Summer REU – Tropical Rainforest Canopy Access Techniques

COURSE LOCATION: Bocas del Toro Biological Station, Boca del Drago, Isla Colon, Republic of Panama.  The biological station is located on a hill facing the Caribbean Sea.  Coral reef and seagrass ecosystems lie out in front of the station and lowland tropical rain forests lie directly behind. This juxtaposition of the two most biologically diverse ecosystems provides tremendous opportunities for education and research. See: for details.
INSTRUCTOR: Bill Maher, Tree Climber Coalition, 251 Oak Grove Rd., Dawsonville, GA, 30534. Telephone 229-732-5973, email: billmaher251@windstream.netSpecialty: Tropical canopy access for research.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course is designed to provide students with the methodology and expertise necessary to explore and conduct research in the tropical forest canopy. The course involves a hands-on approach to the techniques necessary for accessing the canopy as well as lectures on various topics relating to climbing techniques, safety while climbing, facilitation of climbing activities, and combining scientific research with climbing. This course is the equivalent of the Basic Canopy Climbing Course, the Canopy Access Technicians Course, and the Facilitators Course, all done back-to-back over the length of the session. Certification confirming participation in the course will be awarded to those completing the course satisfactorily.  For more information, contact Joe Maher or go to:
Individual Research Projects.  Working closely with faculty and students in other courses, climbers will be responsible for designing and completing an original in-canopy research project of their choosing.  These projects will be carried out during the second half of the course (after Boquete) and students will have about 10 days for data collection.  A few days before the end of the course students will analyze their data, write a technical report, prepare a presentation of their work and orally present their findings at a station-wide symposium on the last day of the course. 
BOQUETE CLOUD FOREST FIELD TRIP:  This three-day field trip will take place midway through the course and will allow students the opportunity to experience tropical cloud and seasonal forests.  We travel in ITEC boats to the mainland and then by private bus to the town of Boquete which lies at the base of 11,000 ft Volcan Baru.  The bus trip will take us up and over the central mountain range and through remote Palo Seco National Park.  Several stops will be made in route.
COURSE LENGTH: ITEC Summer field courses are about four weeks in length. The CAT B-18 will run from June 15 through July 10, 2018.
TUITION: $2250 USD.  Tuition fee includes all lodging, meals and airport transfers in Bocas del Toro.  The tuition also covers transportation and lodging during the 3-day cloud forest field trip to Boquete.
REGISTRATION DEADLINE: May 15, 2018.  The course is limited to 10 students and applications will be evaluated as they arrive.  If you believe that your application may arrive late, notify ITEC.
CONTACT:  Institute for Tropical Ecology and Conservation, 2911 NW 40th PL, Gainesville, FL 32605, tel:352-367-9128,, web:  ITEC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1996.