In case you were wondering, CTFS stands for the Center for Tropical forest Science, also know as Forest-GEO: www.forestgeo.si.edu/; and is a global network of forest dynamics plots, aimed at documenting the diversity and dynamics of the world's forests.
♠This year's annual workshop was held was at Luquillo. Having worked in the Luquillo Forest Dynamics Plot (LFDP) for several years, I can say that having the workshop here in Puerto Rico is a pleasure and an honor. Today we toured El Yunque National Forest, visiting the USDA Forest Service-side of the mountain before heading to El Verde, where the 16-Ha permanent plot is located.
Jess Zimmerman, Chris Nytch and myself helped guide the group of roughly 60 scientists through the Luquillo mountains. We sought to highlight the four main forest types, and stopped at key landmarks like Mt. Britton tower, the HT Odum radiation site, and the LFDP. ♠
The four forest type of the Luquillo Mtns of Puerto Rico: upper elevations (>800m) have dwarf cloud forest; a band of Palo Colorado (Cyrilla racemiflora) forest exits between (600-800m) and lowland Caribbean Tabonuco forest dominates lower elevations ( <600m). Palm forest dominates interspered throughout, mainly in steep or rocky areas, but also in flooded valley microhabitats. (Figure from International Institute of Tropical Forestry UDSA Forest Service, Rio Piedras PR. Bulletin IITF-34).
It was a great day and a great success for the CTFS team.
James "Aaron" Hogan is an ecologist interested in plant biodiversity, forests and global change.