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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

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.

Farewell Joan Siedenburg

July 05, 2018

Many in the STRI community will remember Joan Siedenburg, who died on June 9 at 92 years of age, as a wonderful friend of tropical research in Panama. Her yearly visits to STRI gave her a chance to participate directly in both the discovery process and in outreach to local communities.

Sweet desserts drive the search for disease-carrying mosquitoes

July 02, 2018

As researchers ask which disease-carrying mosquito species will rule Panama’s Azuero Penninsula (and perhaps the world), they discover culinary delights along the way.

In STRI’s carbon offset program, everyone wins

June 27, 2018

STRI took a gamble on a carbon offset program in partnership with an indigenous community in eastern Panama. Ten years later, it has successfully met offset goals, empowered women, built environmental stewardship capacity, created a long-term research platform and offered hope for a community’s threatened forest-based traditions.

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