Field Biology Quarter

FBQ Winter 2019 - Cocha Cashu Biological Station, Manú National Park, Peru

Instructors: Dr. Greg Grether , Dr. Debra Shier

In Winter 2019, the “field” will be the premier Amazonian rainforest site, Cocha Cashu Biological Station, in Manú National Park, Peru. Cocha Cashu was established in 1969 and has been under the management of the San Diego Zoo since 2011. The species list includes 15 species of monkeys, 17 mammalian carnivores, including 6 species of cats, over 500 species of birds, 82 species of amphibians, over 1000 species of plants, etc. In short, the site has incredible biological diversity. Cocha Cashu also has a well-designed but rustic infrastructure, with tent platforms, showers, dining facilities, library, water purification system, satellite-based communication system, etc. For more information on Cocha Cashu, go to

Courses and Instructors:
EE Biol 132 – Field Behavioral Ecology (8 units) – Dr. Greg Grether
EE Biol 151B – Field Conservation Biology (8 units) – Dr. Debra Shier

The 16 upper division units of coursework fulfills the field quarter requirement for Ecology, Behavior, and Evolution (EBE) majors, 4 major courses for the Biology major, and fulfills 16 units of the Conservation Biology minor elective requirement. Qualified students in other majors and departments are welcome to apply.

Prerequisites and recommended courses: Prerequisites for the FBQ are Life Sciences 1, EE Biol 100, or an equivalent course in animal ecology and behavior. We also recommend that applicants take (1) one year of math and physics, (2) a course in statistics, and (3) one or more of following EE Biol courses: 129 (Animal Behavior); 126 (Behavioral Ecology); 122 (Ecology); 120 (Evolution); 116 (Conservation Biology); 114 (Ornithology); 113 (Herpetology); 112 (Ichthyology); and 115 (Mammalogy). EE Biol 126, 129 and 116 are the most directly relevant courses for this FBQ.

Cost: Besides normal registration fees and tuition, there will be a mandatory student contribution to defray costs associated with the trip (travel, lodging, food, and supplies). The student contribution for of the Winter 2019 trip remains to be determined but is estimated at $2000. Scholarships are available for students with financial needs (inquire in the EEB Undergrad Office). All students are encouraged to apply.

Students will be expected to update their passports and immunizations, as needed, and to bring certain personal items along on the trip (suitable clothing, toiletries, compass, flashlight, etc.). If you are accepted, a non-refundable deposit of $500 will be due after the interview process is complete.

Application deadline and procedure: Applications will be accepted until Friday, March 16th, 2018. Find the application form using this link:

A subset of applicants will be invited for interviews during spring quarter 2018. Enrollment is capped at 15 students.