For the past 16 years, 65-year-old Magali Salinas has been on the frontline of conservation, rehabilitating and releasing wildlife in the Madre de Dios region of the Peruvian Amazon.
Sadly, this area has faced habitat destruction, illegal wildlife trade, illegal logging and illegal mining, but Salinas is doing her part to help the animals and even has a center called the Amazon Shelter, where she cares for nearly 80 animals at once.
Salinas sold her possessions in order to buy a plot of land, and over the years, her rescue has grown immensely. She started a non-profit organization, hired a veterinarian, built more enclosures to hold more animals, and made accommodations for volunteers.
The animals at the shelter, including sloths, tortoises, parrots, monkeys, and more, are nursed back to health before Salinas releases them back into the wild in areas that are much safer. Salinas spends time with each animal and cares for them as if they were her own children.
Once Salinas releases the animals back into the wild, she monitors them every day for at least a week to make sure they’re healthy and surviving as they should.
“The jungle has made me much tougher. More of a warrior you could say,” Salinas said. “I don’t have a day off. I don’t rest. This is for really tough people. It’s not for everyone.”
Salinas rescues most of the animals from the illegal pet trade, and animals who fall victim to illegal logging, mining, and hunting activities.
In addition to reintroducing rescued animals to the wild, Salinas hopes to regenerate certain parts of forest that have been logged in the past.
Director and producer Nick Werber made a short film, titled Magali, to showcase Salinas’ dedication and hard work.
“I really wanted to show what you can do with whatever small resources you have,” Werber told Mongabay News. “This one person with not much money, not much experience, really, by the force of her own will created this center that has had a lot of influence. It just goes to show the difference that one person can make. That was what inspired me to make the film.”
Watch the short film below:Whizzco