Jhonatan Acosta, a 30-year-old Bolivian man, was rescued after spending 31 days alone in the Amazon rainforest, where he had to resort to eating insects and worms to survive.
He had become separated from his friends during a hunting trip in the Baures municipality in the southwest region of the forest. Acosta managed to collect water in his boots and resorted to drinking his own urine to stay alive.
In the event of confirmation, Acosta’s 31-day lone survival could rank him among the longest-ever survivors to have made it out alive from the Amazon rainforest.
Acosta shared that he intends to give up hunting and devote himself to creating music for God after his miraculous rescue.
Acosta revealed that his knowledge of survival techniques helped him greatly during his 31-day ordeal, where he had to consume insects, drink his urine, eat worms, and even survive animal attacks.
He came face-to-face with jaguars and had to eat tree roots to survive.
‘I asked God for rain,’ Acosta recounted. ‘If it hadn’t rained, I would not have survived.’
Despite walking 40 kilometers in search of civilization, he found himself going around in circles and was exposed to the elements at night, leading to multiple bites from different creatures.
Acosta was reported missing by his family in late January after he got separated from his hunting group. Despite the long time he spent missing, his friends and family never lost hope of finding him alive.
After a month of being missing, Acosta was finally heard shouting “Please, get me out of here!” by people who were looking for him. He had heard their voices near the area where he was lost and was desperate to attract their attention.
Initially, the search party thought it was someone else, but soon realised that it was Acosta. He appeared disheveled and had a broken shotgun in his hands, which made them apprehensive at first. Nonetheless, they were overjoyed to find him and greeted him with shouts of joy and firecrackers in the town of Baures.
Acosta’s younger brother, Horacio, mentioned that they found him with the help of around 17 people, including indigenous Ayoreos. He added that they were at the ranch when someone came running to inform them about finding his brother.
Horacio expressed his gratitude and referred to his brother’s rescue as a miracle, adding that they need to take advantage of the opportunity to be united as a family after going through such a difficult experience.
Acosta was taken to the hospital for treatment of dehydration and was severely underweight. He shared with local media that he was about to lose hope before he was found.
Horacio also mentioned that his brother has decided to give up hunting and instead dedicate himself to making music for God. This decision was inspired by his experience in the Amazon.
‘My brother wants to go to the mountains and he wants to say goodbye. He is going to dedicate himself to making music for God. He is not going to hunt again. He promised that he was going to make music for God and I think he is going to keep it.’
Notably, there have been other cases of survival in the Amazon, such as Yossi Ghinsberg who survived for three weeks in 1981, inspiring a movie, and pilot Antonio Sena who survived for 38 days in 2021 after a crash landing. Additionally, two young brothers were rescued after 25 days lost in the Brazilian part of the rainforest in a separate incident.