Cambridge Columbus zoological expedition to Venezuela 1988

Christopher Sharpe

A study of the birds, dragonflies and butterflies of the Paria Peninsula National Park, Macuro. The ornithological projects included census work (88 species), and ecological and behavioural studies of several species, including 2 which may be threatened. Dragonfly studies included observation, photography and capture at several sites (81 specimens of 31 species). Butterfly studies included photography and description of a total of 90 species. The team also attempted to assess the threat from agriculture to the undisturbed habitat and its wildlife in the National Park.

Project update: 1/8/96. The team studied the birds, butterflies and dragonflies of the Paria Peninsula National Park. Two team members, Ruth Bond and Chris Sharpe, launched a further project in the area. Chris Sharpe settled in Venezuela and ran projects in Paria with the NGO Provita. He now runs the FFI Americas field programme. Since the project ended, a serious threat to the Park’s integrity has arisen: a large gas pipeline has been proposed to cross over the park with degazetting of part of the legally designated area.