The paucity of data on community diversity of crocodilian habitats hinders the ability conservation managers to properly assess how anthropogenic disturbances affect wildlife. The trophic status and ancient phylogenetic lineage of crocodilians, as well as parasite dependency on host and environment, presents a new opportunity to use them as biological indicators of the extent to which ecosystems function. This project intends to examine the significance of parasites as biodiversity and health indicators of crocodilian habitats through a cross-disciplinary approach that includes community ecology, parasitology, eco-toxicology, and translational ecology.
The community ecology research and biodiversity surveys are conducted in various locations around the Placencia Lagoon to examine the effects of human development and environmental changes in different areas. Surveys are conducted twice a week around the Placencia Lagoon following the PROALAS protocol (eBird). The research includes the following:
The Green Team from Turtle Inn, Projects Abroad, and various volunteers throughout the Placencia Peninsulas have teamed up with the CRC as Citizen Scientists, helping us gather bird, aquatic and terrestrial biodiversity data around the Placencia Lagoon. As of 2018, this project is now led by the CRC Community Ecology Intern.
Interested in helping the CRC monitor the Placencia Lagoon? Contact us.
Due to financial constraints, CRC has had to suspend this project until more research funds come in. Additionally, we would like to work with University of Belize in regards to getting a Belizean student to assist in leading these projects. We hope to reignite these surveys by May 2022.