Field Frame Friday: Spot the gecko!

[Photo and caption by Meredith Lutz] Reference: Nagy, Z. T., Sonet, G., Glaw, F., & Vences, M. (2012). First large-scale DNA barcoding assessment of reptiles in the biodiversity hotspot of Madagascar, based on newly designed COI primers. PloS One, 7,  e34506.

Field Frame: World Lemur Festival

  Happy world lemur festival! The Indri is the largest of the living lemurs (although there used to be lemurs as big as gorillas!). Adults live in pairs and sing duets each morning, which can serve to improve group cohesion (Giacoma et al., 2010) and defend their forest territory (Pollack, 1986). Their name in Malagasy, Babakoto,…

Field Fiasco: Fabric Fiesta!

Doing field research in a foreign country comes with many issues that you might not encounter in the United States—having to pack all of your equipment to meet airline regulations, adapting to a new culture, and speaking multiple new languages are all challenges I have had to overcome in order to study social relationships in…

Field Frame Friday: Lemur siesta

This week we introduce a new biweekly feature: Field Frame Friday, where we feature some of the best pictures from our fieldwork.   Greater bamboo lemurs can be found in bamboo forests in the eastern rainforests of Madagascar. Their range, however, is severely fragmented, and the species is highly endangered (Wright et al., 2008). Here…

Field Fiasco: Fossa Follies

Before my trip to Madagascar last summer, I was guaranteed a fossa sighting— a must-see on my Madagascar bucket list. Fossa are Madagascar’s largest endemic carnivores, and these nocturnal animals are closely related to the mongoose. During previous field seasons in the rainforest of Madagascar, we had caught pictures of fossa on our camera traps (cameras…

Creature Feature: Diademed sifaka

The diademed sifaka (Propithecus diadema) is potentially the world’s most colorful lemur species. You’d think that would make them easy to find in the green rainforests of eastern Madagascar, especially since they are the second largest living lemur, but they can camouflage surprisingly well in the shadows. You may wonder why sifaka (pronounced she-FAK) are…