We started the morning with a pre-breakfast wildlife exploration along Clavero Lake, a small tributary of the Ucayali River. We spotted several species of birds, including the black-collared hawk, pygmy kingfisher, capped heron, and white-winged swallow. This skiff ride in the early morning allowed us to see birds as they were just becoming active for the day; some of them were still near their nesting grounds at that time.

We spotted several fishermen working their nets; this is the best time of the year for fishing, as fish are plentiful in the low-water tributaries. One of the fishing canoes came close to us and we identified some species they caught, including freshwater sardines, armored catfish, and red-bellied piranhas. Fish are a major part of the everyday diet for plenty of Amazon communities along the river.

After breakfast we had a presentation on the Amazon, where we learned lots about the largest flowing river in the world. The Amazon River proper begins at the confluence of Ucayali River and Maranon River in Peru. We also learned about the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve, which we are visiting during this expedition.

After lunch our National Geographic-Lindblad certified photo instructor Anahi Concari gave a presentation on nature photography. We all learned the essentials and prepared our cameras for the afternoon’s exploration around Supay Cano.

During our afternoon skiff ride, one highlight was observing pink dolphins swimming around our boats. We also spotted two species of monkeys in the rainforest canopy: howler monkeys and squirrel monkeys were seen moving around in the trees. Greater anis were following the squirrel monkeys; they look for insects that fly about as the monkeys move the branches.

We had a spectacular day at these two visitor sites.