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Join research teams in Costa Rica and Mexico to learn about tropical forest ecosystems, the important roles of large and small animals within an ecosystem, and the threats to their survival.

Join Earthwatch in Costa Rica where you will have the opportunity to study caterpillars. The caterpillar is at the bottom of the food chain, AND also one of the most plentiful forest inhabitants, which means they are critical for the ecosystem. In Mexico you will investigate the predators at the top of the feeding hierarchy — the jaguar and other wild cats. Changes in their populations may provide early warning of a distressed ecosystem.


Listen to Shauneen Giudice, your teacher host, as she explains your mission.

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  • Learn about tropical forest ecosystems, caterpillars, and wild cats.
  • Learn about Earthwatch's research, and why scientific study of natural populations are important.
  • Do your own research on ecosystems and food webs in your community.