Trying to make conservation sustainable


The morning alarm at Guard Post 106 on Peru’s Cushabatay River is of the all-natural variety—birdsong building to a crescendo as the sky begins to lighten. As Julio Gómez and his crew of five young park guards boil water, fry eggs and pluck hot peppers from their small garden of vegetables and cassava, their job seems idyllic. A few dozen meters from their lean-to kitchen, however, the chain-sawed remains of a mahogany tree illustrate the menaces facing this remote corner of Peru’s north-central Amazon, part of the buffer zone around highly prized Cordillera Azul National Park. “I also used to do things that destroyed the environment,” says Jorge Ochayano, one of three guards and a volunteer assigned to work with... [Log in to read more]

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