BOGOTA: A miracle in the jungle was how Colombians described the discovery Friday of four indigenous children who survived 40 days in the Amazon jungle after their plane crashed.

The children were flying May 1 from Araracuara, in Amazonas province, to San Jose del Guaviare, in southeastern Colombia when the plane malfunctioned and crashed. Three adults, including the children´s mother, died.

The minors began wandering in the jungle, looking for help. It began what would be an intense search by the military -- Operation Hope, reported Anadolu Agency.

Search commandos used different strategies to find the children, even broadcasting a message recorded by their grandmother in their indigenous language telling them to stay in place.

For more than one month, the commandos followed clues left by the children -- a baby bottle, child-sized footprints in the mud, fruit that appeared to be bitten, and a diaper.

Three members of the team belong to an indigenous group who knew the ins and outs of the hostile jungle where the children were stranded.

Lesly Jacobombaire Mucutuy (13), Soleiny Jacobombaire Mucutuy (9), Tien Noriel Ronoque Mucutuy (4) and Cristin Neriman Ranoque Mucutuy (11 months old), were found with signs of dehydration, malnutrition and infections.

Colombian President Gustavo Petro expressed happiness on Twitter.

“A joy for the whole country! The four children who were lost 40 days ago in the Colombian jungle have been found alive,” he said.-Bernama