Thursday, 8 October 2009

Santo 2006 results

In 2006, a major expedition to Espiritu Santo island in Vanuatu was undertaken, headed up by Phillipe Bouchet and a team from the French research organisation L'Institut de recherche pour le développement, (IRD). It was named, rather originally, Santo 2006. This was a massive effort that attempted to survey a transect across Vanuatu's largest and highest island.

The idea and scheme is cool. Unfortunately though, the results from the survey have been slow in coming out and has had many people concerned that this might be another one of those major biodiversity efforts that begin with a hiss and a roar and ends with an extended whimper as people and funding agencies realise that the process of figuring out what you've found takes a lot longer and is a lot slower than is expected.

Serendipitously, thanks to a friend who is mighty keen on dragonflies, I was able to come across some of the papers that are starting to trickle out. The most recent issue of Zoosystema, one of the publications of the
Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle (MNHM), is chock full of Santo 2006 results.

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