The End of an Era

After over 6 years of intensive research and community development work in and around the Yachana Reserve, GVI Amazon is coming to a close. We have finished our final research project (look forward to our Road Effects paper, coming soon!) and are handing over the project to our partner, The Yachana Foundation. They will continue to maintain and monitor the reserve, using it as an hands-on science education center for students -- we're very excited to see what fabulous things this next generation of scientists find! For more detail on GVI Amazon's closure, and our accomplishments over the years, please read on...
GVI Amazon Closure Statement

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A Healthy Obsession with Pooh!

Matt, one of our staff members has brought a new style survey to GVI, he's been looking into ways of luring dung beetles in order to assess the abundance and diversity of the population within the Yachana Reserve. There has been much discussion as to what would be the most attractive bait for the trap! Four trials have been undertaken, each time with 10 traps. The bait is suspended above the trap - pooh sticks some might say! The outcome has been somewhat variable. The first three attempts yielded few beetles;5, 28 and 4. Was this down to poor quality horse pooh? It would seem so. The fourth trial saw Matt practising his Spanish with a local farmer who was in his field tending to his cows "Busco caca para la sciencia!" asked Matt somewhat tentatively. The farmer was happy enough for Matt to collect some of his cow's finest and he headed off to set the traps. 48 hours later he returned with a couple of eager EMs to find somewhere in the region of 298 dung beetles, included in which were an estimated 10 species, or quite probably more. They are now left with the task of painstakeingly IDing all the little critters and have certainly got their work cut out!