When you are studying the diversity of a group as poorly known as jumping spiders, you feel that any moment not out in the field could mean that you miss finding something, which could mean that species will never be known. This means that I tend to have long hours in the field, constrained primarily by daylight hours, and long hours in the evening processing specimens. This is my excuse for not having blogged our field work so far, which started when Heather Proctor and I arrived to Puerto Vallarta on 4 February. We have been very busy since.
Here is our Puerto Vallarta team, from right to left: Fabio Cupul, Heather Proctor, myself, and Isabel Navarro. Fabio is a professor at the Centro Universitario de la Costa, a campus of the Universidad de Guadalajara. One thing you learn quickly is that the success or failure of a field expedition often depends on the help of local experts who know the area. This has been true of our trip; Fabio has very generously helped with our days in Puerto Vallarta, showing us interesting habitats and supporting us logistically. Isabel Navarro is Fabio’s student, and is just starting with research on spiders. She is excellent at finding jumping spiders.
In the next few posts I’ll tell you what we’ve found over the first few days in and around Puerto Vallarta.