I Field course: Wildlife Management and Indigenous Communities in the Amazon

Methodology and management tools for the community management of wildlife
14 to 29 March, 2013
Loreto, Peru

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Yavacus and SERNANP - National Reserve Pucacuro are pleased to present their first field course "Wildlife Management and Indigenous Communities in the Amazon - Methodology and management tools for the community management of wildlife" to be held from 14 to 29 March 2013. Our course is aimed at students and professionals in biology, forestry, veterinary science, animal husbandry and related branches of medicine and wildlife conservation.
This course will be conducted entirely in the Pucacuro National Reserve, and offers a unique opportunity to gain knowledge in the assessment of populations of aquatic and terrestrial fauna, hunting pressure indicators, wildlife health, hunting and sustainability. All within a collaborative methodology with native communities, thereby offering an integrated approach to evaluating different elements of ecosystem health.

1.1. Pucacuro National Reserve

The Pucacuro National Reserve, 637,953.83 hectares in size, is located in the district of El Tigre, in the province and department of Loreto. Its main objectives are to protect a representative sample of the wet forests of the Napo ecoregion, manage natural resources for the benefit of local communities and ensure connectivity of forests with the Yasuni National Park in Ecuador.

The Pucacuro River Basin, a northern tributary of the Tigre River, which in turn flows into the Marañón, is made up of rivers Tangarana and Baratillo. This basin is located in the heart of the so-called "Napo Moist Forest" ecoregion which is one of the most important areas for the conservation of biological diversity worldwide for its exceptional species richness and endemism. It houses at least 500 species of birds, 150 species of fish, 140 species of mammals, 94 species of amphibians and 91 reptiles.

Inside the basin are around 40 lakes with high fish diversity resulting from by the meandering river’s narrow channels, enclosed terraces and frequently flooded forest. The main habitats of the reserve forests are lowland and low terraces, varillale forests, flooded forests or "varzea" and permanently waterlogged palm swamps.

The NR Pucacuro shows an exceptionally rich fauna, especially of species with economic value, and endemic species including the equatorial saki monkey (Pithecia aequatorialis) and an endemic frog (Allobates zaparo), rare species like the Goeldi’s marmoset (Callimico goeldii), and large populations of white-lipped peccary (Tayassu peccary), wolly monkey (Lagothrix poeppigii) and paiche (Arapaima gigas). The reserve has traditionally been inhabited by indigenous Kichwa communities and to date is one of the few reserves with a sustainable hunting program, local rangers and wildlife management that integrates harmoniously with native communities.

Access to the protected area is from the city of Iquitos by river via Amazon, Marañon and Tigre Rivers. A total journey of 272 Km


To train students and professionals in designing research projects and implementing methodologies for the assessment of in situ management of wildlife, the sustainable development of natural resources with Amazonian communities, and contribute to the management of the Pucacuro NR.

2.1. Specific objectives

  • Learn about wildlife through its population monitoring and hunting records, and the subsequent analysis of the data collected.
  • Develop research projects aimed at improving the management of the Pucacuro RN and welfare of the surrounding communities.
  • Implement applied research projects in the Pucacuro NR and contribute to its sustainable management.


Mark Bowler
Biologist. Completed his Ph.D. at the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE), University of Kent, conducting research with the uakari monkey (Cacajao calvus) in the Yavari River, Loreto Region, Peru. Since 2007 he has been involved in various studies and research projects on primatology and conservation in Peru. Currently associated with the University of St. Andrews, Scotland and the San Diego Zoo Global Institute for Conservation Research, USA. His research has a broad base in conservation biology, but his current focus is on anthropogenic effects on primate populations and distributions in Peru, and on primate ecology and behavior.

Pedro Mayor
Veterinary Degree and PhD from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Diploma in ex situ Wildlife Management, Master in Animal Production and Governance and Sustainable Development. Is Professor of Animal Health and Anatomy Department of the Autonomous University of Barcelona. His research in the field of biology, conservation and wildlife management focuses primarily on reproduction, anatomy, modeling sustainable subsistence hunting, health studies focused on the study of zoonoses, sustainable resource use and production strategies in Amazonian rural communities. He has been coordinator of several research projects and development cooperation, and has experience in organizing courses and training programs, workshops and academic and outreach to rural communities. He is a member of the Specialist Group of the Species Survival Commission of the IUCN's group of Pigs, peccaries and hippos.

Cesar Medina
Biologist from National University of San Agustin de Arequipa (UNSA), research associate at the Museo de Historia Natural of UNiversidad San Agustin - Arequipa and the Bat Conservation Program in Peru (PCMP). Dedicated to the study of small mammals (rodents and bats), taxonomic and ecological aspects. Interested in biogeography and evolutionary processes of high Andean rodents. Is an active member of the Argentina Society for the Study of Mammals (SAREM).

Daniel Montes
Veterinary degree from the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos. His private practice is developed in different zoos in Lima participating in the design of various research projects in ex situ wildlife. He has participated in the organization and coordination of courses and training programs, workshops, seminars and training courses on management, medicine and wildlife conservation. In recent years there has been an external consultant for the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and FaunaVet-PERU. Founding member of the Peruvian Association of Wildlife Veterinarians (APEVEFAS) and active member of the American Association Zoo Veterinarians (AAZV). Currently involved in research projects related to biology, in situ conservation and management of wildlife in the Loreto region.

Pedro E. Pérez Peña
Biologist graduated from the National University of the Peruvian Amazon, specializing in Herpetology. He completed his Masters in Conservation and International Wildlife Trade at the University of Kent (Canterbury, UK). He specializes in conservation and natural resource management in participatory work with mestizo and indigenous communities in Morona River Basin and Huitoyacu in Tamshiyacu-Tahuayo ACR in the Pacaya-Samiria RN in the river basin and the Yavarí Mirín Pucacuro RN. His research in the field of biology, conservation and wildlife management focuses primarily on the study of the dynamics of populations of mammals and birds mainly hunted, hunting and sustainability besides ecological and taxonomic studies of amphibians and reptiles. He also participated in various training programs for students, professionals, mestizo and indigenous communities in conservation of natural resources.

Gloria Rojas
Biologist at the National University of the Peruvian Amazon, with a Masters degree in Forest Resource Conservation in the Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina, his experience in public administration has allowed the final categorization of the Pucacuro National Reserve, also has experience in natural resource management with communities, won approval of Prime Management Plan Paiche Arapaima gigas in the Pacaya Samiria and tourism initiatives and environmental education with indigenous communities in the Amazon. Currently as Head of Department of Natural Protected Areas Service implements the management strategy aimed at developing applied research for making management decisions Pucacuro National Reserve.

Lourdes Ruck
Biologist and Master in Ecology and Conservation of Biodiversity by the Federal University of Mato Grosso (Brazil). He has extensive experience in management of fisheries resources and natural wildlife indigenous and mestizo communities. With experience in management of protected areas of national administration for the implementation and monitoring of agreements on sustainable use of wildlife with Kichwa communities, expressing opinions to hydrocarbon activities and assessments of environmental management in ANP, promoting LOUs subscription and agreements with local communities and educational institutions, and implementation of international cooperation projects.

The course comprises 13 days of activity in the RN Pucacuro and 2 river travel days, which will be developed according to the following schedule:

Day 01
- Meeting attendees in Iquitos
- Welcome Reception

Day 02
- Exit to the RN Pucacuro
- Arrive Intuto
- Talks induction

Days 03 - 13
- Theoretical and practical sessions aimed
- Establishment of working groups

Daily activities in field

  • Census wildlife and fishery resource.
  • Census rodents and bats.
  • Census nights of caimanes.
  • Herpetological census (reptiles and amphibians).
  • Interviews and surveys in communities, Pucacuro RN.
  • Analysis of collected data using statistical packages.
  • Discussions on activities daily.
  • Management of data and mapping.

Day 14
  • Presentation of group work / individual research proposals in Pucacuro RN.
  • Preparation and submission of final report.
  • Closure and issuing of certificates.

Day 15
  • Return to Iquitos city.
  • Fellowship dinner


5.1. Research as a management strategy in Pucacuro RN. Gloria Rojas.

5.2. Biodiversity and Conservation. Origin, threats and challenges facing the Amazonian biodiversity. Pedro Mayor.

5.3. Amazonian communities and wildlife management (Kichwa ethnic). Pedro Mayor.

5.4. Sustainable Development. Integration of the concept of sustainable development in the Amazon communities. Pedro Mayor.

5.5. Conservation and management of natural resources. Considerations in fisheries management: case study: paiche Lourdes Ruck.

5.5. Fish and Wildlife Monitoring. Study of different methodologies for monitoring wildlife populations and sampling fish and the DISTANCE and fixed width methods for visual encounter surveys, nocturnal counts of alligators, traps and mist nets, nets waiting, hunt records per unit effort (CPUE). Pedro Pérez.

5.6. Preparation and analysis of data. Alpha and beta biodiversity, abundance indices, DISTANCE, fixed width, and statistical analysis. Pedro Pérez.

5.7. Sustainability of hunting. Development of different models to evaluate subsistence hunting. Pedro Pérez.

5.8. Remote wildlife monitoring techniques through the use of camera traps and audio monitoring units. Mark Bowler.

5.9. Data management and mapping. Pedro Perez

5.10. Conservation medicine. Importance of health monitoring of wildlife and local communities under the approach: One Health, One Ecosystem. Pedro Mayor and Daniel Montes

5.11. Collection of biological samples for health monitoring. Methods of collecting biological samples from animals from subsistence hunting and trapped or captive animals. Daniel Montes.

5.12. Wildlife management ex situ. Importance of ex situ and in situ wildlife for the design of conservation programs, and evaluation of animal welfare in ex situ wildlife. Daniel Montes.

5.13. Environmental Education. Design of environmental education programs. Daniel Montes.


Payment: US$ 1,000.00 In Bank BCP Cuenta Corriente en dólares N°390-1967144-1-43

Only 03 vacancies

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Registration includes:

  • Transportation from Iquitos to the RN Pucacuro and transport within the reserve to work areas.
  • Accommodation and meals during the trip and the days of fieldwork.
  • Theoretical sessions daily
  • Daily fieldwork
  • Studies in Kichwa indigenous communities
  • Course materials.
  • Certificate and abstract CD.
  • First aid kit.

Attendees will:

  • Provide proof of current vaccination against yellow fever and hepatitis.
  • Carry equipment, use basic field toilets, field clothing and be prepared for demanding work in the tropics.
  • Have individual tents, sleeping bags, headlamps, rubber boots.
  • Have necessary field materials; insect repellent, sun protection (glasses, hats, sunscreen), long-sleeved shirts.
  • Complete the registration forms.
  • Provide laptops or notebooks for data analysis if possible (attendees will be able to engage more fully in data analysis if they bring their own computer).
  • The registration fee does not include transportation to the city of Iquitos.


In the Amazon, the presence of tropical diseases is common, attendees should bring their own first aid kit with antimalarial drugs, and fully consider the case preventive measures (use of repellents, proper golf clothes, mosquito nets, etc.). A doctor should be consulted before travel and all necessary inoculations should be up-to-date.


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