Observing the flora and fauna in Chilean Patagonia is a fascinating and simple activity as it requires no specialist equipment; it is only necessary to move with care and respect for the ecosystem in which you will be immersed, and it is ideal to take a waterproof jacket along with waterproof trousers and shoes.
Generally, in Chile there are not animals who pose a danger to human beings, such as large carnivores or poisonous snakes. The biggest predator, the puma, normally fears man and prefers to stay far away. There are only three types of poisonous spider and a very low rate of incidents. In this region, the puma, the guiña (Andean mountain cat), the zorro culpeo (Andean fox), the huemul (deer), the pudú (the smallest deer in the world), and the huillín (southern river otter) can all be found.
The Aysén region is an exceptional place for bird watching as, due to the scarce intervention of man, the majority of the birds do not fear man’s presence and it is possible to watch them from just a few meters away. It is even possible that the curious chucao approaches you. The most notable birds in the region are majestic Andean condors, flamingos, caiquenes (wild geese), bandurrias, tiuques, falcons, friendly kingfishers, curious chucaos, hummingbirds, and a variety of seabirds such as cormorants, Humboldt penguins, albatrosses, and many more.
A varied species of mammals endangered by extinction can be found, whose habitats have been declared Protected Areas or National Parks. In the channels and fjords a rich population of marine life is found, including whales, seals, and marine birds.
The native flora of Aysén is characterized by areas of impenetrable woods of coigües, canelos, tepas, lumas, tiacas, and mañios, as well as an undergrowth of nalcas, quilas, chilcos, and an innumerable variety of ferns. In spring (October to December) it is possible to observe delicate orchids in Queulat National Park, together with numerous types of moss and fern in the dense natural woods.
In the highest mountain zones, we find the beautiful lenga, whose leaves turn an intense red color in autumn. In the most open area of the Patagonian pampa, the vegetation is characterized by shorter trees which can sustain the wind, like the ñire, and native grasses that support the low temperatures and snow, like the coirón or the magallanic fescue. Also, in spring, the paths are marked by never-ending rows of lupine flowers of intense blues, pinks, yellows, and whites, presenting a marvelous spectacle.