HOTSPOT: Tropical Andes [Bolivia]

Please note that you can navigate to subtopics by clicking on a slideshow photo above.

Bolivians are probably the people most in love with their country and their culture that I have met. That is extraordinary, when you consider that Bolivia is incredibly ethnically diverse, containing about 36 indigenous groups. How peoples with such distinct histories and traditions can come together to warmly embrace Bolivian [pluri]nationhood I find incredible, on the basis of the failure to do so in so many other parts of the world.

climbing the road to the archaeological ruins of El Fuerte Samaipata

Bolivians love Bolivia. So they love to travel IN Bolivia if they have resources. And who wouldn’t love to do so? In a globally relatively modest-sized country, Bolivia contains drastic contrasts and variety. The Tropical Andes pass through the heart of the nation, rising to snow-covered rocky peaks and creating humid, lush valleys. Swamps, deserts, salt flats, savannahs… Bolivia has it all. Due to so many elevations and climates, Bolivia’s biological heterogeneity mirrors its topographic heterogeneity. Bolivia contains 4 biomes, 46 ecoregions, and 190 ecosystems.

Within Bolivia, Salvi Muller and I collected material together for a documentary about the interdependence of biological and cultural diversity in Bolivia. Therefore, I was able to travel extensively within Bolivia. My time within Bolivia was spent recording around the following locations: La Paz, Madidi National Park, Salar de Uyuni and its adjacent protected lands, Samaipata, the Rio Grand basin, Potosi, with a side-trip to Cusco and Machu Picchu.

Click here to see all my photos from Bolivia.


  • Lynn


    i’m a biology student from Germany and i’m looking for an internship/position as field assistant or the like for the a couple of months after completing my bachelor studies and before beginning my masters (from around mid-April till September) I’d really like to find something in South or Central America.

    Do you perhaps know of any open positions or people i could contact?

    I’m interested in anything involving conservation biology, ecology and biodiversity – everything from field studies to molecular lab work. My final bachelor project will focus on ecology and evolution in dragonflies and involve barcoding and community structure analysis.

    I would be really happy to hear from you and hopefully get some tips :-)

    With kind regards,

    October 14, 2014
    • Emma


      Thanks for writing! I’ve already chosen my field assistants for this season, but I’d recommend checking out job boards on sites like
      >Animal Behavioural Society
      >Orithological Society of North America
      >Society of Conservation Biology
      >Volunteer Latin America…

      I don’t know anyone who’s right at this moment looking for a field assistant, so sorry I can’t be more specifically helpful!


      October 16, 2014
  • Lynn

    Thank you very much, Emma! I’ll check out the websites right away :-)

    October 20, 2014

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