By Helen Schreider, Frank Schreider

Because the day of the conquistadors, the Amazon has lured explorers and adventurers. Many have left files in their reviews, yet few money owed are so choked with the exceitement of discovery as Exploring The Amazon, a stirring tribute to the braveness of its authors. one other nationwide Geographic treasure.

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At Benjamin consistent, Brazil's port of access, I placed this philosophy and what little I remembered of Portuguese to a try out. the consequences have been below exhilarating. thankfully the customs officer spoke Spanish too. "Never mind," he inspired. "You'll examine speedy. in the end, Spanish is simply Portuguese badly spoken. " "By the way," he extra, "you'll want a flag in your Amazon Queen. " He offered us with a vibrant new ensign —blue globe in a yellow diamond opposed to a eco-friendly heritage with Brazil's motto, Ordem e Progresso, "Order and Progress," and a celebrity to symbolize every one country. Shaggy three-toed sloths, Bradypus tridactylus {opposite), idle in a Colombian grove; a few sloths spend years in one tree. An Indian woman upends a paca, Agouti paca (upper left); the rodent grows to approximately 30 inches lengthy. A swamp deer, Blastocerus dichotomus, steps down a Belem park direction. under left, a cumbersome tapir, Tapirus terrestris — at approximately six hundred kilos the largest South American mammal—munches a mango. A piglike collared peccary, Tayassu taja^u, investigates an uncovered root. HELEN AND FRANK S(-HRE10E LOREN MclNTYRE f ^'% I "Unlike the other river on the earth— the Amazon is assorted each trip," says Capt. Philip Baxter, whose sales space Line send M. V. Cyril (below correct) berths to tackle shipment at Leticia, the single Colombian port at the river. The leaky steamer Narino (bottom), now not healthy for carrier at the Amazon, lies on a river terrace. The vendors deserted the craft in 1964. this day just a caretaker and his family members reside aboard. HELEN AND FRANK SCHREIDER (UPPER LEFT AND correct) AND LOREN MciNTYRE in a single vital recognize loads of development has come to the Amazon on account that Lieutenant Herndon traveled down the river. In his time the Amazon was once nonetheless closed to overseas vessels, and the yankee naval officer needed to alternate his Peruvian-built craft for one in every of Brazilian building. A circus corporation, floating downriver on a raft made up of logs minimize in Peru, was once compelled to construct a brand new raft of Brazilian logs. Such specifications resulted in 1866 with the hole of the Amazon to vessels of all flags. in spite of the fact that, we came upon that little else had replaced. real, a few of the villages that Herndon defined as clusters of shacks have grown to cities of numerous thousand inhabitants, and electrical energy has come to a few and to others paved streets. yet although a couple of prosperous retailers zip round on motorbikes or in jeeps, most folk nonetheless eke out a negative lifestyles lumbering and gathering Brazil nuts, smoking wild rubber, fishing, and roasting cassava to make farinha — the coarse meal with no which no Brazilian dinner is whole. the nice improvement that Herndon so with a bit of luck envisioned might come as soon as the Amazon used to be opened to international trade has but to be learned. certainly, if we settle for Friar Carvajals account, lengthy stretches of the river-banks have been extra seriously populated in 1 542 than they're this day: ".. . we observed the villages glimmering white, and we had no longer proceeded a long way once we observed arising the river an excellent many canoes, all outfitted for battling, gaily coloured, and [the males] with their shields on, that are produced from the shell-like skins of lizards and the hides of manatees and of tapirs, as tall as a guy, simply because they disguise them fullyyt.

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