After spending two weeks at the Cook's Lake research site in Nova Scotia looking at how climate change is impacting small mammal populations I have a profound new understanding of this issue, but also several new insights about how field research is conducted and the questions that scientists wrestle with as they work to understand the natural world.
The last two days we collected all of our traps, went over the results from our data, and looked for field signs at Thomas Raddall Provincial Park, and ended with a barbeque in the rain. After things cleared up we went bat detecting, but unfortunately the conditions weren't ideal for hearing the bats in the area.
Saturday I made my way back home to San Diego, and 14 hours later I landed here in California, exhausted, informed, and inspired. Beyond the training that we received as volunteer researchers, one of the most valuable aspects of this expedition was the wonderful people that I had the opportunity to meet and work with. It's easy to just focus on the work at hand, but connecting with the people around you is always what makes any type of work rewarding.
I want to thank Earthwatch for giving me this opportunity to teach "Live from the Field", Charlene Parsons for doing double duty back home with our team, Nikki Hinostro for having the vision to allow me to go on this adventure, and most of all I would like to thank all of the students on our team who followed along, posted comments, and asked questions during the video conference; you're the best.
See you in class!
Last question: If you could go anywhere and do scientific research in the field, where would you want to go, and what would you want to study?
- Mr. Greenslate