Published: February 1, 2013

Discovering New Plant Species in the Amazon

Katherine Webbink, Information Systems Specialist, Information Technology

We're excited to present the first Field Revealed episode to highlight the Field Museum's rapid inventory work! This week's episode comes all the way from Peru where local intrepid researchers have been carrying out "rapid inventories" with Rhe Field Museum's Environment, Culture, and Conservation (ECCo) teams. Rapid inventories are swift surveys of species diversity in remote areas--information which is then provided to local communities as a tool for them to build conservation and education efforts.

During ECCo’s 25th Rapid Inventory, the team of botanists found seven new plant species to science. This Qualea is one of them, and collecting its flowers was a big challenge. Sit back and enjoy watching the botanists doing their work! ECCo is staying busy both in Chicago and in the Andes-Amazon region.  

Wondering what kind of trees those were on your last walk around Chicago?  Or in the Amazon? ECCo has produced color guides and other useful i.d. and conservations tools--give them a try!

This episode was brought to us by Federico Pardo, who documented the ECCo team's 25th Rapid Inventory.  

Katherine Webbink

In the Technology Department, Kate works on cataloging the Field Museum's digital media--how do we preserve the digital media bits of natural history? For now, the answer here seems to involve a lot of DNGs. Going forward, digital formats and the workflows that go with them change all the time, so collections need to stay on their toes if they don't want to lose data and the ideas that go with them.