Tropical Amazonian Rain Forest, Venezuela by Fabian Michelangeli

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Picture Story

A sea of rain forest serves as a tablecloth from which the flat-topped mountains of southern Venezuela, called tepuis by the indigenous tribes, emerge. These forests and the summits host endemic plants and animals found nowhere else on the planet. Different trees flower at different times during the year; some species flower once in a decade. It is still unknown what triggers the blooming of all individuals of a given species all at once. This photograph was taken during an expedition to the Amazonian rain forest where we studied the biodiversity of this realm. I was fortunate to coincide with the flowering one morning of a particular species of trees (pink in the photograph) belonging to the jacaranda family. The morning after arrival, still asleep in my hammock, my native friend woke me up to show me this phenomenon which had last occurred four or five years before. By chance, the helicopter that had taken us there had not yet left allowing us to register this marvel of Nature.


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