We have long had the ambition to restore the wetlands that once existed around the lodge. Last month this ambition became one step nearer to becoming reality, when after months of hard work the final area to be restored was flooded. The original wetland – drained in the 1980s to make way for agriculture and pasture – was largely wooded swamp covered with water-loving trees Tabebuia cassinoides and palms (Bactris spp.), dripping with orchids and bromeliads. The restored wetland looks very different and includes a wider range of habitats such as small lakes, Typha reedbeds and wet grassland, as well as areas of replanted Tabebuia. Since restoration began in 2005, the wetland has been maturing quickly and biodiversity increasing rapidly. Over 200 species of birds have now been recorded, caiman and Capybara have moved in, and in a short while it is planned to replant the first Cattleya harrisonia orchids that existed long ago. The latest phase differs from the others in that it has been designed so that the water level can be raised and lowered to attract wading birds, and migrant Solitary Sandpipers (a scarce migrant at REGUA) have already been seen. One tower hide already exists and a new hide will be ready by March 2010. The addition of the new flooded area, some 3 hectares in size, has increased the total area flooded at REGUA to around 15 hectares. Many thanks to everyone who has supported us on this exciting project.