Governmental permits, through the Ministerio del Ambiente, are required for any investigations carried out in this country. This applies to all kinds of research even in cases when only observations are carried out and no specimens are collected. TBS administrators can help you with the acquisition of permits for your research, collection of scientific specimens, and can advise on the possibility of exportation of samples. Please follow through this section of our website to understand more about our policies regarding research as well as procedures associated wi?th your permit application.

Permitting Procedure

How to apply for permission to conduct research

Those wishing to conduct research at the Tiputini Biodiversity Station must provide the following information (see "Required Form for Scientists") and documents to with copies to and To ensure sufficient time for evaluation and processing, please allow 60 days before your expected entry date.

  • Personal Information (Name, address, cell phone number, e-mail address and fax number, health information, allergies, relevant medical conditions, personal and special needs, diet, disabilities). Same information for each assistant or volunteer.
  • Current concise version of the PI’s Curriculum Vitae including relevant information for the scientist’s home institution.
  • A letter of sponsorship or affiliation from the home institution.
  • Research proposal. This 5-page document (maximum), including title, short introduction, justification, objectives, materials (there is limited space available at the station), methodology, expected results, a reasonably faithful estimate of samples that are going to be collected (if any) as well as a time table and financial budget for the research (with beginning and ending dates). The budget is only referential and should include all parts of your research. The proposal must be presented to governmental authorities in Spanish but we can provide translation services if need be (at a cost of $8 per page).
  • Copy of passport photo page. (Pdf documents are preferred.)
  • Copy of a currently valid yellow fever vaccination record (preferably an official WHO document sent as a pdf).

What’s next

Your proposal will be submitted to the USFQ research committee for evaluation. Once approved internally, it will be submitted to the Ecuadorian government’s Ministry of the Environment for further scrutiny and processing. If your research is to be restricted to TBS and/or the Yasuní National Park, processing of the permit will occur entirely within the Orellana Province. If however, your research is intended to be comparative, involving other regions of Ecuador, you are required to apply for a separate research permit for each and every province in which you intend to work. We will assist with this procedure but are not responsible for any delays in the processing. In most typical cases, a permit can be obtained within about 2 weeks after paperwork is presented to the ministry’s regional office in Coca. The processing cost for a research permit is US$20. TBS charges a $20 handling fee to expedite this process, but we cannot guarantee time schedules for completion. This can be paid upon your arrival in the country.

Research permits are only issued for one year; if your research is expected to extend for greater periods, you must go through a renewal process each year, which involves the submission of a progress report on an annual basis along with a new proposal for the following year. Any exportation of specimens requires a separate document.

Researcher’s responsibilities

1. Once the research permit has been issued, you are responsible for reading, understanding and complying with all stipulations included therein. If specimens are to be collected, the permit will indicate where they are to be deposited definitively. You must submit a final report of your investigation and send us copies of any resulting publication(s).

2. Export permit: If you are planning to export specimens, you must submit to and a list, in this format, of all material at least one week before they leave the country. We will do our best to process the export permit by your scheduled departure date. All specimens must be presented at the park office in Coca and also at CESA for an agricultural/veterinary inspection that results in a "permiso fitosanitario". Any scientist wishing to export specimens should schedule a minimum of three working days in Quito for processing before leaving the country. If permits have not been processed and you are unable to take the specimens with you, we will mail them to you upon proper arrangement for the cost of their shipment.

3. While at the station: Before beginning your field work at TBS, you must converse with our in-camp administrator to ensure that you are not interfering with any other ongoing research activities. You are not allowed to make any new trails, use a machete, cut or collect any vegetation or capture or collect any examples of fauna before our manager has cleared you for said activities as set forth in your permitting document.