EFB/FOR 523 Tropical Ecology
State University of New York, College of Environmental Science & Forestry, Syracuse, NY

Course Info
Learn Tropical Ecology in the Amazon rainforest and high Andes of Ecuador over Spring break. Explore the principles of tropical ecology, nature conservation, and sustainable resource management during an intensive field study in Ecuador over Spring break and in weekly on-campus meetings during the Spring semester. Learn about theories explaining the high biological diversity of the tropical terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems in some of the most biodiverse places on our planet (the Tropical Andes Biodiversity Hotspot and Yasuni Biosphere Reserve). Our main base in Ecuador is at the Tiputini Biodiversity Station, deep in the rainforests of the Yasuni Biosphere Reserve, but our field explorations include diverse tropical ecosystems across the Andes (from 300 to 4,000 m above sea level): tropical dry forests, cloud forests, paramo, montane tropical forests, and lowland rainforest with aquatic whitewater river and lagoon ecosystems. We will canoe and hike in the wilderness where one can observe elusive giant river otters, river dolphins, arapaima, tapir or jaguar, as well as ten species of monkeys and countless bird, insect, and plant species. The ability to swim and a fee covering travel and lodging in Ecuador are required. The course has a 25 year tradition (since 1992), with field trips to the Caribbean until 2017 (see here). Prerequisites: one year of college biology and a general ecology course. [3 credits; counts toward EFB field experience]
Course Instructors: Donald Stewart and Martin Dovciak
Watch the videoclips below to learn more about the Tiputini Biodiversity Station and lowland rainforest
See the links below for more information (watch for updates for Spring 2020):
Photos from some of the field trip destinations and ecosystems visited:
Class at the Tiputini Biodiversity Station
Tiputini lagoon with giant otters, arapaima, and the hoatzin
Our group exploring lowland rainforest, posing with some large buttresses
Palms and Cecropia along the Tiputini river
Waterfall embedded in montane rainforests in the Andes
Class floating on the Tiputini river, heading back to the Andes
Cloud ceiling, paramo, and polylepis forest in the high Andes above Quito
Cloud forests and agriculture at the Palulahua Reserve
Class at the Jerusalem dry forest near Quito

© 2019. Dovciak & Stewart. Some materials may be protected by other copyrights and may not be reposted without the permission of the original copyright holder.