Eastern Ecuador is tropical lowlands, the majority is lush green rainforest. This region, known as the Ecuadorian Amazon or Oriente, covers approximately half of the country’s total area. Though the Amazon River does not flow through Ecuador, all the rivers flowing East of the Andes contribute to this mighty river, making Ecuador known as the Headwaters of the Amazon.
The Ecuadorian Amazon is easily accessible, it has good infrastructure, and is home to many indigenous settlements, which welcome visitors. The relative closeness to the Andes, makes the temperatures milder than in other Amazon regions. This region is tropical and humid, the Ecuadorian Amazon hosts temperatures of 30 to 35 Celsius degrees, and rainfall of 110 to 160 inches annually. The constant moisture and heat produces an environment that sustains the principal attraction……… rainforest’s abundance of life.
It is home to more species of plants and animals than in the rest of the world’s ecosystems combined. The Ecuadorian Amazon is considered one of the richest and most complex plant and animal habitats in the world. Over 100 species of trees per acre live in some regions. The rainforest of Central America compares with only 40 species of trees per acre.
The jungle is a thick, layered mesh of life forms. The upper canopy’s trees reach 165 ft towards the sky, providing the structure for other plants and animals to subsist. Beneath their broad evergreen leaves and branches is a world of textures and smells. Trees, vines, orchids and bromeliads intertwine becoming the hiding place for the birds and animals that live in the area.