After working extra-hard on both our final (accepted to be published!) versions of our first projects at Palo Verde – as well as submitting our first drafts of our Monteverde projects – we took a scientific break and headed to the Monteverde biological reserve to check out some cool organisms.. namely, hummingbirds!
It was a well-deserved break that allowed us to flex our bird identification muscles – can you name the species in these photos? (Write your answers in the comments!)
We also got to feel what it’s like to have a hummingbird land on your fingers. Here, Miranda and Jenny are having the Disney princess experience:
Miranda, Ann, Fredrik and I spent the past week in breathtaking Monteverde looking at a mini-ecosystem we never would’ve imagined would be so interesting: phytotelmata!
What are phytotelmata, do you ask? Well, they’re tiny pools of water located in plants, like bromeliads, for example.
The challenge with studying bromeliads is that they’re typically located high up on trees in the forest, making them largely unreachable to scientists. Luckily, we had a garden planted outside our research station that let us examine these organisms up close!
We also found some pretty cool stuff when we looked at what these “islands” of water contained: even some organisms that haven’t been seen in almost a hundred years.
Lyrics by Miranda Stein ’16
Phytotelmata! What a wonderful phrase!
Phytotelmata! Ain’t no passing craze!
It means a tiny pond, in some bromelidae!
It’s a mystery, of biology!