Welcome to the (Peruvian Jungle): Monkey-ing Around

In trying to organize the posts for this part of the trip I had some difficulty. There’s so much that we experienced. I considered chronological, but in this case, that’s quite irrelevant, so I’m just going to post as I feel.

One thing I’ll mention, is we spent a lot of time on boats. This may not be for everyone but I loved it. Our last day, we didn’t have much time, so decided to take a look at the monkey reserve. It’s a space run by conservationists, where monkeys who were once people’s pets, are taken to live out their days in the wild. There’s a space that has been set up as a preserve and is protected for them to live.

Apparently lots of people think monkeys would make good pets and surprise, surprise, they aren’t. It’s similar to here when people get a dog (or maybe pet racoon) they can’t handle. Anyway, their stoop must be a popular place for tours, because they came right out to greet us.

The white and black Cappuccino Monkeys are little rascals. They remind me of the kid siblings of the group. Crawling all over the larger species, picking at them and just fast enough to get away after pissing them off. This little one, sadly has associated boats with bananas and worried his larger cousins would get all the spoils, took matters into his own hands by getting first in line.

Bad little monkey

The Howler Monkey howled. He was not swayed by our banana bribes.

Let it out

And the Spider Monkey is the monkey vision we all had as kids.


They were tons of fun and I can say for myself (and suspect for my parents), it was enough to make you small-child excited.

Our last stop before heading home, was to a neighbouring village, where a family of three, Three-Fingered-Sloths, sometimes stay. I know they aren’t monkeys, rather very much their own thing, but I don’t think they’ll mind being placed in the same post.

Three fingers is all you need

Like any family, these were an interesting bunch. They choose to spend much of their time with a local human family but were not captive. They were free to come and go as they pleased. Some days, their human hosts would look out and the three sloths would be crawling their way back to the jungle, not to be seen for weeks sometimes.

Pablo, or papa sloth, was the one most comfortable with humans and the one who liked to be held, so he’s the one we handled.

Mom and Pablo

Male sloths of this breed are distinguished by these beautiful back-markings.
Male sloths of this breed are distinguished by their beautiful back-markings.

Mamma Anita didn’t like to be handled but didn’t seem to mind having us around. She was still getting used to being a mom.

The one thing that was interesting for me in getting to know these animals, is the need to slow down. They really do move slowly. In handling them, they get stressed if you move too quickly or try to move them faster than they’d move themselves. This means that it may take a minute or two as Pablo stretched his arm up ever so carefully, and then his other….and then one leg, and another. I appreciated the lesson in deliberate movement and presence.

My Peruvian Love

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