OEB 51: Biology and Evolution of Invertebrate Animals
Instructor: Gonzalo Giribet & Cassandra Extavour
OEB 51 spent spring break in the Archipelago of Bocas del Toro, in the Caribbean side of Panama, close to the border with Costa Rica, for its 14th year! This archipelago is home to a state-of-the-art laboratory from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and is located in an area of high marine biodiversity including mangroves and coral reefs. In addition, it always offers sheltered localities for working in the water even for those students who have never snorkeled before. There, students explore different marine ecosystems, from mangroves to coral reefs and sponge reefs, as well of areas of high and low currents. This offers students the opportunity to study a great variety of invertebrates from most animal phyla both in situ and in the lab.
OEB 52: Biology of Plants
Instructors: Elena Kramer and N. Michele Holbrook
OEB 52 takes four field trips each spring - an overnight to Harvard Forest as well as afternoon trips to the Arnold Arboretum, Ponkapoag Bog, and Garden in the Woods. All these trips are full of fun, food, and most importantly, flora! The lynchpin of the course is the overnight trip to Harvard Forest, helping everyone get to know each other through botanical charades, long hikes in the woods, and conversation over shared meals. Once again, the weather mostly cooperated and our great class of undergrads made every field trip special.
OEB 103: Systematics and Evolution
Instructor: Charles Davis
OEB 103 students had another great spring break trip to the Chapada region of eastern Brazil, in the state of Bahia! OEB 103 students joined students from the Federal University of Bahia and the State University of Santa Cruz. Professor Charles Davis and students studied the rich vascular plant diversity of the Chapada region, and performed lab activities investigating the phylogenetic, morphological, and ecological diversity among the plants. Highlights of the trip were the amazing scenery, strange new plants, and the camaraderie of the week!
OEB 11: Introduction to Tropical Biology
Instructor: David Haig & Gonzalo Giribet
OEB 11 spent J-term in Australia together with undergraduates from Sydney University. The course, focusing on Australian biology, explored Sydney and its environments, and conducted terrestrial ecology work in Sydney Harbor and in Chichester Forest, in northern New South Wales. We then traveled to the One Tree Island Research Field Station in the Great Barrier Reef, to complete the marine component of the trip. The students were able to experience first-hand the local biodiversity and the research related to aspects of diversity, ecology and evolution, while interacting with their Australia counterparts and learning about the local culture. This was the first time the field course was offered and it was a great success!