2-27-19: Now I know why we have to have the boots...

When going on an Earthwatch expedition, they provide for you a travel bulletin, which tells you everything you need to know about the trip, the housing, the daily schedule, the travel (do you need to stay overnight at a hotel, and then get picked up in the morning, etc),  But most important is THE PACKING LIST.  Some things mentioned that were specific to our trip were:
 
1.  headlamp (this is essential, as getting from our housing to the labs and the comodore (eating facility, I think this is the right spelling...) is a 10 minute walk through the forest, and it is not lined with lights...
 
2.  tall rubber boots.  At first, I was like, what?  But the graduate student warned us they are essential, as they are to prevent snake bites when walking through the forest.  Okay...
 
So today, we reversed roles, and I went with these guys on a long hike through the forest to try to find Piper in unexplored areas of La Selva (the phytochemistry distribution stuff), while Mr. Rudnick stayed with the others and did the lab stuff we did yesterday
We explored parts of La Selva along the river that creates its border, and man, did we slip in mud all over the place.  6 miles is a fine hike, but combined with mud, looking for Piper, and then the terrain (at one point, we had several verticals to climb that were...well...mud and roots, and I was thinking to myself....it's going to be fine, it's going to be fine...)
 
In the end, we didn't find any new locations of Piper - just like yesterday's group that explored new territory.  We did sample one area, but it was in an area we were pretty sure there would be Piper.
 
Several cool things, check out the pictures below
And now check out some video:
 
1.  We were hiking, and the howler monkeys were pretty close - I tried to record them
 
 
2.  Me and Ava on a leaf-cutter ant path observation
 
We got back for lunch, and then took a quick break before heading back out
After lunch, we went back out to flag Piper along a path, and we would collect and sample later.  Then we helped those out in the lab by doing some zoo - a few pupated, and some are quite pretty!
In the evening, Heather (another graduate student) wanted to do a discussion/group exercise with us, and asked us to talk about what we thought of the interactions of:  politics, environment, and equality.  A very...robust discussion broke out, and you can see from the board below, all sectors were touched upon
And then, last but not least, the kids have been having some fun with the animals they have been taking photos of.  
Hopefully I will be able to keep up with the daily posting...!!!