- 13 Mar 08, 11:31 AM
Posted from: Sao Raimundo do Jaraua in the Sustainable Development Reserve, Mamiraua.
We have been here for three days now. This is a small community of about 20 wooden houses on the banks of a river channel called Jarauá. The channel comes off the main river Japurá, and Japurá feeds the Amazon river itself about 36 kilometres downriver from here.
A small community on the river bank
The Jaraua channel leads up to a network of lakes, which become inaccessible by boat during the dry season. At this time of year you can reach the lakes by canoe, through flooded forests and floating meadows. These lakes, rich in aquatic life, are the single most important resource for the communities. There are some 50 odd lakes, shared by four different communities in this sector. Only they are allowed in these lakes and they are responsible for preserving them.
Because of their work with the Mamirauá Institute, responsible for this natural reserve, the communities are managing their fish stocks successfully and they have told us that there is greater abundance today than ever before. This is really an example of a success story and the people we have spoken with in the community are all very conscious of the need to preserve the environment and not over-fish.
No doubt that the creation of the Mamirauá Reserve was a great thing for these communities because it was precisely this area that was being raped by big commercial fishermen in the past. The sustainable reserve has given these communities exclusive access to their own lakes and the Jarauá communities, with the biggest numbers of lakes in their area, are the luckiest.
Find out more about Amazonas wildlife.