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¡SOBRE México!: Student Opportunities for Biological Research in Mexico

¡SOBRE México!


¡SOBRE México!: Projects

Investigating How Animals Cope with Intense Seasonality in the Tropical Dry Forest

Collaborators: Dr. Daniel Beck and Dr. Andres Garcia Aguayo
Subject: Vertebrate evolution and adaptations to strong seasonality
Field of Research: Herpetology / Ecology
Location: Estación de Biología, Chamela


Intense seasonality defines dry tropical forest and is a major driver of evolution. Yet little is known about how vertebrates respond to the striking differences in habitat structure and resource availability that occur between the dry and wet seasons.

Kissing Bugs (Triatoma) and Chagas Disease

Collaborators: Dr. Gabe Stryker and Dr. Víctor Manuel Guillermo Sánchez Cordero Dávila
Subject: Triatoma and Chagas Disease
Field of Research: Molecular Parasitology
Location: Estación de Biología Chamela

Investigate the host-parasite relationships between Triatoma spp., the Trypanosomes they transmit, and the mammals that serve as hosts.

Response of a Tropical Dry Forest to Category 5 Hurricane Patricia

Collaborators: Dr. María Eugenia González del Castillo Aranda, UNAM; Dr. Katherine Renton, Jefe de la Estacion de Biologia, Chamela; Andres Garcia-Aguayo, Estacion de Biologia Chamela
Subject: Impact of hurricanes on tropical forests
Field of Research: Ecology, ecological disturbance
Location: Estación de Biología, Chamela


     CWU and Mexican scientists are using a variety of techniquesto monitor small vertebrates (amphibians, lizards, turtles) and some of their invertebrate parasites (ticks and kissing bugs) in the forests around Estación de Biología, Chamela, which received a direct hit from Hurricane Patricia in October, 2015. The research will yield a better understanding of the impact of woody debris deposited by the hurricane on microhabitat use and community structure of ectotherms that inhabit the forest.

Variation in Food and Nesting Resources for Parrots and Other Cavity-nesting Birds

Collaborators: Dr. Daniel Beck, Dr. Katherine Renton, and Dr. Jorge Vega Rivera
Subject: Resource variation for birds in seasonally dry tropical forest
Field of Research: Conservation Biology and Avian Ecology
Location: Estación de Biología, Chamela


Dr. Renton and her students are characterizing spatial and temporal variation in food (fruiting phenology of trees) and habitat resources (tree cavities) used by dry forest birds. She has invited CWU students to join her in monitoring transects in three habitat types (deciduous forest, semi-deciduous forest, and watercourses) to test for habitat variation in resource availability.

Examples of specific projects include:

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