Positive, selfless, open-minded, hard-working, considerate, energetic, observant, reliable, fun-loving, kind-hearted, generous, easy-going, passionate, inspired, and inspirational….These are the words that describe every member of our team this year. The impact this small group of students left on the community of Parismina is permanent and it is the beginning of a postive relationship between a struggling community and our small but mighty college that will bring change for the people of Parismina and Fleming students. Thank you Hannah Albani, Kari Jansen, Jacob Knight, and Kate Powell (listed alphabetically because I cannot place any one of you above the other!). A special thank you to the community of Parismina and to my good friend and partner in all Costa Rican endeavours – Mario Garcia. And last but not least, thank you to Michael Fraser, Barbara Elliot, Jill Stocker, and Linda Skilton for your continued support of this project.
Our first night in Costa Rica. Left to right: Josh, Kate, Hannah, Kari, and Jacob
Lunch at a local cafe in Parismina. The entire team including Mario (far left)
The team at the Pacuare camp
Goofing around again
The ultimate look – Blue Steel
Posted in Applied & Community Based Research, Costa Rica, EM 2013, Jacob, Josh, Kari, Kate, Monitoring Amphibians & Reptiles, Reptile Biology & ID, Species at Risk | Comments (0)
On the night of the 25th I went on a snake walk on the Raphia trail with Josh and Kiersten and was able to catch my first snake here in Costa Rica, and used a snake hook to retrieve it down from a tree. It was a very long brown blunt headed tree snake. As I was getting the snake down it musked on me, as i was below it. The musk landed on my face which may have upset most people but it didn’t faze me at all because I was just so excited to have gotten the chance.
The massive pit we had to dig to find an unhatched Leatherback nest. My team mates from left to right include Caitlin McManus (Fleming Environmental Visual Communications student); Dan Jenner (Fleming/Trent Ecological Restoration student); Khrissy (Cano Palma Turtle Project Co-ordinator); Kate Klarer (volunteer and University of Ottawa student)
On the 28th during morning patrol there was a Leather back excavation. It took a lot of hard work and digging in the sun, heat, and dirt. We were well over a meter down and about 2 meters around. A team had previously tried to excavate the nest 2 days before but were not successful. We were about to give up when we found the ID tag. The eggs once finally were found were below the water table. Although it was sad it was extremely interesting to see different levels of development in the baby turtles. Most of them were in stage 3 which is three quarters of development.
A Leatherback turtle that did not finish development. The nest was most likely flooded during late stage of development.
Later that day we were able to do a snake workup of an annulated boa. This was the type of snake I was most looking forward to seeing. Later that night the whole group went for a boat ride with Josh as he taught us about ecological diversity we were privlidged enough to see a Tamandua in the trees searching for food. A tamandua is a type of ant-eater. I also completed a night patrol that night and completed about 12 miles on the beach within morning and night patrols.
The next morning patrol I completed was on the 30th of July. There was an empty green sea turtle carapace on the beach. This was from either the first or second night here. It was the turtle that had been tied up by poachers. Which reminded me of why people are working so hard to patrol the beach and conserve all of the amazing wildlife that is here.
Posted in Cano Palma, Jacqueline, Monitoring Amphibians & Reptiles, Reptile Biology & ID, Tropical Field Ecology | Comments (0)
Me and Fred, my gecko friend for the day. He’s an adult male Yellow-headed Gecko, Gonatodes albigularis.
The time seems to be going so quickly now, I can’t believe we are into our fourth week at Cano Palma already. On Friday we had brunch because two of the York University interns were leaving. After that, there were chocolate and sugar cinnamon donuts and for dinner there was pizza.
For my research project, I am doing a gecko census to establish an idea of the territories of the geckos in the kitchen. I record general survey data which includes start and end time and weather as well as any notes about the survey. For the individual records, I have time, location (east wall or south wall), substrate (what it’s on), relative age (juvenile, subadult, or adult), gender (male or female), and notes. I have done three surveys so far. After I have collected enough data, I will analyze it and try to find where gecko territories are.
Instead of going for the usual three o’clock group hike, we got to go for a boat ride on the canal at six o’clock. We saw a tamandua at the start of our ride. We also saw a few bare-throated tiger herons. At the end of the night we released the annulated boa that Dad caught last night. The last few days have been hot and sunny. I’m so happy the weather is changing.
Tamanduas are a small, arboreal, anteater (more like termite eater).
Annulated boa, Corallus annulatus.
Posted in Cano Palma, Liam, Monitoring Amphibians & Reptiles, Reptile Biology & ID, Tropical Field Ecology | Comments (1)