ECOSARA plant research volunteers will be involved in attempting to inventory and document the plant species recorded in San Rafael. Research volunteers will work as part of a small group overseen by a staff member on current research projects or for those that wish to develop their own projects, alone under the guidance of a staff member who will assist them to ensure that their results are both useful and productive. A file of suggested botanical research projects with detailed instructions is available for volunteers who wish to work alone and are looking for ideas on how to do so. Of course volunteers are able to switch between projects, just because you signed up as a plant volunteer doesnīt mean that you canīt also do some work with animals if the fancy takes you!

We encourage
ECOSARA research volunteers to publish the results of their work and offer all the assistance necessary to those that wish to do so. For many volunteers the opportunity to see their name in print is something that is extremely appealing. Volunteers will be credited in any publication that uses data which they helped to gather. Volunteers who carry out their own projects will have an informal meeting each evening with staff members to discuss progress and will be expected to produce a brief report of their findings at the end of their stay.

We think that
ALL field observations are important and accurate note-taking is part of the daily routine of all volunteers. The study of plants is for the most part a nocturnal pursuit and amphibian volunteers will have ample opportunity to rest during the heat of the day to prepare them for their after-dark endeavours. Daily observations and records will be logged into the San Rafael biodiversity database to keep tabs on amphibian abundance and distribution. Volunteers with a knack for photography are always welcome, we are always looking to boost the photographic database of the parks fauna.  In the interests of making data accessible and open to all we collaborate with online database projects such as the FAUNA image gallery.

Some projects are ongoing throughout the year, other projects - in situ studies of breeding and vocalisations - are more seasonal. If you have a specific project in mind that you would like to work on, check with us that it isnīt seasonal before confirming your dates!!

To give you an idea of the sort of work that amphibian volunteers are involved with, here are some of the more popular projects:

Association of plant species with soil characteristics.
Plant animal associations, pollination, parasitism or passing through?
Design and development of identification keys for plants groups.
Propagation of plant species.
Microhabitat requirements of plant communities.
Studies of plant succession.
Establishment of a plant photographic database for identification purposes.
Floral seasonality of orquids and Atlantic forest plants.
Useful plants and how they are used by human populations.
Edible plants, the San Rafael cook book.
Friend or foe, how do plants defend themselves against predators?
Sustainable use of the forest, the answer to San Rafaelīs problems?
Fungi and mushroom inventories, not plants but heh!!

You donīt need to have any scientific background to be an
ECOSARA plant research volunteer, just enthusiasm, a sense of adventure and willingness to get your hands dirty!

Up for it?!

Click here to apply now!
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