Student Journal Entry: Lindsay Akers



May 26

Today rocked, like very other day. Started out the morning having my cereal stolen by the cat. I still don’t understand why she’s targeted me as her victim. After breakfast, we went on our first exploration of the camp site. It took a sold 30 minutes before we even left the gates because we were looking at so many plant and wildlife species.

Pretty much every tree here can be described as “tall, green with wide leaves and fruit.” Dr. Woolley actually tried to describe one to me like that, thinking it would be a helpful description (nice try, Woolley).

Unfortunately, we couldn’t make the first part of the hike down the field station because the path had been overgrown with vegetation. We saw some super cool plants just near the buildings, through. My favorite thing that I saw was a bunch of pink pineapples growing out of an agave.We also found a fruit that Dr. Lacher cut in half so we could eat the sap from the seeds in side, which tasted like chocolate.

After we left the station, we hiked up killer staircase #1 to the bee house. Apparently there are a bunch of mango trees on the far side down some deep dark trail, but Kristen and I looked and couldn’t find any. :-(.

We then climbed staircase #2 and hiked to the old dorm. We found a bunch of termites (family Termitidae) munching on some of the trees near the dorms. After exploring the dorms, we headed back up in the other direction, where the habitats changed drastically from that of the station (canopy).

We found a couple of massive katydids (Family Tettigonilidae). Erich was the Katydid whisperer or something, he held one for a long time just chilling on his hand as another attacked Mattie and her backpack.

Later, near the end of the hike, we found this giant spotted spider that Travis carried around on his walking stick for WAY too long. I’m for sure not a spider lover.

After our hike, my group and Dr. Woolley headed down to Champagne Beach to go snorkeling, aka my favorite thing. I’ve never snorkeled at an actual reef before, and it was every bit as beautiful as I hoped it would be. The water was so blue and clear, you could see everything perfectly. I saw so many cool metallic fish, eels, and coral (listed in the species section).

We spent a long time just swimming and exploring before we took the transects. I even gave Anchal a mini swim lesson and now she’s basically a mermaid, with a giant life vest named Bertha, of course.

After we finished the transects we attached the Hobo until to about to record water temperature and headed back to Springfield for another delicious dinner. I felt like a slug afterwards and went straight to bed.

Beautiful and sunny most of the day
Briefly rained on the morning hike

Projectu updates:
Began marine project, did first set of transects at the reef
Adjusted ropes so the quadrant would hang evenly, attempted to figure out how GPS worked
Continued prep for fly project; finished assembling traps and discussed how to hang them at sites
Scouted out potential trap locations on morning hike (will set out traps tomorrow).

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