Discounts on Scientific Expeditions

The Foundation for Field Research, which is seeking mature travelers for its scientific expeditions, will initiate some senior discounts for 1992.

These are not leisurely, relaxing vacations, but weeklong working expeditions.

They include such field-research projects as helping biologists compile information on wildlife, digging for fossils or artifacts and working on diving expeditions, plus dozens of other scientific ventures.

Although many are offered in California, other Western states and Mexico, expeditions can also be in Europe, Africa and the Caribbean.


What you get are well-maintained camps with accommodations in tents and three meals a day.

Over the years, thousands of mature travelers have paid to join such field trips, using them as learning experiences. Costs are tax-deductible.

The Foundation for Field Research, entering its 10th year as a tax-exempt organization, is offering a 15% discount off several 1992 expeditions for mature travelers 55 and over. These are:

--Cedros Island: Located off the Pacific coast of Mexico’s Baja California. There are four seven-day sessions in March. Participants can either help track rare mule deer on the beautiful island or participate in a fossil dig on a project funded by the National Geographic Society and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.


Cost of the weeklong sessions are $699 per person, $348 per additional week. The price includes van and boat transportation to and from San Diego, accommodations and meals in a base camp on the island. Participants will have the option of participating in both deer spotting and fossil digging.

--Historic Warner’s Ranch: East of San Diego near Warner’s Hot Springs, participants can join an archeological dig of old adobe ruins dating to 1830, when Warner’s was considered the first civilized stop for travelers entering California. There are three five-day sessions in April.

Cost for the five-day sessions are $395 per person, including van transportation from San Diego, a base tent camp, meals and research supplies.

Other Foundation for Field Research trips that mature travelers might consider:

--Elephant research in the West African country of Mali, 100 miles south of Timbuktu. Research teams will conduct an elephant census and study their diets.

A companion Mali project during the same dates, April 6-17 or April 20 to May 1, will study herbal medicines and remedies, including a study of native magic as a cure.

Cost for the elephant or medicine projects are $1,672 per person for a 14-day session.

--Rescuing the freshly laid eggs of leatherback turtles on the beaches of Michoacan, Mexico. Team members will move the eggs to protected nursery areas to save them from poachers, who sell them as aphrodisiacs. The project will run from Dec. 14 through Feb. 1 and cost $995 per person for the first week, $200 for additional weeks.


--Digging in medieval mounds in the Netherlands, helping archeologists uncover an ancient coastal village north of Amsterdam. Cost for a one-week session in June or July is $875 per person for the first week, $350 for additional weeks.

--Scuba diving on the wrecks of two early slave ships that went down off the island of Carriacou, north of Grenada in the Caribbean. Weeklong trips in July and August cost $1,325 per person.

In addition, expeditions will study prairie dog colonies in Montana, research Mayo Indian arts and handicrafts near Sonora, Mexico, research the rock-art signs of Southwestern Indian astronomers, and attempt to gauge the impact of white-water rafting on the Salmon River in Idaho.

Prices for the trips do not include transportation to the research site. However, travel expenses are tax-deductible, according to the Foundation for Field Research.

For more information on senior-discounted expeditions and a complete program of worldwide research trips, contact the Foundation for Field Research, P.O. Box 2010, Alpine, Calif. 91903, (619) 445-9264.