Land Conservation and Forest Restoration, Science and Research / 23.09.2011

[caption id="attachment_2260" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Peltogyne Purpurea: An endemic species of Costa Rica and Western Panama, now very scarce because of overexplotation for its valuable timber."][/caption] Visiting a tropical forest can be overwhelming because of the enormous number of species found there, especially if you are talking about the Osa Peninsula, one of the most biologically diverse places in the world. This diversity is especially evident amongst plants which, as immobile organisms, are easily observed.  This same diversity, however, can be distressing for a person interested in identifying a species...

Environmental Education, Science and Research / 25.02.2011

Located in southwestern Costa Rica, the Osa is hailed by many as Costa Rica's "last frontier" as it remains a largely untouched, remote wilderness. The Osa's high level of biological diversity coupled with its unique combination of 13 distinct tropical ecosystems have made it a high global conservation priority. With a total area of only 300,000 acres, the Osa is home to 50% of species found in Costa Rica, including many endemic species. When one considers the small size of the Osa, there are few places left on...

Science and Research, Sea Turtles / 30.11.2010

Today SEE Turtles launched its effort to raise money for Friends of the Osa’s annual Sea Turtle Festival.  SEE Turtles is a project of the Ocean Foundation that promotes conservation tourism by acting as a resource for travelers to connect with volunteer programs or to donate to organizations protecting sea turtles and educating communities.  Through the matching fund launched today, you can donate to support FOO’s Sea Turtle Festival in 2011. [caption id="attachment_1857" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Children perform the life cycle of sea turtles at the Second Annual Osa Sea Turtle...

Science and Research, Sea Turtles / 20.10.2010

By Phoebe Edge, Research Field Assistant (RFA) , Sea Turtle Conservation Program. What turtle has the best eye sight? A SEE TURTLE! And that´s why it´s so important that we make sure on night patrols that we spot the ladies before they spot us…the last thing we want to do is scare them back to the sea. A good turtle detective just doesn´t do that. An Olive Ridley could have swum thousands of miles to get to this specific beach  which is why here at Friends of the Osa we do...

Science and Research, Sea Turtles / 29.09.2010

By Phoebe Edge, Research Field Assistant (RFA) , Sea Turtle Conservation Program. [caption id="attachment_1494" align="alignright" width="300"] Park guards and lodge employees on the beach for the sea turtle workshop[/caption] On all of the morning and night patrols we collect quantitative data from the turtles we encounter, as well as from their tracks and nests. This year we have also begun taking a more active approach protecting as many nests as possible from both natural and unnatural predators. Metal mesh nets are used to cover each nest we find on Piro...

Miscellaneous, Science and Research / 20.09.2010

In 2008, in order to determine the distribution and abundance of leaf litter amphibian species, I began a monitoring program around the Piro Research Center along with Federico Bolaños and Gerardo Chaves, herpetologists from the University of Costa Rica. In 2010, with the support of the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund (MBZ), I expanded this project to Los Charcos and Petosa, a private property owned by Bert Kerstetter, an important supporter of Friends of the Osa. The information generated by this project was included in the latest update workshop...

Community Outreach, Science and Research, Sea Turtles / 15.09.2010

By Phoebe Edge, Research Field Assistant of the Sea Turtle Conservation Program We are officially half way through this year´s turtle season and it has been a very busy 3 months indeed! Within this time, we have been continuously patrolling our beaches morning and night to help our favorite reptiles. There seems to never be a dull moment, even the walks to the beach prove exciting! Already, we´ve been fortunate enough to have encountered jaguarundi, coati, caiman, anteaters, armadillos, as well as a variety of beautiful and rare frogs...

Science and Research, Sea Turtles / 07.09.2010

Last month I shared with you the total data for in situ nests, nest predation and false crawls for the month of July, and mentioned that these data were not adjusted for sampling effort. By sampling effort, I mean the amount of time and / or distance that was invested on each beach to get the data. For example, we monitor 2 km of Piro beach and 4.5 km of Pejeperro beach.  So, it isn’t the same to walk Piro beach and find two turtles as it is to walk...

Science and Research / 15.08.2010

By: Zia Mehrabi, University of Oxford. The Osa Biodiversity Center (OBC) provided a brilliant opportunity for biological research at an accessible location bordering Corcovado National Park (CNP). CNP represents the largest remaining tract of tropical lowland forest left standing on the pacific coast of Central America. The Osa Peninsula is phytogeographically unusual with high floral species diversity of an estimated 500 species of woody plants and exhibits high primate abundances as well as being home to charismatic large felids such as puma and jaguar.  The work undertaken at the OBC...

Environmental Education, Science and Research / 22.04.2010

By Samantha Weintraub PhD Student, University of Colorado, Boulder Ecology & Evolutionary Biology When most people wander through a tropical forest, they are awed by the diversity and abundance of plants, mammals and other members of the forest community they see.  While biodiversity is certainly a fantastic feature of tropical landscapes, my interests lie on the darker side of the ecosystem.  Don’t worry, I’m not talking about the force – I’m talking about the soil!  For an ecosystem ecologist, one of the most fascinating aspects of tropical ecology concerns how tropical...