Methods: The original experimental design was to be a series of ground samples, two from each location where it was feasible to make a collection. The weather was severe in some instances and time constraints did not allow for two samples to be collected from each site. Samples were taken from Almonds and Corals (Caribbean Lowland forest), Drake Bay Wilderness Resort (Pacific Lowland forest) and San Pedrillo (Pacific Lowland forest). Plots for sample collection were 25cm by 25cm square, but there was no depth requirement that was strictly enforced. The compost and loose soil in each plot was collected, but the underlying compacted soil was not removed for sampling. Each sample was then slowly examined and each individual insect or ground arthropod was counted and identified.
Qualitative data sets were obtained by a variety of methods. In Monteverde (Mountain Forest), Arenal Lava Flats, Mountain Paramo, and mountainous bog ecosystems researchers actively searched for insects both on the ground or flying. At La Selva station insect observations were made, but no active searching for insects was performed. Corresponding information about altitude and temperature were recorded, although in some instances no exact numerical data is available.
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