About conducting research at El Verde
Finding Your Way Around. Trail maps can be found in the magazine rack in the conference room.
Establishing a Study Site. Before working in an area, you MUST determine that you are not going to disturb any ongoing research by discussing your project with Omar Pérez-Reyes, Scientific Director. The station has various permanent plots and it is not always obvious where they are located. Look for flagging tape marks, marking tubes or signs. Although marks might be old, they may be still in used. The Luquillo Forest Dynamics Plot (LFDP) committee MUST approved in advance any work in the LFDP. Please stay on the trails while crossing the LFDP. The establishment of new permanent plots at the station should be discussed with the Scientific Director, please provide a map with the location of those sites. In the absence of a general map with all of permanent plots in it, it is particularly important that you mark your area. You are responsible for removing all equipment and markings once your study is completed.
Experiments/Collecting. Before you do any manipulation/collection at El Verde, you must have the appropriate permits by the Department of Natural Resources and USDA Forest Service. Contact the administration for further information.
Field Equipment / Materials. Field equipment and materials is to be provided by researchers. Station staff can tell you where to purchase any supplies you will need. Do not remove any equipment or material from the station without prior authorization.
Safety. We recommend researchers not to work alone in the forest and to use sturdy boots and hardhats. If you have to work alone, you MUST tell someone at the station where you are working and what time you will return before going to the forest. Sign-out sheets are available in the conference room to indicate your itinerary when working alone. Walky-talkies are available in the administration for use in the field. Do not fail to provide this information; your life may depend on it.
Long-Term Monitoring by the LUQ-LTER
The Luquillo LTER monitors several variables on a long-term basis to assess natural patterns and changes due to hurricanes and other disturbances. Among those variables are climate, flowering and fruiting phenology of common trees, stream water chemistry and discharge, and animal populations (shrimp, coqui, lizards, snails, insects).
Luquillo Forest Dynamics Plot (LFDP)
The LFDP was marked and set aside as a long-term forest dynamics plot in 1990. Its dimensions are 500 x 320 m or 16 hectares. The plot is routinely monitored to assess populations of shrubs, trees, and animals, investigate natural disturbance patterns and land-use legacies, and understand changes in tree community composition and diversity. Periodic censuses of plants, animals, and environmental conditions are the only activities allowed within the plot.
Flora virtual de El Verde