There are two incredible things that make the Blue Phantom Plecos habitat even more special. The first one is that in some areas the chrome rocks are filled with some of the world’s largest rock art, also referred to as pre-columbian petroglyphs.

We turn on our small flashlights and start walking upstream on the Orinoco river bank. It is 4:30 am and I know that I am going to document one of the most spectacular places on earth. Maria, Alipio and I are carrying the heavy photo gear, we are huffing and puffing as we walk over a sandy stretch. The dry, soft river sand sinks with our weight making it harder to walk. They follow behind me as I choose the perfect spot to video and photograph the sunrise. It is hard to describe the magnificence of this place, it irradiates a powerful sense of history, but not a learnt history, but one that comes from deep inside you. I guess the best description I can come up with is: the place where the universe was born, where everything was created, where life started, you feel in the cosmogony. This incredible place is called the Atures Rapids and it’s the home of a very special fish, the still scientifically undescribed Blue Phantom Pleco, Hemiancistrus sp.