Terrestrial Program
The Terrestrial Program (TP) funds long-term monitoring projects whose core programs include Meteorology and Hydrology, Tropical Plant Reproductive Biology, and the Population Dynamics of Insect, Lizards, Birds, and Mammals.

Meteorology and Hydrology:  The Terrestrial Program Meteorology and Hydrology project was initiated in 1972 on BCI. Continuous daily rainfall records for the island extend back to 1929.

Temperature, solar radiation, wind speed and direction, precipitation, runoff and evaporation have been monitored since 1972. In addition, water chemistry (nutrients, suspended solids, pH, Dissolved O2) and soil moisture have been monitored since 1997. The data collected by this program are used to support all scientists working in Panama. This program is scheduled to continue indefinitely.
Tropical Plant Reproductive Biology:  Flower production and seed set have been documented on a weekly basis since 1985, while seedling recruitment and performance have been documented annually since 1994. More that 400 plant species are being monitored. The project provides the basic demographic data required to test many theories about mechanisms that influence the structure and dynamics of tropical forest plant communities. The project also makes possible the identification of proximate cues for anthesis and leaf fall for large numbers of species. Finally, the project allows analyses of inter-annual variation in climate and reproductive effort, including El Niño and La Niña events.  The data now represent two of the longest and most extensive, uninterrupted phenological records (15 and 17 years) in the Neotropics. This program is scheduled to continue indefinitely. 
Insect CensusInsect population fluctuations have been monitored through the use of insect traps located primarily on BCI since 1972. The program has documented the long-term population fluctuations of hundreds of tropical insect species.
Mammalian Population Fluctuations:  Since 1982, this project has investigated the sensitivity of population patterns in mammalian frugivores to fruitfall fluctuations in Neotropical communities. This sensitivity is of concern to managers of wildlife preserves because it is a critical factor in the vulnerability of a species to extinction. The project includes an annual 100+ km trail transect supplemented with a mark-re-sighting study of squirrels (Sciurus granatensis), a foraging study of squirrels and red brocket deer (Mazama americana), extended nocturnal censuses, arboreal trapping and a DNA study of the genetic variation of selected species. The study also monitors the fruiting of Dipteryx panamensis - a very important species for many fruit eating mammals on BCI. 
Avian Community and Population Dynamics: Since 1993, this project has investigated the demography and community dynamics of forest birds of central Panama. The project is composed of two parts: 1) The analysis of Scale and Methodological Effects on Community and Populations Dynamics. This project maps the movement of color-marked birds on a 100  ha plot at three different spatial scales.

Each species is spot mapped using  data from song censuses, mist netting and color banding. 2) Analysis of the long-term population trends of species in central Panama that differ in their predicted vulnerability to habitat fragmentation and loss. This project investigates the correlates of vulnerability of tropical birds to disturbance/fragmentation such as diet, body size, demographic traits and nesting ecology. 
ESP Bird monitoring in the BCNM: Monitoring of bird populations in the BCNM. The project's goals are:

1) Track annual population fluctuations on BCI and the Gigante peninsula
2) Conduct annual species inventories on BCI and Gigante
3) Inventory bird species richness on all the peninsulas in the BCNM
4) Compare reproductive success of birds on BCI and Gigante to evaluate nest predation as a possible cause of bird extinctions from BCI
5) Estimate annual survivorship of birds on BCI
Tropical Tree Seed Dynamics: The Tropical Tree Seed Dynamics project was initiated in 1988 on BCI. This project builds upon the long-term Terrestrial Program quantitative phenology census of within- and between-year variation in flowering and seed production and evaluates spatial and temporal patterns of tree species recruitment. Individual trees contained within the quantitative phenology census (see above) are used for study of seedling recruitment dynamics in three species. All individuals are marked with permanent bands and measured. Seedling survival, growth, and new seedling establishment are censused yearly during late December to early January (wet season - dry season transition). The study evaluates the relationships between seed production (from the Terrestrial Program quantitative and community-seed fall censuses) and seed recruitment, both within and between years.

Meteorological, water quality and physical-oceanographic data

Terrestrial Program physical monitoring data available for public can be found by clicking here or on Physical Monitoring on the menu at the top of the page. They include solar radiation, quantum radiation, rainfall, air temperature,  humidity, barometric pressure, air temperature, wind speed and direction, soil moisture and runoff. These data are available from BCI and the two canopy crane towers.

Furthermore, thanks to the gracious cooperation of the Panama Canal Authority (ACP), a complete copy of the ACP's physical monitoring data can be obtained by connecting the same link.

Biological data

The Terrestrial Program investigates a number groups of terrestrial organisms (plants, birds, lizards, insects) and access to these data are controlled by the PI. If you wish copies of those data, please contact the PI using the links provided on each Program's description page. Where possible, we do supply metadata descriptions of each project and those data can be found by clicking here or on the menu option Meta data from the home page.