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Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute Oral History Interviews

Creator::
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Extent:
1 audiotape (Reference copy).
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Audiotapes
Transcripts
Place:
Panama
Panama -- Social life and customs
Barro Colorado Island (Panama)
Panama -- Description and travel
Date:
1990
Introduction:
The Smithsonian Institution Archives began its Oral History Program in 1973. The purpose of the program is to supplement the written documentation of the Archives' record and manuscript collections with an Oral History Collection, focusing on the history of the Institution, research by its scholars, and contributions of its staff. Program staff conduct interviews with current and retired Smithsonian staff and others who have made significant contributions to the Institution. There are also interviews conducted by researchers or students on topics related to the history of the Smithsonian or the holdings of the Smithsonian Institution Archives.

STRI staff who lived on Barro Colorado Island and raised their families in this unique environment were interviewed as a group to capture what life was like living and and working in this remote tropical location.
Descriptive Entry:
This interview by Pamela M. Henson, historian, Smithsonian Institution Archives, was recorded at the Rands' home in Gamboa, Panama, and documented reminiscences of former colleagues, students, visitors, and staff at STRI from the late 1950s to 1990, including experiences with ants (Paraponera), snakes, food, beer, long-term residence on Barro Colorado Island, increasing institutional management of STRI in recent years, laundry, pets, and children.

This collection is comprised of one interview session, totaling approximately 1.0 hour of recording and 40 pages of transcript.
Historical Note:
Many Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) staff live on Barro Colorado Island (BCI), an island located in Gatun Lake, part of the Panama Canal watershed. In 1923, the island was set aside as a nature reserve and site for research in tropical biology. The BCI Research Station was run by a consortium of universities and government agencies in its early years. Called the Canal Zone Biological Area (CZBA), it was transferred to the Smithsonian Institution in 1946 and was renamed the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in 1966.

This group interview documents life on the island from the perspective of five residents, Brian C. Bock, A. Stanley Rand, Patricia Rand, Nicholas D. Smythe, and Tanis Smythe. A. Stanley Rand received his Ph.D. in biology from Harvard University in 1961. After working with Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology and the Secretary of Agriculture in Brazil, he began working at STRI in 1964 as a herpetologist. From 1974 to 1979, Rand served as Assistant Director, and he was appointed Senior Biologist in 1979. His interest in the behavior and ecology of reptiles and amphibians led to pioneering studies of frog communications. Patricia Rand came to live on the island with her husband in 1964 and raised their family there. She conducted research and prepared exhibits on the history of BCI.

Nicholas D. Smythe received his Ph.D. in biology from the University of Maryland in 1970. He began working at STRI the same year to develop baseline studies of the rainforest for the Environmental Sciences Program. His research interests centered on frugivorous mammals, and during the 1980s Smythe began a domestication program for the paca, a species of cavy, which is an excellent source of protein and can be raised on forest by-products. Smythe's goal was a large scale paca industry which would prevent further destruction of the rainforest. Tanis Smythe took up residence on BCI with her husband in 1970 and also worked in the STRI library. Brian Bock, a herpetologist at the University of Tennessee, was a visiting scientist in STRI's Biology Program and worked at STRI with the iguana biology and management project.
Rights:
Restricted. Contact SIHistory@si.edu to request permission.
Topic:
Tropical biology  Search this
Conservation of natural resources  Search this
Herpetologists  Search this
Women -- History  Search this
Oral history  Search this
Interviews  Search this
Paca  Search this
Genre/Form:
Audiotapes
Transcripts
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 9580, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute Oral History Interviews
Identifier:
Record Unit 9580
See more items in:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute Oral History Interviews
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-faru9580

Gilberto Ocana Oral History Interview

Creator::
Ocana, Gilberto, interviewee  Search this
Extent:
2 audiotapes (Reference copies).
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Audiotapes
Transcripts
Place:
Barro Colorado Nature Monument (Panama)
Barro Colorado Island (Panama)
Panama
Date:
1989
Introduction:
The Smithsonian Institution Archives began its Oral History Program in 1973. The purpose of the program is to supplement the written documentation of the Archives' record and manuscript collections with an Oral History Collection, focusing on the history of the Institution, research by its scholars, and contributions of its staff. Program staff conduct interviews with current and retired Smithsonian staff and others who have made significant contributions to the Institution. There are also interviews conducted by researchers or students on topics related to the history of the Smithsonian or the holdings of the Smithsonian Institution Archives.

Ocana was interviewed for the Smithsonian Institution Archives Oral History Collection because of his research career in agronomy in Panama, as a professor at the University of Panama and researcher and administrator at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama.
Descriptive Entry:
This interview of Ocana by Pamela M. Henson of Smithsonian Institution Archives discusses his family, education, work as an agronomist and professor in Panama, and career at STRI, especially his agriforestry project. The collection consists of 2.5 hours of audiotape recordings and 34 pages of transcript. For a videotaped interview of Ocana at the site of the agriforestry project on Gigante Peninsula, see Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 9553, Conservation of Endangered Species Videohistory Interviews.
Historical Note:
Gilberto Ocana (1931-2004), agronomist specializing in tropical flora, received the B.S. from the Ecole Nationale d'Agriculture in Alger, Algeria, in 1955. From 1955 to 1960, he served on the staff of the Servicio Interamericano de Cooperacion Agricola en Panama and taught at the Agricultural School of the University of Panama from 1961 to 1963. In 1967, he received the Ph.D. in plant pathology from the University of California at Riverside. He then returned to the University of Panama, serving as Dean as well as Professor of Agronomy. In 1980, he joined the staff of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) as manager of the Barro Colorado Nature Monument, a nature preserve consisting of Barro Colorado Island and its surrounding peninsulas. While at STRI, he developed an experimental farm at Las Pavas on the Gigante Peninsula that would restore soils destroyed by cattle grazing and provide a comfortable income for small farmers. He retired from STRI in 1993.
Rights:
Restricted. Contact SIHistory@si.edu to request permission.
Topic:
Conservation of natural resources  Search this
Tropical biology  Search this
Agronomy  Search this
Sustainable agriculture  Search this
Genre/Form:
Audiotapes
Transcripts
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 9576, Gilberto Ocana Oral History Interview
Identifier:
Record Unit 9576
See more items in:
Gilberto Ocana Oral History Interview
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-faru9576

A. Stanley Rand Oral History Interviews

Creator::
Rand, A. Stanley (Austin Stanley), 1932-2005, interviewee  Search this
Extent:
4 audiotapes (Reference copy).
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Audiotapes
Transcripts
Place:
Barro Colorado Island (Panama)
Panama
Brazil
Date:
1986, 1989-1990
Introduction:
The Smithsonian Institution Archives began its Oral History Program in 1973. The purpose of the program is to supplement the written documentation of the Archives' record and manuscript collections with an Oral History Collection, focusing on the history of the Institution, research by its scholars, and contributions of its staff. Program staff conduct interviews with current and retired Smithsonian staff and others who have made significant contributions to the Institution. There are also interviews conducted by researchers or students on topics related to the history of the Smithsonian or the holdings of the Smithsonian Institution Archives.

Austin Stanley Rand was interviewed for the Oral History Collection because of his distinguished scientific career, and long tenure at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute as both researcher and administrator. Additional interviews of Rand can be found in Record Unit 9580, Barro Colorado Island Group Oral History Interview, and Record Unit 9553, Conservation of Endangered Species Videohistory Interviews. Additional information about Rand can be found in the Records of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and the A. Stanley Rand Papers which are also housed in Smithsonian Institution Archives.
Descriptive Entry:
The Austin Stanley Rand Interviews were conducted during three sessions from December 1986 through June 1990. The first interview was in December 1986 by Daryl Jones, a student at the University of Maryland; the second, in April 1989 by Smithsonian Institution Archives historian, Pamela M. Henson, and Joel Bartholemew Hagen, a Smithsonian postdoctoral fellow; and the third, in June 1990 by Pamela Henson. They consist of 3.5 hours of audiotape and audio cassette recordings and 81 pages of transcript

The Austin Stanley Rand Interviews discuss his background, education and early interest in zoology; career at STRI; recollections of colleagues and life on Barro Colorado Island (BCI), including Martin Humphrey Moynihan, Neal Griffith Smith, and Dagmar I. Werner; discussions of his and his colleagues' major research interests; STRI's regional role; and changes at STRI over the years.
Historical Note:
Austin Stanley Rand (1932-2005), was a herpetologist and Senior Biologist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI). He was born on September 29, 1932, in Seneca Falls, New York. He received his B.A. in zoology from DePauw University in 1955, served in the U.S. Army from 1955-1957, and received his Ph.D. in Biology from Harvard University in 1961. In 1961 he married Patricia Rand, and they had three children, Hugh, Margaret and Katherine.

Rand began his scientific career in 1950, when he worked three summers as an Assistant in the Division of Amphibians and Reptiles at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois. In 1957, he worked as an Assistant in the Division of Mammals at the Field Museum. Upon completing his Ph.D., Rand served as a Research Assistant in Herpetology at the Museum of Comparative Zoology (MCZ) at Harvard University from 1961-1962, and as a Zoologist for the Secretary of Agriculture in Sa Paulo, Brazil from 1962-1964. Rand first arrived at STRI in 1964 as a herpetologist. From 1973-1979, Rand also served as Coordinator of the Tropical Program of the Smithsonian's Environmental Sciences Program, coordinating research projects on marine and terrestrial monitoring. In 1974, Rand was appointed STRI's Assistant Director, with special responsibilities for the operation of the Barro Colorado Island field station, as well as budget and planning for STRI. In 1979, he was appointed Senior Biologist, a position which he held until his death. In 1988, he also became responsible for coordinating scientific activities at STRI's facilities in Gamboa, Panama. At STRI, Rand supervised graduate student and postdoctoral research, and consulted for the Panamanian government as requested.

Rand's research interests were primarily in studies of the behavior and ecology of tropical reptiles and amphibians, particularly social behavior and vocal communication in lizards (Iguana iguana and Anolis limifrons) and Tungara frogs (Physalaemus pustulosus). His major field work included a month or more in Brazil, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Jamaica, Haiti, Panama, Puerto Rico, St. Kitts, Santo Domingo, and Venezuela, as well as shorter visits elsewhere. He was a prolific producer of articles, both alone and as co-author, and both organized and participated in various symposia.

Rand was a member of various professional societies, including the American Society of Naturalists, the Society for the Study of Evolution, the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, the Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles, Association for Tropical Biology, Herpetologist's League, and Animal Behavior Society.
Topic:
Tropical biology  Search this
Herpetology  Search this
Interviews  Search this
Oral history  Search this
Amphibians  Search this
Frogs  Search this
Herpetologists  Search this
Anura  Search this
Iguanas  Search this
Genre/Form:
Audiotapes
Transcripts
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 9579, A. Stanley Rand Oral History Interviews
Identifier:
Record Unit 9579
See more items in:
A. Stanley Rand Oral History Interviews
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-faru9579

Join the longest conversation in tropical biology

Creator:
Smithsonian Insider  Search this
Type:
Blog posts
Smithsonian staff publications
Conversations and talks
Blog posts
Published Date:
Thu, 27 Mar 2014 01:37:55 +0000
Topic:
Science  Search this
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Smithsonian Insider
Data Source:
Smithsonian Insider
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:posts_5efbf9572606e0453af60cf857928e21

Tunicados

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2014-07-21T14:27:11.000Z
YouTube Category:
Film & Animation  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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BRSenespanol
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
BRSenespanol
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_8CPIE2WWJ84

Aprendiendo acerca de algas marinas

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-06-29T15:56:00.000Z
YouTube Category:
Education  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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BRSenespanol
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
BRSenespanol
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_N3pCjaE8gyc

Nido de Benteveo Real en Bocas del Toro

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-07-09T19:51:51.000Z
YouTube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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BRSenespanol
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
BRSenespanol
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_uMpgL_YGZnM

Nerita scabricosta larvae

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
Conversations and talks
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-02-02T14:46:45.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
See more by:
collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_0URP_IyTf34

Visualizing Flow Through the Mantle Cavity in a Slipper Snail

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-11-12T15:49:16.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_1ET6hOexVCY

Dolabrifera dolabrifera

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2014-10-17T22:11:01.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
See more by:
collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_1rNZbQtGDxo

Echinoderm larvae - Sea Cucumbers and Brittle Stars

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2014-04-19T16:37:06.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_3p37SvW9mso

Yellow-Crowned Amazon Parrot

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-12-14T21:00:21.000Z
YouTube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_9dNWNptEUvc

How to Spawn a Sea Urchin

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2014-09-06T14:11:06.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_EwFbicPFwis

Lophophorate larvae from Bocas del Toro, Panama.

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2014-04-17T01:51:11.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_KcEyR_DuEuo

Pseudosphinx tetrio Caterpillars

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-09-10T17:22:29.000Z
YouTube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_P0KBFp9Upno

How to do a plankton tow

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2013-09-02T21:23:47.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_P39xWGCf3cI

Exploring the Intertidal, Part 1: Sandy Beach

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-03-28T16:47:59.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_QHEWmMOhzt0

Exploring the Intertidal, Part 2: Rocky Shore

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2012-03-28T20:24:00.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_QKLXz_YZqOE

Moon Snail (sp. Natica) Egg Case Part 2: Hatching and Larvae

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2013-08-02T17:36:44.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_SEX2JjXJ90I

Pilidium, the larvae of nemertean worms

Creator:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute  Search this
Type:
YouTube Videos
Uploaded:
2013-01-02T19:35:21.000Z
YouTube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
Topic:
Tropics;Biology  Search this
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collinlabpanama
Data Source:
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
YouTube Channel:
collinlabpanama
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_UJpy0EeJrBk

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