Guyana: Geography: The Savanna Region – Part 4 of 4

The Savanna Region – Geography of Guyana – Part 4 of 4
–A Documentary …. by Lal Balkaran
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This is the fourth and final documentary on the Geography of Guyana in text and pictures that focusses on the fourth natural region known as the Savanna Region. It is over 25 minutes of viewing and consists of six maps, over 200 lines of text, and almost 100 photographs, the majority of which are stunning. The documentary profiles and captures the way to look at this region – both physical, political, economic, cultural, and human.         
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The Savanna Region comprises the Rupununi and Pakaraima in the southwest of the country. It is an area that is 37,000 sq. kms and represents a continuation of the savannas in Brazil and Venezuela where it is an off-shoot of the Gran Sabana. The Rupununi stretches from the foothills of the Pakaraima in the north to Mamirpawa in the south.
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This part of the region is a vast area of some 20,000 sq. kms comprising dry grasslands, curatella or sand-ox trees (kai n’ bay in Wapishana), termite mounds, hills, mountains, tree-lined creeks, ité palms, and occasional lakes. To those who have never seen such open country, the first time they set eyes on the savanna is eventful. It is a large expanse of flat or undulating country, hard and rough, with tufts of grass and the sandbox trees, and mountains in the horizon. The sandbox trees, shaped by the constant wind, bend as if in reverence to nature. Huge boulders are found throughout the region as well.
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The majestic Kanuku Mountains or Mountains of Life divide the Rupununi into North, where the Makushi people live, and the South where the Wapishana can be found. The Northern Rupununi extends from the Siparuni River and the foothills of the Pakaraima to the Kanukus while the South Rupununi extends from the Kanukus to Mamirpawa in the south savanna beyond Achawib. The Rupununi is considered one of the last great wilderness areas in the world and the most intact in South America.
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The Kanukus form the southern ridge of an ancient rift valley with the South Pakaraima or Iwokrama Range to the North and the North Rupununi savanna forming the valley floor. The Region contains perhaps the most spectacular landscape scenery of rolling hills, mountains, mountain ranges, rivers, creeks, and lakes as you will see from the photos in this documentary. The flat plains between the Kanuku and Pakaraima mountains are a key characteristic of the North Rupununi where six major rivers run through – Essequibo, Takatu, Rupununi, Rewa, Siparuni, and Burro-Burro. Shea Rock and Shiriri Mountain in the South Rupununi are landmarks that can be seen from huge distances.
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The picturesque Ireng River in the north is the only major river in Guyana that flows in a southerly direction. It also forms part of the western border with Brazil and flows through grassy rolling hills as it flows into the Takatu which flows onto the Rio Branco which in turn flows into the Rio Negro, a tributary of the mighty Amazon. The Ireng contains some spectacular waterfalls including Chiung Falls and the scenic and much visited Orinduik Falls that cascades over red jasper terraces. The Amerindian tribes that mainly dwell in the Region are the Patamona, Makushi, and Wapishana.
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See how these people farm, fish, and live their daily lives. Watch vacqueros or local cowboys in action. Key economic activities in the Region include air transport, gold mining, eco-tourism, birding, cattle ranching, farming, fishing, light manufacturing, balata bleeding, leather works, craft work, hammock making, and wildlife export. With its proximity to Brazil and Venezuela, living in the Savanna Region makes you feel part of Latin America rather than the Caribbean. Relax, enjoy, and learn so much more about the most scenic natural region of Guyana – the Savanna Region – in this well-researched and carefully put together 25-minute documentary.
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Music — Song  –Jazz Soul And Love – Cinematic Tunes — Artist – Cinematic Tunes
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