About The Shot ABOUT THE SHOT Family of Gold Hunters While drifting down the Napo river in the amazonian Ecuador, we came across groups of people working the shores in search of gold. this particular group struck me the most as I saw a couple of young kids carrying loads of dirt probably heavier than their own weight. They work for up to 6 months to collect enough gold flakes to live for awhile before starting all over again. Monkey Trouble Hundreds of visitors scatter themselves along the stretches of white sand at Manuel Antonio National Park, a park known for its beaches and abundance of wildlife. The White-faced Capuchins know the drill and waste no time to raid every backpack, purse, or bag that may contain food. Despite the park strict rules of not allowing food, many still smuggle fruits and other snacks. The problem: the monkeys ingest not just the snack, but the wrappers causing intestinal impaction and a slow death. The monkeys are also exposed to human diseases by from this close contact. Despite my advice to help the monkey back on the tree, the photo session continued, until the monkey showed some aggression. The young man walked away with just minor scratches, reminder that while friendly they are still wild and unpredictable. Mahogany Load While driving towards Darien, I came across large trucks carrying huge Mahogany trees. While much of the harvesting is legal and sustainable, the take of these trees sometimes require the falling of other nearby trees hosting micro fauna and food for many species of tropical birds. Road to Darien, Panama. Bird for Sale While driving in Panama, we came across two kids carrying a Keel-billed Toucan on the side of the road. As we approached they appeared to hide the bird from our view. I decided to investigate. I turned around and stopped to asked them what kind of bird that was. They both approached the passenger window and said - it's a toucan and it's for sale. Forty dollars and it's yours. This was not a case of wildlife trafficking, but a mere case of bad luck for the toucan. On close inspection it was missing an eye and was unable to fly. Perhaps it was hit by car and was picked up by the kids which tried to make some money. The $40 would have put food on their family table for a week. Along Ruta Empalme - Almirante, Panama.