STRANGE Discoveries In The Amazon
Date: 2019-05-09 13:15:00
The strangest discoveries found in the Amazon! From see-through amphibians no bigger than a thumbnail to the steaming hot waters that course through the rainforest
#10 Solar Halos
When travelling the Tambopata [tam-boh-pah-tah] river in Peru, be sure to look to the sky every break in the canopy for a gorgeous sight that occurs rarely in other parts of the world. Often referred to as a sun or solar halo, an optical formation decorates the bright sky crafting a variety of spectral effects. Of these different effects arise different types of halos, with the most common forms being circular halos, light pillars, and sun dogs. Circular halos occur when a ring of iridescent [ear-ih-dess-sent] light surrounds a light source, occurring sometimes with the moon as well as the sun. Light pillars stretch vertically either above or below an illumination and sun dogs appear as bright spots along one or opposite sides of a bright point. These effects occur naturally in the sky when light refracts through ice crystals in high-elevation cirrus [sear-iss] clouds. These clouds are typically associated with increased rates of precipitation and while they hang 18,000 feet above the surface in temperate regions, tropical areas raise the clouds an additional 3,000 feet closer to the sun!
#9 Macaw Clay Lick
Some of the banks along the Peruvian Amazon basin, in the Tambopata [tam-boh-pah-tah] region, are often covered in a vivid display of colorful feathers as birds come from around the rainforest to find these special locations. Called Macaw Clay Licks, these land formations are rich in mineral nutrients that are rarely found elsewhere in the diets of these birds. Macaws, parakeets and parrots form this diverse group of feathered spice hunters that descend upon the clay shelf. Here the birds strangely consume small bits of clay, either to provide some sort of sodium supplement or as a means for neutralizing toxins in their diet. Either way, these vibrant feathered animals have a raucous, good time, cawing, singing and chirping all the while, making this a must-see stop for travelers in this region.
#8 Glass Frogs
One of the Amazon’s most intriguing creatures is the translucent tummied amphibian known as the glass frog. This unique animal is found all across the rainforest in a wide variety of sizes and shades, with around 60 species being discovered throughout the Amazon. The most common of these species is the north glass frog which measures just barely three quarters to one and a half inches as an adult…approximately the size of a pair of aspirin tablets! But their miniscule stature isn’t all that makes these tiny frogs special. Much of the upper surface of the glass frog’s skin is green and lends itself to camouflage with ease. But its underside is like a biology classroom display as the glass frog’s translucent abdomen reveals its inner organs in full. This semi-transparence spreads to the frogs legs as well, allowing it to even more easily conceal itself in the foliage of the surrounding rainforest. Combine that with their majorly nocturnal nature and these slippery critters become a headache to hunt for would-be predators. Luckily for tourists, though, visitors to the Amazon rainforest shouldn’t have too difficult a time finding them as their vast population spreads across Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru.