• Sharing the jungle

  • Admin03/19/2013
  • The land surrounding Kalu Yala is home to numerous species of plants and animals. The lack of development and surrounding rivers make the mountains and valleys prime habitat for a wide array of species. Most of the mammal population stays well hidden in the trees and rocks so the only sign of them is tracks, scat (aka poop) or perhaps an occasional glimpse of tail.

    Two toed sloth: As is well-known of sloths, they are very slow movers that spend most of their lives in trees, where they feed on leaves. Because their diet is so poor they have an incredibly slow metabolism and body temperature and that is why they are such lazy creatures. Sloths only come down from the trees once a week to go to the bathroom.

    Howler monkeys: These monkeys are well known in the valley due to their early morning jam sessions. The Howlers are named for the sound they produce in the mornings and evenings, the Howls can carry over 5 kilometers. The Howlers are rarely seen due to the fact that they spend most of their day sleeping in the upper parts of the canopy but they have been spotted in the trees by the river.

    Coati: Coatis are essentially tropical raccoons, they are a reddish brown color with dark, long faces and very long tails. Their main nutrition consists of small vertebrates such as mice and lizards, as well as fruit and insects. They have been seen chasing lizards on the road leading to camp although they generally stay well hidden.

    Ocelot: Ocelots are mid-sized felines related to leopards, they are about the size of your average dog. Ocelots are primarily active at night and therefore are rarely seen. They hunt reptiles and small mammals and tend to stay as far from humans as they can.

    Jaguar: Jaguars are the largest cats in the new world and can reach lengths of 2 meters with a body height of one meter and a weight of over 100 kg.  These felines are clearly the kings of the local jungle. But they are very shy and avoid humans, so that your chance of actually spotting one is very slim. There have apparently been occasional jaguars that wander down from Chagres national park and cause problems with the local cattle but there is no known sustaining population anywhere near Tres Brazos.

    Horse: Most if not all of the local campisinos have horses. They are seen on a daily basis being ridden or simply grazing in a pasture. Occasionally they have been known to get into camp and roll around in the volleyball court or wander through are garden.

    Cows: Cows are the second most common animal next to horses. They are usually eating in their pastures along the road to camp or being herded to a new grazing area. Once and a while a few cows might get out of their pastures and come through camp if the back gate is not properly closed.