Tropical Field Ecology and Conservation Course in Mexico
The first tropical field ecology and conservation class was led by Dr. Kathryn E. Stoner and Dr. Wiebke J. Boeing to southern Mexico in the state of Chiapas. Nine FWCE students participated in this unique 2 week field class which focused on using fish and wildlife techniques applied to conduct short research projects. The diverse tropical rainforest and its rivers in the Selva Lacandona were our classroom. Some of the highlights included seeing a jaguar, spider monkeys, howler monkeys, Scarlet macaws, snakes, and collared peccaries. Our photo trap cameras also captured pictures of brocket deer, mountain lions, ocelots, and tapirs. The class participated in mist netting for bats and was privileged to see some of the rarest and most fascinating bats in the Neotropics including the false vampire bat, the wrinkled-face bat, and the sucker-footed bat. Sharing the adventure were undergrads Miranda ValVerde, Pedro Castillo, Hunter Falco, Dominique Lujan, Elizabeth Parker and Jacob Townsend along with graduate students Rachel Burke, Michael Canton and Sabrina Deeley. Students will present their research projects from this course at our FWCE Wednesday Brown Bag Seminar on August 26th and Sept 2nd in Knox Hall 142 from 12:00-1:00 pm. All are welcome to attend. We anticipate offering this low budget class every other spring and hope to have some small scholarships available to further alleviate expenses. Please check with the FWCE office for further information.