In the Sand County Almanac, Aldo Leopold writes: “One of the penalties of an ecological education is that one lives alone in a world of wounds. Much of the damage inflicted on land is quite invisible to laymen. An ecologist must either harden his shell and make believe that the consequences of science are none of his business, or he must be the doctor who sees the marks of death in a community that believes itself well and does not want to be told otherwise”
As an interdisciplinary conservation scientist I see our world full of ecological and social wounds. Ecosystems around the world are under threat and many communities are struggling to make ends meet. These two wounded worlds intersect where societies rely on natural resources and ecosystems that are over utilised, poorly managed or under pressure from global threats such as climate change.
I am currently studying for a PhD at the University of Oxford. My project focuses on human-carnivore conflict in Ruaha National Park, Tanzania. I am looking at how negative attitudes towards carnivores are created in the villages surrounding the park and how these attitudes translate into retaliatory behaviour. I will also be modelling the wider impact of different retaliatory behaviour against carnivores on other wildlife and how this may feedback into the human-carnivore conflict system, for instance will lethal control of lions result in more herbivores and an increase in crop raiding?
This blog documents my thoughts, stories and pictures as I navigate my PhD and try to understand and solve some of the illnesses our world faces.
I’ll also be using this blog to share some of my natural history photography, so hopefully I can also share some of the beautiful and healthy parts of the world I come across as well.