Do you have a goal as a guide here?
I want to see a Banded Ground Cuckoo! It’s one of the rarest birds here, almost mythical. They follow carnivorous army ants, picking out the fleeing insects, but these ants only live in primary forests, so they’re really rare. And the cuckoos hide. It really would be a personal achievement.
Apart from spotting the mythical cuckoo, what are your plans for the future?
I want to finish studying environmental engineering via distance learning and get my degree. I want to be able to guide in any other country.
How do your views on nature differ from your family?
My grandfather came from Otavalo and my grandmother from Quito, and they were some of the first to come to this area to settle. They would hunt and fish. But now a lot of my family work here at Mashpi, so attitudes are changing.
What is so special about Mashpi?
Activities here also involve children, so it’s cool getting them into nature and conservation at a young age. It’s our job to transmit this magic!