GUIDED TOURS TO THE XIXUAÚ-XIPARINÃ NATURE RESERVE
Tours are organised for groups of from 4 to 10 people and vary in length from 8 to 15 days.
At almost 500 kms from the city of Manaus, trips to the Xixuau’ are complete naturalist expeditions involving one a half days travel along the Rio Negro and the Rio Jauaperi, followed by a number of days of total immersion in the 172.000 hectares of virgin forest which constitute the reserve.
Groups generally tend to consist of people with a particular interest in one or more aspects of the Amazon forest.
The Xixuau’ is a permanent research site and currently projects are being run with Embrapa of Roraima, the University of Salerno (Italy), the National Health Foundation of Amazonas and the University of Siena (Italy), with the sponsorship of the Istituto Italo-Latino Americano in Rome.
The reserve often hosts teams of documentary film makers, from all over the world, working on the making of wildlife films, due to the abundance and visibility of fauna which is difficult to encounter in other parts of the Amazon.
Nature photographers from Europe and North America visit frequently.
The reserve centre provides accomodation in Malocas, native huts built in the style of the Waimiri-Atroari Indians. From here excursions depart into the forest, along the rivers Xixuau’ and Xiparina’, to observe the flora and fauna of the reserve.
Species which are extremely common in the Xixuau’-Xiparina’ compared to other parts of the Amazon are the Giant Otter, Boto and Tucuxi dolphins, manatees, anaconda, coral snakes, turtles, saki, spider, capuchin, squirrel and howler monkeys, marmosets, tamarins, anteaters, kinkajous, ocelot, jaguar, tapir,peccary, paca, armadillos, caymen (black, spectacled, stone head)deer and a host of bird species.
In the heart of the reserve is an area of buriti palm trees where hundreds of macaws nest. In this area a number of permanent observation towers have been build . Parrots, toucans, parakeets, hoatzins, humming birds, ibises, egrets, herons, harpies, ducks, jacamars, potoos, wood peckers, storks, terns, spoonbills, eagles and falcons make the reserve a bird watchers paradise.
The river teems with fish and sports fishing is an increasing attraction with excellent rainbow bass, piranha, pirarara, surubim, aruana, acara, pacu, aracu, etc.
The reserve is situated almost exactly on the equator and the seasons are defined by high water (March-September) and low water (October – February). During the high water season the area is characterised by vast tracts of igapo’ (flooded forest) and the low water season presents immense sandy beaches and extreme concentrations of aquatic life.
Transport to the reserve is by regional boat and outboards are used along the main river and at the entrance to the reserve. All movements inside the reserve are by paddle canoe and on foot through the forest.