In January 2016, Marty Condon and a group of researchers went on a collection trip to French Guiana. The trip yielded the largest collection of flowers to date, which required many hours of work in and out of the field. The specimens collected will be essential in understanding the biodiversity of the unique system that Condon works on.
The 2016 French Guiana team. From left to right: Isaac Winkler, Marty Condon, Renata Harrison, Julia Thome, Anne Weitekamp, and Andrew Rasmussen
The team take 2, this time with a female Gurania spinulosa plant.
Renata Harrison; Team photographer.
Anne Weitekamp; Resident pupae roller.
Julia Thome; Professional field note taker.
Isaac Winkler; Spreadsheet wizard.
Andrew Rasmussen; Superstar field coordinator.
Our fearless leader Marty checking cups for emerged pupa.
A Bleph fly on a Gurania spinulosa inflorescence.
Julia and Anne collecting flowers from plant 196.
Female fruit of Gurania spinulosa.
Here, Isaac demonstrates proper form to capture a specimen in the field.
Labeled flowers in the field.
Andrew prepares to label an inflorescence.
Here, Andrew is showing off his field lunch, a can of cooked carrots and peas. Delicious!
The team enjoying an authentic Hmong meal in Cacao before going back into the field.
Julia Thome; Tarp Queen.
Isaac and Andrew preparing to scale down a hill to collect flowers.
Anne demonstrating the proper field gear while protecting herself from the harsh Guianese sun.
Everyone looking on as Julia cuts a inflorescence high in the trees. Without Julia’s tennis muscles this would have been impossible.
Renata prepares herself to use the pole to reach a high inflorescence of spinulosa.
Anne and Julia were super excited to collect a whole female branch to look at back at camp
Our flagging system of pink tags to indicate our flowers.
Isaac in the field, always on the lookout for cool bugs.
Andrew feeling the pain of his field lunches.
Anne; on a wasp hunt!
Our handy-dandy butterfly net used to catch inflorescence when they were out of reach.
Marty in her natural habitat.
Gurania Spinulosa, the most popular flower at the ball (i.e. French Guiana).
Andrew, happy to reach the end of Kaw Road, where most of the collection took place.
Marty and Julia bonding over pâté.
Isaac, the bug man, showing off his new friend, a tarantula!
Logs on logs on logs on logs.
David Bowe the caterpillar.
Close-up on tarantula friend.
Cool bug alert!! Although this bug looks like a leaf, it’s actually a stick bug.
A Bullet Ant, also known as a Veinti-cuatro. This names comes from the excruciating pain you feel for at least 24 hours after it stings.
Isaac captured this Tarantula Hawk Wasp which like the Bullet Ant has a sting that rank at the top of the list of most painful insect stings.
Here Renata compares her head to the enormous hawk wasp.
Looks like a Walking Stick right? It’s actually a Jumping stick, which is a type of Grasshopper!
This guy was one of the highlights of our trip. He was nice enough to smile at the camera.
Renata was so happy to be able to see her favorite animal in the wild, a sloth!!
Spoty, the youngest resident dog.
Rex the oldest resident dogs. He was always up for a good back scratch.
Flecky looking on as Julia and Isaac dissect flowers.
A bleph egg attached to the inside of a spinulosa flower.
Microscope picture of a bleph pupa.
Wasp larva inside of a bleph pupa. PARASITISM!!
Isaac, the dissector extraordinaire!
Julia, in her natural habitat.
Getting some work done before we go into the field for the day.