Review of Biodiversity Research Institute (IPBio) by Biodiversity Research Institute (IPBio) | GivingWay

Review of Biodiversity Research Institute (IPBio) by Biodiversity Research Institute (IPBio)

on 13/05/2019

3 Months at the betary reserve, the best decision ever

First of all, I have to say that my three months at the betary reserve have been amongst the best ones of my life. I was there as an amphibian researcher, but this took up less than half of my working time here, the other time I spent together with the eco volunteers. I always loved the workdays as, even though we worked on a more or less fixed week schedule, every day was new and unique in its own way. A big part of this has to do with the mindboggling nature. I think the Atlantic rainforest is greatly underestimated by the wider public. Even I had never even heard of it, Brazil’s rainforest is the Amazon right? But once I arrived here, I knew I was in my own little paradise. It was not only the visit of monkeys or the colorful butterflies everywhere, not even the hummingbirds which are flying around your head like little helicopters, it was the extreme diversity of this place. And because you are volunteering here you live in the forest and through your work you get to interact with the place like no holiday ever can. You start learning the scientific names of a variety of sighted birds, search for macroinvertebrates or just help weeding in the greenhouse. As an amphibian researcher I started getting attached to the frogs in our care and see tadpoles grow, and all of this in the name of scientific research and the conservation of this unique place. Of course, it is a non-profit organization and it doesn’t have the facilities an established university has, but we have the dedication to improvise and make it work. The living space was surprisingly comfortable with a working kitchen, a sofa and TV, the rooms have either AC od a fan and the beds are made every week. The weekend activities made the experience complete, whether it was going downriver on a boia or hiking to a cave or going to swim with dolphins in Cananeia!
I have fallen in love with this place, with the stars during the night, the people, the bioluminescent mushrooms and everything else! Leaving IPBio is definitely the hardest thing I have done in my gap year.