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Manu Wildlife Highlights Feb '13

Last month a lot of snakes were spotted in Manu, but there were also peccary and capybara sightings

White lipped peccaries live in large herds, normally between 20-300 individuals in size though one of up to 2000 have been recorded. Because of the large herd size these peccaries need plenty of space, so seeing them is an indication of the forest’s good health.

A juvenile Amazon tree boa clings to a branch, the Amazon tree boa has a large variety of patterning and colouration, so two individuals from this species will often look very different. As well as constricting their prey these snakes also bite with sharp needle like teeth although they are not venomous.

Mussarana snakes are often kept as pets by farmers because they feed on other snakes including the venomous pit vipers. The mussarana are immune to the venom of these snakes and so can easily keep farm lands free of them, protecting important livestock.

Also called the yellow bellied puffing snake, the giant bird snake is an opportunistic hunter feeding mostly on small birds and mammals.

The moyobamba snouted treefrog lives in the rainforest but is also happy to live in heavily degraded areas where deforestation has occurred, making it highly adaptable.

This beautiful creature is a banded calico snake, sometimes also called the calico false coral snake since it also can have red and black stripes.

Despite being semi-aquatic and four feet long the capybara is a rodent just like rats, mice and squirrels, just on a much larger scale.

The banded-water snake lives in fresh water and feeds on frogs, fish and eels. It has been reported to be ovoviviparous, meaning that the eggs develop within the mother’s body until they are ready to hatch.

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