I’ve just returned from an Applied Tropical Ecology field course held at McGill’s Bellairs Institute in Barbados. After our orientation we spent a day with each of the three professors, studying their specialties (molecular biology, seagrass ecosystems, and oceanography). Then we had a couple of days touring around the island, and then we had a week to work on our independent projects. My group studied the Giant African snail, which was fascinating but also a bit sickening by the end. There were also several more excursions scattered throughout that week. By the end of the trip we had been to the rugged cliffs of the North Point, observed monkeys in the Welchman Hall Gully rainforest, watched sugar cane be crushed to make rum at St. Nicholas Abbey, eaten delicious fish and bought souvenirs at Oistins fish market, spent an evening attempting to see leatherback turtles on the east coast (and watched a relocation of a nest of leatherback eggs instead), helped halksbill turtle hatchlings make their way to the sea, and snorkelled for hours with the dazzling array of fish on the reef. Here are a few photos from those amazing two weeks.