General botanical collections were made of the Maya Mountain
divide and along the upper slopes on the Cayo side of the
divide, from 800 m at the lowest point up to the 1130 m
at Doyle’s Delight. A total of 281 vascular plant
collections were made, including 1107 duplicate herbarium
specimens and approximately 90 living plants. These represent
about 75 families and 170 genera. Photographs were taken
of the majority of the species collected.
The beautiful palm Colpothrinax cookii was the dominant
canopy tree, but other large trees present were Ilex
sp. (Aquifoliaceae), Euterpe precatoria
(Arecaceae), Hedyosmum mexicanum (Chloranthaceae),
Clusia sp. (Clusiaceae), Cyrilla racemiflora
and Purdiea belizensis (both Cyrillaceae),
two species of Sloanea (Elaeocarpaceae), several
Euphorbiaceae, four or five species of Inga (Fabaceae),
two species of Quercus (Fagaceae), Calatola
costaricensis (Icacinaceae), several Lauraceae, Magnolia
yoroconte (Magnoliaceae), Podocarpus sp. (Podocarpaceae),
Randia matudae (Rubiaceae).
However, since trees were fairly well collected during
previous expeditions, an effort was made to collect as many
herbaceous plants, particularly epiphytes, as possible.
The common bamboo on the divide (Merostachys sp.,
Poaceae) flowered earlier in 2007 (or 2006?) and nearly
all adult plants were dead. Numerous seedlings were observed
and a few larger plants persisted. Collections of old flower
remnants were made along with several of the persisting
Based on the photographs alone, four species of epiphyte
new to Belize were found. Catopsis nitida, Werauhia
hygrometrica, Werauhia sanguinolenta (all bromeliads)
and Columnea linearis (Gesneriaceae). Another bromeliad
(Werauhia noctiflorens), which was very common
in the camp area, was described as new for science coincidentally
in September 2007 based on a collection made from Little
Quartz Ridge in 1997 and also found in Chiapas, Mexico.
Pteridophytes are also particularly rich in the area, with
many tree ferns present.
The dominant canopy
One of several species encountered.
This is a picture of a ripe fruit.
Very common in the
camp area, was described as new for science coincidentally
in September 2007 based on a collection made from
Little Quartz Ridge in 1997.
Flowered earlier in 2007 (or 2006?)
and nearly all adult plants were dead. Numerous seedlings
were observed and a few larger plants persisted. Collections
of old flower remnants were made along with several
of the persisting adult culms.
The living plants were divided between the Belize Botanic
Garden, the Belize Zoo, and Selby Botanical Gardens. All
CITES-listed live specimens (Cactaceae, Orchidaceae) were
left in Belize as Hurricane Felix caused disruptions in
government services, making it difficult to obtain CITES
permits. As of this date, the herbarium specimens are awaiting
shipment from Belize to Florida for drying and processing.
After processing, the sets will be distributed as follows:
Belize Forestry Dept., Selby Botanical Gardens, taxonomic
specialist, Missouri Botanical Garden, British Museum of
Natural History, New York Botanical Garden, Escuela Agricola
Panamericana in Honduras.
Selby Gardens is grateful to Marge Schmiel for financial
support. We wish to thank our field colleagues, particularly
Jan Meerman, for adding numerous species to our collection.
the Doyle's Delight Main Page
Colin Youngs Trainee Report
Back to top
Belize | Administrative
| Publications | Species
Lists | Projects | HOME