Los Amigos Biological Field Station
Meet the Students:
This course was small but diverse, with students hailing from three countries, led by two experienced instructors – Gideon Erkenswick and Alice Poirier.
Perched at the top of a 30m-tall tree, students get a bird’s eye view of the rainforest canopy
One of the smallest neotropical snakes in existence – Leptotyphlops diaplocius is often mistaken for a worm until you see its tongue emerge!
A red brocket deer (Mazama americana) is caught unawares by our course while riding up the pristine Los Amigos River
A puma (Puma concolor) saunters past our camera traps, with not one but TWO cubs in tow!
Students see an incredibly gorgeous bird, a band-tailed manakin (Pipra fasciicauda), up close during a mist-netting session
A dwarf caiman (Paleosuchus troglodytes) emerges from under a log as students cross a small stream in the floodplain forest
An Amazon tree boa (Corallus hortulanus) settles under a cabin and is gently returned to the forest
We are surprised by a three-striped arrow poison dart frog (Ameerga trivittata) on a night hike
In this course, each student undertook an independent study into a topic of their choice. The options were limitless: they could pick a project on anything from insects to large primates. Each student submitted a proposal for their project, which was reviewed by the instructors. Once they had a plan in place, they spent three days carrying out their study. At the end, all results were presented in 10-min talks to everyone present at the field station.
Ashley investigated dominance hierarchies in emperor tamarins (Saguinus imperator): are dominant individuals more likely to feed first and also most often?
Walter studied the differences between lichens in terra firme and floodplain forests at the site
Madeline was interested in whether ants behaved differently when in undisturbed forest as opposed to nearest camp – her illustrations of the different species helped her answer this question
Irina conducted feeding experiments to examine the relationship between the different senses – olfaction/taste/vision – in emperor tamarins (Saguinus imperator)
Kaelyn assessed titi monkey (Callicebus brunneus) responses to an ornate hawk eagle vocalization, specifically assessing if vigilance behaviors increased
Worrell investigated if neotropical bird abundances were different based on habitat using observational surveys along trails.