Our Mission

To protect and study wildlife using hands-on education and innovations in conservation technology.

About Us

Our first foray into wildlife research began as early as 2009, with the beginnings of a study into tamarin reproductive biology. In 2013, we acquired 501(c)3 accreditation and began to offer research training programs in field biology, as well as courses in tropical biology and field methods. In 2018, we expanded our focus to include bats, small mammals, and birds and also began an ongoing adventure in field-based conservation genomics laboratories. We currently offer research support to three field laboratories we assisted in establishing on three continents.

To date, we have trained 313 research scientists, providing an average of 2 scholarships per field course. 

Conservation

Peru has recorded 508 mammal species across 50 families, roughly 10% of global mammal diversity. There is also correspondingly high plant, avian and amphibian diversity. We concentrate our research and education efforts in the Madre de Dios region, which is home to one of the world’s largest artisanal and small-scale gold mining industries that has operated largely illegally since its meteoric rise following the global recession in 2008. During that economic downturn, the annual rate of deforestation in the region tripled, with the loss of 6,145 hectares per year through 2012 closely following rising gold prices. We strive for our research and educational activities to inform present-day and future policy makers for sustainable stewardship of the  Amazon basin.

Three Goals

Our research programs began with a focus on 11 nonhuman primate species at the the Estación Biológica Río Los Amigos (EBLA) in southeastern Peru, and long-term primate monitoring remains our largest project. We approach this research from a variety of perspectives including social behavior, disease ecology, space use, reproduction, and population growth. Some of our main interests, e.g. community disease ecology, have expanded to include other taxonomic groups such as birds, bats, and small terrestrial mammals.

Each scientist on our research team leads an independent investigation that is integrated with our core wildlife monitoring program that takes place annually between May and August. We use a combination of hands-on and remote sensing monitoring techniques. [Learn more]

Education

Education is our most powerful tool. All our research projects serve as a platform for annual in-depth tropical field biology training programs. We provide unique hands-on opportunities for people from any walk of life to learn the wildlife monitoring techniques employed by our research team leaders. This includes an end-to-end workflow, from sampling to data analysis and reporting. 

Upon completion of our programs, participants have confidence and the know-how to engage in active research and conservation across the globe. Our work does not end when a participant departs from our field programs – we continue to offer support and assistance toward realizing future education or career options. Today we bring upwards of 50 participants to our sites each year, many of whom return in subsequent years as field program managers and instructors.

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Research Affiliations

We are grateful for prior support from:

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