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|Next week I’m going back to the Pantanal in Brazil for two weeks. I was there during five days five years ago and it is an el dorado for bird lovers. So I promised myself to go back there.|
This photo is taken in the evening from a boat on a river. A lot of Cormorants were sitting in trees and in the middle a Jabiru on her nest.
The Pantanal is a tropical wetland. It is one of the world's largest wetlands of any kind. Most of it lies within the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul, but it extends into Mato Grosso and portions of Bolivia and Paraguay, sprawling over an area estimated at between 140,000 square kilometres (54,000 sq mi) and 195,000 square kilometres (75,000 sq mi). Various subregional ecosystems exist, each with distinct hydrological, geological and ecological characteristics; up to 12 of them have been defined (RADAMBRASIL 1982).
About 80% of the Pantanal floodplains are submerged during the rainy seasons, nurturing an astonishing biologically diverse collection of aquatic plants and helping support a dense array of animal species.
Geology, geography and ecology
The Pantanal is a huge, gently-sloped basin that receives runoff from the upland areas (the Planalto highlands) and slowly releases the water through the Paraguay River and tributaries. The formation is a result of the large, concave pre-Andean depression of the earth's crust, related to the Andean orogeny of the Tertiary. It constitutes an enormous internal river delta, in which several rivers flowing from the surrounding plateau merge, depositing their sediments and erosion residues, which have been filling, throughout the years, the large depression area of the Pantanal. This area is also one of the distinct physiographic provinces of the larger Parana-Paraguay Plain area.
The Pantanal is bounded by the Chiquitano dry forests to the west and northwest, by the Arid Chaco dry forests to the southwest, and the Humid Chaco to the south. The Cerrado savannas lie to the north, east and southeast. The Pantanal has an average yearly rainfall of 1,000–1,400 mm (39–55 in), but is fed by the upper Paraguay River. Its average temperature is 25 °C (77 °F), but temperatures can fluctuate from 0 to 40 °C (32 to 104 °F).
During the rainy season, the water in the Pantanal basin rises between two and five meters. Just as the Nile delta is fertile, arable land, so too are the Pantanal plains. The dramatic increase of water during the rainy season nourishes the producers of Pantanal, which in turn nourishes all the other species, as well. Humans have taken advantage of this so much that it has become a problem.
Floodplain ecosystems such as the Pantanal are defined by their seasonal inundation and desiccation. They shift between phases of standing water and phases of dry soil, when the water table can be well below the root region. Soils range from high levels of sand in higher areas to higher amounts of clay and silt in riverine areas.
Elevation of the Pantanal ranges from 80 to 150 m (260 to 490 ft) above sea level. Annual rainfall over the flood basin is between 1,000 and 1,500 mm (39 and 59 in), with most rainfall occurring between November and March. In the Paraguay River portion of the Pantanal, water levels rise between two meters to five meters seasonally; water fluctuations in other parts of the Pantanal are less than this. Flood waters tend to flow slowly (2 to 10 cm (0.79 to 3.9 in) per second) due to the low gradients and high resistance offered by the dense vegetation.
Main article: List of plants of Pantanal vegetation of Brazil
The vegetation of the Pantanal, often referred to as the "Pantanal complex", is a mixture of plant communities typical of a variety of surrounding biome regions: these include moist tropical Amazonian rainforest plants, semiarid woodland plants typical of northeast Brazil, Brazilian cerrado savanna plants and plants of the Chaco savannas of Bolivia and Paraguay. Forests usually occur at higher altitudes of the region, while grasslands cover the seasonally inundated areas. The key limiting factors for growth are inundation and, even more importantly, water-stress during the dry season. The Pantanal ecosystem is home to 3500 known plant species.
The Pantanal ecosystem is also thought to be home to 1000 bird species, 400 fish species, 300 mammalian species, 480 reptile species and over 9000 different subspecies of invertebrates.
Among the rarest animals to inhabit the wetland of the Pantanal are the marsh deer (Blastocerus dichotomus) and the giant river otter (Pteroneura brasiliensis). Parts of the Pantanal are also home to the following endangered or threatened species: the hyacinth macaw (Anodorhyncus hyacinthinus) (a bird endangered due to smuggling), the crowned solitary eagle, the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), the bush dog (Speothos venaticus), the South American tapir (Tapirus terrestris), the giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla) and the yacare caiman (Caiman yacare). The Pantanal is home to one of the largest and healthiest jaguar (Panthera onca) populations on Earth.
Most fish are detritivores, primarily ingesting fine particles from sediments and plant surfaces. This is characteristic of fish living in South American flood-plains in general. Fish migration between river channels and flood-plain regions occurs seasonally. These fish have many adaptations that allow them to survive in the oxygen-depleted flood-plain waters.
In addition to the caiman, the following reptiles inhabit the Pantanal: the yellow anaconda (Eunectes notaeus), the gold tegu (Tupinambis teguixin), the red-footed tortoise (Geochelone carbonaria) and the green iguana (Iguana iguana).
samiran88, maaciejka, marius-secan, josediogo1958, anel, Adanac, CeltickRanger, jusninasirun has marked this note useful
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Zo die zit alvast in de planning
Leuk vooruitzicht voor jou en je vrouw
super mooie foto van die deze vogelboom
Mooi licht en leuke compositie
very extra ordinary picture. leaf less tree but the Cormorants are appear like a leafs.
great picture i like it.
'n Baie kunstige foto, ietwat anders as jou gewone maar baie goed aansluitend daarby. Vir 'n voëlliefhebber soos jy moet hierdie 'n baie besondere plek wees en ek sien uit na die foto's waarmee jy gaan terugkom. Jou nota hierby is baie interessant. Beste groete.
incredible photo. Excellent atmosphere and situation. How many of bird are there????
Perfect lighting and colours.
Thanks for sharing,
Ciao Peter, fantastic capture of a lot of birds, fascinating silhouette, magic atmosphere, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio
- [2012-09-04 10:08]
Nice and interesting photo how from horror.
Very useful and informative notes!
Ciao Peter. An amazing graphic silouette of trees and bird. Just like a paint MF.
- [2012-09-04 15:31]
Hi Peter,fantastic capture,not easy to see a lot of birds like in this pic,i like a lot your point of view to create this beautiful effect in backlight,spectacular details too.Have a nice day and thanks,Luciano
- [2012-09-05 0:58]
Beautiful evening silhouette photo of this bare tree which has more birds on it than leaves. Hope you see as many bird species as there are birds on this tree on your trip:). Best wishes.
Another marvelous composition. Wonderful landscape with this gorgeous species of birds, which I never meet in my region (the cormorants are to be found only on Danube river, far to my home). Perfect photo taken from a good POV. Splendid light......the colors are fantastic. The POV is very good chosen.
Thanks for sharing!
A great capture with fine colors, details & composition. Well done & presented with a nice POV. TFS & best wishes!
beautiful photography, EXTRAORDINARY
Congratulations, hello Vanni
Excellent bird-tree landscape, TFS & best regards, Ferran
Have a nice day!
- [2012-09-06 11:55]
Druk aan het pakken hierzo,ben benieuwd wat we allemaal gaan zien,
groetjes en tot binnenkort,
Amazing scene Peter!!! Impressive photo too! Excellent composition and fantastic atmosphere!
Bom dia Peter
Wonderful capture of this giant colony.Enjoy Your trip.
Have a good weekend!
- [2012-09-08 6:05]
An interesting picture from your archives. An amazing amount of Cormorantss perched on the trees and a lovely "controluce" taken from the boat.
I wish you a very interesting travel to Brazil, and I'm sure you will come back with plenty of interesting shots.
- [2012-09-14 7:50]
I absolutely love this image, plain and simple. Great work Peter, thank you.
magnific picture Peter, excellent the moment you have captured, congratulations for the picture and for info too,
un saluto, tino
Beautiful photo with atmosphere effect,
excellent timing, the cormorants are us much
that is if they where the leafs of the tree ! TFS
Thanks for sharing this image. I have never seen so many birds perched on one tree. Superb silhouette against fine sky tone.
Thanks and kind regards.