A Summer in Southeast Alaska

Greetings from Colorado! My name is Amber, and I am ecstatic to be part of the acoustic ecology research team in Alaska this summer! To introduce myself, I will start by listing three things I am passionate about: chocolate, wildlife conservation, and chasing my wildest dreams wherever they may lead. I am originally from North Carolina, but have spent the last several years traveling North America working as a wildlife technician. From the windswept prairies of Kansas, to the arid desert southwest, and to the parklands of southern Manitoba, I have participated in many research projects and have gained some incredible experience. I have learned a great deal about not only wildlife and natural resource management, but also about myself and about people in general.

I am also passionate about sharing my love of nature with others, as I believe this is one way we can conjure interest in and devotion to our natural world. I enjoy accomplishing this through nature photography, and wish I currently had more time to dedicate to this cause. It is relatively easy to grab peoples’ attention through photos, and it is my goal to capture images that will increase awareness and instill concern for nature within their hearts. Below is a photo I took several years ago on the plains of North Dakota. It isn’t the greatest quality, but still one of my all time favorites.North Dakota sunrise

My past fieldwork endeavors have been primarily avian focused, so I am excited to be working with marine mammals during the upcoming season. I have always dreamed of working with such incredible animals. I feel as though I have much to learn from Miche and others on the crew, and am eager to conduct my own independent research project. I have not decided exactly what this will entail yet, but I am determined to produce results that will be of value and will increase our understanding of humpback whale ecology and associated management implications.

Camping in the rain for an entire summer will be a new experience for me, but I am certainly looking forward to spending a few months “off the grid.” I try to accomplish this as often as possible, but taking online courses requires me to remain somewhat close to an internet source (and the hordes of human beings associated with such places). Alaska is new to me as well, and I hope to take some photos that I can share with the rest of the world once the season is over. I am also eager to gain experience in the world of acoustic ecology. I look forward to acquiring a deeper understanding about the knowledge we are able to gain from such technology, and the insights it will provide into these animal’s lives.

Well, I guess that is me in a nutshell. I look forward to meeting some incredible people this summer, exploring a beautiful part of the world, and conducting valuable research with some amazing animals.  Here’s to the best field season yet!



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