Course: Peru. Ant Evolution. Aug 4-15

2013 August 4-15, Villa Carmen, Manu Biosphere Reserve, Peru

Organized by the Academy of Sciences

Application link:


Aug 3: participants arrive in Peru

Aug 4 8am: depart Cuzco to Villa Carmen, 8 hrs drive

Aug 14 8am: depart Villa Carmen to Wayqecha Biol. St., 4 hrs drive (overnight at halfway point).

Aug 15 8am: depart Wayqecha to Cuzco, 4 hrs drive, arriving for lunch in time for afternoon (3pm or later) flights to Lima and beyond.
COURSE OBJECTIVES. – ANT COURSE is designed for systematists, ecologists, behaviorists, conservation biologists, and other biologists whose research requires a greater understanding of ant taxonomy and field techniques. In 2013, emphasis is on the identification of the ant genera and species occurring in the Neotropics. Lectures will include background information on the ecology, life histories and evolution of ants. Field trips emphasize collecting and sampling techniques, and associated lab work focuses specimen preparation, sorting and labeling. Information on equipment, literature, and myrmecological contacts are also presented.
COURSE SIGNIFICANCE. – Ant Course is a unique opportunity to acquire training that is unavailable elsewhere. This course will provide students with 1) the confidence and skills to identify Neotropical ant genera; 2) an understanding of modern specimen processing and curation techniques; 3) an appreciation for the biological diversity of ants; and 4) experience keying to the species level.
SPONSORED BY. – California Academy of Sciences and The Arthur Lawrence Green Memorial Fund, Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University
LOCATION. – ANT COURSE will be based at the Villa Carmen Biological Station run by Amazon Conservation Association. The station is adjacent to Manu Biosphere Reserve, Peru and includes lowland and mountain rainforest from 520 – 1200 m. The course will be the first exploration of ants at the station and vicinity.
PARTICIPANT ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA. – ANT COURSE is open to all interested individuals, including students, professors and motivated amateurs (citizen scientists). Priority will be given to those students for whom the course will have a significant impact on their research with ants. We aim to include students with a diverse interest in biology, including ant systematics, ecology, behavioral biology, , and conservation. An entomological background is not required. The high instructor to student ratio will allow students to receive individual attention. Though many of the instructors speak Spanish, ANT COURSE is presented in English and limited to 30 participants
COSTS. – Course fees for the 10-day COURSE are $975 for current students (undergraduate and graduate) and $1275 for non-students (postdocs and professionals). Transportation costs between home and Cuzco, and hotel fees in Cuzco are to be borne by all participants. Pay course fees by July 1 at:
FELLOWSHIPS. – Those interested in attending the course should seek all possible avenues to secure funding on their own for the course. Each year we strive to raise funds to support a few students by offering discounted tuition fees. You should only apply for the Ant Course if you cannot find other support and it is essential for your participation in the course. Please notify the course if your funding request status changes before the application due date.
COURSE APPLICATION. – Application and course information at The first step is to fill out a form at: Note this form requires a short statement of your research interests and future plans and a statement of your reasons for wishing to participate in the course. Also requires is one letter of reference from a professor or colleague familiar with your work to be submitted by the referee at: You will be notified of your acceptance to the Course around APRIL 15-20.
ANT COURSE is limited to 30 participants. Selection of participants will be carried out by committee, based on your reasons for wishing to take the course at this time. Priority will be given to those students for whom the course will have a significant impact on their research with ants. Because the Course is offered yearly, and because many well-qualified candidates are not accepted because of limited capacity, we urge applicants not selected for this session to apply again the following year.
2013 Possible INSTRUCTORS – Final list announced Spring 2013:

Brian Fisher (Coordinator), Dept. of Entomology, California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA

Frank Azorsa (Co-organizer/TA), Dept. of Entomology, California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA

Flavia Esteves, Dept. of Entomology. California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA

Rodrigo Feitosa, Universidade Federal do Paran, Departamento de Zoologia,

Cx. Postal 19020, 81531-980, Curitiba, PR, Brasil

Megan Frederickson, Department of Ecology and Biology,

University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, M5S 3G5, Canada

John LaPolla, Dept. of Biological Sciences, 8000 York Road, Towson University, Towson, MD 21252, USA

John Lattke, Museo Inst. Zoologa Agrcola, Universidad Central de

Venezuela, Apartado 4579, Maracay 2101-A, Venezuela

Jack Longino, Department of Biology, 257 S 1400 E, University of Utah, Salt

Lake City, UT 84112

Corrie Moreau, Division of Insects, Field Museum of Natural History, 1400

South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605

Stacy Philpott, Environmental Studies, University of California, Santa

Cruz, CA 95064

Scott Powell, Department of Biological Sciences, George

University, DC, U.S.A

Andrew Suarez, Departments of Entomology and Animal Biology, University of

, Urbana, IL

Walter Tschinkel Department of Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL.

Phil Ward, Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis, CA


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