The station

The biological Station "José Álvarez Alonso",belonging to the Research Institute of the Peruvian Amazon, it is an ideal place to develop research on biodiversity and neotropical evolution processes, in terra firme ecosystems, among which forests of white sand. Various national and international institutions developing their investigations, field courses in taxonomy, ecology, entomology, ornithology, herpetology, mammalogy, monitoring and surveillance of protected natural areas. It is also suitable for conservation activities, environmental education, nature tourism, hiking, bird watching, among others.

Description of the area.

It is located within the Allpahuayo Mishana National Reserve. It has an area of 2,750 hectares, with a variety of ecosystems among which forests on white sand (wet-sand, dry-sand and sagebrush) considered one of the most fragile ecosystems of the Peruvian Amazon; these ecosystems have a special wildlife with the conditions of extreme poverty of nutrients in soils. From the station you have access to floodplain forest ecosystems by sewage from the basin of the Nanay River (Igapó). Hydrology of the Nanay River, similar to the Amazon River, with two distinct periods; the high water, "creciente" with its peak in May and low water, "vaciante", with its peak in September; the difference in water levels between the two that is six meters, on average, for the lower basin of the river.

Flora and vegetation.

Iquitos region is known for the diversity of habitats and biodiversity records registered in its forests. Nanay basin is located in the "Ecorregion Napo", one of the richest biodiversity ecoregions. En una hectárea de bosque Allpahuayo Mishana Nacional puede ser de hasta 311 especies de árboles mayores de 10 cm de diámetro. (Gentry 1988, Vásquez-Martínez & Phillips 2000).This high diversity is a reflection of the variety of habitats (high soil heterogeneity) can be found; from forests on well-drained clay soils, to forests on white sand soils ("varillales") very poor in nutrients.

Among the most common species of varillales are: Aspidosperma excelsum (Apocynaceae), Macrolobium limbatum (Fabaceae), Micropholis egensis (Sapotaceae), Anthodiscus pilosus (Caryocaraceae), Podocarpus celatus (Podocarpaceae), Caraipa utilis (Clusiaceae), Caraipa tereticaulis (Clusiaceae), Pachira brevipes (Bombacaceae), Pagamea coriácea (Rubiaceae), Lissocarpa kating (Lissocarpaceae), Epistiphium parviflorum (Orchidaceae), Mauritia carana (Arecaceae), Euterpe catinga (Arecaceae), Dicymbe uaiparuensis (Fabaceae), Metteniussa tessmanninana (Icacinaceae), Sterigmapetalum obovatum (Rhizophoraceae), Humiria balsamífera (Humiriaceae) and Doliocarpus dentatus (Dilleniaceae). In the herbaceous layer are several species of ferns Trichomanes spp., Elaphoglossum pilosum, Lindsaea sp., Metaxya lanosa and melastomatáceas as Granfenrieda limbata.

Floodplain forests of the Nanay River, locally known as "tahuampa sewage" share characteristics and species forests with "igapo" the Black River in Brazil, including genera of plants, asSymmeria sp. and Mollia sp. y especies como Caryocar microcarpum, entre otras plantas especialistas de este tipo de bosque, [(Prance, 1980, Encarnación, 1993; Gentry y Ortiz 1993; IIAP 2000)


In the area of the reserve there are at least 145 species of mammals in 16 species of marsupials, 9 species of edentates, 63 species of bats, 13 species of primates, 10 species of carnivores, 2 species of dolphins, 5 species of ungulates and 27 species of rodents. Approximately 28 species are categorized as vulnerable, among which mono tocon Callicebus lucifer, tocon negro Callicebus torquatus, tamandúa Myrmecophaga tridactyla, armadillo gigante Priodontes maximus; otorongo Pantera onca, species near threatened status. Among the species categorized as rare highlights Procyon cancrivorus and Paleosuchus palpebrosus. Twenty species of birds are associated with white sand forests on the area, and several of them, these forests near Iquitos is the only known range in Peru .; as perlita de Iquitos, Polioptila clementsi, critically endangered species. At least six new bird species have been discovered in the last five years Allpahuayo Mishana, four of which have recently been described.

Thecnical Data

Location District: San Juan Bautista, Province: Maynas, Department: Loreto
Distances Iquitos – Centro de Investigación Allpahuayo = 26.5 km
Time distance 20 a 30 minutes by car from Iquitos Airport
Grid Reference LO: 73°24'36'' LS: 03°51'12"
Area 2750 ha
Altitude 123 msnm
Pluviosity Entre 2500 y 3000 mm/anuales
Temperatures T° media anual: 26.9 C°
Seasonality Rainy season: December – March, Dry season: April - November


the biological station has adequate facilities for researchers to develop their research goals more efficiently and visitors in general have a unique experience with forest; taking into account, respect and friendly attitude towards the environment that ensures the area conservation . We have suitable environments for your stay to be pleasant, superb conditions for the development of their research. We have:

  • Rooms for up to 25 people.
  • Auditorium with capacity for 50 people, where they can develop various activities such as reading, courses and workshops.
  • Clearly marked ecological circuits and whose maintenance is performed on an ongoing basis.
  • A kitchen equipped to meet their basic needs
  • Library and reading room.
  • Permanent electricity.
  • Backup power (electric generator and solar panel)
  • Mobile signal on focal points


the biological station is located in the Allpahuayo Mishana National Reserve, District: San Juan Bautista, Province: Maynas, Department: Loreto-Perú

What can we know?

The research center is located a short distance from Iquitos City, and is favorable place to develop multiple activities in the area of research. next are detailed the different resources and areas, are there in the Research Centre Allpahuayo to availability of researchers, students and the general public :

  • Medicinal garden.
  • Amazonian fruit garden.
  • Plots of achiote (Bixa orellana), aguaje (Mauritia flexuosa), uvilla (Pourouma cecropiifolia), metohuayo (Cariodendron orinocense).
  • Timber: palo sangre (Brosimun sp.), remo caspi (Aspidosperma excelsum), tornillo (Cedrelinga cateniformis), etc.
  • White Sand Forest: dry varillales , wet varillales y chamizales.
  • A great diversity of fauna and flora, which houses the forests of CIA.

Medicinal plant gardens.

The Garden of Medicinal Plants was established in 1992 to maintain and preserve a living collection of Amazonian medicinal species under cultivation (ex situ) and in natural forest, serving to conduct research, develop and transfer technologies of cultivation and use.In this training garden , education and tourism are performed, as well as research papers, theses studies and pre-professional practices of national and foreign students.

Types of forests

This area protects a distinct ecosystems of unique combination and age, of the lower basin of Nanay river and home to an exceptional biological wealth, since it is located in the "Ecorregion Napo", one of the most biodiverse areas in the Amazon and the world. Although the highlight of Allpahuayo Mishana are their rare and antique white sand forests, Here you can find recent floodplain forests by the Nanay River (which also has numerous lakes and streams sewage, with typical flora and fauna), swamp forests, and clay hills forests, of various types, each of which has its typical community of plants and animals.

Primary Forest

this forest where natural ecosystem conditions are maintained with minimal or no human activity (logging, agriculture, etc.). Locally these forests are called center or height.

White sand forest or varillal forest

It grows on white sandy soils are known locally varillales. They are very special and fragile ecosystems that have high soil heterogeneity and different drainage conditions, which has given rise to a unique flora and fauna adapted to very poor environmental conditions.

Secondary Forest

Forest with pioneer species that grow after the crops have been abandoned, after the original vegetation has been cleared and has been replaced by herbaceous vegetation, then scrubs, and later trees, heliofita pioneer species. As time passes the soil and microclimate conditions are changing, and primary forest species in the composition of vegetation, state which is called transitional forest.


Given the different characteristics of the groups who visit us (locals, Peruvians in general, foreign, domestic and foreign researchers, college, university, research assistants, etc., rates differ in each case.

Auditorium rent C.I. Allpahuayo. S/. 58.30
Dining room rent (includes kitchenware). S/. 23.30
1.Students in general. S/. 5.80
2.Foreign Students. S/. 17.50
3.National professionals. S/. 17.50
4.Foreign professionals. S/. 35.00
5.General Public. S/. 35.00
a)Public Educational Institutions
1.Students, Primary, Secondary Level. S/. 0.58
2.Universities or Superior Inst. S/. 1.17
a) Public Educational Institutions
1.Initial, Primary, Secondary Students. S/. 1.17
2.Universities or Superior Inst. S/. 3.50
b) Individuals: people
1.Over 15 years old. S/. 9.30
2.Children under 14 years of age S/. 5.80
1.Students. S/. 17.50
2.Visitors. S/. 23.30

Guidelines for researchers


  1. CARE OF THE ENVIRONMENT: The research center, takes its commitment to promoting sustainable development and respect for the environment. That is why we suggest minimizing the direct impact of their activities on the environment.
  2. INSTITUTIONAL PROPERTIES: You must use the institutional resources efficiently and appropriately, and only for the development project. Also, protect the resources and facilities of the biological stationand preserve and prevent inappropriate uses that might result in economic damage or deterioration.
  3. SAFETY: Observe the following precautions to avoid any eventuality:
    • Never go to do field activities without first tell someone where you will, This is vital if we must look . We recommend you always carry with you a compass, map of trails, a flashlight, waterproof and always use high boots.
    • Do not use equipment which does not have proper training. This includes tree climbing equipment, electric generators, chainsaws, etc.
    • Be careful with cuts, bites, stings, scratches, pins, etc. Any break in the skin must be treated with appropriate medications.
    • Avoid eating foods whose provenance is unknown, and could endanger your health.
    • Inside the hostel, leave the boots in the place assigned to them, and wear sandals, so help keep facilities clean.


  1. COVER LETTER: Before planning your research you should send a cover letter for any kind of research. In addition to the requested letters should send their CV (no more than 3 pages).

    In addition, the researcher interested should send their research proposal clearly and summary, which will be evaluated prior to approval. It is important that you notify the date of their arrival in at least one month in advance.

  2. PERMISSION: Researchers wishing to study at the biological station must have all permits stipulated by Peruvian law. The principal investigator must submit a copy of the permit granted before entering the work area.
  3. HEALTHINESS: Researchers must have a personal first aid kit, before his departure to the CIA. Will be required to sign a liability waiver letter to the person responsible for institutional logistic. The IIAP will do whatever is in their power to respond to emergencies; however, it is not legally responsible for the health and / or safety of researchers or their assistants.

During your visit:

  1. PERSONAL STUFF: Consideration should be cause minimal impact on vegetation and wildlife, if your job requires delineation of areas, marking trees or some other element of permanence in the woods, please inform the site administrator. No tree or shrub can be cut in the CIA and its neighboring areas, without prior authorization. Under no circumstances should cut the bark of trees as a sign of mark.
  2. PROJECT SUPERVISION: Researchers are obliged to cooperate with supervision and institutional control, and with officials acting in the exercise of these functions. Failure to comply with this obligation, false statements, those which aim to be misleading or simply hide information, can lead to penalties as well as other actions of civil or criminal law that the institution sees fit.
  3. BIOCIRCUITS: If you find a path that requires maintenance, Please note this location, and tell us to take the actions necessary for maintenance. If you work outside the established trail system, please do not use machete. When you leave the field, please indicate on the board "Activities of the day",which route to follow during the day and when you expect to be back, also always carry water, flashlight, compass, waterproof, a map of the trails and use high boots.
  4. TOOLS: The IIAP can provide some tools and other equipment for research, with the approval of the coordination of research or center manager.Under no circumstances publications library will be removed.
  5. FEEDING:The service kitchen is open 24 hours, because there will always be subject to the availability of time each researcher, the same shall have all inputs for food. Water in the research center is not potable, however it is adequate for personal hygiene. To drink, you will find in the kitchen a bowl of water.
  6. REST: The hours of rest is generally 10 pm to 6 am, so that the center should be silent in these hours. If you want to listen to music, please use headphones, be considerate of others and maintain low noise.
  7. ELECTRICITY: The power station is 220 V. have a backup generator in case of loss of electricity.
  8. WEATHER: Weather conditions at the center are unpredictable, moisture area may cause deterioration in electronics, so keep computers, cameras, etc. in dry and safe places.
  9. WILDLIFE: As far as possible be avoided disturbing the animals and never feed. Do not touch any animal that you are unfamiliar or for those who are not trained, this includes all vertebrates and invertebrates (spiders, caterpillars, scorpions, etc.).

After your visit:

  1. RESEARCH RESULTS: The IIAP is interested in the research being conducted in the area and the destination of the data collected by researchers. Please help us to develop a scientific database for the area, sending reports, publications, photographs, GPS points, maps, PowerPoint presentations and other research results.
  2. IDEAS: If you have ideas related to the monitoring of their field of study or were born project ideas for the future, please let us know.
  3. EQUIPMENT: All equipment must be removed from the forest or water bodies at the end of your research project. El personal de la estación es instruido para eliminar todos los desechos de la selva no autorizado,if a researcher does not. Researchers can leave their equipment in warehouses Center, after coordination with the administrator. Center staff will do its best to protect equipment; however, it is not liable for damage or loss.
  4. DEPARTURE: If your output is temporary, please inform the researcher resident and report your return date with several days in advance.


The Research Institute of the Peruvian Amazon has an internship program that provides an opportunity for young students or recent graduates, from around the country and around the world, to meet and work at the Allpahuayo Research Center, mechanisms for protection and promotion offered by the Inter-American System of Human Rights. One benefit of this program is to further the knowledge gained during the internship is applied in the country of origin of the intern.

the biological station has opportunities for young students of Biology, Ecology, graduates,and related careers., during the internship, participants have the opportunity to work alongside professionals and officials of IIAP in different activities developed by the biological station. The internships are unpaid.

Those interested should download all the documents with the requirements for acceptance into the biological station.

  • Aplication form, (in spanish). Descargar
  • Volunteer Requirements, (in spanish). Descargar
  • Contact Us

    If you have any questions or precise to know more about the biological station "José Álvarez Alonso", please Email Us.

  • Manager: Fredy Árevalo Dávila .
  • Telephone: (065) 265515 - (065) 265516 anexo 131 .
  • E-mail:
  • Address: highway Iquitos-Nauta km 26.8. Distrito San Juan Bautista –Maynas - Loreto.
  • Gallery