Honduras 2015

Sponsored in part by the Shasta College Foundation
and The McConnell Foundation.


Trip expedition made possible through Operation Wallacea. An international program focused on conservation research through academic partnerships​.

         Diver Honduras.jpg     Honduras hills.jpg    Honduras frog.jpg
Images courtesy of Operation Wallacea​​

This June and July, over 50 community members from the Redding area, consisting mostly of students and educators from Shasta College, University Preparatory High School, and Shasta High School are traveling to Honduras to assist with biodiversity research in both cloud forest and coral reef ecosystems.  This amazing opportunity has been organized through Shasta College and Operation Wallacea (OpWall), an organization
that runs a series of biological and conservation management research programs in remote locations across the world.

This Shasta College course, the Natural History of the Neotropics, which includes four weeks of online learning with the two-week lab experience in Honduras is a four-credit, fully transferable course that both high school and college students can take to cover a portion of their General Education requirements in the sciences. Shasta College instructor Dr. Susannah Johnson-Fulton explains, “Students will be actively involved in collecting data that will be published in peer-reviewed journals
and will help to preserve/conserve species in these biodiverse ecosystems.” Students will gain first-hand experience in research subjects that span animal behavior, forest ecology, terrestrial invertebrates, fisheries, amphibian and reptile ecology, general marine ecology including reef systems, spatial ecology using GIS, environmental science, conservation management, and much more. Dr. Johnson-Fulton expounded on the benefit of the class and lab saying, “This experience will also greatly strengthen our students’ resumes, giving them a huge step-up in any career and/or education path they choose.”  This science-based, study abroad course is the first of many that Shasta College plans to offer, with future courses going to different locations, such as Indonesia, Madagascar, Greece, China, Peru, Dominica, Cuba, and the Galapagos. For more information on how you can be involved in next year's program as a participant or as a donor to help support students, please email Susannah Johnson-Fulton at sfulton@shastacollege.edu and/or Randy Reed at rreed@shastacollege.edu.


To help afford this amazing experience many students worked hard at a number of fundraising efforts and applied for scholarships. Special recognition and thanks go to The McConnell Foundation and the Shasta College Foundation for the substantial number of scholarships awarded to many of these students. Many of these students have also been active members of Shasta College Global Expeditions Club, a new campus club that focuses on community outreach, fundraising, and organizing hiking and backpacking trips to help prepare students for their future expeditions.

Since the group going to Honduras this summer is so large, it has been divided into two groups. One group is already in the field with Randy Reed and will return July 1
st and the second group will be leaving for Honduras with Susannah Johnson-Fulton June 29 and will return July 16. Watch for updates, photos, and videos of what these local students are experiencing in the rainforests and coastal reefs of Honduras on the following website: www.shastacollege.edu/honduras2015

Both Randy and Susannah feel very strongly about experiential education – getting students out of a classroom setting and experiencing what they are learning about first-hand. Randy Reed, an Earth Science professor at Shasta College, teaches college courses such as geology, ancient life, and oceanography. Professor Reed shares his love of earth sciences by connecting with the community and getting his students out into the field whenever possible. Susannah Johnson-Fulton has a doctorate in botany and teaches botany, biology, and natural history at Shasta College. Dr. Johnson-Fulton has traveled extensively and is passionate about the positive impact the combination of traveling internationally, making cultural connections, and learning about the natural world by conducting field work can have on individuals, especially those just figuring out who they are and what they believe in and those wanting to make a difference in the world.

Operation Wallacea (OpWall) is an organization, funded by tuition fees, that runs a series of biological and conservation management research programs in remote locations across the world. These Expedition sites  are designed with specific wildlife conservation aims in mind- from identifying areas needing protection, through implementing and assessing conservation management programs. All sites are associated with graduate and post-graduate level research and OpWall, though this program, is directly responsible for numerous invertebrate and vertebrate species discoveries. The OpWall program researchers publish in peer-reviewed journals and are associated with the United Nations Reductions in Emissions and Deforestation and Degradation (“REDD+”) whose goals are to support conservation through sustainable management of forests and the facilitation of forest carbon sequestration.​


Randy and Corina Reed.JPG
This is Randy Reed and his daughter Corina. This first series of images and videos below were taken by him during the first group's expedition to Honduras. Included are some narrative comments or explanations from him as well. 







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The view into the Merondon Mountains where Cusuco National Park is. This was what we saw this morning on the way down.  Elevation about 3000 feet but the mountain in the background is over 5000 feet.


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Staff and researchers assembled to welcome students from Shasta and around the world to the base camp established by Operation Wallacea to study biodiversity within the Cusuco National Park

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An older local man lives in this home and has the garden around his house.


The diving and sea component of the excursion were based out of Utila. Below you'll see the view of the path and port right out of the dive shop (upper right). From the port in Utila (lower right) we took the water taxi which is moored there (left side pictures) to the "Coral View" where the diving took place.

Diving_Port Utila.jpg

"Coral View" is where the scuba videos were taken



 Content Editor ‭[1]‬


​ The video above was shot by Randy Reed while the team was beginning their first scuba diving adventure.

The video below is of the coral reef. ​


 Content Editor ‭[2]‬


​~The images below this point are from the second expedition lead by Susannah Fulton. Their adventure, while similar, had a different schedule of events for a portion of the trip.  

The travel to Honduras.

Trip to Honduras.jpg


The groups briefly overlapped and were able to connect before the first group headed home and the other began their adventure.


truck travel.jpg

buenos aires.jpg


The group had a great time at the Capuca satellite camp. 

Capuca Satallite Camp.jpg

dung beetle.jpg


All images, videos and descriptions for the second Honduras expedition were uploaded by Susannah, minor alterations may have been made at the discretion of the website administrator for clarity purposes only.