CAYENNE, French Guiana – Two hikers lost in the dense jungle of French Guiana for weeks survived by eating the only things at hand: beetles and other insects, frogs and spiders.
The French hikers, Guilhem Nayral and Loic Pillois, were found on Thursday, French authorities said.
They had left Feb. 14 for a hike from the Grand Kanori rapids on the river Approuague to the tiny village of Saul. Their families alerted authorities on Feb. 28, two days after they were scheduled to arrive.
"After 12 days, we hadn't arrived in Saul. We thought that someone would come looking for us, so we stopped. We waited for three weeks in the same place. We heard helicopters pass, and we figured that we had to make ourselves seen. So we cut down trees to make a fire," Pillois told reporters, according to RFO television.
"We ate palm seeds, we drank water because we always had a river next to us, where we washed. We also trapped insects and beetles. We ate frogs and tarantulas."
"Finally, after three weeks, we began hiking again for three hours a day. It rained so much, we had lots of trouble with the swamps, the climbs and the descents," he said. "Then, at last, we stopped because Guilhem started to feel weak. Since we heard a plane from Saul, I said to myself, 'we're only a day or two away, so I'm going to Saul to call a helicopter."'
Pillois arrived Thursday in Saul, and told police that Nayral was waiting a five- or six-hour hike away, French authorities said. Helicopters were sent to collect him.