One Million steps and few thousand more travel blog

First parrots down

Lots more gathering

Some more but then frightening off

Some start to arrive at abandoned salt lick

Posing for me

Whoops he fell off

Close call

Another shot

Wonderful colours

Surprisingly as I was the last one awake, and Alison was up showering. Today we had a slightly later start 6:00 to go to the claylick to see the early morning parrots at the claylick. We troupe along in our now familiar line but now with a greater awareness of our surroundings and what signs to look for. Although having said that as soon as you do not look where you are stepping, you soon become a cropper falling over.

We did note that Daves arms were covered in itchy bites and where the bites were not present he had an allergic reaction to deet, so the rest of his uncovered arms and legs were now glowing red. This unfortunately added to the desires of the mosquitos. There was no relief for David as his bite count increased exponentially.

As was yesterday it now was waiting game of who could hold out the longest. It sounded as if there were hundreds around the lick but up in the trees. The sound as well as the significant amount of bird droppings gave us a clue, but none of the parrots were settling. Silverio then spots a wild turkey at the edge of the river and this bird was frightening them off. Were waited and hoped but in groups of two or three the birds flew behind us and away to other lick. Disappointedly but acceptance of nature we started to head back. But wait no, Silverio has turned to the right and we are off on another new track to an old abandoned lick site in hope to find some parrots.

So we set down in an abandoned hide and waited. I was not aware of the ants nest aside of me in the corner of the hide until they were climbing down my camera lens onto my shirt and onto my body. I soon had a nest building around my belly. They were not biting at this stage so I sat silent and waiting.

As luck had been on our side so far, Silverio had proven correct and the parrots began to appear and finally giving a wonderful display of colour and noise to keep my camera and post editing activity happy for hours.

The only downside was on our return for breakfast and the now statutory shower I was covered with hundreds of tiny bites all across the top half of my body with half an ants nest in my camera bag.

After breakfast we were going to see the largest and tallest iron tree in the forest. Now like me do I want to hack through 5kms of prime rainforest jungle to see a tree nah already seen thousands, but there we go off to find a tree. Now remember this is rainforest and apart from the rain we had on the boat, we are in brilliant sunshine. It's the hottest the locals have had for months, the river has dropped 4ms since our arrival and it is still dropping.

We are trekking through the jungle and we come to an impasse where the water depth of this flooded area is higher than our Wellington boots. Silverio goes to find away around to get to the tree after all we have already trekked for an hour, loss 2 stone in weight and still dripping. He finally returns us and has found some fallen trees we can walk across to get the other side. These trees are about 100m long and 2m in circumference and laying across a small lake about 0.5ms deep. We have to get up onto the logs and side step all the way without falling off these submerged trees. Alison was fantastic despite having grave concerns how she would cope but she did and we all managed to get across without injury or getting wet. We trekked on seeing Amazonian woodpeckers, wasps and butterflies until we reached this massive tree. It must be at least 1000 years old a base of at least 20m circumference and a height of at least 70m massive.

We took lots of pictures and now showed Silverio how to take a pan shot of the tree and appear multiple times in the shot. So we finally set up his webpage shot for him appearing in three different poses in one shot around the base of the tree. He was very chuffed and could not wait to tell his family and friends of this new trick.

In return he provided me with details on how to set my camera up for single point focus. I wished he had told me earlier. On the way back we had to cross the lake again only this time Dave pulled Irene off the tree when she was assisting him to get on. Irene fell first with Dave landing on top using Irene as a cushion for his fall. Fortunately neither were injured and both fell about laughing. This was a relief as I am confident we could have carried Irene but for Dave there was no way.

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