Tamshiyacu Tahuayo Regional Conservation Area spans an area of 4,200.8 km2 comprising floodable and upland forest of the Peruvian Amazon. It is known for its abundant wildlife.
It has high levels of biodiversity. Hundreds of species of mammals, primates, birds, fish and reptiles have been documented, including several that are endemic as well as either endangered or threatened.
The reserve was established to conserve ecosystems of upland and floodable rainforests, as well as ecological and evolutionary processes of the area, guaranteeing the sustainable use of the wildlife by the local population.
Tamshiyacu Tahuayo has several research and tourist activities focused on wildlife-spotting, including camping, hiking, boating, bird watching and fishing.
Much research has been conducted in this area since the mid-1970s. Between 1988 and 1990 the importance of conserving the area was highlighted due its unique and vast biodiversity, especially the high diversity of primates as the threatened bald uakari (Cacajao calvus ucayalii), endemic to Peru, as well as other species recently recorded as the Ranitomeya uakarii. at During the 1980s, in order to stop the exploitation and degradation of natural resources that started around 1970, local villages of the Alto Tahuayo River and the Blanco River took actions to protect their resources. This local organization influenced the establishment of the reserve.
Villagers later joined and with some researchers from the United States, University of Kent, The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), the Peruvian Instituto Veterinario de Investigaciones Tropicales y de Altura (IVITA), and the Rainforest Conservation Fund (RCF) to start a program of sustainable development.
On May 21, 2007, the Regional Government of Loreto signed the Ordenanza Regional 011-2007-GRL-CR that approved the technical proposal for the establishment of the protected area. Finally, on May 15, 2009, Ministry of Environment signed the Decreto Supremo 010-2009-MINAM, law that created the Regional Conservation Area Tamshiyacu Tahuayo.
ACRCTT is located within the Department of Loreto, in the north of Peru. It is 420,080.25 ha (4,200.8 km2; 1’038,040.9 acres) in area.
The reserve comprises rivers, lakes, canals, oxbow lakes, swamps, several types of upland and lowland forests including varzea, igapo, and terra firme.
The conservation area includes part of the Iquitos várzea ecoregion. ACRCTT has many world records on diversity of plants, primates and mammals species.
ACRCTT has habitat that supports a known 1650 species of plants, however it is estimated that there are 2500-3500 species of plants in ACRCTT. It is possible to find trees such cedar (Cedrela odorata), mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla), and others.
The US Chicago Field Museum’s Rapid Biological Inventory, found in the ACRCTT 240 species of fish, 77 species of amphibians, 45 species of reptiles, 400 species of birds, and 39 species of terrestrial mammals, including 14 species of primates.
Some of the wildlife that inhabits the ACRCTT area are monkeys the huapo Colorado or bald uakari (Cacajao calvus ucayalii), the squirrel monkey (Saimiri sciureus), the red howler monkey (Alouatta seniculus); the pink dolphin (Inia geoffrensis), the grey dolphin (Sotalia fluviatilis), the brown-throated sloth (Bradypus variegatus), the capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris), the spectacled caiman (Caiman crocodilus), the black caiman (Melanosuchus niger), the South American tapir (Tapirus terrestris), the giant river otter (Pteronura brasiliensis), the giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla), giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus), jaguar (Panthera onca), the Amazonian manatee (Trichechus inunguis), the wattled curassow (Crax globulosa), the hoazin (Opisthocomus hoazin), the harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja), among others.
ACRCTT is located on the Amazon rainforest, near the Amazon River. This protected area is located on the lowland jungle (Spanish: selva baja) also known as Omagua region or Amazon basin. It has annual temperatures ranging from 25 °C (77 °F) to 33 °C (91 °F) and an annual rainfall of 3,000 millimetres (120 in)
Although ACRCTT it is possible to visit year-round, the busiest season for visitors is from July to August, during the low river season, which is also when mosquitoes are least active. This is also the high tourist season throughout Peru.
Similar to the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve, ACRCTT is focused on wildlife viewing, but is not as popular and less visited than Pacaya-Samiria. As of 2016, there are several Lodges operating in the ACRCTT from affordable and comfortable as the Curassow Amazon Lodge to expensive and luxurious as the Tree House Lodge. Many lodges offer private bungalows with private bathrooms. Many lodges have no electricity, however, some like the Tahuayo Lodge have power via solar panels. Only Amazonia Expeditions Research Center Lodge is built inside the boundary of the reserve. All other lodges have been built just outside the reserve's boundaries. Most visitors access the protected area via Iquitos but also sometimes from Nauta.
Visitors partake in boating on rivers, lagoons and oxbow, hiking and camping, these activities are focused on observe wildlife. Also travelers may fish and navigate the Amazon River.
ACRCTT has great biodiversity and spans over an important flyway of migratory birds hence in important for bird watching and bird photography also.