Meet our science team

Carlos Morochz

Scientific Research Director

Carlos Morochz joined the Mashpi team in 2010 as Resident Biologist to head up conservation and investigation projects, freshly graduated from San Francisco de Quito University. His ground-breaking discoveries in the reserve include important observations of behaviour and locations of lekking bird species, the umbrella bird, and of the cock of the rock, among others.

In order to find these places he camped for three months, getting familiarized with the 1,300 hectares of the reserve. This broadened his knowledge in ecology and species behaviour as well as their interactions and the forest complexities.

These findings and the initial inventories of mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles helped him design many of Mashpi Lodge’s attractions and research programs.

Two more projects involved the construction of insectaries for breeding butterflies for a long term program (see Life Centre), and the camera trap project which has led to interesting threatened-species findings.

These projects cultivated the importance of research and enriching the lodge’s knowledge in order to teach local communities, our guests and public in general the importance of preserving what’s left of our forest for our future generations.

Currently he leads the research department in collaboration with universities being a participant, designer and leader of different research projects.His latest discoveries and descriptions are two new species of amphibians and a Magnolia Tree.

Andrea Tapia

Entomology Laboratory Coordinator

Andrea was born in Quito but she spent most of her childhood in the highlands of the central Andes in Ecuador, where her passion for nature developed. After being surrounded by nature her entire life she decided to study her BSc. in Biology at Quito’s San Francisco University.

Following her degree in Quito, she attended Melbourne University where she received a Master’s in Environmental Conservation and Restoration and worked with aquatic macroinvertebrates in rivers in Central Victoria, Australia.

Her interest and passion for Ecuadorian ecosystems took her back to her country, where she is applying her knowledge to develop new research projects that will provide us more information about the extraordinary forest in the Mashpi Reserve.

Anderson Medina

Research Assistant

Anderson started his journey as a research assistant at a young age as a member of the Mashpi Reserve team. He was born in Pachijal a small town near the Reserve and he has always been interested in nature. His experience and knowledge of the forest has been invaluable for many research projects.

He is currently leading the long-term Butterfly Project which is looking at butterflies’ diversity and the efficacy of different baits used in butterfly traps.

Additionally, he participated in the field work and data analysis of the camera trap project developed in the reserve.

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