Research + Education
Education as a pathway to connection
Our goal is to inspire and share the wonders of the natural world through the exploration of trees with students on both a local and global scale.
Through tree climbing, we are able to teach perseverance, inner strength, focus, and teamwork in the context of nature. The lessons we can learn from climbing are endless, and climbing in the forest allows for a deep personal relationship with the forest to be fostered.
Why is it important to study the canopy?
The forest canopy is a world that has been largely unexplored. It has been called by some the “last biotic frontier”. What we do know about the canopy is that it is extremely important to the health and wellbeing of the forest ecosystem as a whole. The canopy acts as a sponge, holding water and nutrients crucial to the survival of not only the plants and animals that live up there, but also to the dwellers of the forest floor. The canopy is also home to an incredible amount of biodiversity, an astonishing 1/2 of all terrestrial species! It is essential that we understand more about this key piece of the forest so that we may better protect it.
Getting up there
One reason that the canopy has been for the most part overlooked by science is because of the difficulties posed with accessing it. Using climbing techniques, we are able to safely ascend into the canopy in order to conduct research.
Our goal is to gain a better understanding of the canopy ecosystem by designing and conducting field research experiments. By gathering, analyzing, and comparing data on the plants, animals, and soil found in the canopy, we can better make sense of the role the canopy plays in the forest ecosystem.
By involving students in our research, we are enabling them to participate in real, cutting edge canopy science. This experience inspires and empowers them to know that science is something anyone can participate in and opens up an opportunity for hands on environmental education that has a lasting impact. By studying the forest, we form a relationship with it, and the more we understand about the natural world, the more invested we become in its protection.