January 2024 Newsletter

The new year brings new animals, new volunteers and of course news on the residents too!


Baby two-fingered sloth Kelso is no baby anymore, growing steadily and climbing in trees every day. Pick as he is, only a small group of volunteers has the honour to take care of him. He is eating very well by himself, munching away the fresh leaves from the forest.

Fun fact: Adult sloths only poop once a week! Kelso isn’t there yet, but happily poops every three days.

Pataku the male paca, is now living in the big wide world! It did not take him long to choose for permanent freedom after he was let out! Though hard to spot him, nocturnal as he is and we are not, we were happy to see him one evening roaming around in the forest nearby, looking happy and healthy.

Young squirrel monkey Mina is exploring the outside world bit by bit. A couple of times a week, she goes out to climb the trees and play with the other monkeys, while at other times new squirrel monkey Dina is joining her in the enclosure. We hope one day she will show Dina how it is done!

Night monkeys Otis, Yuna and Ushari having been released earlier nearby the centre, were taken a step further. Douwe and Geyler, brought them further into the jungle. As all three have had a lot of human contact for various reasons it is hoped the extra distance will ensure they return to natural habits without human interaction. Douwe and Geyler are taking turns regularly bringing them food. Otis and Ushari recently showed their face at EV, were checked out and brought back to find their way to Yuna again.

Susy Utzinger Orphan Animal Hospital (SUSTOAH)

After sustaining wounds of a fight with capuchins, male woolly monkey Manok finished treatment and was happy to get away from the enclosed spaces and join his friends outside again. As soon as he was out, we could hear greetings between monkeys for some time after.

Martin, the dominant male of the woolly group, after showing him who is still the boss, gave him a nice cuddle. Some years ago, Martin himself, stayed in the clinic for a while, fighting the parasite Prosthenorchis Elegans. He is a beauty now, such a big change! It is great to see that the woolly monkeys, all coming from different places at different times, are bonding to such a strong group here at EV.

The only animals left in the clinic were the small yellow-footed turtles. They are waiting for the Ministry to come and set them free. Till then they will be moved to the outside enclosure, Aguatena, to have more room to swim and sunbath at will.

A good time for the necessary repairs to start at the clinic! Douwe took the opportunity to start with some new tiles everywhere…, bit by bit all small cracks and holes will be fixed giving the clinic a small make-over.


A big change for remaining parrots in the quarantine. Some of them have been together for a while. According to ability to fly and species they were now separated to join others in the different enclosures. They all seemed happy enough with the choice, making new friends quickly in their new surroundings of the different aviaries.

It only took a day or two for Yoni, the new mealy parrot, to win over the hearts of Drago and Dani (Daenarys), the other mealy parrots in the Elmo front-enclosure.

Another new arrival is juvenile female woolly, Sinya. She was handed over to the authorities as people figured out (as often they do), a monkey is not suitable as a pet-animal. Giving her lots of branches and enrichment to play with is helping her to get more detached from us humans and it turns out she is a great climber! She is receiving regular visitors of our local free spider monkeys and woolly monkeys as they sit in front of her window to check her out. What are they thinking??


A new year is starting, new plans arising, what is needed and where to prioritise….?

The bodega will be one of the larger projects this year. Repairs are needed, and with more mouths to feed additional storage space is also required. So, plans are drawn up and financing sought to make the bodega bigger too!

The last of the wooden enclosures, Tiliku, was finally empty. It had been repaired many times, as it was always an important release enclosure away from the normal bustle of the EV. But now no more…we finally got the opportunity to break it down!

Not to worry, Tiliku (named after a dusky headed parrot, and being the first release enclosure of EV), will not be forgotten. It will be rebuilt…or better said: newly built, bigger, stronger and nicer!

Volunteer life

We are with a big volunteer team again! Everybody is well trained, and the work flows smoothly, giving more fun time also after work. Starting a bit earlier, working extra hard and coming back in time for the afternoon feeding, a big splash and swim was enjoyed at the waterfall ´Regalia´. It was a great day enjoying the beautiful boat ride through the jungle and the cool waters.

Nearer by is another great opportunity, making the hike up to the viewpoint (´mirador´) in the late afternoon, enjoying a beautiful sunset in the nice company of volunteer dog Yara!

And what is not to like being guided by Machico through the forest! Volunteers learned a lot of interesting new facts about life in the forest.

Do you want to experience the beauty of the jungle yourself? Come join us! (https://www.esperanzaverdeperu.com/en/volunteering/)

¡Hasta proxima!