Presentation on theme: "The Hummingbird and The Caracara: A Legend of the Achuar-Background Information Sustainable Ecosystems Enduring Cultures (SEEC-Ecuador) Maria Zambrano,"— Presentation transcript:
The Hummingbird and The Caracara: A Legend of the Achuar-Background Information Sustainable Ecosystems Enduring Cultures (SEEC-Ecuador) Maria Zambrano, M.A.
Getting to the Achuar Community Unless one is willing and able to walk ten days through the Amazon rainforest, one must take a small six passenger plane from Shell to a landing strip. The somewhat bumpy ride lasts about two hours.
After the plane ride, visitors take a quiet boat ride for about an hour to the Kapawi Ecolodge and Reserve in the heart of the Amazon rain forest.
The Achuar live close to water sources; the Pastaza River is a main tributary of the Amazon and was the closest to the Kapawi Ecolodge and Reserve where we stayed. Our guides constantly emphasized the importance of preserving this home to almost 70% of all forms of life on our planet.
Canoeing and/or rafting trips along the Pastaza River during the day or night are invigorating and informative. The biodiversity is amazing as one sees caimans, macaws, hummingbirds, speckled chachalacas, pink dolphins, and so many other animals in their natural habitat.
The Rufous hummingbird is but one of the hundreds of birds in the Amazon rainforest of Ecuador.
The caracara is a bird of prey; its beauty does not compare to that of the hummingbird but it is important to the ecosystem nonetheless.
Approximately 8000 Achuar live in the heart of Amazon river basin in 68 communities, along the eastern borders of Ecuador and Peru. “Shuar” means person and “acha” means aguaje palm; Achuar means people of the aguaje palm. This palm grows abundantly in the Amazon lowlands They receive 60% of their income from direct employment at Kapawi and from supplying products and services to ecotourism.
According to the Achuar beliefs, “every plant and animal in the rainforest has its own soul and life, almost a human spirit.” They are extremely knowledgeable about the medicinal value of each plant. Luis was also very good at the art of story telling.
The Achuar guide and his bilingual partner explain the use of this poisonous mushroom to teach ten year old girls the motions for making pottery.
Our most patient Achuar guide, Luis, used natural dyes to paint our faces with traditional designs. Women and men wear different designs.
Kapawi was built by Achuar craftsmen utilizing traditional techniques and materials and ecologically sound technology. Water is heated by solar panels.
In addition to ecotourism, the Achuar hunt, fish and raise manioc, sweet potato, and other crops. Approximately 21%of their income is from handicrafts such as pottery and jewelry. Pottery and jewelry is usually made by the women; hunting tools are usually made by males.
¡Gracias! Makete! The opportunity to visit an Achuar family was most special! Thank you!