Photography: Longwood Graduate Students
With the bell ringing, we got up at 5:30 am and started an morning exploration of Rio Negro rainforest.
The mysterious journey of the plants and animal kingdom started along the bank of creek. Although it is the rainy season of this year, the water leve of the Negro River still not as high as the previous years which we can tell from the water mark on the tree trunks. Many epiphytic plants, such as philodendron, bromellias and many other ones telling the different life styles of Amazon. The most exciting part is to get the chance seeing cattleya orchid in bloom on the top of 60 feet tree trunk. At the same time, bird watching we saw parrots, toucans,vultures displayed the biodiversity in Amazon rainforest. Many of these species named with Amazon and that means they only exist in this region. Also, quite a bit tropical features were caught with the more exploration.
Jungle tour was led by both local guide and translator for 2 hours. We got into the deep heart of rainforest which only has 10% sunlight. All the plants survive in their own special ways in this complex ecosystem. Several native trees such as Makuku, rose wood, Brazilian tree, water vine, ferns, philodendron, heliconias which make us feel like back in the conservatory at Longwood Gardens, while all the plants here grow in their original ways surrounding by the animal and insects neighbors.
The great experience of rainforest gave us the best lesson of biodiversity which makes everybody think about conservation and preservation a lot more afterward.