The Amazon region of Ecuador, also known as Amazonia or Oriente, has an area of approximately 120,000 km² of the Amazon. It includes the provinces of Sucumbíos, Orellana, Napo, Pastaza, Morona Santiago and Zamora. It extends over an area of exuberant vegetation, typical of humid-tropical forests, representing 43% of the Ecuadorian territory. Its limits are marked by the Andes Mountains in the western part of this region, while Peru and Colombia are in the southern and eastern limits, respectively.
The Amazon is one of the regions that provide the Ecuadorian State with the oil that is exported. The main activities in the region are oil extraction, commerce, tourism, cattle ranching and agriculture.
The average annual temperature ranges between 15 and 40 °C. The Amazon ecosystem, especially its tropical rainforest, contains the richest and most complex plant and animal habitats in the world.
The existence of a prolific flora and fauna together with extraordinary variations of macro and micro habitats is the most important characteristic of this region.
As dictated by their sense of survival, various ethnic groups have occupied this area since before colonial times, integrating and forming part of this special environment, from which they have extracted ancestral and useful knowledge of the true natural resources of this region, such as ethno-geobotany. The indigenous organization of the Shuar is an example of the overcoming of its inhabitants.
In the Amazon, there are two national parks that are home to natural wealth; Yasuní and Cuyabeno.
Yasuní National Park extends over an area of 9820 square kilometers in the provinces of Orellana and Pastaza, between the Napo River and the Curaray River in the Amazon basin about 250 kilometers southeast of Quito. The park, mainly jungle, was recognized by UNESCO in 1989 as a Biosphere Reserve and is part of the territory where the Huaorani people are located. Two Huaorani factions, the Tagaeri and Taromenane, are uncontacted groups.
The term “Yasuní”, without knowing its linguistic origin, means “sacred land” as it is generally interpreted by communities in the area.
The Cuyabeno Wildlife Production Reserve is located in the province of Sucumbíos and is home to one of the largest concentrations of wildlife, both flora and fauna. It holds a record for the highest levels of biodiversity in the world. This area is home to the Cofanes and the Siona-Secoya.