Trip to Brazil, January 2001.


In January 2001, I went to Santarem, Brazil to participate in some field work.   There I met Michael Keller and Mike Palace, both of New Hampshire, and we headed to the forest to measure the effects of logging.  We used radiometers to measure the canopy gap fraction, or how open or closed the canopy is, in two logging blocks and two background forest plots.  These are the best pictures from the trip.

Here is a sunset shot on the way to Brazil:

sunset_to_brazil.jpg (14559 bytes)

This is our camp.  It was quite nice:  beautiful woodwork, clean bathrooms, electricity for most hours (though we had to put up with the noise from the generator).

camp.jpg (84672 bytes)

We walked up two towers that were built to be able to measure gases and winds above the canopy.  Here is the view from the top.

jeff_tower.jpg (42554 bytes)


The bugs and critters were amazing.  Upon arriving at the camp, Michael lifted up his mattress and found the 10" centipede below:

centipede_10inch.jpg (28522 bytes)

Butterflies were everywhere, though of course extremely difficult to photograph.   The two pictures below are the same butterfly.

butterfly.jpg (21869 bytes)

open_butterfly.jpg (33412 bytes)

Caterpillars were also cool:

caterpillar.jpg (91767 bytes)

This is a picture of a scarab beetle; I tried taking its picture several times without successfully capturing how beautiful it was.

scarab.jpg (23123 bytes)

This spider had spun a web across most of the walkway up a tower in the canopy, but fortunately left just enough room for us to pass by.  It was pretty big:  about 6" including legs.

spider.jpg (21966 bytes)

I saw this tarantula crawling on a stick while taking measurements.  It's only about 2" in diameter.

tarantula.jpg (28013 bytes)

Moths were everywhere around the lights of the camp.  This one had settled on the dining hall's screen and was about 6" wide.

moth.jpg (28118 bytes)

Heleconias were just starting to bloom and were fairly common.  This one had ants on it sipping its nectar.

heliconia.jpg (24959 bytes)

Fungi were everywhere.  These were some of the best.  They look like little umbrellas.

fungus.jpg (35220 bytes)

The clouds were awesome (when you could see them).  This one, above the Santarem Yacht Club, had a very cool cap cloud. 

cloud_santarem.jpg (15772 bytes)

The next two are taken at Alter do Chao, a local beach where we hung out for a weekend.

alter_do_chao_cloud.jpg (17281 bytes)

alter_do_chao_sunset.jpg (10446 bytes)

We found a howler monkey, which Mike identified. 

howler_skull.jpg (68324 bytes)

Late in the trip we went on a cool 1/2-day boat trip on the Tapajos and Amazon Rivers.   We saw some great birds, freshwater dolphins, and a caiman.  The boat owner took us out a couple of times in his canoe.  We paddled into the flooded forest and saw some sloths.  This is a shot down a canal.

jeff_boat.jpg (20495 bytes)

On the plane ride home, I saw a sunset I'd never seen before.  Bands of color were visible on the horizon like a flat rainbow. 

sunset_plane.jpg (8553 bytes)