efe-epaBy Alvaro Mellizo Iquitos, Peru

They are not mutants and they don't live in the sewers of New York. They don't star in films or television series. However, the task of the taricaya turtles is a tough one - fully as ambitious and worthwhile as that of a superhero - namely, saving the Amazon.

As if that weren't enough, Podonecmis unifilis - the scientific name of this species - is also winning another noteworthy fight: recovering from its near-extinct status in the Nanay River region near Iquitos, in the heart of Peru's tropical jungle.