BSES HQ receives expedition field updates weekly so check back every Monday to see what has happened in the week gone by.

Thursday, August 20

Return Details

The group has begun the long journey home. Confirmation of their return details to London are as follows:

Flight no. CO28
Date: Saturday 22nd August
Arrival time: 0645
Airport: Heathrow Terminal 4

See you there!

Tuesday, August 18

Recent Activities

Now on their way back to Iquitos, here are a few things the team have been up to...

Wild Fire

Just come back from their jungle living phase. The base camp should have been well set up there now (but sadly they'll now have to take it all down and 'leave no trace'). Wild have recently completed an evening canoe safari which saw them paddling back in the dark to camp - much excitement all round experiencing the jungle's nightlife awaken.

Caiman Fire

Recently spent the day exploring some of the narrowest tributaries in the Amazon by canoe. They then rafted up in the dark and floated down to camp. Whilst on their jungle living, Caiman constructed the Amazon water park made up of a slide and rope swing into the river - recently enjoyed by Wild Fire

Caiman also completed a mega long transect where they ended up poking though jungle and bumping into the jungle living group at a nearby cocha (pond).

On the other boat, Ucayali and Pride enjoyed the last few days of their science projects by completing the macaw surveys, jungle transects and caiman studies - look out for the results in the coming months.

Monday, August 17

Expedition moves down river

After a brief call from the expedition we can report that all is well.

The boats are moving back down river on their way to Iquitos and plan to stop off at the village of San Martine to get a taste of real Amazonian life and play some football with the locals.

Tomorrow they will be heading to Nauta and Iquitos.
The return journey has begun...

Thursday, August 13

YE Diaries

The YE diary entries brought back with Dot have now been added to the blog. They are listed under the appropriate date below, so scroll down to view them or click on the 'YE Diary' tab under Media on the right.

Tuesday, August 11


Expedition Coordinator Dot has returned from her visit to the Amazon expedition with lots of photos and news. Dot was based on the Pithecia boat with Ucayali and Tribe fires, and spent most of her time on Wild camp with Ucayali. Photos are available by clicking the link below, and we aim to have some YE diary entries written up for you soon too. Watch this space!

Monday, August 10

Daily Discoveries

After a brief Conversation over Satellite telephone with the Chief Leader, Ewan Laurie, the following is a brief update of each fire's activities over the last week. Due to the dense canopy, it can be difficult for the satellite phone to maintain signal long enough to transmit emails reliably so apologies for the lack of images. however, Dot from the office has just returned from her Amazon visit and so look out for photos and movies soon...


Have been on their 5 day jungle living this week, due back onto the boats at lunchtime today (Peru time), they have radioed in to say that all is well.


Completing many transects this week such as the terrestrial transect which sees the young people head roughly 9km into the dense jungle to survey the species - sightings include howler monkeys and other large mammals. Also being completed are Caiman surveys at night and work on the fisheries. Special sighting this week was a giant stalk with a massive wingspan - noticed whilst taking a dip in the Amazon river!


Also on survey work, they are mainly being occupied by dawn and dusk Macaw surveys, whilst also being taken on an overnight jungle living course.


Being kept busy with terrestrial transects as well as dolphin surveys in the day and caiman surveys at night, this group have also been working on the man-made beach that holds the turtle egg breeding grounds as part of a long term turtle egg protection programme being undertaken in the reserve.

Life on board the boats remains lively with down time spent on artistic and development projects and parties being enjoyed at every possible occasional - the next date in the diary is tonight when Caiman fire return from the junlge and following that on the 15th when both boats will meet up again!

Monday, August 3

Life on the Lobo

A hot day. After fish and rice for breakfast, we took part in the flag raising ceremony at the local guard hut to mark Peruvian Independence Day. Ralph, Adam, Issachar, Ali, Liz and Rose headed out with Torstein and Chris to spend a couple of days in the jungle learning new skills (they have radioed in to say that all is well).

Nick, Jack, Becky, Brittany, Riana, Linn & Ewan have been out on transects in the forest, where they have seen Howler monkeys, Woolly monkeys, Brown Capuchins, Black Squirrels and many insects. The average person has been bitten over 40 times so far. Teams have also been out on overnight Macaw surveys by canoe and have been on day surveys of dolphins and turtles and night surveys of Caiman, which have proved successful.

Each person is also working on their own small research project, such as a weather log or recording the catch in our butterfly nets. The guitar is getting played a lot and we have been throwing ourselves into our artistic endeavors and environmental awareness program too. Last night we celebrated Katherine's birthday with a giant jelly and she had two eggs broken over her head in the Peruvian tradition to ensure good luck.

Busy days and Nights

Tribe update:

Having arrived at the Pithecia (floating research station), the fire split into three teams. Meg, Anastasia, Sam & Katie have seen tortoises, capuchin monkeys, tamarins and bright green snakes as well as a Jaguar scratch post. Annabel, Tim, Sophie and Joanna have carried out turtle surveys, which are difficult due to the high water, but are increasingly successful. They have also spotted lots of dolphins and macaws.

Grace, Aaron, Carly and Ricarco have been on Caiman & Fish surveys, spotting one Caiman 4 metres long! The fish survey yielded 55 fish in one hour, including piranhas, which will be eaten for tea! They also saw Toucans and heard the raucous Howler monkeys. That night the entire boat had a party to celebrate Aaron's birthday, with Amazonian banoffee pie and plenty of dancing.

Ucayali Update

Ucayali are on their 5-day Wild Camp with Andy and have radioed in to say that all is well. Poem by Carly about turtle surveys

We were meant to see some turtles
On the sandy river side
But instead we watched the birds
And the noisy dolphins glide

We waited ever so silent
For the turtles to come our way
But instead we got Macaws
And to me that was quite okay!

Seven we seen in total
The most the groups had seen
But there is still some time to wait
As some groups haven't yet been

Throughout the sun was beaming
But I definitely didn't mind
Our lunch was ready on return
Which I found was ever so kind!

Saturday, August 1

By Hannah Thomas

Got up at 5.30am for a terrestrial transect, I was woken by Jack and James next door singing! Our Peruvian guides were Manuel and Franco, and Dot came with James and I. It was so beautiful, and just like I imagined rainforest to be before I came here – up until now it’s almost felt like a remote part of England, but with the hanging vines, tall towering trees and green canopy with light filtering through it felt just like a David Attenborough documentary, especially when we saw the group of 65+ squirrel monkeys. Also saw bats sheltering in a tree, and the cutest family of racoony-type things called coati. Overall our transect was really successful – we say an estimated 160+ monkeys in total, including capuchin, tamarin, red howler and woolly monkeys. We also saw a ‘jungle chicken' (!), small snake, two types of squirrel, tapir tracks, jaguar scratching posts and lots of birds. At one point Franco and Manuel cut a vine down, which contained about 5 litres of pure fresh drinking water! They were really enthusiastic, and enjoyed showing us the animals when they spotted them as well as all the most exotic trees and plants.

Manuel asked me today what England is like, and what kind of monkeys we have! It’s so hard to describe! I said we have no monkeys, less trees and more roads and people, though to be honest I’m not sure that paints much of a picture for him.

We’re back from the transect now, and Als and John are drinking too much coffee and playing Irish snap. I might go and join in – it sounds fun as I can hear them from downstairs!