Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Smithsonian guide to the biodiverse marine environment of Panama’s Bocas del Toro

29.12.2005


A new, undescribed species of marine worm.


Coral reefs, coastal rainforest, land-grab, industrial bananas and organic cacao, mangroves, tourist boom, eclectic cultural mix: A Caribbean Journal of Science special issue presents the first scientific overview of the marine environment in Bocas del Toro Province near Panama’s border with Costa Rica. With color photographic guide to marine invertebrates--the volume, edited by Dr. Rachel Collin, director STRI’s research station in Bocas--debuts new species and new records for Panama and provides an essential reference for researchers, tourists and conservationists throughout the region.

"The known diversity in Bocas looks very good in comparison with other places in the Caribbean" explains Collin. "Sponges and some brittlestars are much more abundant on reefs here, and after only ten days of snorkel sampling, Bocas has already become the most diverse site for Nemerteans (unsegmented marine worms) and the second most diverse site for tunicates. Diversity is expected to increase with more intensive sampling." Collin found funds from the Smithsonian Marine Science Network and the Smithsonian Women’s Committee to invite a host of experts on different taxonomic groups to conduct marine surveys in 2003 and 2004, and to set up a baseline species inventory for the station.

Collin encourages interested researchers to contact STRI: "I hope that scientists and students will find the organisms they work with in our online database and decide to visit the station. We already have documented more than 3000 species." (see links)



Comparable to Dan Janzen’s Natural History of Costa Rica or Egbert Leigh’s The Ecology of a Tropical Forest, the book-length CJS volume provides a geographic, geological and environmental context for the station and sets the stage for future work in the region. Focusing in like a pirate’s spyglass, initial chapters describe Bocas del Toro’s geology, physical environmental monitoring program, and salt- water communities. Later chapters present two new species of brittle star, three new species of Micura worms and overviews of sponges, hydroids, sea squirts, black corals, soft corals, porcellanid crabs and peanut worms.

In 2003 STRI inaugurated a new, award-winning, low-impact laboratory in Bocas (see links). In addition to providing a state-of-the-art seawater system that makes it possible to conduct experiments requiring living marine organisms, the station is now base camp for surveys of nearby reefs, seagrass beds and mangroves, as part of CARICOMP, a Caribbean-wide monitoring program that STRI has participated in since 1999.

Collin hopes that people will take advantage of the free, online guide: "Many of the same animals also live in other parts of the Caribbean. The online guide provides a service for the entire region."

STRI Director, Dr. Ira Rubinoff, placed conservation of marine and terrestrial ecosystems in Bocas high on STRI’s priority list for 2006: "It is critical that homeowners, divers, retirees, investors, sports fishermen, tourists--all of the different interests in Bocas del Toro--realize that they depend upon and benefit from the sustainable management of natural beauty and biodiversity."

Rachel Collin | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.si.edu
http://www.stri.org
http://www.caribjsci.org

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Bioinvasion on the rise
15.02.2017 | Universität Konstanz

nachricht Litter Levels in the Depths of the Arctic are On the Rise
10.02.2017 | Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>