An Introduction to Tropical Stream Research

800 450 Stroud Water Research Center

Question: Where can you find tropical streams trickling off the slope of an ancient volcano, capuchin monkeys swinging (and relaxing) in the trees, packs of white-lipped peccaries rampaging through old-growth forest, and a team of scientists hunkered down streamside measuring the breath of stream ecosystems?

Answer: Maritza Biological Station!

30 Years of Research in Costa Rica

Since 1989, Maritza Biological Station and Asociación Centro de Investigación Stroud (ACIS) have been the headquarters and foundation for Stroud™ Water Research Center’s tropical research programs, and the station has become a resource for scientists, teachers, and land managers throughout the region. The streams flowing through the station are a Long-Term Research in Environmental Biology site, funded by the National Science Foundation. To date, research on those streams has generated more than 30 peer-reviewed scientific papers.

Scientists Give Board Members a Tour

In addition to collecting valuable data that helps reveal how tropical streams are connected with the forests they drain, six Stroud Center scientists recently provided a tour of Maritza for members of our board of directors. Bern Sweeney, Ph.D., John Jackson, Ph.D., and Executive Director David Arscott, Ph.D., described the history and current research directions of the Maritza Biological Station to introduce six board members to the importance of our water research in the tropics. The board members were also given a tour of the amazing upgrades and improvements made at the station thanks to Station Manager Rafa Morales’s intensive efforts.

Steve and Mayra Stroud from ACIS and Maritza Biological Station staff Cristian López and Marieta López hosted our visit with an abundance of Costa Rican hospitality, cheer, and great food. Lively discussions and great camaraderie led to a memorable trip for all, topped off by research scientists Diana Oviedo-Vargas, Ph.D., and Marc Peipoch, Ph.D., returning home with lots of data, water samples, and new scientific insights on tropical stream ecosystems.

Stay Tuned for the Public Television Episode!

A film crew for the Visionaries public television series captured this science-in-action for an upcoming episode about the Stroud Center. We’ll post an update when it debuts!