Unveil the Cloudforest

No one has studied the colibri cloudforest.

until now.

Rainforest Partnership and Principal Investigator Sean McHugh are ready to spend the next two months in Peru to conduct the first-ever mammal survey in the Colibri Cloudforest.

30 research camera stations will collect data to support the creation of: the new Bosque de Nubes de Toldopampa Regional Conservation Area, a new UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, a management plan for three conservation concession areas, and future potential projects.

You cannot protect what you do not know

A camera station is a remotely activated camera equipped with motion sensor technology used to capture photos and videos of wild animals noninvasively for field research. Camera stations are one of the most effective ways to observe animals interacting in their natural habitats.

This mammal inventory survey will support the creation of the new Bosque de Nubes de Toldopampa Regional Conservation Area, a new UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, and a management plan for three conservation concession areas in this region.

Let’s unveil new and rare mammals and discover the rich biodiversity of the Central Peru Cloudforest.

How it works

Sponsor a Camera Station

Create a custom fundraising page for your organization, friends, or family to sponsor a camera station.

Receive exclusive pictures and footage from your team’s camera station every week.

Send an Individual Gift

Individual donations fund camera stations and support the research team. They’re mammals too!

Receive photo updates from the cloudforest straight to your inbox.

 

Campaign Goals

Raise $30,000

Be part of RP’s first crowdfunding campaign and the cloudforest’s first mammal survey.

Study Colibri Cloudforest Mammals

Discover how these mammals live in the cloudforest.

Secure Wildlife Reserves

Survey data is vital for creating new conservation areas with local and regional governments.

Our Team

Sean McHugh

Principal Investigator

Sean McHugh is a scientist specializing in wildlife research, applied ecology, and conservation. He is passionate about conserving biodiversity and habitats. His work and research include predator ecology, animal behavior, habitat connectivity, mammalian diversity, land management, and protection of wild areas/hotspots. He believes that using animals as a flagship or umbrella species can provide a conservation blanket for the lesser-known but equally important organisms that depend on the same environments.

Jaz McKibben

Wildlife Photography & Videographer

Jaz McKibben has a film degree and has professional experience working as a rafting guide and underwater photographer. Her work is dedicated to documenting the beauty of natural environments in order to raise awareness for sustainable economic alternatives for people living in threatened areas. Jaz is currently based out of Pittsburgh, PA but has lived in other countries such as Indonesia, China, and Bolivia. Jaz and Sean have undertaken collaborative projects in the past and are eager to reunite in Peru this upcoming fall.

Eusebio Alanya Quiñones

Colibri Community-based Coordinator

Eusebio Alanya Quiñones is a natural leader from the Colibri Cloudforest region and will act as the coordinator for Sean and Jaz for this project. In September 2010, he joined RP as the community-based coordinator for the Colibri Cloudforest Ecotourism project. He works directly with the communities of San Antonio and Calabaza, and with RP teams in Peru and Austin. His work focuses on sustainable conservation through the creation of protected areas, coordination with different governmental entities, and engagement with engineers and specialists.

Have questions?

Say Hello!

Reach out to us with any questions you may have about our campaign and we will do our best to respond to you within 48 hours. Thank you for continually supporting the mission of protecting and conserving our beautiful rainforests.

How is RP connected with this area?

The community of San Antonio, one of our closest community partners in this region, lays on the buffer zone of Pui Pui Protection Forest, a protected area that has more than 150,000 acres of native forest.

Local initiatives, such as our partners UNCP (University of Central Peru), San Antonio Community, and Victoria SAC each have their own forest protected in a surrounding territory, protecting approximately 22,000 acres total.

What is a cloudforest?

Cloudforests are subsets of tropical rainforests; they’re located at high elevations and characterized by a persistent low-cloud level that often envelopes the landscape. They’re home to the some of the most endemic species of plants and animals in the world and but are faced with a variety external threats. Most of these threats are related to drastic changes in land cover including deforestation caused by farming, fires, selective logging, and urban encroachment.

What animals are the cameras expected to photograph?

One of the things that make camera surveys so enticing to scientists and the general public is the intrigue of not knowing what animals will pass by the cameras.

The list of potential species includes:

  • Andean/Spectacled Bear
  • Puma
  • Ocelot
  • Andean Fox Or Culpeo
  • Pampas Cat or Colocolo
  • Mountain Paca
  • Red Brocket Deer
  • White-Tailed Deer
Where will the cameras be set up?

The cameras will be set up in the Colibri Cloudforest area in the Pampa Hermosa District in Junin in Central Peru. This region hosts one of the most unique and biodiverse ecosystems in the world—the cloudforest. The cloudforest is habitat some of the most endemic species on the planet (meaning those species are found here and nowhere else).

What will this campaign fund?

Donations to this campaign are funding the mammal survey, the temporary camera stations, as well as the trip to the Colibri Cloudforest area for Sean McHugh and Jaz McKibben.

More specifically, this campaign will cover the costs of the cameras; the work of scouting, creating, and managing the 30 camera stations; any paid support and guidance from the community; equipment costs; travel, lodging; and food for the team. Campaign donations will also fund the post-fieldwork analysis.

How much does the total project cost?

With this current survey serving to provide baseline data, our goal is to raise $30,000 for this first-ever mammal survey.

However, we hope that this becomes an ongoing project that lasts for multiple years to come.

How long will this project take?

The initial phase in the field will be over two months, September to November. The camera stations will be strategically placed and checked every few days by Sean McHugh and Jaz McKibben, accompanied by Eusebio Alanya or another member of the community.

These temporary camera stations will actively take photos and short videos. Each week, our scientists will collect and analyze the data and send updates to the RP HQ in Austin.

Data including pictures, videos, and stories will be shared with supporters of the project, while special updates will be shared with those who have “adopted” a camera station.

The analysis of the immense amount of data collected during the two months of fieldwork will continue well into 2019. Post-fieldwork will include the creation of short films.