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Workshop on Epiphytes culminates with research agreement

Alfredo Saldana and Gerhard Zotz

A network of researchers will be formed with international projections

"Between 7 and 8 December the first workshop of epiphytes and climber plants in Chile took place at Katalapi Park. The meeting was attended by 21 participants (including researchers, postdocs and graduate students) from around the UdeC , UACH , ULS and UCT . The workshop was coordinated by Dr. Alfredo Saldaña (UdeC) , and sponsored by the Direccion de Postgrado (UdeC) and Mecesup Project UCO 0708 . In this workshop, we were privileged to have the participation of Prof. Dr. Gerhard Zotz (Carl von Ossietzky Universität , Oldenburg , Germany ), an internationally recognized expert in epiphytes. As a result of the meeting and thanks we shared our knowledge about these functional groups. We decided to join an international network of research collaboration ( Epinet ), which seeks to formulate new research questions in the fields of ecology , ecophysiology, and conservation of these groups, at a more integrative and spatial larger scale. To this end and following the meeting, we began to plan a collaboration strategy that addresses the challenge of responding these questions (eg what environmental factors limit the distribution of epiphytes in temperate ecosystems?). The collaborative network will not only focus on epiphytes , but also climbers, lianas, and parasites , as these life forms share a similar habitat and generally have been little studied . Dr. Saldaña will coordinate the research plan and  network. Interested persons may contact him at "



The IX Summer Colloquium on Plant Ecophysiology will be held in Katalapi

January 18-20, 2014
The full final program is now available
As usual, the International Summer Colloquium on Plant Ecophysiology be held from 18 to 20 January 2014 . This event consists of lectures, panel discussions, short scientific presentations, and social events to facilitate knowledge and discussion among participants. The conference will be highlighted by a number of guest speakers: Hans Lambers (Australia), Michael Shane (Australia), Jaume Flexas (Spain), Dana Bergstrom (Australia), Robert Turgeon (USA), Marilyn Ball (Australia), Rafael Oliveira (Brazil) , Frida Piper (Chile), and Franςois Teste (Australia). The topics of their lectures are in the general program, which can be downloaded from this page. In addition, there will be presentations of short communications, a panel discussion on the development of Plant Ecophysiology in Chile, and numerous instances to allow discussion. Those interested in participating can write directly to the organizer (, sending the title and author of the presentation.

The deadline for submission of work titles is November 30, 2013

Download Course poster

Download full Program

Download Instructions for 2014 Colloquium




New international graduate course on Plant Ecophysiology is offered in Katalapi Park

Application deadline: October 31 2013


The international graduate level course on “Ecophysiology of Plant Soil Interactions” will be offered entre from January 9-17, 2014 in Katalapi Park, Región de Los Lagos, Chile. The course is organized by Professors Luis J. Corcuera (Universidad de Concepción, Chile), Hans Lambers (UWA, Australia), Alejandra Zúñiga (Universidad Austral de Chile), and Marjorie Reyes (Universidad de La Frontera, Chile). Among invited lecturers are Jaume Flexas (Spain), Michael Shane (Australia), François Teste (Australia), Rafael Oliveira (Brazil), Dante Pinochet (Chile), Nicolás Franck (Chile), Manuel Pinto (Chile) y Frida Piper (Chile). The course includes lectures, papers presentations, and preparation of a research projects. The main language of the course will be English. Those interested in the course must send the application form and curriculum vitae before October 31, 2013. Application instructions and the application form may be downloaded from this web site (see below).  Since this is an official graduate course of Universities of Concepción, Austral de Chile, and La Frontera, those that approve the course may obtain official certificates from any of those three institutions.


Download Course brochure

Download Application instructions

Download Application Form


Poster on Crustaceans of Katalapi Park is now available

Dr Patricio de Los Ríos, Professor at Universidad Católica de Temuco visited Katalapi Park to study the presence of Crustaceans within the park. As a result of this research, Dr de Los Ríos made a poster with the most abundant species within the park. Aegla abtao and larvae of juvenile plecoptera Ephemeroptera and Plecoptera (Diamphanopsis) were founf in creeks (indicators of clean water); Hyalella chiloensis, Diptera (Nematocera and Chironomidae) were found in creeks with slow running water and small ponds within the forest.Simocephalus, Chydorus sphaericus y Eucyclops serrulatus, which are indicators of mesotrophic waters, were found in Laguna Chapito. These studies agree with data from similar protected areas in the Chilean and Argentinean Patagonia. Similarly, the species found may be typical of Chiloe Island and adjacent continental areas.

Since these species are indicator of water quality, it may be concluded that streams in Katalapi are in very clean. Dr de Los Rios will continue this work with an annual course of qualitative and quantitative variations of the species found within the park.


Nehuen School´s Study Field Trip focuses on Learning and Personal Growth

Students after a walk in the forest

A new take on "field trip entertainment", was enthusiastically embraced by juniors and teachers of Talagante´s Nehuén School (located near Santiago).   The  6 day/ 5 night visit do Katalapi Park combined travel to some of the area´s touristic highlights, with activities in Katalapi aimed at exploration, discovery, and connection with learning. During final evaluations, they emphasized that this turned out be a field trip which escaped conventions and surpassed all expectations.

Katalapi Park Environmental Education and Research Center is located centrally to some of the most traditional tourist destinations for high school field trips: Puerto Montt, Angelmó, Puerto Varas, Frutillar, Chiloé and Alerce Andino National Park. However, the objectives set for Nehuén School´s field trip aimed at creating an experience that went above and beyond conventional tourism.

“We minimized lectures, played a lot, and gave the youngsters challenges”, says Ana María Vliegenthart, the Park´s Education Director, “for example, we gave them a map and clues to discover the forest and its biodiversity, letting them come to the conclusion that they have seen true treasures. Seeing how the participants grow in enthusiasm as they discover a new universe, to share in their energy, that is priceless. We are the most thankful fof all for having had these wonderful kids with us.”

In addition to serving as a setting for activities aimed at creating a connection with nature , our Environmental Research and Education Center also served as a home base for getting to know the area´s tourist attractions. Katalapi Park has already hosted college field trips in the past, and with Nehuén School´s visit, now expands its operations to High Schools field trips, as long as they share the Center´s focus on learning and personal growth, which contrast with more traditional field trips which may focus more on conventional tourism or a collective party experience. In Katalapi´s case, we give a whole new meaning to the concept of “entertainment”. Katalapi Park also offeres programs in English for foreign institutions.

We finish by sharing some of the testimonies of this special group of students:  

·         “I believe that Katalapi´s forest was the “channel” that connected me to nature, it was a sort of teacher that shared its wisdom with me… one more companion, a magical place”.

·         “The south was a powerful energizer that stimulated all my senses, I feel I don´t want to go. The atmosphere created, each detail, the welcoming details of the place… you can´t capture it in a picture, it is all treasured in my memory. Thank You.”

·         “My study field trip was flowing with the wind, dissolving into the sea, flowering with the earth, and puryfing myself with fire… I will soon leave and I feel paused, in harmony of strength and peace. "