Blog Category: Nature | Ecology Project International

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Blog Category: Nature



In Baja, Ecology Project International's home base in Mexico, the turquoise crescent of the Gulf of California is framed by desert—an impossible contrast of translucent waters against a wind-sculpted rockscape. At first glance, you might think it was empty of life, but under the surface of the water is a vibrant jungle. Eight hundred species of fish thrive here—77 of which are endemic, meaning they are found nowhere else on earth. Nearly 5,000 species of invertebrates, from bristling sea stars to iridescent mantis shrimp, creep along the bottom or float in the current.  Around 70 million years ago, near the age of the extinction of dinosaurs, the Colorado River was born. As it grew, it channeled trillions of gallons of fresh water and nutrients into the growing Gulf of California. In the past century, however, the development of the Hoover and Glen Canyon Dams among... Read More

Conservation, Education, Nature, Nonprofit, Professional Development, Science, Travel



Belize’s coastal ecosystems are deeply diverse. From thrumming inland rainforests to dense processions of mangroves, rich seagrass beds, and expansive coral reefs, Belize buzzes with life. These unique ecological communities form the backbone of Belize’s environmental health, and Ecology Project International (EPI) students work with local conservation organizations to protect them. The Mesoamerican Reef system in Belize is second in size only to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Its giant coralline structure has protected the Belizean coastline and communities for eons from the tempestuousness of the sea. The reef itself has historically been protected from inland and coastal pollution by an expansive filtration system—mangrove forests.  Mangroves are incredible examples of evolution. One of the only types of trees that can thrive in partial seawater submersion, mangroves survive by perching above their submerged anchor roots. They also have evolved complex methods to... Read More

Conservation, Education, Nature, Science, Travel



Costa Rica is breathtaking in its biodiversity. Rainforests drip with clicking invertebrates, and seas teem with swirling fish. Costa Rica has shores on both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, and with the rainforest in between, it's no wonder the country vibrates with such incredible flora and fauna. Here, you'll find six species of felines, four species of primates, and five of the remaining seven species of sea turtles, including the distinguished baulas. Baula is the term Central Americans use to describe leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea). Between the months of March and July, female baulas can be found struggling up the beaches on the Caribbean shores of Costa Rica. Agile in the water, they labor in the sand to follow an ancient path out of the ocean. Under the cover of night, they ... Read More

Alumni, Conservation, Education, Nature, Nonprofit, Professional Development, Science, Travel