These photos are evidence of the scale of destructive gold mining in the Madre de Dios region.

An excerpt from the article 43 facts about Peru

Pits dug by illegal miners form a river trail as these people follow the paths of old rivers where valuable minerals have been deposited for hundreds of years. These are hundreds of pools from which vegetation has been removed, filled with water, and surrounded by mud - thanks to the reflected light they look like rivers of liquid gold.