Our Projects

Toucan Club: We’re excited to bring to you a community of biologists and nature-lovers alike. All memberships support us in achieving our mission, to reduce habitat degradation and to preserve Belize’s natural biodiversity. For $25/year you can help to support our long-term wildlife monitoring efforts and our work in promoting sustainable farming practices in the Selva Maya of Belize.

Avian Monitoring Program (Belize): We have been monitoring birds at T.R.E.E.S since 2011. Our focus is on gaining basic vital data on understudied resident birds as well as monitoring Neotropical migrants off their breeding grounds. We offer training and capacity building to International and local students.

Sustainable Agriculture Program (Belize): The focus of our program is on the research and development of tropical farming techniques that can be used to reduce soil degradation and habitat loss while maintaining productivity. Slash-and–burn agriculture has accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic and is the leading cause of wildfires and deforestation in our area. Our goal is to reduce slash-and-burn agriculture by presenting farmers alternative techniques to replenish nutrient poor soils.

The Coastal Painted Turtle Project (BC, Canada): The goal of this project is to assess the current status of endangered Western Painted Turtle populations, which are only known in a few locations throughout coastal BC. In addition, assess and address threats such as road mortality and habitat loss or degradation on a site by site basis and create a plan for long-term recovery of coastal populations. 

Coastal Douglas-fir Ecosystem Conservation Project (BC, Canada): The Coastal Douglas-fir biogeoclimatic zone is the smallest and most at-risk zone in BC. This zone covers a large area of the Powell River Regional District. Only 9% of the forest has been protected and of all the forest zones in BC, the Coastal Douglas Fir has been the most altered by human activities.

Bat Monitoring Program (Belize): In 2016, we initiated a bat monitoring project to monitor species diversity and we are now expanding the project. We will be comparing diversity, relative activity, and foraging behavior in bats between organic and non-organic subsistence agricultural areas. We are exploring whether organic farming areas provide better habitat for foraging bats and predict that bat species richness and activity will be greater in these areas.

Western Toad Migration Monitoring and Mitigation (BC): We are working reduce and mitigate various threats to significant breeding populations of Western Toads. Mortality on roads and trails is a major threat at some of our toad breeding sites, where we have installed drift fencing and crossing structures. We hope to recruit more volunteers to assist us in moving adult toads across roads during the spring, install fencing again in the summer, and coordinate with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to install more crossing structures at critical sites.

Turtle movement program (Belize): We are using radio-telemetry to study the movement and behaviour of The White-lipped Mud Turtle (Kinosternon leucostomum) in response to seasonal water level fluctuations and flood events. Extreme water level fluctuations and increased drought from climate change will likely impact survival and fitness of these turtles in our riverine system.