I’ve been obsessed over the podcast The Adventure Zone for the last year. I absolutely love it. The first graphic novel, based on the podcast, was just released. Here are my thoughts on the wonderfulness that was created by Clint, Justin, Travis, and Griffin McElroy.
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One of the most endangered species in the South American rain forest is the Giant Otter, which can be found in the Ox Bow lakes and rivers of Manu in southeastern Peru. Scientists are enthralled with this unique species because they have a highly developed and interesting social behavior that is quite different than most other animals in their familial group.For example, they live in small families of about 10 members and spend their lives hunting, playing, and sleeping together. The groups are composed of a parent couple and their offspring of the same and different ages. Otters can have between one and four cubs each year, but usually only the dominant female produces offspring. The interesting aspect of this familial relationship is that this is the only species of otter where the males and females live together. In the families of Giant Otters, all the members in a group help to rear the cubs whether male or female. Otter families stay in their own territory and do not wander into the territory of other groups, which is why they are called Lobo Del Rio in Spanish, which means the river wolf. The otters are one of the largest of their group and are the longest at 1.5 to 2 meters. Interestingly enough they live an average of 8 years in the wild and 14 years in captivity. Scientists are hopeful that the otters will not become extinct because they do so well in captivity, but it is difficult to introduce new otters into a natural environment because of these tight familial groups. Another problem for scientists hoping to replace the population is that when the females are under stress they stop producing milk and the new cubs starve to death. The ages of the cubs helps determine how close travelers can get to these spectacular mammals because of course, the protection of the otters is of the upmost importance. However, this is why watching Giant Otters in Manu and the Amazon forest is such an amazing sight for animal lovers and naturalists who will get to see these endangered species in their native habitat.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
This guide to the Giant Otters in Manu, located in the Amazon jungle of Peru was written by a Peru travel expert at Peru For Less, available to help you custom design your Peru vacations.