Spotting the Caiman Alligator on the Amazon River

A caiman alligator is spotted in the underbrush along the Amazon River waters edge.

A caiman alligator is spotted in the underbrush along the Amazon River waters edge.

Some would say it was pure luck that we spotted a caiman alligator while cruising on the Amazon River.  Our expedition skiff is gliding along at about 10 knots on an Amazon River inlet, when a fellow passenger, Vic, shouts out that he spotted a Caiman.  Caezar, the native driving our skiff, slows and turns the boat back to a wall of green jungle.  At the same time, our naturalist guide, Lois, works his magic with his binoculars to find the exact spot where the elusive caiman waits for his prey.  The dozen voyagers look in the branches for a Caiman Lizard but see nothing, and Vic points to the water where the Caiman Alligator is lazing on the water’s edge, eyeing us for breakfast.  Vic is a hunter at his home in Vancouver, and has developed an eagle eye for spotting wildlife during our Amazon River Cruise.

I was able to snap a few pictures and imagine the size of this beast for a minute or so before he dives and disappears with a big splash.  Only then do I realize the size of this creature and the damage he could do to an unaware swimmer or hiker.  I’m glad that my naturalist, Lois, is escorting us through his homeland while we search for birds, reptiles and fish during our Amazon River Cruise.

The reward for sighting a creature before the guide is 20 points this time.  Most points have been awarded for bird sightings until now.  The first guest to reach 50 points will receive a complimentary piranha pedicure.

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