Fairchild’s Caribbean fern conservation initiatives and graduate research find common ground in Puerto Rico

Monday, March 13, 2017

Between February 13th and 22nd of 2017, Fairchild conservation biologists (Jennifer Possley and Jimmy Lange) and one of our FIU graduate students (Jonathan Flickinger) undertook a joint trip to western Puerto Rico. Jennifer and Jimmy were supported by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and Jonathan was sponsored by grants from the Botanical Society of America, and Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. Our conservation biologists were hosted by Omar Monsegur from USWS Caribbean Ecology Services Field Office and by Jeanine Vélez from Department of Biology, University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez. The primary objective of their trip was to locate, map, and collect spores from federally endangered ferns. Jonathan was particularly interested in studying species of Eugenia (Myrtaceae) endemic to Puerto Rico. His field work was carried out thanks to the collaboration and help of Prof. Eugenio Santiago (Director of the Herbarium of the Botanic Garden of Puerto Rico, Department of Biology, Universidad de Puerto Rico at Río Piedras) and José Sustache (Botanist of the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources of Puerto Rico).

Photos. (Top: left to right: Jimmy Lange, José Sustache, Jonathan Flickinger, Jeanine Vélez, Eugenio Santiago, and Jennifer Possley. Bottom: Jimmy Lange and Jennifer Posley)