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Thesea dalioli

New soft coral species discovered in Coiba, Panama

October 04, 2018

Scientists named new blood-red species of octocoral in honor of philanthropist Ray Dalio.

Pre-Columbian burials thumbnail

Violence in Pre-Columbian Panama Exaggerated, New Study Shows

September 24, 2018

An oft-cited publication said a pre-Colombian archaeological site in Panama showed signs of extreme violence. A new review of the evidence strongly suggests that the interpretation was wrong.

Tender loving care

Could quality of care help address some captive amphibian diseases?

September 03, 2018

One of many challenges to endangered frog conservation is the diseases they develop in captivity. Understanding how to prevent them is key to successful husbandry practices.

NOT Resilient

Old Species Learn New Tricks…Very Slowly

August 23, 2018

Perhaps old species, like some older people, gradually lose their ability to deal with changes in their environment. Aaron O’Dea and colleagues show that when the Caribbean was cut off from the Pacific by the rise of the Panama land bridge, evolutionarily old species took longer to expand into new habitats than evolutionarily younger species did.


Each tropical tree species gets the nutrients it needs

August 06, 2018

Biodiversity is the key to successful reforestation and climate-change mitigation because each tree species has its own way of getting the nutrients it needs to survive.

Tracking the route of the mosquito

August 03, 2018

Which mosquito species is likely to transmit the virus that causes the next epidemic? Join José Loaiza, Smithsonian research associate, senior scientist at Panama’s government research bureau, INDICASAT, and University of Panama professor, as he visits back yards and used-tire lots to find the answer.

Tropical Forest Seeds Have Three Survival Strategies

Tropical Forest Seeds Have Three Survival Strategies

August 03, 2018

From tiny banana seeds to giant coconuts, it’s tough for seeds to survive in tropical soils where they are under attack by fungi, bacteria, insects and animals. By understanding how seeds defend themselves, tropical biologists contribute to reforestation, crop management and sustainable agriculture in the tropics.

Research and Empowerment Transform Science Education in Panama and the World

July 16, 2018

Inspired by a universal call-to-action from the Interacademy Partnership (IAP) within the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the Smithsonian Science Education Center (SSEC), in conjunction with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) and other organizations, is bringing together a global team to design inclusive and equitable research-based science education .

Accepting applications for prestigious three-year fellowship

July 13, 2018

More than thirty years after its inception, the Tupper Fellowship remains the most prestigious postdoctoral academic appointment offered by the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. We are currently seeking qualified candidates from around the world.

First report of stone tool use by Cebus Monkeys

July 09, 2018

White-faced capuchin monkeys in Panama’s Coiba National Park habitually use hammer and anvil stones to break hermit crab shells, snail shells, coconuts and other food items, according to visiting scientists at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI). This is the first report of habitual stone-tool use by Cebus monkeys.

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