If you’re planning a trip around Europe, you most likely want to soak in as much of the culture as possible. The Hotel Tropical’s zoo, with 22 species, was smaller but fit into the eco-resort’s lush 400 square meters of foliage set on the banks of the Rio Negro. It, too, was a rescue facility certified by the Brazilian government. The resident biologist, Dayse Campista, and her co-worker, Andre, very kindly spent substantial time with me so that I could learn more about the unique rainforest inhabitants. They included an endangered White Bellied Spider travel insurance Monkey, Nina. A true celebrity she starred as Zuzu in a feature film, Taina 2 an Adventure in the Amazon. As a new mother, Nina very cautiously hid her young baby underneath her paws to protect it from visitors’ intruding eyes. I was delighted when Dayse was able to coax Nina into showing off her new, as yet unnamed, offspring. I was intrigued also by the Collared Peccaries. Like miniature Wild Boars, they reminded me of my time as a German exchange student watching “Hans” and “Sissy”, a full-size version, run around the local castle moat.
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