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New Woodlizard Species Discovered in Ecuador

Commonly referred to as woodlizards, Enyalioides is a genus in the lizard family Hoplocercidae which is endemic to the northern part of South America and Panama. The recent discovery of three new species brings the number of identified species in the genus Enyalioides to fifteen. Two of these species were discovered in Ecuador, with the third being found in Panama.

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Volunteering in Ecuador

Based in Ohio, USA, the non-profit Tandana Foundation offers opportunities for volunteers to travel to Ecuador and participate in various community development programs. Visiting a foreign country as a guest is far different from being there as a tourist, and volunteers have a host of heart-warming experiences and memories to treasure, knowing that they have made a difference in the lives of people they now call friends. The foundation's name is taken from a Kichwa root meaning "to unite" or "to gather together" and their focus is on creating and nurturing responsible relationships between people of different cultures where mutual respect and compassion lead to giving and receiving as communities.

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Ecuador's Spectacular Spotted Eagle Rays

The biodiversity of Ecuador's Galapagos Islands is well known internationally, particularly among nature lovers, and visitors are never disappointed in a tour of this amazing archipelago. The Galapagos Marine Reserve is listed among the world's best diving destinations, and for good reason as there are a number of sites for divers to choose from, most of which are suitable for all levels of experience. Marine creatures that divers are likely to see include hammerhead sharks, reef sharks, green sea turtles, sea horses, puffer fish, golden rays, manta rays, sting rays and spotted eagle rays, as well as a wide variety of mollusks and invertebrates.

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Explore Ecuador's Manabí Province

Ecuador's Manabí Province has plenty of beautiful beaches and excursion options enjoyed by locals and visitors alike, as well as numerous historical and cultural attractions. The Machalilla National Park is a must-see destination for nature-lovers. Consisting primarily of tropical dry forest, Machalilla is home to howler monkeys, capuchins, pumas, jaguars, ocelots and deer, as well as a huge variety of bird species including cuckoos, caciques, tanagers, hawks, falcons and swallows. Reptiles in this spectacular reserve include green iguanas, crocodiles, many different lizard species and snakes.

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Guayasamín's Tribute to Fellow Latin Americans

Located in the Bellavista neighborhood overlooking the city of Quito, La Capilla del Hombre is an art museum designed by Ecuadorian painter Oswaldo Guayasamín (1919-1999) as a tribute to the people of Latin America. Visitors to La Capilla del Hombre can view at leisure the murals painted by Guayasamín depicting the manner in which Latin Americans have changed through history, from pre-Columbian times through to the 20th century. The artist is well known for his ability to express the emotions of his subjects and this is evident both in the murals, and his other works displayed at the museum and the nearby Fundacion Guayasamín Museum.

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Visit Cuenca's Museum of Modern Art

Visitors to the charming city of Cuenca will find a wealth of history and culture to enjoy. An abundance of beautifully preserved historical buildings has resulted in the center of the Cuenca being listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is also home to a number of interesting museums, one of which is the Municipal Museum of Modern Art (Museo Municipal de Arte Moderno), housed in a historic building that has served a number of purposes over the years, including being a recovery center for alcoholics and a prison, before being restored and repurposed by Banco Central in 1982.

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Ecuadorian Philanthropist Maria Augusta Urrutia

The Casa-Museo Maria Augusta Urrutia is a museum dedicated to the memory of aristocratic philanthropist Maria Augusta Urrutia who was born in Quito on December 6, 1901, and dedicated her life, and her resources, to the service of people in need. Visitors to this beautiful 19th century building will see a home that has essentially remained unchanged since Doña María Augusta lived there. Beautiful furnishings, hand-painted wall paper, stained-glass windows, hand-crafted tiles and finishes, as well as a permanent exhibition of artworks, primarily by Ecuadorian artists Victor Mideros, are all treasures to be discovered in this interesting museum.

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History and Culture in Quito's Museums

Visitors to Ecuador's capital city will find a treasure trove of history and culture in Quito's various museums, and should plan to include at least one or more on their itinerary. History and art enthusiasts will appreciate the Museo Nacional del Banco Central (Central Bank Museum) which has five exhibition areas devoted to artifacts from pre-Colombian and pre-historic eras, as well as works by contemporary and historical artists. The museum uses multimedia exhibits to guide visitors through the fascinating journey of Ecuador's history and the significance of its art.

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