One of the most incredible sights in the Amazon forest is rising before the sun and watching hundreds of macaws and parrots descend upon a mountainous reddish colored clay lick at the first light of day. The birds are vibrant reds, blues, yellows, and greens and seeing so many at once is a visual feast and a perfect wildlife photo opportunity. Scientists dont really understand why the birds ingest this detoxifying clay, but do realize that however mysterious the reason, it is a vital part of their diet. Naturalists speculate that the birds need the minerals from the clay to help them digest and neutralize the toxic seeds and fruits that they eat in Manus forests. Scientists also believe that much like the water cooler at work, the clay licks are important for socializing and exchanging information.Explorers will discover that the area around the clay lick is incredibly loud and the air is full of purring, gurgling, screeching and squabbling which can be heard from hundreds of yards away. The intense volume of this spectacle, and the birds exposed position from predators that fly above and lurk below is also of interest. Scientists note that despite the obvious danger, many of the birds stay at the clay lick long after they have eaten the normal quantity of clay. Occasionally an eagle will be spotted up above and the birds will take to their wings in a simultaneous flurry, creating a spectacular display of colors against the slowly lightening sky. Other bird species and animals visit the clay lick throughout the day, but the macaws and parrots are the most coveted of the birds to see because of their incredible beauty and sheer numbers.There is one main clay lick located in Manu along the banks of the river and most tours allow adventurers to watch and photograph the birds from a blind catamaran which floats along the water. The best time to visit is August to October when the activity reaches its peak.Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com
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