Tuesday, October 30, 2007

What You Should Know About Living in the Rain Forest - Part 2

The Animals

The animals of the rain forest in Colombia are intriguing too. All around you every form of life awaits to pique your interest. Go ahead, walk along the beach. For miles there’s only you, the flora and fauna of an unspoiled earth. The scurrying and antics of the sand crabs will amuse you. Chirping and croaking of venomous, brilliant blue-skinned frogs with their starkly contrasting yellow markings will startle and amaze you.

Look closely in the streams and you’ll delight in the playfulness of royal purple colored crabs scampering over rocks and fallen tree limbs near the cool, crystal clear waters. Overhead in the networks of branches female green iguanas leap and crawl among the fresh green leaves that perfectly match their color. Male iguanas, striped dark brown and off black will be hard to spot against the tree trunks and branches until the slide gracefully from one to another.

Be Wary
Be wary of the spiders with three foot wide webs spun between low-lying tree limbs. Those green-mottled-with-white spiders will be off to one side. Spread the fingers of your hand as wide as you can, from the tip of your thumb to the end of your pinkie will be just about the span of the spider and its legs. Its body will be about the length of the first two segments of one of your fingers. If you spot a tablespoon-sized ball of white or yellow “cotton” attached to a limb near the edge of the web, that’ll be her eggs; another generation waiting to be hatched soon. Then the spider will be in a bad mood. Best to leave her and her brood alone.

When the sea mixes with the fresh waters of a rain forest stream, a tidewater swamp complete with mangrove trees and their over-grown, finger-like roots will surely be present. It is among these the fire engine red Tasquera crab with its snow-white claws and blackened back will bask, climb and hide. They’re quick, but you should be able to get a good close look before they bolt for cover. You’ll wonder how such a gaily colored creature can hide itself in such a dull, dark environment so completely that it cannot be seen or found. Speared, rinsed and cleaned, they make the most marvelous crab soup you could imagine.

Deep maroon and purple Mapara crabs (pictured) like moist, sandy soil and in typical crab family fashion, will eat whatever they can find or catch. Though small, their pincers are extremely powerful and most painful to experience. Watch out for them in the sandy soil of the yard, around animal pens or in the rainforest near the beach or fresh water sources. Claws removed, they make a fine salt or fresh water fishing bait that lunkers can’t resist.

At every turn, there are delights and a few dangers that could befall the unwary, but nature is at peace here with all who are conscious of the environment. It is here to nourish, care for and delight you. Come, enjoy it.

Prof. Larry M. Lynch is an English language teaching and learning expert author and university professor in Cali, Colombia. Now YOU too can live your dreams in paradise, find romance, high adventure and get paid while travelling for free. Need professional, original salt or fresh water fishing related content or articles for your blog, newsletter or website? Have a question, request, or want to receive more information or to be added to his articles and information mailing list? Contact the author at: lynchlarrym@gmail.com/

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