Environment: Growing a Forest From Scratch

A "Muddy-Your-Boots" Biologist Tries a Unique Experiment

Daniel Janzen, 47, is a tenured professor of biology at the University of Pennsylvania, but for the past 14 years his home has been a rented, tin-roofed cabin in an isolated Central American wilderness. The location, Santa Rosa National Park on Costa Rica's Pacific coast, is ideal for his favorite pursuits: rambling across abandoned pasture, collecting seeds and caterpillars, weighing and identifying trapped mice, netting insects by night -- work he calls "muddy-your-boots biology." Janzen, in fact, spends so little time in Philadelphia that he maintains no residence there. He prefers to sleep on a cot in his university office.

Since...

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