My third to last day was a “Sunday Fun-day.” A day that we were all allowed to do pretty much anything we wanted. Most of the rest of the mammal team decided to do a hike a the Huascar river to swim in it again (I’ll detail my adventures on the Huascar later), but I actually wanted to do just what I was supposed to do every day. I wanted to do a monkey follow. However, I didn’t want to follow just any monkey; I wanted to follow Tamarins. Sophia was kind enough to accompany on my mission.
We headed down Mega Otter Fossil and almost immediately saw one, and then two groups of spider monkeys. We took “Primate Sighting” GPS points to note their locations and later enter for data. Then, after maybe 30 minutes of walking we found a small mixed group of Squirrel Monkeys and Brown Capuchins. To follow or not to follow, that was the question.
On the one hand they weren’t my goal of Tamarins, which I had only seen a few times while at ARCC. But on the other, they were still monkeys, and my two favorite kinds at that. We decided to just go for it and do a short follow. We headed into the bush deciding the Squirrel Monkeys would be our focus. They were pretty elusive at first, staying high up in the canopy, darting out of sight as soon as we say them. But we eventually pinned down the group number to just 4. We followed them for an hour before deciding we were done with the data. Then, right after we decided to stop the brown capuchins got very charismatic, coming low to the ground and being fairly bold. So we stopped, watched, and I took the above video. I was being attached by flies and mosquitoes during it so please excuse the spastic shakes. My little point and shoot can stabilize some of my movements, but not those twitches.