I. Reading and Web Assignments: - to be completed before
departure, questions will be sent to you
Peru - General Information
World Fact Book - Peru
Planet - Peru
Library of Congress:
Peru - A Country Study
The Andes Web
Ring (Photos & Info)
Lima Post (news)
of the Andes
Cultures of Peru
Peru Travel Adventures: Peru People and Preserved Culture
Art and Culture of the Incas
Art and Culture
Music of the
Peruvian National Parks
Protected Areas in Peru
Enjoy Peru Nature: National Parks
National Parks Guide
Traveller Guide: National Parks
Hidden Rain Forest
List for Peru
Andean Botanical Information System
Peru Flora and Fauna (photos only)
of the Flowering Plants and Gymnosperms of Peru
Biological Collections Web Server
of Plant Diversity in South America
Atlas of Biodiversity
The Tree of Life Web Project
Wildlife Fund: Factsheets
for the Future: Biodiversity
and World Map
Project: What is Biodiversity?
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Union of Concerned Scientists:
Citizens and Scientists for Environmental Solutions
World Conservation Union
II. Presentations and Programs: - to be attended throughout
your travels, reading handouts will be given to you
• Biogeography of Peru
• Rainforest structure and stability
• Fluora and Fauna of Peru
• Interspecific interactions
• Disturbance and Community Structure
• Species Richness and Abundance
• Evolutionary adaptions of desert and rainforest organisms
• Importance of Biodiversity
• Threats to Biodiversity (required reading, The
Future of Life, E .O. Wilson) and Peru’s conservation
of an Amazon Jungle Guide; Amazing Encounters with Tropical Nature
and Culture (includes a history of Amazonia Expeditions)
by Paul Beaver
* Students in Biology
497 must select a topic of interest (related to one of the above
areas) and lead a 30-45 minute group discussion.
III. Journal Assignments
- to be completed throughout your travels and upon your return
to the mainland.
You will be given a trip journal to keep notes on your trip.
For example, you should keep a daily journal of things you did,
things you saw and things you learned.
You might also want to keep track of the people you met and
anything else you wish to remember, such as your first impressions,
your surprises, etc
After your trip you will be asked to write a short summary for
each day travel. Your submitted entries will be incorporated
into student learning activities for students in Drs. Jacqueline
McLaughlin's and Stam Zervano's PSU first-year seminar course
entitled Biodiversity on Line. Your entries will also be quoted
in various newspaper, magazine, and journal publications given
After your trip you will also be required to answer the following
questions (more may be added that directly related to trip experiences).
It is suggested that you keep them in mind and write some of
your answers throughout your travels.
• In general, what impressed you the most about Peru?
• Overall, what were your best and worst experiences?
• Any surprises or disappointments throughout the trip?
• What did you learn about the biodiversity of Peru’s
• What problems concerning biodiversity did you uncover?
And are there solutions?
• How have human activities impacted the natural habitats
• What are your opinions on the future of Peru’s
• Give an example of two or three key concepts of biodiversity
that you experienced firsthand in the field.
Examples: keystone species exerting strong controls on community
structure, affects of abiotic factors, affects of biogeographic
factors, ecological succession, and disturbance and community
structure. Elaborate on how these experiences impacted your
IV. Species Assignments
- to be completed
throughout your travels and upon your return to the mainland
Students taking the Biology 297 credits are required to thoroughly
research a selected Peruvian plant or animal species. Students
taking Biology 497 credits are required to thoroughly research
two selected Peruvian plant or animal species. In order to eliminate
replication, you need to tell Dr. McLaughlin the species that
you have chosen. Please do this on the airplane to Peru or sometime
early on, during the trip. She will record your choices(s) and
eliminate it from her list. If there is replication she will
notify you so that individuals can make other choices, if need
During your trip you should try to find out as much as possible
about your selected organism by asking questions, talking with
expert naturalist field guides, using field guide books, etc.
Upon your return you may wish to research your organism(s) some
You will need to
answer questions like the following:
• What is the scientific name of the species? Common name?
• Where was the organism spotted?
• What is the range and habitat of the species?
• What is its evolutionary history? (Origin, relatives
• What role does it play in its environment (niche)? Is
it a keystone species?
• Any unique adaptations?
• Elaborate on the species food chain.
• Is it an endemic species to Peru? If not, where else
is it found?
• What are the threats to its survival
V. Field Research for Biology 497 Students.
be completed during your travels and upon your return to
on pre-trip reference reviews and discussions with the course
instructors, you will submit a protocol for conducting a
field research study during our stay in Peru. A scientific
report will be due as part of your post-trip assignment
and will include objectives, methods, data analysis and
interpretation, conclusions, and literature review.