourdes García Mayta. I am a peruvian 3 girl. I am from Puerto Maldonado a typical Peruvian amazonic country town. I am twelve years old. I study in 2do “A” Dos de Mayo High School. My grandpa and grandma always talking me health importance of medicinal plants. My grandpa’s name is Juan Mayta Choque, he is an empiric seller medicinal plants preparation. He is 65 years old. I love him. He learned me to knowing medicinal plants. When I knew in my school, in my class “De la Escuela al Jardín” Aceer Program, I was to get excited. My special interest was the “field open”. The field open day, I shared with my schoolmates that my grandpa learns me about some medicinal plants. It was interesting!!!. I presented to my teacher a small investigation of “quión and algodón” typical rainforest medicinal plants. Then our educative visit to “Fundo Concepción” , We are making small herbals and we are processing interesting models. For this task we are using many and variety rainforest seeds. Now, I and my schoolmates, we are promoting a small medicinal garden plants in our school, I am a member of the ecologist students Club in my school.

Thanks Aceer!!!


See past Amigos!


Looking for some fun games to games to do? Check out our Games Page!

If you are looking for more games, books, maps, or information on the Rainforest visit our resources page.


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