Today was the longest and most tiring day yet…as evidenced by the fact that we all took a nap at 11am. We spent the morning collecting our camera traps from our first day in the rainforest, and it was exhausting. Dr. Solomon told us that it would be easier the second time…but that was false. We did get all the traps though! And we saw Spider Monkeys! And on the way we saw some reptiles! We saw 2 skinks: neither of which I got a particularly good look at. I didn’t see the first one at all but Cassia said it had a blue tail and yellow lateral stripes, so I’m near certain it was a Sumichrast’s Skink (Plestiodon sumichrasti). The second one I did get to see, but as it was running through the grass. Based on its general color I have some ideas, but I’ll have to break out a guide book and take a closer look at the picture Kaela took get a better idea.
In the afternoon we finished processing the data from the Azteca Ants/Cecropia field project, which was pretty much inconclusive. After that we learned about Leaf-Cutter Ants by excavating their nests. Unfortunately we had to disrupt the nest, destroying their hard-worked architecture and invoking the wrath of enormous soldier ants trying to protect their colony. It was cool to the see the fungus that the ants cultivate inside their nests though.
Today was our last day in the rainforest (yay we survived). I’m not sure how I feel about it yet, and I’m excited to go to the reef. Tomorrow though we’ll be seeing the ATM cave and seeing the Belize Zoo, so not time for the reef quite yet. I’ll certainly miss my reptiles though.