Chile - Argentina 2000 : Birding Trip Report
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Torres Del Paine Los Glaciares Peninsula Valdez Iguazu Los Esteros Del Ibera Buenos Aires

Chile - Argentina 2000: Iguazu

The Iguazù National Park, officially established in 1934 and inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1984, covers an area of more than 65.000 hectares.
The site consists of the national park and national reserve. The park is located less than 5km from the Paraguay border in Misiones Province, northeastern Argentina, with the reserve contiguous to the west. The Iguazú River forms the northern boundary of both the reserve and park, and also the southern boundary of Iguaçu National Park in Brazil.

The Iguazú River has its source in the Serra do Mar mountains at an elevation of 1,300m, a short distance from the Atlantic Coast, and flows west for over 500km into the Parana River, immediately to the west of Puerto Iguazú.
The Iguazú Falls (a Guarani name meaning 'Great Waters'), located in the west of the park, are made up of 150-270 subsidiary falls depending on the flow rate, which seasonally varies between 300 cu.m/sec. and 6,500 cu.m/sec.. The falls form a semi-circular front of 2,700m, of which 800m is under Brazilian jurisdiction. A proliferation of elongated islands, islets and rocks create numerous waterfalls which together form the large fan of the Iguazú Waterfalls. The falls drop an average of 72m and the river immediately turns into anarrow, 80m deep canyon, which has been enlarged by erosion of the basalt bedrock. The falls were probably initially located at the confluence of the Iguazú and Parana Rivers some 20,000 years ago, but erosion has caused them to recede 28km upstream to their present location.

Of all the sights on earth, the Garganta del Diablo must come closest to the experience of sailing off the edge of a flat earth imagined by early European sailors. On three sides, the deafening cascade plunges to a murky destination; the vapors soaking the viewer blur the base of the falls. It is difficult to abandon a site of such menacing attraction, where you can still sense the awe that the region's native peoples must have felt.
  The park is rich in fauna and includes 68 species of mammals, 422 of birds, 38 of reptiles, and 18 of amphibians, a large number of which are threatened or vulnerable.

There are plenty of travel agencies around Pto. Iguazu. We warmly recommend 'Explorador Expediciones'. Andrea, Daniel and José form an excellent team, are helpful (any time of the day; they arranged our trip to Esteros Del Ibera) and are very knowledgable.
In case you want to contact them...
write a mail to Andrea and Daniel.



Torres Del Paine NP
Glaciares NP
Peninsula Valdez
Iguazu NP
Los Esteros Del Ibera
Buenos Aires

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